Crystal Healing: Hoax or Science?


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After a tough day of work, Phoebe Gariepy decides to treat herself. She pulls into Leapin Lizards, a crystal store in Portland. Gariepy walks into the building, she is suddenly surrounded by a massive collection of various crystals and stones. She finds herself drawn to a table engulfed in small pieces of Apopholite, and a large Amethyst cathedral. Gariepy sits and examines the crystals, and while the soothing sound of atmospheric music comforts her, she handles the crystals, and studies their vibration. Suddenly she feels at peace with the stress of the day. Gariepy only had two dollars, but since Leapin Lizards is such an affordable store, she bought a ruby, which she later made into a wire wrapped necklace.

“I believe that crystals have energetic properties. When I wear them it is kind of comforting. I can also use them to attract certain things or use them for certain lessons in life,” Gariepy said.

Gariepy, a junior, has been collecting stones since she was little. Her earliest memories of collecting stones include two dollar gem bags from toy stores, gifts from her grandparents travels, and being surrounded by them in her house.

“My favorite stone is tourmaline. You can find it in Maine, and it’s fairly rare. It comes in all different colors. It makes me feel really grounded and connected to nature.” Gariepy said.

Many people believe that crystal healing is nonsense, however, many find stones fascinating and believe their power is grounded in science. Basically, everything on the earth is composed of vibrating atoms. Since crystals are formed from vibrating molecules, their vibration is said to give off a certain individual energy that you can feel. The vibration is the healing factor.

Skeptics believe that the effectiveness of crystal healing is a myth. Some scientists suggest any positive affects are just the result of the placebo effect. The placebo effect is a type of treatment where the benefits of the medication are simply a result of the mind of the user, and the real treatment doesn’t actually work or exist.

Kylie Garrett, a senior, despite skepticism, is a believer. She has just recently started collecting stones.

“My mom and I go to crystal stores every now and then, and I find myself almost drawn to certain rocks. Then that’s the rock that I’ll choose, and then that will have an effect later on,” Garrett said.


Garrett became interested in crystals because of her mother, who also collects crystals. Garrett says she is very happy with the effects that the stones have produced. Garrett says that her favorite stone store is Zen and Company in Kennebunk, and her favorite stone is Citrine. Citrine is said to help with self-confidence, success, and personal power.

Hoax or science, the world may never know. Whether it is the Placebo Effect, atomic vibrations, magic, or some other unidentified mysterious force, the only way to truly know is to try it yourself.

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