Peridot And People


Obviously, as a true “catlady” (the crazy part can be added depending on whether you know me or not in real life… ) I regard my cats as people. Not the human variety, you understand, (I’m not completely bats… ) but as distinct little persons – in fur – with their own foibles, personalities and responses to the world around them.

By nature, I am a solitary person, but on occasion I am called upon to converse and interact with others. Don’t misunderstand me – I find other people endlessly interesting, everyone with their own story to tell and their own chapter to add in this Book Of Life.

Sometimes, the lovely Lizian asks me to look after the shop and really, I am not going to pass up the opportunity to babysit all the wonderful crystals… And the people… the people I’ve met who want to stop and share their story, have a chat, touch base – I’ve got used to the disappointed looks from some people when they realise it’s only me…


There is one particular gentleman and his wife who are regular visitors and he was only too delighted to find a new (and captive) audience. To be fair, though, he spoke entertainingly and well – I laughed in all the right places and gasped in others as I learned of his days in the armed services and how he met his wife… a real Romeo and Juliet story.

I was privileged to meet a truly lovely lady who has had various serious health issues yet met them bravely and with determination – helped by a few crystals, of course…

And there are the lost ones, the ones who have at some point been beaten rather badly by Life and seek refuge and comfort from the shop and the reassuring figures of the owners. All these people are worthy of a more in-depth blog post, although obviously I would have to ask permission as really, these stories aren’t my own to tell, but I can try to help where I can, otherwise, what’s he point? To quote a well-known phrase – from various sources – ‘We’re all in this together…’


Peridot is an appropriate crystal to choose, as it is commonly associated with the month of September, and it is also a transitional crystal, by which I mean it’s one of those stabilising ones that will ease the passage of Life from one stage into the next. It is good to encourage independence making up your own mind about things without too much pressure from external influences.

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Likewise, Peridot will help you to see when you’re wrong, about a person or a situation and helps to resolve any anger or guilt you may feel. Peridot has a strong protective quality to it and is also a good cleanser for body and spirit. By removing these ideas that be cloud intellect, Peridot opens the mind to recognising negative influences and detaching yourself from them, using your own intuition to see your way forward.

Above all, Peridot shows us how to accept our stories, learn from them and move on.

Sometimes we can choose to stop and share these stories or keep them to ourselves. Either way, everybody has a story to tell, and sometimes it helps to lend an ear.


Danburite and Darling Cats


Yes, I know. I sound like the typical besotted cat owner, but really there is nothing quite as sweet or as heart-meltingly… darling as a cat that is on the receiving end of bounteous praise and admiration of their unsurpassed beauty…

Who’s beautiful then?”

A blank stare from my cat, Charlie…


Are you talking to me? WHAT?”

Who’s Mummy’s little princess…?”

A slight, satisfied curve to her jaws appears as she acknowledges that yes, yes, indeed she is Mummy’s little princess.

Oh yes, WHO’S the MOST beautiful cat in the world… my lamb, my precious, my darling…?”

And that magic word will usually produce the treasured reaction, the slow blink that is the feline equivalent of a human kiss. Her golden eyes are covered by furry eyelids as she squeezes them shut in pleasure and recognition of her supreme beauty…


My partner…


No… you’re not a cat.”


A pause for thought as we all stop to consider the possibility of a feline future… Yet, later…



I lavish these endearments on my cats to let them know I love them… I was listening to a dear old man talking to his dog the other day…

No, my duck, come away, you don’t want to eat that…”

I had to reflect that love for a pet, no matter what species or size, is one of the purest forms of this emotion that we can witness, much like Danburite which contains a very pure vibration that links to the heart energy, the seat of all love.


The pink variety of this crystal is particularly sensitive, as it encourages openness, honesty and the ability to love oneself, despite faults.

Danburite is a kind stone, as it will help you bring deep changes to your life and gently dissolve ties from past difficulties to facilitate progress forwards. This quality also make it a useful stone as someone’s time here draws to a close and they need to move onwards, onwards and upwards as Danburite works with the higher consciousness and opens a path to the angelic realms.


It’s a hug. A pat on the back and a crystal reminder that ultimately, no matter what, love remains, unqualified and accepting.


Carnelian and Compassion for Cats


These cats are breaking my heart… I have a stray cat problem as I am sure I may have mentioned before. With the onset of winter and the colder, wetter weather, I am seeing homeless felines everywhere,

Why? Why do people do this? I will never understand why people take on the responsibility of an animal and then as soon as it grows up or loses its cuteness or does something wrong then the animal is abandoned. I would sooner chop off my own arm than abandon one of my cats – they are family.

