I can't believe I haven't written a Blog about Sugilite, a stone that has become a primary focus of my business and personal interest. I can remember my first Moldavite - how it launched my entire Crystal career (hear my Moldavite Podcast on Spotify here) - but I cannot recall when first I was exposed to Sugilite. Suffice it to say: somewhere along the line (probably in the past 30 years), call it the '90's.
Already being 'geo-sentient' (sensitive to the energy of stones), I picked up on the awesomeness of Sugilite. I don't use the word 'awesome' flippantly, or as a matter of habit, as we tend to daily. Indeed, Sugilite brings awe to those who appreciate it, and recognize its many qualities. Yes, I've dubbed it 'The Manifestation Stone,' and that's pretty grand (a bit more on that later). But it's truly a complex stone, whose composite makeup of different minerals gives it a huge range of appearance: from almost completely black (due to manganese) to the mythical translucent Pink Gel (that the Chinese are so enamored of). I say mythical because I know people who are eager to buy and sell this Pink Gel, but cannot find it, even in South Africa. Older collections in the States are cited as your best bet for finding the good stuff. Even in Tucson, you really have to look, as it's much easier to find low grade boulders and pebbles of $1 and $2-a-gram material. FYI, the Pink Gel can go for $50+ a carat, which is up to 250 times more! Online, there are some sources of Sugilite. The smaller minded part of me wishes I could steer you away from them - but I won't try that - cause you might look anyway. The Internet has turned a lot of businesses - particularly brick and mortar ones - on their head. What seems to be a buyer's market has people scrambling for the lowest common denominator. Yet still, some people prefer to buy in person, where they can touch what they're considering. And others prefer to buy from trusted sources. My business model focuses on quality over quantity, which has more modest, but meaningful outcomes. All vendors have their limitations (even me!). I'd like to become a (dare I wish to become the) go-to guy for Sugilite, and I am becoming that for a small and growing number of people. Truly, the audience for Sugilite is uncommon. I've been to gem shows at which not a single vendor carries it. Likewise, huge wholesalers steer clear of it. Maybe you'll find some cabs of varying quality here and there. Pursuing my own interest, and stockpiling it, I've got a pretty broad range of Sugilite, from set pendants and earrings to necklaces, cabochons, smalls, and medium to larger rough specimens. What you see on my site is not all that I've got - it's tedious and time consuming to upload product, and with the pressing needs of shows and my store - I too often don't get to that. Which is why I always recommend folks email me - kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com - so I can show you what my Quality Custom Crystal Mail Order is all about. It's easier to simply send you photos and videos, once we narrow down your interest - it's more personable that way - and also, I like posting to Facebook albums (if you can Friend or Message me there). You might ask: what makes me different from other suppliers? And that's a valid question, important to answer...especially if you're considering buying from me. First, of all, I think my personal appreciation for Sugilite, my reverence for it matters. When we first met I knew it was special. I placed it instinctively in the Source Energy Zone (I have created 10 categories into which all Crystals may be organized). Source is akin to - but not the same as - the Crown Chakra. Rather than being a place on (or just above) our body - as the Crown Chakra is - Source is more of a place, its own location, at the intersection of our highest Being and Higher Beings, meaning our Spirit Guides, G8D (God), the Saints, Faeries, whatever your go-do entities might be. The color purple is sacred for sure, and speaks to Spirit, but it's primary representative - Amethyst - I've placed in the Vision Zone, because it is (as Vision is, in general) a vehicle, not a destination, per se. More on Amethyst in some other Blog or explanation. I mention it here because Sugilite is purple too, and shares some of that 'energetic signature' (reaching into Spirit for what is to be, or what is, on a higher level). Sugilite is actually most akin - in look and feel - to Lapis, the key Voice stone. They're like purple and blue versions of each other. Of course that's a simplification, as Sugilite lacks the Calcite and Pyrite that give Lapis its white streaks and golden flecks. They are a sort of yin and yang for one another (Lapis and Sugilite). Lapis is the key Voice stone, having to do with finding and using one's voice with force and meaning. So why shouldn't Sugilite do the same, on a larger scale, representing how we interface with our hopes and dreams and bring them into being?! Because it's not translucent - a quality of the higher Energy Zones - it would seem that Sugilite has to do with something lower than Vision and Source, and yet it has that higher level/purpose, or 'purplessence' going on (I just made up that word). As treasured as the pink material is, and it's great for its introduction of a heart element to the stone, Sugilite is (first and foremost) a purple experience. And yet it's color - Purple - is not the beginning, middle, and end of what Sugilite is all about. It has to do with so much more than its color. Not all stones are like this. Some stones really are more limited in scope by their color. I think