Today’s post is a review of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Crystals by Karen Ryan, who was the featured practitioner in the Crystal Healing for Animals post (see also Using Crystals with Cows for tips from Karen on how to use healing crystals in barns).
Karen is the founder of The Crystal Tiger in Mississauga, Ontario and a long-time crystal healing therapist. She is also a Reiki master, Radionics Therapist, and Spiritual Aromatherapist, and teaches Reiki and crystal healing courses. This is her third book – she has previously written “How to Use Your Pyramid” and “Spiritual Aromatherapy: The Subtle Effects of Essential Oils on the Human Spirit”. Karen is also one of the contributors and our crystal healing expert here at AWG.
While I’m personally not thrilled with the “idiot’s guide” as a title (I may not know a lot about a subject, but that doesn’t make me an idiot), I do like the way these books are set up, and “Crystals” is no exception. The mostly short paragraphs, frequent itemized lists and framed “side notes” on almost every page really help to break up the text and make learning easier.
This is a great book, packed with so much information that you can’t read it in one sitting. Karen not only tells you how and why to use crystals for healing, there is also tons of scientific data and interesting facts. And I love Karen’s style of writing; it’s direct, down to earth and witty. After the first few read-throughs, I use this book as an encyclopedia, going back to it again and again to look things up.
The book is divided up into five parts:
1. All About Crystals
2. Starting your Crystal Collection
3. Healing properties of Crystals
4. Crystal Healing Techniques
5. Personal Development
Each part is divided up into several chapters, and each chapter is divided into clearly defined sections. The chapters end with a short re-cap highlighting the most important facts in that chapter, so you can make sure you didn’t miss anything essential.
The parts break down as follows:
Part 1 – An overview of, and the history and science behind, healing stones and crystals, Crystals and healing, Buying crystals
In part 1, All About Crystals, Karen talks about
- the history of crystals and crystal healing
- real vs. man-made crystals
- famous gemstones (the Hope diamond, etc.)
- the structure and energetic properties of crystals
- the difference between rocks, minerals, gemstones and crystals
- the scientific properties of healing crystals and what they mean (for example, the term “Broadcast” means the ability to send out energy patterns to be received by others, which is useful in distance healing)
- the energy and vibration of crystals
- the Buddhist classes of illness
- a quick overview and how to of meditation
- the importance of intent
- what crystal healing is and why it works
- what crystal energy healing is
- easy ways to use crystals in jewelry to heal yourself
- using crystals with Reiki and symbols
- the importance of crystals in Ayurvedic healing (and which gemstones correspond to which astrological signs)
- how and where to buy healing crystals (there is more to it than one might think)
Interesting tidbit from Part 1: There is a company called LifeGem that creates diamonds from the carbon in a lock of hair or the cremated ashes of people and pets!
Part 2 – Energy, Chakras and Crystals, Crystal healing wands, 6 essential healing crystals, Healing crystal jewelry, Feng Shui and crystals
In part two, you learn about
- meridians, chakras, chi and auras
- the importance of chakra crystal healing (and which crystals to choose)
- using chakra essential oils
- how to use crystal wands and pyramids for healing
- how to clean and charge your crystals
- the six most important healing crystals and how to use them
- how to connect with your crystals
- the many different ways to use crystals around the house
- how to wear crystal healing jewelry
- how to use crystals with Feng Shui
Interesting tidbit from Part 2: Using crystals with appliances promotes a longer life and fewer breakdowns (must try it with my computer!)
Part 3 – Selecting crystals for healing, The five “Master Healers”, Specific health conditions and crystal healing properties, Crystals and animals, Pendulums, Gem essences and Crystal water
Part three covers
- how to select and use crystals for physical, emotional and spiritual healing (there’s a whole chapter on each)
- lists of which crystal to use for a variety of health issues (chronic pain, headaches, fertility, grief, negativity, etc.), and also which body part and condition they relate to
- the five most useful healing crystals, what they do and how to use them
- which crystals to use specifically for men, women, teens, and children
- how to use crystals (and which to use for specific conditions) with animals
- using pendulums
- Devas, angels and past lives
- crystal water, gem essences, power packs and blessing salts
Interesting tidbit from Part 3: If you are drawn to a particular crystal, there is usually a reason for it. For example, Malachite helps the liver and heart, and if you find yourself attracted to it, it may be time to get your heart or liver checked.
Part 4 – Energy clearing techniques, Crystal healing layouts, Performing your first healing session
In part 4, we learn
- several different crystal healing techniques
- how to balance your chakras
- how to clean auras
- about patterns – how to arrange your crystals for different healing situations
- how to energetically clear spaces
- how to store your crystals
- how to do a crystal healing session (includes a handy worksheet)
Interesting tidbit from Part 4: Kyanite crystals are always charged and never have to be cleansed
Part 5 – Different forms of meditation and techniques, Incorporating healing crystals and gemstones in your everyday life, Crystal healing training
The last part of the book talks about
- different ways to meditate – an important part of crystal healing (and your health)
- getting to know your crystals
- using crystals every day in different ways
- how and where to learn more about crystal healing (classes, certification, etc.)
- what you can expect as you progress as a healer
Interesting tidbit from Part 5: Listening to Gregorian chants has been found to increase endorphins and ease pain.
At the end of the book, there is an alphabetical list of healing crystals, outlining what each does and how to use them, a glossary, and recommended books.
Regardless of whether you are curious about the healing power of crystals and want to give it a try on your own, or just want to be able to select the right bracelet or pendant to wear on any given day, I highly recommend this book. There truly is something for everyone in it, and I guarantee you will learn at least one or two (but probably many) new things.