Silent and strong, enduring and wise, storing the knowledge of the ages, much of Stone's medicine lies in its ability to remain in place for a long time, communing with the Earth, sensing all in its environment. Stone teaches us to be quiet, contemplative, patient. Stone asks us to be still and to listen. It reminds us that there are deeper places to delve than what we see on the surface. Stone reminds us that there are beings on the planet whose lives move differently than our own, but who nonetheless, move in harmonious rhythm.
Stone has lent itself to our use for millennia, for buildings and roads, for temples and as writing tablets, and for healing. It has been an integral part of the human journey. Working with Stone as an ally goes well beyond the appeal and allure of the more celebrated crystals and it is not the intent of this guidance to advise as to the healing properties of individual stones. Rather it is my intent to encourage an exploration into the spirit of Stone as a whole, the nexus from which all the luminous particularities of its members radiate. While it is lovely to work with beautiful gemstones and crystals, a fascination with them alone can obscure the deeper significance of what it is to be aligned with Stone. One can, of course, selectively purchase beautiful stones in a shop, but the simple medicine of stone is also as close as your back yard.
If there is a large boulder in your vicinity, your yard, a nearby park, or on a neighbor's land who will allow you access, try spending some time with this being. Approach with respect and ask to share in the stone's company for a while. With your eyes closed, place your hands on the stone, feel its density, its weight, its bond to the earth. Let your attention sink into the stone, into the ground. See what you feel. Does it calm you? Do you feel a sense of renewal, of energy moving? How does the surface of the stone feel? It is rough or smooth? Does it feel cool or warm?
Open your eyes and look carefully at the stone. What do you see? What color is it? What colors do you see in it? Are there flecks of other minerals in it? Soften your vision; let your focus go lax. Do you see anything in the air around the stone or on its surface? Just maintain this state for a few moments. If you don't see anything, don't fret, the act of letting go and being with is therapeutic. Just be content in the presence of this mammoth being.
Once you have spent some time with the stone in this fashion, turn around and sit down on the ground with your back to the stone. Scrunch right up next to it. Feel the ground support you, feel the strength and integrity of the stone against your back. Sink back into the stone as though you are a part of it. Just sit like this for a while, quietly, listening, sensing.
When your time with the stone is done, stand up and return gently to ordinary consciousness. Thank the stone for allowing you this time with it, for sharing its essence and its medicine.
After you have spent some time with a large representative of the Stone family, spend a little time with one a wee bit smaller. Outside, perhaps in your back yard or even your driveway if you have gravel, find a small stone that fits in the palm of your hand. With the stone's permission, pick it up and look at it carefully. Practice the same kind of seeing as you did with the boulder. Then sit somewhere comfortable for a while, close your eyes and close your hands over the stone. See what you feel and see what appears in your mind's eye. Relax your inner vision as you did your outer vision. Introduce yourself to the stone, see what answers you. Ask questions. Answers may come in words, pictures or instantaneous knowing, or they may not come at all. No worries; keep practicing. The important thing here is the communing with Stone, not the results.
If it seems appropriate and you feel you have the stone's permission to be moved, take the stone home with you and keep in a place that is harmonious so that the two of you may visit again. If you feel that the stone does not want to be moved, place it back where you found it, thank it for sharing its time with you and wish it well.
This is just a beginning in how to work with Stone in alliance and healing. Creating alliances is essential in any healing practice. The elements of the Earth are not here just for our use. Stones, to some, may seem inscrutable and non-communicative, but they are actually quite amenable to working with us in a healing way. It takes time, patience and respect to cultivate Relationship with Stone. The specifics of healing with gemstones or crystals are no different than with any other stones if there is attunement to Stone. The important component is respectful partnership.
As with all allies in nature, it is well to be mindful of a stone's origin. Minerals are greedily mined and distributed worldwide, and massive earth moving can disrupt natural energies and balances. The stones readily agree to alliance with us and the sharing of their medicine. However, we are wise to only take what we need and to find ways to give back to the stone world. Stones are the record and wisdom keepers and deserve our respect and love.
I hope you enjoy your exploration of the Stone world and that it enhances your awareness and appreciation of the natural world.
(To read about the geology and healing properties of individual stones, navigate to our Blog, which is being updated weekly with descriptions and medicine interpretations.)