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Crystal Healing And Ethical Mining


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I am interested in crystal healing, but am concerned that any crystals I purchase should be from a mining source which can show high standards of ethical mining and Fair Trade.

 

I feel it is important that any crystals I (we) use should not involve causing damage to the earth or anyone involved in the extraction process in line with the principle of harm none.

 

Can anyone recommend a supplier?

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This could be tricky. Is there such a thing as ethical mining? I somehow doubt it. If you think about it, it's a bit hard to get stuff out of the Earth without damaging the Earth.

 

I would say, use them anyway, in the knowledge that they are only byproducts, not the main cause of mining taking place. To use them for good will go some way to balance out the harm caused by the mining.

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Could you use a form of healing without using crystals?  :)

284172[/snapback]

Good point. It begs the question, is the healing done by us using the crystals as a medium or the crystals themsleves?

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I'd say, at best crystals are a focus for a genuine healer, at worst they're expensive pointless tat that causes damage to the Earth and to the poor folk mining them for peanuts, often in the most dire working conditions.

 

And before anyone asks, yes, I own some - now I've got past my naive phase, I use them for decoration.

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If you're not keen on totally abandoning the idea of using crystals, have you considered collecting your own?

 

Quartz seems to be the most common form of crystal used for healing, and there are chunks of it lying all over the countryside. A rugged lump of Welsh white quartz may not look quite as pretty as a polished point, but by the time you've trudged through Snowdonia to find it, it will hold a heck of a lot of intrinsic value! And you will know exactly where it came from, and how ecologically sound the process was of obtaining it!

 

To my mind, that makes it a lot more useful than anything you can buy in a shop.

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i dont use crystals for anything as i dont think you can ever be sure they come from a reputable source and as Julai said removing any thing from the earth causes damage,i am however a bit of a hypocrite because i have jewellery with stones in it and to be honest i havent thought about where they might have come from,since giving this some thought i am not going to be buying anything with a stone or crystal in it in the future thats for sure :)

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some crystals are pushed to the surface by earth movement , there are tons laying around various places , and free to be picked up , if u know where to look

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A quick question to those who feel its unethical to utilise crystals because of mining, out of interest how many of you drive cars? Utilise Gas, Electricity etc? Is that not a hypocritical position?

 

Not trying to stir trouble just curious.

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A quick question to those who feel its unethical to utilise crystals because of mining, out of interest how many of you drive cars? Utilise Gas, Electricity etc? Is that not a hypocritical position?

 

Not trying to stir trouble just curious.

 

That’s an interesting point. I drive a car, definitely more than I should as I make excuses not to cycle to work – too cold, too wet, too dangerous, - too lazy and the truth is when I cycle I feel exposed to weather, traffic and people. In my car I feel safer and more comfortable, but to what cost to the planet? You have me thinking there and you may have given me the nudged I needed from another person to help me make the change back to cycling. Ideally I would use the car only when essential.

 

I do utilise gas, electricity etc, but make every effort to switch things off when not in use and keep consumption to a minimum. I also have a garden allotment in order to grow as much food as possible, lowering demand on commercial produce with its unfair wages for manual workers, air and road miles and pesticides and herbicides.

 

So whether it is ethical to mine for crystals – I would say no due to the exploitation of people paid slave wages to do dangerous and unhealthy work and also to the scars left on the earth due to the mining process itself and inevitable spoil heaps.

 

I initially said I was interested in crystals for healing, but was uncomfortable about the ethics around their excavation. My stand now is that I would not use crystals due to the ethical question which has been answered for me, especially as – as has been offered above – the crystal is possibly just a focus for us as healers rather than the source of healing in itself. A wand cut from a windfall branch or a pebble from a garden or a beach would do just as well as a focal point without causing lasting environmental damage.

 

So I would not consider my view to be from a hypocritical position if I keep my consumption of fossil fuels down to an absolute minimum and considering that the use of crystals is not essential to healing when one considers that there are other methods which are just as effective but less damaging to the earth – perhaps not as pretty; but can we afford pretty when pretty things are won at the expense of the environment?

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A quick question to those who feel its unethical to utilise crystals because of mining, out of interest how many of you drive cars? Utilise Gas, Electricity etc? Is that not a hypocritical position?

 

Not really. I feel its unethical to buy environmentally unfriendly, exploitative products that have no practical use.

 

Cars and energy supplies? Pretty practical from where I'm sitting unless I want to walk to work and live off grass.

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Well, Val and Ethereal, if the crystals are byproducts of mining and would just lie about otherwise, I don't see it as unethical to take them home and play with them.

 

You could see it as unethical to buy a new car which encourages the miners to dig up more crystals!

 

If you really need your own car, then I think you have to carry an awareness that you are participating in the rape of the earth for human comfort. 'Practical' is an odd way to qualify your ethics, surely? It could be 'practical' to get rid of all unproductive members of society by euthanasia, for example.

 

We should probably accept that we are all hypocrites, in the sense that we set ourselves impossible ideals and then suffer from selective awareness when we fail to live up to them.

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From what I've read, a lot of the crystals usually seen for sale are mined specifically, rather than being the by-product of other ore extraction. Those that are by products of manufacturing are processed in ways that waste enormous amounts of natural resources and are then shipped all over the globe.

 

'Practical' is an odd way to qualify your ethics, surely?

 

How else would one do it? I am well aware that every action I take has an impact on my environment, therefore I take as many steps as I feel are reasonable to minimise that impact, whilst maintaining a lifestyle that makes me happy.

