Issue 25

Oh Don't Mine Me, I'm Just Manifesting.

Before commencing the reading of this article, you will need to gather all your crystals, assemble them into your preferred grid shape, light seven sticks of incense and drink a cup of river water that has been blessed by a druid and bathed in the light of a blue moon.

I JEST I JEST! Of course, I’m only joking. (the druid is optional!)

The following page or so will be an informal, deeply unacademic, and borderline un-journalistic account of my personal journey into the world of healing crystals.

I was an ideal candidate for the self-guinea pigging of the crystal experience as my trip down the path of spirituality and healing has been beset with obstructions and lameness. Really I just got to said path, found a nice grassy patch and sat down and had a picnic and a few cans, and it's there I languished, not quite being spiritual, but not really dismissing it with bald cynicism, until the exact moment I decided I would pursue the truth of the crystals.

So just to clarify, I knew that the crystals were there, but I have zero crystal experience. I was like a pug at a sheepdog trial,

Truth be told though, I was an ideal candidate for whatever the coloured-y stones were peddling. My mind sometimes feels at best busy (like rush hour in NYC busy), and at worst eye-wateringly chaotic (like that Thai airport when they were closing the borders at the start of the pandemic), so I was looking forward to inviting a little geologically induced zen into my hallucinogenic funfair of a life.

I started to research the ways of the stones. And by that I mean I mentioned healing crystals twice within earshot of my phone and then started getting served a tsunami of crystal accounts on instagram. This led me down a labyrinthine rabbit hole of online crystal retailers. My phone pinged rhythmically with notifications that @CrystalMavenKween was going live on IG or pulsating with mesmerising stories whereby the account owner would pan the camera seductively over their crystalline wares and let you know what was new in that week (from wherever they were getting their gear). I’m not going to lie, there was a lot of crystal scrolling done. I like shiny things and I like coloured-y things. (Honestly, yes I am that basic.)

And don’t get me started on CrystalTok, I lost a few days in there admiring a marvellous miscellany of stones in every conceivable shape you can imagine. There was spherical ones, ones shaped like hearts, wands, stars.. I even happened across crystal mickeys, which immediately sent me on the search for crystal marys, which you’ll be glad to hear were just as plentiful.

In order to level up my research, I got off the internet and toddled down to my local crystal retailer. There are now several in Dublin where I live, but my chosen one, Dervish, has been around for decades and was recently in the media due to local surprise at the queues that were forming outside it. I planned my visit to take place after I’d finished a session of laser hair removal as my clinic was nearby the shop. Catherine, my laserista, whom I adore* was asking me what I was up to for the day.

*I feel its very important to adore someone who’s traversed the landscape of your nether regions on several occasions armed with nothing other than an IPL laser gun.

I explained I was off to get myself some crystals in order to fix my life with vibrational pebbles before writing about it here. Catherine was intrigued, and we chatted more about it through a steady flow of staccato beeps as she carried out her vital work on my person ruthlessly zapping follicles beyond all recognition...

- “Oh wow” ZAP

- “That’s so interesting” ZAP

- “You should check out yer man off The Hills,- ZAP that’s what he does now. - ZAP. In fact, - ZAP - I'm pretty sure - ZAP - that’s ALL he does now - ZAP

- “Is that too strong? Will I turn it down a touch?”

Sure enough, as I walked to the shop scrolling through my phone to verify Catherine’s pertinent offering of crystal info, I discovered “Yer Man off The Hills” Spencer Pratt’s IG profile had pivoted to a full-on crystal megastore, there was even a picture of him holding a coloured rock the size of a french bulldog. (there’s also a lot of content featuring him - and I shit thee not here - luring hummingbirds to eat out of his hands, but lookit that’s another day’s completely bizarre obsession)

I digress, and wildly so. I arrive at Dervish to find the aforementioned queue very much so alive and well. There were 10 souls, including myself, and also including a man with a tattoo on the whole of his calf depicting the face of a well-known Irish footballer. The sweeping generaliser sitting beyond the desk in my mind was pleasantly surprised at the presence of someone I assumed to be outside the normal demographic of crystal practitioners, thinking it would make a nice observation until I realised he was chaperoning a tweenage daughter also in the queue, and my generaliser raced on unfettered.

The velvet rope at the entrance to the shop (no, that’s not a metaphor, there’s a red rope hemming the queue) released a mother and two daughters in a haze of excitement and nag champa smoke. The girls were simultaneously admiring their matching bracelets that were what looked like Jade. (and by that I mean, they were green, I haven’t a clue what they were). I earwigged their conversation as i waited my turn past the rope.

”did you get the card” said mum, one of the girl then rooted around in the small bag

“I’ll send you a photo” said the other girl on realising the search may be fruitless.

“Is it for adventure” replied the mum, with a genuine smile of excitement for the two girls.

Their very pure enjoyment of the experience was honestly quite infectious, and I longed to feel the same without the jaded cynicism that sometimes creeps in when you leave the door of my brain open. Then all of a sudden the rope parted for me and I was inside the little two-level shop faced with reams and reams of crystals. As mentioned earlier, I’m a soft touch for the shiny and I was suddenly paralysed by a desire for one of EVERYTHING. My mission was to get some crystals and let their energy sort my shit out and here I was at the absolute nerve-centre of the Dublin crystal universe and the vibes were pinging off me like pinballs. I was being spiritually floated through the shop on a cloud of zen while I picked up and examined dozens of crystals and squinted to read their various properties on the small cards that were taped to the front of each container. Cynical me had shed her coat at the door, I was eyebrows deep in the sea of tranquility saying things like “Oh yeah I could use a bit of the Fira Agate’s safety and security, and combine it with the hope and warmth of the citrine, that’d be just GORGE now” I was an unrecognisable cloud of woo-woo and I was loving it.

