By Blanca Moreno
When it comes to the saying “seeing is believing,” people often take this too literally these days. Since the beginning of the 20th-century, people have begun rejecting the idea that there is a God that started everything we know.
Flash forward to 2019, and we have too many different theories to choose from, but recently many have been becoming more interested in the phenomenon of spirituality, crystals, and witchcraft.
On Instagram, this is something that can be found by typing in #witchcraft which has 2.9 million posts or #crystals which has 10.2 million posts, and #spirituality which has 9.4 million posts.
But like everything else in this world, there are those who like to discredit anything that another might believe in, simply because they do not understand it. For this reason, I decided to get educated on the subject.
As someone who was raised in a very religious household, but also grew up in Canada learning about evolution and being heavily interested in science, I have struggled with what to believe or where to direct my faith, and honestly, I just love the idea of crystals holding energy.
Earlier this week I had the chance to speak with Megan Vanalstine, she is a crystal expert and works at Where Faeries Live just off of Whyte Ave. Vanalstine started playing around with crystals when she was a kid, but she had no idea what kind of power they possessed, or that they would end up becoming such a big part of her journey when she was older. Vanalstine has always been a creative soul and when she was a teen she started writing a book with a shaman as the main character, this shaman character led to her interest in crystals four years ago, “I was making jewelry and wanted to develop a line of jewelry inspired by my shaman character, and that’s where I started studying stones more seriously.”
When asked about what sort of healing properties crystals have, she explains, “There are a dozen crystals for any goal. Protection, prosperity, relationships, emotional strength. But crystals (and any spell work) is not a replacement for actual work. For example, I don’t stress the healing aspect of crystals in my own work, because it’s too easy to cross the line into replacing necessary medical care for crystals. But while a crystal isn’t going to shrink a tumour, the right stone might help give the patient something to focus on during meditations so they can remain emotionally strong during treatment.”
Vanalstine is very knowledgable, and listening to her talk about these things made it very easy to understand the enchanting quality of the stones, and I love the fact she kept it very real. I asked her to share some information on five crystals, to which she responded “only five?” Unfortunately, because of how in depth her information was, I could only fit a few explanations of some of my personal favourite’s that she spoke about.
“Well, selenite is a popular crystal, because it’s a high energy stone that puts out a gentle, positive energy. It’s great for homes, but you can also use selenite to cleanse and charge other stones. People often pair selenite with black tourmaline, the most common tourmaline, as it’s a grounding and protective stone. You can set up a grid around the home, alternating black tourmaline (to block/ground negative energy) with selenite (to fill the space with positive energy.) A lot of people also wear or carry black tourmaline for its protective properties. Sodalite is a beautiful blue/white stone that’s sometimes mixed with orange. It’s a soothing stone, especially for people with anxiety issues. Very gentle but sturdy, and popular with kids. Red jasper is a stone of strength, endurance, and courage. It’s a stone you want to carry to help you carry through to your goal when the initial burst of inspiration-energy peters out,” Vanalstine explains.
When I asked Vanalstine what kind of books she would recommend for anyone who is beginning their crystal journey, she says a good place to start would be with The Beginner’s Guide to Crystals by Lisa Butterworth. She also recommends two books as crystal encyclopedia (yes, this is literally what she called them, and I’m all for it!), The Crystal Bible 1, 2, and 3 by Judy Hall, these ones she says are very informative and list the crystals in alphabetical order, which is definitely convenient when someone purchases a stone and isn’t able to capture, and remember everything the person at the shop tells you (they tend to be very in depth with their explanations, and it is a lot to take in when your shopping, especially on Whyte after a few drinks, or is that just me?)
I found Vanalstine’s explanations to be very helpful, as someone that has started collecting crystals for the past year I found that her knowledge of them made me even more interested in learning about them, as well as sharing this new found knowledge with those who claim to be debunking the power behind crystals. I mean can’t we just have something to believe in without some negative person trying to ruin it for everyone. It’s not like those who believe in crystals are saying they will cure cancer, but hey you never know right? (definitely kidding!)