Another new face on the stray circuit, a battered looking black and white tom, found refuge in our conservatory on a cold night last week. My partner had to go out and move him on:

I’m sorry, I’m afraid you’ll have to leave. Can’t have you upsetting the ladies.”

All right Guv’nor, all right, just give me a minute to get me things and I’ll be off…”

I don’t want to make light, really of what is, after all, a heart breaking problem, but I just wish these owners would have a little compassion and think what these animals suffer as they are deprived of a home through no fault of their own, and face an uncertain future.

_mg_8508Boris, the stray, in happier times

This is why we must never ignore these charities such as the Cats Protection League, RSPCA and the PDSA, that do such amazing work. These charities, both here and abroad, do such amazing work, like FACE Foundation, with TNR programmes and empty shelter days, where they try and re-home every animal need our support and help.

And it’s not just cats. Dogs too. Animals that we assume responsibility for and then forget as though these little lives mean nothing. I’m not going to turn this into a rant, but I would urge everybody to donate, help, volunteer, foster, adopt, whatever you can.

I have my four girls obviously, but if I could afford it, then that four would probably become fourteen. And I do think it is about time our government addresses various issues that beset our animal population, for example, look again at the Dangerous Dogs Act, implement policies that would regulate the breeding of animals and protect their lives, set aside some funding for a nationwide programme of trap, neuter, return… If we cannot exercise compassion for our animal friends, then how can we hope to extend that to our own species?


Carnelian, a stone I have not personally experienced although I own several pieces, is a crystal that both stabilises and encourages… It can help you be realistic whilst giving you the energy and motivation to put thoughts into action. My son is fond of this crystal – it is useful in the dramatic arts and can also help cleanse and recharge other crystals, just by being near them.

Carnelian is a very empathetic crystal, it can help to banish fear of the unknown, of death, whilst promoting positive life choices and instilling courage in its wearer.


Linked to the Base chakra, it gives the courage to overcome abuse of any kind and its physical benefits include aiding the absorption of vitamins and helping with depression, back problems and rheumatism.

Carnelian is kind, yet practical. It banishes mental chatter to improve clarity of thought and enhance perception. It removes emotional negativity, protects against other peoples’ negative thoughts and enhance perception. It removes emotional negativity, protects against other peoples’ negative thoughts and promotes a love of life, with all its ups and downs.

Everybody has room for a little piece of Carnelian in their crystal repertoire… everyone has room for a little compassion too.


If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.

14th Dalai Lama

Septarian and Serene Cats


Look! Look at this crystal! Doesn’t it just seem a divine combination of delicious things… like an expensive handmade chocolate. The paler brown, like the foam on a good quality hot chocolate, the darker blocks and lines of brown, rich unctuous milk chocolate and finally the golden chunks of calcite, like wonderful crystallised pineapple…

I must mention In The Autumn of My Life and thank her for bringing this crystal to my attention – she did a wonderful post about her Septarian egg. I’m still getting to know my piece, but I was overjoyed to see a little piece – just right for me – when we visited my son’s crystal lady a couple of weeks after reading In The Autumn of My Life’s post.

Septarian itself is a crystal stew of Calcite (yellow), Aragonite (brown) and Bentonite (grey) and this combination brings the qualities of patience, tolerance and nurturing to the fore in anyone who wishes to work with this stone. It has strong links to Mother Earth and acts as a physical reminder that we must take care of and nurture our environment, our home. Septarian is a marvellous crystal to encourage unity within any spiritual group; and brings harmony and serenity as an almost physical object to any home.


Septarian is a distillstion of pure love and the joy of being alive, it is supportive, nurturing, willing to help those who suffer from SAD and encourages the body to kickstart its own process of healing. Serene, comforting, nurturing and harmonious. Think happy feline…

I must also thank Marc at Katzenworld for his brilliantly helpful review of Feliway Friends.

After last week’s unpleasant happenings, a modicum of harmony has been restored to my fur family. I purchased Feliway and use it religiously…


No, it can’t be it’s a synthetic pheromone and they are scentless…”


I didn’t bother answering him. I didn’t want to point out what he had obviously stood in something outside… I just left the room…

We have more litter trays – the usual rule is one per cat and one spare – we have one per cat, one spare and one ‘just in case’. We have instituted a timetable of outdoor hours and the Girls know when they have to be in so Daddy can lock the catflap to keep intruders out. After Christmas I REALLY want a microchip operated catflap… Brilliant inventions.

There is a definite easing of tension in my little cat. She still prefers it if either my partner or myself goes out with her, and I was touched to see Ting, our Siamese accompanying Charlie on her usual walk round the garden. Charlie didn’t grumble or hiss at her, it was more:

Oh, yes, of course, if you happen to be going this way…”

Ting: “YAY! Does this mean we’re friends now and you’re going to be my big sister now?”