In the end, I went for two crystals I didn’t want to give in to the excessist, addictive side of me and have to make an embarrassing call to the credit union to cover my crystal haul. I just wanted a soupçon of the vibrational action, a starter pack to show me the ropes.

I got something called green flourite, because it was a nice green colour and also said it would help me focus, and also a clear quartz, which is basically like the don of the crystals. The all-seeing all-controlling, finger-in-all-the-chakras crystal. It’s like Anna Wintour, but a crystal.

I arrived home with my little baggy of crystals and suddenly didn’t know what to do. The excitement of Dervish was fading and I was aware that I didn't really know what I should do with my new pebbles of enlightenment. I toyed with consulting the internet but instead decided to consult with my dear friend Zac Krystleman* (not his real name, his real name is Billy Bunzari). Zac is a seasoned crystal aficionado and had only just this year harnessed the power of the stones when the morning after he’d written it as an intention/request to the universe while cleansing his own crystals under a full moon, he’d gotten word of the role in the company he now works at. He’d manifested his way into his dream company with the crystals, thus rendering him a card-carrying expert into how the little prophetic nuggets should be cared for.

Zac took me through various ways to utilize my crystals and also how to charge them. No one wants their crystals getting all clogged with unfulfilled intentions. I felt a little more confident after our chat and returned to my pocket geology project with a renewed confidence.

I decided to hold them in my hands while I was doing my aspirationally twice-daily transcendental meditation (a practice I’d managed to half-bake into my quasi-spiritual life like ramming a load of chocolate chips into a cookie that was already warm, but that’s a whole other edition of YOUTH). It felt nice, they were cold, they were pretty. They were smooth and they were novel. I don't know if they helped me reach a state of restful alertness with any more efficiency than before, but I was trying, and that's the main thing.

I went to sleep with them beside my bed, and when I woke up I checked if they were ok. It dawned on me that I was tending to them as one would have done with a Tamagotchi in their heyday. Full transparency, my Tamagotchis lasted about as long as a goldfish in a class of Guinness, but I tried. That day I felt positive and a bit smug. The way you do when you make a decision to do something good for yourself, but don’t actually do anything yet. That glimmering feeling of the unknown benevolent things that will come to you in the near future.

That was the start of my crystal life, about four months ago. The crystals have remained on the mantlepiece to get whipped down whenever we get the urge to meditate. Sometimes I pick up the green one (the one that invokes focus and creativity) and beg it for me to have a really killer day in work. And then with the clear quartz one, I kind of nod respectfully to it like you would seeing a garda walking down the street, and mentally say “you’re taking care of business round here yeah? Ok grand”.

Sometimes they’ve lain idle and untouched for weeks, sometimes they get a stroke on the daily for a sustained period. For Christmas, I got the boyfriend a few new ones whose properties aligned with nuances of his personality and a velvet bag for them. He got me a rather stunning ornate circular silver box with green velvet inlay in which to keep my two. (my collection had remained a duo thus far). So while the crysties (as we’d taken to calling them) weren’t always getting consistent love, they were in the fringes of consciousness enough to warrant providing them with new homes.

Let's get down to brass tacks here. Do I, an adult human woman with equal parts cynicism and open-mindedness, think that the alleged vibrational energy created by various small stones, can create an actual impact on the events in my life? Probably not. However, and this is the crucial part, I believe that the very act of inviting that level of positivity and directing your mind towards the things you want to happen, in turn makes us unconsciously flick all the dials of our life towards achieving the things we want.

We have the power to make things happen for ourselves, but sometimes we need a vehicle to direct our thoughts and actions with more fervour and focus. For some people, that’s manifestation through writing down a cosmic shopping list and asking the universe, for some it’s by executing the steps advised in Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret (no, I haven’t read it), some listen to life gurus like Tony Robbins and Tim Ferris and lads of that ilk, and for some it’s with crystals. People have used techniques like this for years to corral their thoughts into fuel for actions that will actually make things happen. I don’t think it has that much to do with the universe at all, we don’t need the universe’s help when we actually harness our own minds.

I still take down the crysties when I'm meditating, and sure as shit i’ll take down the green one at some stage in the next few days and implore it to bring some focus to the Jackson Pollock painting that I call a brain. But if I get the focus I desire, it’s myself I’ll thank, because that was me, the crysties just gave me the ritualistic template to have a word with myself, (which I frequently need to do).

I’m not saying that my opinion is 100% right either, but rather than throw myself wildy behind an unsubstantiated claim, I’m still giving the crysties credit where due for playing a part in people taking the steps to make some space for their own thoughts and intentions, a make very positive changes in their lives, but more in a symbolic way, than a vibrational one.

So don’t sweat the sparkly stuff, if you’re a believer, then keep those bad boys charged and keep that good energy blowtorching into your chakras, if you’re not, sure lookit, you do you honey, and don’t hate. My verdict is overwhelmingly positive of the crystal life. Keep the stones to hand and do with them as you please because there can be no malice in the habit of drawing positive thoughts and intentions into the world through your own mind, even if you’re of the belief that the crystals are doing all the work. The human mind is a powerful entity, but that fact sometimes takes a while for us to crystallize. And on that very much intended pun, the crystals have ended this piece.