Subscribe to our email list and receive discounts and special offers from Watchman
The Profile Notebook on CD-ROM $19.95!
“Take two aspirins and call me in the morning.” Though this has been a saying for many years, there are some who would rather take two crystals for their healing. Using crystals for healing has been practiced for centuries. According to J. Gordon Melton, “much of the lore of the healing power of crystals dates to the Middle Ages, from the writing of clerics such as Marbodius . . . and St. Albertus Magnus.”1 The use of crystals for healing has also been very popular among many New Age adherents for decades. A search on the Internet reveals hundreds of web sites related to the use of crystals for the purpose of healing.
Those who promote crystal healing offer an explanation as to why the crystals work: “Crystals supposedly contain the shape-induced vibrational frequencies that mystically interconnect with the earth’s and the individual’s ‘energy field.’ They are allegedly used to amplify, or realign, human ‘psychic’ or cosmic energy for various purposes.”2 Another way of saying this is that crystals are like antennas that direct energy. When the crystal is placed on one’s body, it directs the flow of energy to that person and that particular part of the body. The additional energy that flows to the person as a result of the crystal causes that person (or in New Age parlance, that “individualized cell of energy”) to experience healing as a result of a more balanced flow of energy.
In addition to the belief that crystals can direct energy, most advocates of crystal healing maintain that only certain crystals or gemstones should be used on specific focal points of the body, designated by the Hindu termchakras, in order to bring about the desired result:
Specific stones are placed upon the chakras, or spiritual energy centers, of the body. Since each one of the chakras has an associated color, generally speaking the crystals or stones reflecting that specific color would be placed upon these physical nerve plexus points.3
One chakra, called the “Third Eye,” is located on the forehead between the eyes. This chakra may be familiar to most Westerners as the spot or mark on the foreheads of many Hindus. This spot, commonly called a bindi, symbolizes the inward gaze of the Third Eye as it seeks to discover Brahman or ultimate spiritual reality. This Third Eye chakra is one of the favorite areas of crystal healers for the placing of crystals.
The teaching that crystals can actually direct energy has not gone without criticism, however:
The New Age idea that crystals can harness and direct energy seems to be based upon a misunderstanding of one of the more curious characteristics of certain crystals, namely, that they produce an electrical charge when compressed. This is known as the piezoelectric effect and was discovered in 1880 by Pierre and Jacques Curie. . . . The piezoelectric effect, however, does not give crystals healing or protective power, despite the claims of those who use and sell crystals in New Age and neo-pagan occultist shops.4
Having the right crystal is extremely important to advocates of crystal healing because they believe a crystal is more effective when its vibration matches that of the wearer. Special emphasis is placed not only on how one selects their crystal, but also on activating it to full potential and making sure it is given the proper maintenance.
Purportedly there are a number of ways to choose the right crystal. One way is by holding a crystal in one’s hand and simply feeling that it is “the right one.” Interestingly, even though most who believe in crystal power believe it is important to find the crystal that is best for them, they do not discourage the giving of crystals to others, even though it seems unlikely for one person to find “the right crystal” for someone else.
Crystal users generally believe that crystals can eventually lose their effectiveness in directing energy: “Because of crystal’s propensity for accumulating ambient ‘static’ energies in addition to various individual and environmental imbalanced vibrations, they need to be cleared and cleansed on a regular basis.”5 One of the most popular methods of doing this is to place the crystal in salt water or covering the crystal with table salt. This process is to be repeated every few months.
But clearing and cleansing aren’t the only maintenance a crystal requires. Just as a cell phone needs to be recharged after its energy has been drained, advocates of crystal healing teach that crystals must go through a recharging process. Some recharging methods include placing a crystal in a pyramid-shaped container for a few hours or directing a laser light into the crystal for several minutes.
Once a crystal has been chosen, cleared, cleansed and charged, it is time to activate the crystal. According to Randall Baer, formerly a recognized authority of crystals, “Most crystals have yet to be activated into their full energetic potential, and are presently in a state of relative dormancy. When a crystal becomes more highly activated it is able to work with a more encompassing degree of the universal energy spectrum than before. Therefore, the range and intensity of energies that flow through the crystal are correspondingly increased.”6 Some of the methods recommended for activating crystals are to take them into a blizzard or a lightning storm. It seems that the hazards of activating a crystal might outweigh whatever dubious benefits the crystal might provide!
Crystals and gemstones are not bad. God created them and we can enjoy their beauty just as we can enjoy the beauty of other things that God has created. However, when one associates some magical power with crystals and gemstones, a problem arises. This is especially true when the philosophy underlying one’s view of crystals denies the Christian understanding of God and replaces Him with a god that is an impersonal universal force or energy that can be manipulated for our purposes. As Christians, we should avoid beliefs that contradict essential Christian beliefs, and therefore spiritual discernment is vital.
Unfortunately, not all proponents of New Age healing techniques identify these techniques as New Age. Instead of referring to the mystical flow of energy on which their techniques are based as chi or prana, which would identify their practices with eastern mysticism, they often use terms such as energy or bioenergy. This ambiguity of language can lead undiscerning Christians to become involved in New Age health practices without suspecting their danger. For this reason, Christians should take the time to become informed and learn some of the many names by which these concepts and practices are known.
Not every practice presented as an option for gaining health and wellness is what it seems; some are actually far more harm than good. Randall Baer was a prominent expert on crystal healing and wrote one of the most respected books on the subject. But eventually Baer discovered the harmfulness of his involvement with crystals, and after becoming a Christian came to this conclusion:
Seeing from the eyes of a Christian now, I realize that if Jesus had wanted us to use crystals for healing or spiritual reasons, surely He would have brought up the subject clearly in His teachings. The New Testament does not show the apostle Peter, Paul, or John holding a crystal to their third eye to pray or to tune into Universal Intelligence or for any other purposes whatsoever. Crystal power applications in the New Age invariably are involved with scripturally forbidden practices, either explicitly or implicitly. This is the ultimate and irrevocable flaw. Instead of being crystals of light, they are actually yet another glossy New Age millstone.7
If you are wearing a crystal with the belief that it will in some way empower or heal you, it is time to realize that you are really wearing what Baer calls a “glossy New Age millstone.” This millstone can pull its user away from the true understanding of Almighty God and into the dangerous New Age lie.