the fact that Sugilite shows up in so many different colors is almost its way of derailing that stereotype, defying that limited definition, or 'sense of self.' Intuitively - and while creating my 2nd edition Crystal Meditation and Affirmation card deck - I decided that Sugilite belongs NOT exclusively in Source or Vision, but primarily in Voice, as a powerful companion to Lapis. Voice has to do with bringing the un-manifest into being - whether it is words fabricated from concepts, to convey those inner feelings and ideas (as in the case of Lapis) - or whether it is the vehicle or representative of the fulfillment of your dreams and ambitions, as I believe Sugilite can (and should) be. So that's what I have to say about the metaphysical aspects of Sugilite. I didn't get that from a book - all my info is obtained through logic and inspiration - indeed the crystal lore out there (in books and online) does not generally resonate with me. So if you're a devotee of some other crystal guides, all this may not make sense to you. But if you're open to a different perspective, and any of this feels right for you, I welcome your learning more about this and my other views on the crystal realm...see my Blogs on this site...and YouTube videos. These concepts - my metaphysical approach, and particularly my reverence for Sugilite - means I take it more seriously than most. It's not just a commodity, a product to move and market. As with Moldavite, when you buy Sugilite from me, you're getting it from an insider. I'm sorry I don't mine, or travel the world collecting it - I surely would - but my role is different. Having identified its intangible qualities, which feel so very tangible when I hold it, my main job is finding Sugilite and presenting it to you. That can be (actually is) a complex process. If I stumble upon a piece or pieces I like at a show - if they're dry, I'll look at 'em wet, unless it's obvious that they're great - then I buy 'em. Ditto if I find 'em online. The challenge there is twofold: when pictured not in someones hand (as I prefer to present my stuff), even if rulers or dimes are provided for reference, it's hard to tell how big anything really is. Just this month, I got some tumbles that were tinier than I thought, because of the way they were photographed (all close up, making them look 'huge'). The other issue with buying online comes from the stone itself - I call Sugilite 'photo-synergistic' meaning it gets brighter and more purple or pink - the more intense the light (spotlight or sunlight) is shining on it. Most vendors (not me) show you their stuff ONLY in that bright light, so when you get it, you're disappointed with how it looks in low light. That's why I've started showing all my new pieces in low light, so you can see what it looks like in the worst possible lighting circumstances. All of this takes time - it's not just a question of uploading something or taking a picture of it - some vendors online astound me by posting 6 of the almost identical photo...what good is that?! I post front and back, indoors and outdoors, wet and dry. When a piece has translucent (the definition of being 'gel') I'll also show you how that looks with a light (or the sun) behind it. Too many vendors include the word gel in their descriptions, and that's simply not accurate. A lot of people show you Sugilite only wet, which is wrong, again because it doesn't show you the fullness of the stone. On smaller pebbles, and cut-but-not polished items, I have started occasionally applying cosmetic quality Jojoba oil, which has also been called a wax, and is very long lasting (in terms of not going rancid). I use just a tiny bit of it, often applied with a Q-tip, because I actually hate how goopy Emeralds are in particular - when they're oiled - too often, with cheap, greasy stuff. Different Sugilites will absorb oils differently - the pinkish powdery material will absorb it totally - the black Manganese is less absorbent (and can look too shiny after treatment). I've learned that oiling does darken the stone a bit, from what it would look like simply wet with water. But it's impractical to carry water trays everywhere. If you're spending more than a few hundred for a stone, a bit bigger in size, I think you deserve to get it dry - in it's 'pristine' condition - then you can cut, oil, or keep it as a natural specimen. I'll be adding photos to this blog - and supplement it with new information, or create a 2nd, followup blog from it - but for now I wanted to give you an introduction to my history and approach to the stone, which is easily one of my top 5. You can see all that I have uploaded right here on this site at the nifty URL: www.CrystalConcentrics.com/Sugilite, and another useful source (sometimes I upload there first) is the album Sugilite (new and available) click here, on my Power Stone Crystals Facebook page. I'm writing you this on site in Tucson, days before I set up at the 22nd Street Show, come find me in the Main Tent at booth F-1. I just had a conversation with an old South African dealer - specializes, among other things - in Sugilite. And he said it's not coming out of the ground, that they're literally destroying it in the search for Manganese for industrial purposes. AND, he said my pendant, the featured image in this blog, might fetch 20 grand to the right buyer! If you won't be in Tucson, make sure to have a look at the links above, as my online shop has lots of good photos and pricing. Remember, though, most of my product is OFFline...so don't be a stranger...email me: Kyle@CrystalConcentrics.com with interest! ********************