With its glassy luster, Obsidian is a distinctive stone. Obsidian is formed as lava from volcanic eruptions cools within the earth. The speed at which it cools prevents crystallization and the rock forms as solid volcanic glass.
Although its most common color is black, Obsidian can also be found in light brown, brown mottled with black, and black with a beautiful golden or silvery sheen. Snowflake Obsidian is dotted with white patches where parts of the rock have begun to crystallize. The most prized obsidian by gemologists is the Rainbow Obsidian variety with purple, green and gold bands of sheen.
Obsidian was revered by ancient cultures. It was one of the major barter materials, and prized for its ability to be worked to razor-sharp edges for arrows and spears. It has been used since prehistoric times for making tools, masks, weapons, mirrors and jewelry.
Obsidian helps to protect the very sensitive against depression. It is the stone of the soft hearted and gentle people of the world. Use Obsidian to help block negativity of any kind. As a black gemstone, it symbolizes self control and resilience. Black stones have protective energies in the sense that black is the absence of light, therefore can be used to create invisibility.
Obsidian can be found anywhere that volcanic activity has occurred. Some of its important sources today are South America, Japan, Mexico, Afghanistan, and parts of the United States. The San Carlos Apache Reservation in Arizona, United States, produces an interesting banded variety of obsidian known as "Apache Tears".
Rainbow Obsidian is black obsidian that, when polished and exposed to a strong light, shows bands of rainbow colors. Rainbow obsidian is said to be the stone used by Nostradamus to foresee future events. Rainbow obsidian is particularly powerful in meditation to dissolve shock, fear or barriers. It expands your consciousness, sharpens the senses and can help you delve deep into mysterious phenomena and experiences.
Blue Obsidian in particular has a wonderful, dreamy, expansive energy. Its a great stone to work with if you’re beginning to explore your own spiritual ability, or are even developing a long-term gift. Blue Obsidian has a way of clearing the mind of mental clutter, slowing our thought processes down so we take one thing at a time and do it well (instead of 10 things at once and we’re all over the place!). It also aids communication, so we can clear our head, receive intuitive information and then clearly communicate. Blue Obsidian can be used in any spiritual pursuits such as tarot reading, scrying, astral travel, journeying etc. It is gentle and supportive rather than blasting us too fast or in a way we may feel we’re not in control.
Snowflake Obsidian is a stone of purity. It balances mind body and spirit. Placed on the sacral chakra, Snowflake Obsidian will calm and soothe and allow you to view unhealthy patterns in your own behaviour, thus opening the door to change.