Stepping Stones: Obsidian

Obsidian, also called volcanic glass, is a fascinating and powerful stone. Its smooth character, razor sharpness, overall hardness and its ability to be polished to a high gloss made it a favorite among ancient peoples for crafting blades, jewelry, and other objects.

When I was a child, my parents gave me a big chunk of obsidian (or maybe block or slab would be better words).


They wanted me to feel its sleek difference from the rocks and pebbles I found playing on our small farm. Rocks that spring in liquid form from volcanic eruptions are indeed easily distinguished by touch from those deposited in the grinding, gouging slowness of glacier advances and receedings.

As a child, of course, I had no inkling of obsidian’s metaphysical properties; I just knew I liked how smooth it was.

Maybe a year ago, my husband Ted gave me a bracelet made of rainbow obsidian. I appreciated the gift, but didn’t wear it much, still unaware of what the stone could do.

obsidian bracelet

But this spring and summer, as I began working on the “Soul Essence” songs and became privy to some of the innermost places of other people’s characters, I discovered just how helpful obsidian could be.

It’s an often painfully blunt stone, reflecting without mercy the truth of who you are, both the dark and light sides. Because it is so reflective, it can act as a powerful shield, returning negativity to its sender multiplied. It cuts to the core, cauterizes, and then continues to show you what needs work.

Needless to say, the rainbow obsidian bracelet became almost a daily part of my wardrobe, especially during times of composition. That slab of obsidian is beside my bed, and I’ve often used it in bathwater when I needed high-octane cleansing.

Even so, it’s what you carry inside you that does the heavy lifting of self-discovery and growth; the stone is just a facilitator. And sometimes, we need a more tender, gentle approach rather than a surgeon’s cold blade.

For that, as I soon learned, there were other things besides obsidian.

Explore posts in the same categories: Crystals and Stones, metaphysics

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