Do you realize that Mother Earth comprises 85% crystal? How’s that for magnitude? But, to talk about crystal science, we must begin with the crust of the earth. Interestingly, the crust of the earth is mostly silicon and oxygen, in combination with six other elements. Those elements are as follows:
Amazingly, from this casserole of chemistry derives the wide variety of crystal colors, shapes, and sizes of crystals that we all enjoy.
Crystal Science & Mother Earth’s Natural Recycling
Crystal science also includes reference to Mother Earth’s inherent ability to recycle – naturally. A demonstration of this is when limestone changes to crystals. Of course, it has to be the right conditions that include a variety of ingredients forming together under terrific pressure. The specifications of the production of these spectacular gems include just the right temperature, pressure, and space.
The conditions have to be so specific that it explains why diamonds, for instance, are only found in certain geographical regions around the world. That’s the reason why some precious gems are more expensive than others. It is simply because the conditions to produce them are rare.
Even with a vast abundance of minerals in the earth, for specific technical projects, scientists must produce replicas of what nature offers in order to meet the specifications of their project. But, this is no easy feat even with our modern technological advances.
How Crystals Form 💠
The most precious variety of crystals derive from molten rock, or magma. Of course, magma comes from the intense heat melting rocks in the earth’s core in the upper mantle. When this soup of atoms cools, it solidifies and forms the symmetrical three-dimensional crystals that sparkle to our delight.
During the cooling process, magma forms the first crystals at a the highest melting points with simple composition. Slowly, different minerals continue to form until only complex atoms are left. The complex atoms are the source of the more elaborate crystal production.
The amorphous material or rock comprising of tiny crystals form when magma reaches the surface of the earth and cools very quickly. You will most commonly find these rocks in the form of basalt. However, magma that stays underground solidifies at a slower rate and produces coarse-grain rocks such as quartz, feldspar, and mica – all ingredients of granite.
The table below shows the Moth’s Scale which is the scale of crystal hardness. Simply stated, the minerals below will scratch those below it and is scratched by those above it.
|1. Talc – scratched by fingernail|
|2. Gypsum – scratched by fingernail|
|3. Calcine – scratched by copper coin|
|4. Fluorite – scratched easily by pocket knife|
|5. Apatite – pocket knife just scratches it|
|6. Feldspar – scratched by steel file|
|7. Quartz – scratches quartz easily|
|8. Topaz – scratches quartz easily|
|9. Corundum – scratches topaz easily|
|10. Diamond – hardest natural material known|
Crystals from Dissolved Minerals
Some crystals such as quartz and rhodochrosite form from chemical solutions within rock cavities. Then, water dissolves minerals into component ions or charged ions which produces a aqueous solution. Again, the conditions must be right in terms of time temperature and ingredients. Next, when the right combination happens the solution over saturates and the precipitation of crystals begins. What’s more, the slower the precipitation, the larger the crystals grow.
Crystal Science & Metamorphism
As before, the right range of conditions must be in place for alteration to take place. In fact, the changes in pressure, temperature, or chemical conditions may cause a new species of mineral to form to accommodate its immediate environment.
Interestingly, some crystals recrystallize in their solid state when extreme subterranean changes in temperature and pressure rearrange the atoms without any resulting melting. One example of this is the metamorphosis of limestone into marble and shales which are altered to garnet-studded mica schist. But, the fascinating fact remains that the variety of minerals from the original rocks produces the diversity of crystals.
I hope you find inspiration and guidance from learning more about the world of crystals and how they fit into your lifestyle. If you have any questions or have a suggestion, please contact me right away. I also want to invite you to our group on Facebook to join and jive with kindred spirits. Namaste!
Other Posts in the Crystal Healing series:
- The Amazing Healing World of Crystals • Introduction
- The World of Crystals Through the Ages
- Crystal Environments • Shamanism
- Science of Crystals • How Crystals Form
- Structure of Crystals • The Form Behind the Sparkle
- Light and Crystals • The Fascinating Science
- Crystal Light & Power • The Sparkle that Ignites
- Selecting the Right Crystal Healing Stones