When you look at this photo do you stare at the black figure at the top? Is it intriguing or scary? Or do you walk along the crystal roadway to that enticing doorway and through to the pyramid beyond? Do you spot the dragons and other mystical beings? The owls, and sharks and angels, and… We tend to spot what we’re attuned to first and then our gaze expands. Or do you just look, letting your eyes go slightly out of focus and simply being with the crystal? That’s the mindful way. Although I admit I always look to see what is there before I tune into the crystal energy.
I’ve been particularly focused on being with the energy as I’ve been writing Crystal Mindfulness and experiencing different crystals to support the challenges that come up in life that may knock us off centre. A challenge to staying mindful has come in the publisher pushing the publication date forward into January 2017. So I’m sharing this now to help me stay in the moment and to give you a taster of how crystals can support your mindfulness.
Here’s my definition of mindfulness, but it applies equally to tuning into crystal energy:
‘The practise of mindfulness focuses your mind on what is being sensed and experienced in each moment. Noticing without forming an opinion sights, smells, sounds, textures and tastes in addition to thoughts, emotions, feelings and bodily sensations. It deepens your perceptions and switches off the tendency to chew over the past or worry about the future. But mindfulness also develops ‘skilful thought.’ Thought that is purposeful and relevant in the moment.’ [Judy Hall, Crystal Mindfulness]
This is how I opened the book:
Have you heard about mindfulness and want to practice it but find it challenging and somewhat perplexing? Do you want to have a tranquil yet dynamic, more creative and joy-filled life? To get more from every minute of every day? Then you need crystal mindfulness!
If you find it impossible to stay in the present moment and your head is full of maybe’s, you’ll always be somewhere ahead of yourself worrying about the future or back regretting the past. You may be tossing and turning at night, going over and over the events of the day – or waking up with thoughts racing through your head. Crystals help you to find physical, emotional, mental and spiritual calmness. Simply letting the past and the future be. They anchor you in the present moment and facilitate enjoying every minute.
They say write about what you know. If you’ve been reading these blogs regularly you’ll know that this is an enormous challenge for me: staying calmly in the moment. I’m a compulsive over-thinker. But I must say it’s vastly improved since I started working on the book and really focused on each moment and what each crystal brought to me. The introduction carries on:
A softly attentive mind is an essential component of mindfulness. Compulsive and over-thinking is common and breaking the cycle can be challenging. Being in a state of ‘no-mind’ is pretty impossible to achieve without prolonged training. But mindfulness doesn’t mean having ‘no mind’. It means ‘awareness in the moment.’ Having a quiet mind rather than one that is full of background chatter.
A still mind can be generated by giving your mind something on which to lightly focus such as a crystal or a crystal reflection. The energy of the crystals themselves assists. I sleep with Auralite 23 under my pillow so that my chattering mind doesn’t kick in before I’ve opened my eyes. I cherish that moment of stillness when my brain wakes up clear and calm. That’s the moment of my greatest creativity. When ideas float in unannounced and unjudged. I simply stay with them. Flowing with awareness but no haste. It is a beautiful mindful moment. You can enjoy moments like this too with your crystal friends.
Brains are rather like computers. They run on familiar programs and are subject to hitches and glitches and freezes. Our brain has checks and balances that block off wider awareness and push us along well-defined pathways. It can process up to 40 billion bits of information per second, comparing, judging and measuring. Being mind-full can also be termed mindlessness. So learning to manage that process and shut off unnecessary mind chatter is vital if you are to attune to a wider awareness. You then enter ‘empty mind’ space. Perhaps better termed ‘receptive mind’ space. This is paradoxically both still and dynamic. It contains no preconceptions, no internal agenda, no compulsions or predictions. In this space you meet each moment as it arises and respond accordingly.
Mindlessness versus mindfulness
I really wanted to stress in the book that mindfulness is not something separate and apart. It is what you are rather than what you strive to do. The ideal is to integrate all the segments of your life seamlessly. To be mindful in all things. Living each moment in your daily life to the full and then flowing onto the next. Fortunately this is easily achieved with the assistance of your crystals.
The art of living is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful drifting on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive. Alan Watts
Here’s the Auralite 23 entry from Crystal Mindfulness:
Shutting off the chattering mind
Mindfulness is only possible with a quiet mind.
Featured crystal: Auralite 23
Keywords: Stillness, serenity, silence.
Qualities: Auralite 23 is an extraordinarily complex Amethyst that paradoxically brings you to a point of complete stillness and simplicity. Composed of over twenty three different minerals in an Amethyst, Citrine and Green Quartz base Auralite 23 is more than 1.2 billion years old. It was formed at the moment when multicellular creatures first emerged on Earth. It takes you ‘back to the beginning’. Auralite 23 can be called upon for comfort and calming, especially during times of shock or distress. The crystal offers a space to breathe and relax, to let go and enjoy inner solitude. The gently soothing waves of energy remove stress and allow you to put down burdens you are carrying. If you do need to reflect on a course of action, it assists you to apply the knowledge you already have to plan and then to let go – and stop worrying.
What this crystal brings to mindfulness: Auralite 23 has the ability to shut down the constant mind chatter that so plagues people, taking you into a place of calm serenity. It effortlessly switches off the ticking clock of time that relentlessly pushes humankind on. It is particularly effective if racing thoughts prevent you from sleeping.
Crystal reflection: The clock stops. All is stillness.
Using the crystal to switch off the chattering mind: Gaze at the crystal picture with softly focused eyes. Breathe in deeply. As you breathe out follow the lines down from top to bottom, allowing your thoughts drift away into the reflection until you come to a point of stillness. Alternatively, place the crystal in the middle of your forehead when meditating or grid three around your pillow to help you sleep.
Crystal Mindfulness Watkins Publishing will be released on November 17, 2016.
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