“No… Just… no.”

Lily is quite happy now to come in and go to bed where previously she was a little bit of a wanderer. Any bed will do, she makes it hers. The cooker. The sink. The coffee table. And you can’t move her. She has a way of opening an eye – just the one, mind, and evil things are implicit in that slice of emerald green, evil things that can happen to you if you move her…


My garden has returned to its usual state of splendid isolation. My New Leaf lady gave me a plant that she said repelled cats. I brought it home and my partner and I eagerly planned to place strategic clumps around the garden… then Ting ate it… I carry my Septarian with me every day at the moment, to re-establish links of love and compassion.


By some happy coincidence, my Septarian mirrors my little cat’s fur, brown, gold, chocolate, grey… a veritable cornucopia of fur and crystal colouring.


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Think of a skull and what do you see in your mind’s eye…? The dry skulls of longhorn cattle, abandoned and forlorn, lying in a desert…the years’ old skulls of dinosaurs, hanging and monstrous…the greasy skull of a zombie, threads of rotting flesh and slimy hair still clinging to it…

I visited an ossuary once, and was overwhelmed by the neat stacks of dried and powdery human skulls, piled carefully in alcoves. And everyone at some point in their life will have seen the heaps of skulls, carelessly tossed aside, the markers of one or another despot…

Powerful symbols that imprint on your memory and it is precisely due to these negative connotations that one remembers them… In Art, skulls are sometimes referred to as deaths heads and used to symbolise the impermanence of humanity. Commonly believed to be the seat of the soul, the material vessel of the spirit, the skull was often used by alchemists as a container for use in transformation processes. It is precisely because the skull was held as the seat of intellect, the soul, the essence of being, that the practice of “Anthropophagy” evolved.

IMG_6924 (2).JPGLeft: Carnelian, promotes creativity, positivity and confidence. Right: Stromatolite, fossilised microorganisms, helps you to understand life’s lessons and ‘go with the flow’

There’s a word to conjure with… Anything with “anthro” in it is usually to do with humans, ‘phagy’, eating… so yes. Cannibalism. It was a common practice within some ancient tribes who believed that they would absorb the strength and intelligence of their enemy by consuming their brain and flesh; and sometimes, the leader or shaman would be sacrificed and eaten for that same reason, as well as being an offering to the gods. Therefore skulls are a potent symbol of strength, intelligence – and death.

IMG_6918 (2).JPGFront row: Lepidolite, Preseli Bluestone and Carnelian. Back row: Stromatolite and Lapis Lazuli

My introduction to crystal skulls was through my son’s lovely crystal lady Lizian, who encouraged me not to dismiss them out of hand as gory piratical symbols with a bloodstained history… Instead, regard them as a metaphor for all the positive aspects of humanity, light and love and intelligence. A vessel yes, but for a higher purpose, as this representation does not relate to physical death; rather, it is a key to access the information retained by the collective human consciousness. It is said that by working with the particular vibration of crystal skulls mankind can expand its own consciousness whilst adding to the general pool of human knowledge. The skull is a tangible reminder of this and when coupled with the properties of the crystal from which it is carved, it is then a beneficial and potentially powerful tool.

IMG_6904 (2).JPGLeft to right: Dalmationite, Fluorite, Mookaite, then artistically out of focus unidentifiable skulls

So then… crystal skulls are a reminder of our own humanity. Not in the sense of physical death, but a bit like tying a knot in a handkerchief…We only use a small proportion of our total brain capacity, the skulls are a way of encouraging us to use more, expand our horizons and learn more, utilising them as a way of accessing knowledge left to us from previous civilisations and becoming part of a human “whole” again.

Thank you to In The Autumn Of My Life for the idea for this post, and thank you to Lizian, both for the beautiful examples which my son photographed, and letting me pick her brains for information… if you pardon the pun…!

IMG_7157 (4).JPGPreseli Bluestone… this is the same crystal that Stonehenge is made of, a magical crystal with an ancient vibration… 

All photos were taken by my son!


The Nature of Compassion


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“Come the revolution they’ll all be dead,”
His father said and he shook his head.

The boy, he watched and inside he cried,
Cried for the innocents who had died.

He watched and waited,
He waited and learned
And vowed to help with the knowledge he earned.

This kind young man
He thought: “I can.”

Out on his own,
He flew to the zone

He tended the dying,
Wiped tears of the crying.

Then one day, the young man fell ill.
His last breath left him and he lay still.

His mother, she cried.
Part of her died.

His father raged and he shook his head.
“Come the revolution I’ll see the bastards dead.”

Words Copyright © 2016 Samantha Murdoch