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Abalone (also known as Paua Shell in New Zealand) although not a crystal or mineral, is widely used in jewellery and has its own particular healing properties.  It is a mollusc or shellfish with a beautiful, iridescent interior to its shell, which is actually created by a coating of ‘nacre’ or Mother of Pearl, and with a stunning range of colours.  Abalone has a calming energy and can be of use in emotionally charged situations; soothing the emotions and settling the spirit, whilst promoting co-operation between parties. It also promotes psychic development and intuition, and enhances creativity. Abalone resonates with the first three chakras; Root, Spleen and Sacral, but due to its gorgeous shimmering colours, it also works well with the Brow or Third Eye chakra.  Physically it is said to be of use for arthritis (osteo- and rheumatoid) and other joint problems, plus disorders of the muscles and digestive tract.

Agate  is a variety of Chalcedony which is a microcrystalline (tiny crystal) variety of Quartz. It takes its name from its prime occurrence, in Acate which is in the Ragusa Province of Sicily in Italy.  Agates are often found with distinct bands and are composed of layers of quartz, sometimes of differing colours. When it is concentrically banded it is generally referred to as ‘Agate’ (as with Blue Lace Agate) and when it is in flat layers or bands, it is generally referred to as ‘Onyx’.  It comes in a very wide variety of colours from clear to purple, pink or rose, black, yellow, brown, green, orange and blue, and some are referred to with specific names rather than just by colour, such as Blue Lace Agate, Botswana Agate and Moss Agate.

Almandine  - see Garnet for general description or Almandine Garnet subsection for metaphysical properties

Amazonite works on both the Heart and Throat chakras, opening them to aid loving communication.  It also works well with the Brow chakra, opening your, and aiding intuition.  It is super for absorbing damaging emissions from mobile phones and microwaves. It balances masculine and feminine energy (Yin and Yang) and is excellent for men wishing to get in touch with their femininity. It is known for being a very lucky stone and also as the Stone of Hope – keeping strength and hope up in difficult and trying circumstances.

Amber Although not a crystal (it’s fossilized prehistoric tree resin) Amber is widely used in crystal healing because of its beautiful, sunny, uplifting energies. It has a strong connection with the Earth and is a powerful chakra cleanser.  It has been worn to help relieve tension headaches and to relieve arthritis. In some Far Eastern countries it is referred to as the ‘Tiger Stone’; the stone which carries the soul, and therefore energies of the tiger, promoting courage and strength.  Although most often thought of as being golden, yellowy orange in colour, it can be found in a gorgeous creamy colour (sometimes referred to as Butterscotch Amber), deep reddish orange (Cognac Amber) green and also rarely, black.  Some of the most valuable and rare examples come with insect or plant inclusions – many of which are now extinct species - carrying within them that particular organisms’ energy from millions of years ago.

Amethyst (see also Quartz properties) Another firm favourite! Amethyst enhances the function of the Brow or Third Eye Chakra; protective and powerful with a high vibration. It has been used throughout the ages for its protective properties; to protect from fear, guard against bad dreams, to absorb and dispel negativity, and is favoured by healers for its ability to focus energy.  Once prized by royalty, nobility and ancient energy workers alike, nowadays, because of its ready availability it is often overlooked in favour of some of the more exotic or rarer stones. Try sitting with a piece for a while and reconnect to its endless possible uses!  

Ametrine (see also Quartz properties) A mixture of Amethyst and Citrine together in one stone.  Citrine is heated Amethyst. This process can occur naturally when part of an Amethyst cluster is exposed to ‘hot’ rocks in the earth, heating and transforming the part nearest the heat source into Citrine. The result is a crystal cluster part Amethyst, part Citrine, or Ametrine.  Unfortunately most Ametrine available commercially is produced by artificially heating one part of an Amethyst crystal; however the outcome is the same - Ametrine, and the crystal shares the properties of both Amethyst and Citrine. If you’re looking to change your life this can be a very useful combination; Amethyst helps you visualize the change you want to bring about and Citrine helps you manifest it!

Andradite - see Garnet for general description or Andradite Garnet subsection for varieties/colours

Angel Aura – see Opal Aura

Angelite is known as one of the Stones of the Angels, heightening your awareness of the angelic realm and facilitating angelic contact.  It is a beautiful crystal which promotes peace, compassion and understanding. Physically it is said to help relieve pain and healers use it to help clear energy blockages, whether in the body or environment.  It is also excellent for conditions affecting the throat. In its natural state it is quite brittle which is why carving and jewellery specimens are quite rare. The tumble stones are readily available and have a distinctly waxy feel to them. It is a pale bluish/grey variety of Anhydrite, from the Sulphate class or group of minerals. 

Apache Tears - see Obsidian

Apatite is a stone of harmony and inner peace, and in its sea-green colour, works beautifully with the Heart chakra. It is also a great confidence giver; boosting self-belief and poise, which may be of particular use when facing a difficult or challenging situation.  If worn or held when meditating it is said that this lovely stone can help us achieve a deeper meditative state, leading to a clearer, more enlightened understanding of matters relevant to the individual.  When used in conjunction with other crystals, it can also help enhance their individual vibrations, hence improving the desired healing results. Furthermore, it is said to enhance our intuitive and creative abilities. 

Aqua Aura is Clear Quartz coated with a 1 micron film of pure gold, which gives it its distinctive, electric, peacock blue colour. It is an outstanding tool for people wishing to increase their psychic skills and awareness. It assists with meditation, telepathy, and psychic healing by intensifying the energy generated. It is particularly helpful for distance healing because of its ability to send energy. It is also used for protection from psychic attack.  Other members of the coated Quartz family are: Opal Aura, Titanium Aura, Tanzine Aura and Ruby Aura. (See also Quartz properties and Coated Quartz)

Aquamarine is a beautiful sea-green mineral of the Beryl family. It is known as the Stone of Courage, giving the wearer strength whilst calming and soothing and has an affinity with sensitive people.  It is said to both shield the aura and also to align the chakras and sharpens the intuition. This makes it an excellent crystal to wear whilst meditating.  It is also protective and in ancient times was believed to guard against attack from the dark side!

Arkansas Quartz (see also Quartz properties and Clear Quartz) Arkansas Quartz is purer and clearer than almost any other found in the world.  In fact, the finer crystals are pure enough to make synthetic quartz used in computer components. Sometimes referred to as ‘Arkansas Diamonds’, Clear Quartz from Arkansas (especially from the Old Coleman Mine) is recognized as some of the purest in the world and samples from this particular mine are used as the benchmark of the chemical purity of Quartz worldwide.  Quartz from this area tends to have a more refined energy than that from Brazil

Aventurine (see also Quartz properties). Aventurine is Quartz with tiny, often glistening inclusions, which gives it its gentle sparkle.  Most commonly known in its green form (which is Quartz with Fuschite), Aventurine resonates beautifully with the Heart Chakra and, therefore, is one of the best stones for matters of the heart. It is excellent to help ease the pain of emotional heartache but is also super as an aid to restful sleep, with its calming, soothing energy. Sleeping with a piece under your pillow is also said to help bring answers to problems through our dreams. Physically it is super for all skin complaints, especially for acne sufferers. To achieve results with this crystal, prolonged exposure is best, and this can be done by wearing a bracelet where the stones can be in contact with the skin. Also available in peach and less often, red and silver.

Azeztulite (Azestulite) A true stone of Ascension.  Azeztulite is the trademark name for a very special type of Quartz. It is mined in only one particular place, in North Carolina, USA, and its energy has to be felt to be believed.  It is surely one of the most powerful of all crystals.  

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