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The Earth's record keepers - connecting us to our own energy force within.

My initiation to the world of crystals came during my advanced yoga teacher training in 2018. I was in Stratford, arriving in the stark space of the Wayne Macgregor studio at Here East just as my teacher Claire Missingham was unfolding a selection of eastern toned silk fabrics. I watched her as she carefully laid out her own selection of crystals creating a mesmerising display or coloured gems - it was like being in a sweet shop!

My first crystal was in fact the one I already had around my neck. A clear quartz pendant, the guru bead on my mandala necklace - but I just thought it was pretty. I had no idea of its' significance nor the vast selection of crystals available, their properties and ability to heal, transform, balance and guide. Nor did I have the slightest clue how to use them...this was soon to change!

The crystals that now make up my collection, whilst it's definitely not vast, have all come to me as a result of this initiation. I was further awakened (or should I say inspired), by a chance encounter with a beautiful crystal expert Olaia Lewis (she won't like that term I know, but her knowledge of and passion for the subject is such that I think she deserves this label.). Olaia and I went on to forge a friendship over crystals, coffee and cake which led us to co-create two gorgeous yoga and crystal workshops during the Summer of 2019. There is a natural alchemy between the two spheres as both are in essence, energy practices.

I now regularly use crystals to enhance my own practice; to balance my energy centres when they feel misaligned and to help me with other challenges. Firstly there is no right or wrong way to use crystals, as I'm sure Olaia would confirm. Each person who comes into contact and develops a connection with any crystals will find their own way to connect with them. Crystals have been formed over thousands of years. They are shaped by the materials they come into contact with and the pressures of the experiences they undergo, they echo the earth and hold her secret history within their magical form. They connect to our own energy in different ways and through their specific characteristics can help us to activate or channel the unseen vibrations that live within us.

Meditating with crystals is perhaps the easiest way to begin. Allow yourself to be drawn towards a crystal naturally although researching their qualities is fascinating remain open to being drawn. There are some that you might not resonate with either right now or maybe never, that's ok, there are some that will become very special to you indeed. You can hold the crystal in your hand or place it on your body or pop it down in front of you. Direct connection with the crystal may elicit vibrations that alter while you meditate. I've experienced crystals becoming warm, heavy, light or even feeling as though they are moving in my palm! The trick is really to just let these sensations flow through you without expectation - stay curious and see what arises.

Another lovely way to use crystals is to place them in your home to either bring a certain energy into a space or to absorb and neutralise any negative energy. There are specific crystals that emit energy and ones that will absorb negative vibrations or cleanse the energy field - the aura. Some crystals can also be used to purify water such as Shungite.

Tuning into your crystals might happen instantly or take a little practice. They are wisdom keepers and when you open yourself up to them they can act as assistants helping you to achieve tasks or intentions. You can give them jobs to help you with. This is particularly useful when you work with the moon phases. After you have set your intentions at each new moon, give your crystals a specific task to help you manifest your intentions. Place them with your written down intentions so they are constantly tuned into their role. The energy of your intention will be channelled through the crystal. When you take your desire to manifest and bring in the assistance of the crystals you are magnifying it's potential to come into being - the crystal becomes a focus for your intention as well as a source of energy to fuel your progress.

Crystals can also be very useful for those moments when you feel triggered. I always take either a green aventurine tumble stone or my little sparkly piece of pyrite with me when I travel, just turning it in my palm can relieve any trepidation and give me a point of reference to pull me back into the present moment. If I'm tackling something difficult and feel the need for extra strength, courage and focus, then I'll wear my fluorite necklace. I adore labradorite for meditation; when I gaze upon this stone it looks as though it actually contains the whole universe inside it. My selenite heart and candle holder are the ones I use when I need to cleanse some negativity or if I'm struggling to let go - they look and feel like liquid light and moonstones certainly help me get back in touch with my own feminine energy - I have 3 moonstone rings!

Sadly I lost my mandala necklace with the quartz pendant but the Citrine which Claire gifted to me on my training has a truly special place on the alter in the yoga studio - at the foot of Lakshmi's throne, enhancing the energy of abundance whilst I teach or practice.

I will be offering more ideas for rituals using crystals in my moon meditations as we harness and enjoy the support these Earth grown wisdom keepers' vibrations offer and recalling ancient practices were used by our ancestors to embrace their potent energy channelling alchemy. I hope you can join me very soon.

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I have a fascination with the earths gems. I would love to know more about crystals.

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