 

I never bought a new car in my life, so I can't comment on the ethics of doing so. I can, however, say that euthanising all the 'unproductive' members of society would be both unethical and unpractical- think of all the social workers and benefits workers who would suddenly be out of work (and then need euthanising in their turn and... we'd end up depopulating the country of everyone except crofters).

 

I really fail to see how pragmatism makes me, or anyone else, a hypocrite.

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I can, however, say that euthanising all the 'unproductive' members of society would be both unethical and unpractical- think of all the social workers and benefits workers who would suddenly be out of work (and then need euthanising in their turn and... we'd end up depopulating the country of everyone except crofters).

 

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Now this is an idea i like :ph34r: :( If there were more crofters and zero social workers we'd all be better off.

edit: oops, hope you're not a social or a benefit worker. :blink:

Edited by woozle
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Well, Val and Ethereal, if the crystals are byproducts of mining and would just lie about otherwise, I don't see it as unethical to take them home and play with them.

 

If that was so, then I'd agree.

 

What shocked me was being taken into a warehouse supplier for New Age type shops. This was the wholesaler. Simply seeing the sheer quantity of crystals in that warehouse - and only one warehouse. They can't all be byproducts.

 

You could see it as unethical to buy a new car which encourages the miners to dig up more crystals!

 

I'm not sure that mining for iron etc produces crystals. Just look at a mining operation - the slag heaps aren't exactly crawling with machines sifting out potential other byproducts. :blink:

 

If you really need your own car, then I think you have to carry an awareness that you are participating in the rape of the earth for human comfort.

 

Yes. But so is any aspect of modern life - building material for houses; mining for energy products such as gas or oil for heating, cooking, artificial light etc... where do we stop? Every time we enter a shop we are buying goods that have relied on products mined from the earth to prepare or transport them to the shop. To disengage from this process we would need to own land that provided us with everything we need for living - including fully renewable sources (on our land, or within walking/cycling distance of it) to provide what we need for heat, light and fuel for cooking. We would also have to have our own well and waste recycling, and make our own clothes. Anything beyond that means, at some point, being dependent on using resources prepared and used by someone else - whether we label that 'rape' or something else.

 

'Practical' is an odd way to qualify your ethics, surely? It could be 'practical' to get rid of all unproductive members of society by euthanasia, for example.

 

Practical is also a sliding scale. Is it more or less practical to live in the country and drive a car, or walk to work because one lives in a city? The impact of a city may be greater than the impact of a rural community. Should one assess purely in terms of the individual usage of resources, or should one also look at the cumulative effect of a mass of individuals?

 

And, are 'practical' and 'ethical' mutually exclusive terms? :ph34r:

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Hm, I don't think 'practical' and 'ethical' are either mutually exclusive or synonymous.

 

I still have a problem with Val's association of ethics with pragmatism. If you take a pragmatic approach to everyday living, and you want to uphold principles of lowest environmental impact, it's going to be a compromise.

 

You can call it practical or you can call it hypocritical. I think both are true. Only we don't like the sound of hypocritical so much. I don't think we can avoid being hypocrites, any of us. The odd diamond ring will slip into our lives, the odd dishwasher, the odd digital TV when the BBC forces us to ditch our billions of old style TV's. And don't get me started on sugar...

 

Talking of crystals (well, sugar usually comes in crystals too), I admit that I know very little about the mining of them and I'm happy to be corrected on that score, and to agree that we don't need them for comfortable living as such.

 

I just think that taking the moral high ground over them is not going to stop them from being dug up, because they are pretty and people want them. And miners have to make a living too.

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Isn't the simplest answer to go to a licensed lapidary? If I feel the need for some rocks of any kind, that's where I go. Most 'Western' ( I hate using that term but unfortunately, it applies most of the time) countries have them and their goods must adhere to ethical gathering and labeling. At least in these places, you know the crystal one is getting IS a crystal and not some dyed piece of plastic shite and that it's not been harvested by people kept on starvation wages from places that will soon be depleted.

 

I have also found they are WAY less expensive than New Age shop tat. The New Age shops get away with their robbery because people don't know the actual value of most stones ( and why should we? Most people are not geologists).

 

When there is a compromise solution, I think that's the best way. It's just a matter of curbing one's need for immediate gratification until they can get to a real lapidary. Alternately , one can do a search for 'ethical lapidaries' or 'ethical crystals' or other combination's of search terms. Check out that they ARE ethical by contacting sites that have that information, such as Geologists or Rock and Gem societies.

 

A little more work, but peace of mind AND enjoying something beautiful that isn't hurting the earth.

 

Marto

Edited by Marto
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  • 3 weeks later...

in relation to the hypocrit point i do think most people (if not every one) is a hypocrit in some ways eg i am a veggie (dont eat meat or fish) although i eat eggs- quite a lot!! and i eat dairy and use leather stuff ... and although i would like to slowly make the change to vegan it shows my point...... it human nature

 

i dont think it is such a problem if you try to cut back (keep to minimum) of any think not ESSENTIAL ... that way every one gets enough and theres not so much damage to the earth pixie xx :D

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i dont think it is such a problem if you try to cut back (keep to minimum) of any think not ESSENTIAL ... that way every one gets enough and theres not so much damage to the earth pixie xx 

 

I think that's my end point in relation to my first post here. While crystals can be considered useful in the process/magic of healing, I doubt anyone could claim they were essential, especially when they can mean damage to the planet and exploitation of vulnerable societies.

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