There are tons of different forms of quartz–colors, formations, markings, etc. While most people associate quartz with lighter colors, smoky quartz has darkness and depth sometimes lacking in other stones. Smoky quartz varies from pale gray and light brown to dark gray–even almost black. Like citrine, specimens sold as smoky quartz are sometimes artificially colored or irradiated pieces of clear quartz. Some people find the man-made versions provide the same energy and healing as natural smoky quartz; for others, there is no substitute for the real thing. If it’s important to you to have all-natural smoky quartz, do some research to make sure that’s what you’re getting.
Smoky quartz develops in regions with lots of granite–think mountains and volcanoes. It’s a common mineral, found world-wide, though certain varieties are considered more valuable, such as cairngorm, a yellowish-brown Smoky Quartz from Scotland’s Cairngorm Mountains, or morion, a naturally dark version prized for its extra protective properties.
Think root chakra, grounding, stability and protection when you think of smoky quartz. Its energy is gentler and somewhat different than that of its clear cousin: While clear quartz expands energy, smoky quartz focuses or concentrates it (1). Soothing. Calming. Dissipating negative energies. When you need to concentrate or focus, smoky quartz can help, making it a great stone for students and teachers. It can also heighten perception.
If you want to release something, hold a piece of smoky quartz with the point facing away from you, and it will facilitate that release. Want to attract something? Hold the crystal with the point facing you. Starting to get some ideas on how to work with this crystal’s energy?
The smoky quartz card from the Lavish Earth Crystal Affirmation Cards deck offers this wisdom: “Smokey quartz is soothing and takes your mind off pure survival. When you are not focused on your struggles you are free to create and manifest solutions. Released from stress, you are free to connect with that part of you that can visualize change, leading to the expansion you crave.”
I love smoky quartz and frequently use it when I’m doing tarot readings to help me concentrate and better understand messages from my guides. The protective energy it brings doesn’t hurt, either, and holding it helps me ground after readings. I also generally hold a piece during my deepest meditations, where I’m trying to sort through past lives or clear ancestral karma. Easy to find and affordable, this is another crystal I’d highly recommend as part of a starter crystal magic or healing kit.
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(1) The Essential Crystal Handbook, Simon and Sue Lilly. 2006.