Every now and then, the uncertainty of our times seems to follow us everywhere we turn. And it can feel a little tougher to stay in a positive frame of mind and keep our spirits high.
But it doesn’t have to be. One of the most protective stones you can have during challenging times is black obsidian. This unassuming natural black stone carries a wealth of healing energy just waiting for you to explore and use in your life.
In this guide, you’ll learn about black obsidian and its fascinating role throughout history. We’ll also explore a few simple ways you can use this natural stone’s powerful metaphysical properties to enrich your daily life.
The Origins of Black Obsidian and Its Many Other Forms
Black obsidian is created when molten rock from a volcanic eruption cools so quickly that it doesn't form any crystals and instead turns into volcanic glass. While most obsidian is black, it also comes in other colors and varieties depending on the minerals and gasses present during its formation. Sometimes pockets of grey or white crystals form in a piece of obsidian over time, which gives it a mottled appearance, resulting in what’s called snowflake obsidian.
Other times, gas and other inclusions combine to create a variety of obsidian known as rainbow obsidian. Rainbow obsidian is distinct from natural black obsidian because of its iridescent sheen. It has a dazzling rainbow effect and comes with its own special healing properties.
Still, obsidian can end up with a swirling blend of colors. Anything from red, orange, and yellow to tan or blue can show up in this natural stone. Black and brown are the most common color combinations, creating mahogany obsidian. Other obsidian color variations include gold sheen obsidian, pumpkin obsidian, and double flow obsidian.
Around the American Southwest, you can find another type of obsidian unique to the area. Small pieces of black obsidian, typically less than an inch long, are known as apache tears. Apache tears derives its name from Native American folklore.
You can find deposits of black obsidian around the world in areas with volcanic activity, including Japan, Mexico, Kenya, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Scotland, Turkey, Australia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Iceland, Greece, and the United States.
Black Obsidian in History
Long before we looked to black obsidian as a healing crystal, ancient civilizations used it as a tool and cutting instrument.
Pre-Columbian societies in both North and South America used obsidian extensively, and black obsidian quickly found its way into everyday life. Whether it was used as a knife for food preparation or as a tipped spear or arrowhead during hunting excursions, obsidian’s sharp edges were prized.
This volcanic glass may have reached its peak usage during the Aztec Empire. Black obsidian was a key feature of their unique sword, which they called a “macuahuitl.” Unlike European swords with a single sharp point, Aztec swords were fashioned with obsidian blades on each side. Black obsidian was so sharp and effective as a cutting tool that it's thought to be one of the reasons why the Aztecs had no metallurgy.
Spain eventually conquered the Aztec Empire in the 1500s, but it’s probably not a coincidence that Spaniards began incorporating black obsidian in their tools and even used it for their razor blades. It would take another 200 years before obsidian blades would be traded in for steel ones.
Healing Properties of Black Obsidian
Black obsidian is among the most powerful chakra healing crystals, and its metaphysical properties are useful in different areas of your life. You can always customize your experience with black obsidian by combining it with other healing crystals. Tiger's eye, rose quartz, and black onyx also boosts its protective qualities.
Here are a few ways to harness the power of black obsidian’s metaphysical properties.
Protect Yourself from Negative Energy
One of black obsidian’s most well-known healing properties is its ability to act as a protective stone. If you find yourself in the depths of negative thinking or feel threatened by negative energy circulating around you, pick up a black obsidian pendant necklace or healing bracelet to help you create a shield of psychic protection around your aura.
You can also use obsidian as a protective stone for traveling. Whether you keep a small pyramid of it in your car or tuck it in your luggage, your energetic space will be safe and protected.
Find an obsidian bracelet that mixes in different stones or wear obsidian with other favorite pieces of gemstone jewelry. If you have a long commute in your car, consider wearing some black tourmaline as it’s believed to offer extra protection against any mishaps. Rose quartz and tiger’s eye are other helpful and protective healing crystals you might want to try.
Don’t forget to cleanse your black obsidian stones regularly. Because it’s so efficient at absorbing negative energy, you need to be diligent about clearing it so you can keep your protection stone in tip-top shape.
Invite Grounding Energy Into Your Life
Maybe you’re struggling with feeling confident about yourself and secure with your choices. Or, perhaps you feel like you just can’t focus on the things you want to do at home or at work. Use black obsidian’s healing properties in situations like these to help you feel grounded and lucid.
Wearing an obsidian mala necklace is an easy way to invite black obsidian’s healing properties into your life. Another bonus to using natural obsidian is that its energy nourishes your lower chakras. Obsidian crystal stimulates your root chakra and can clear up any lingering energy blockages, helping you to feel more centered. It also gives your solar plexus chakra a boost to enhance your confidence.
If you’re under pressure with a deadline at work and need to power through, wearing a piece of jewelry with black onyx or black agate can magnify the healing properties of black obsidian. They can help you concentrate a little better and give you a jolt of motivation.
Keeping a piece of hematite nearby can also help your focus and concentration. It also stops procrastination in its tracks. Lava stone is deeply supportive of black obsidian's grounding energies as well.
Discover Your True Self
Whenever you’re on a journey of self-discovery, black obsidian should be one of your go-to gemstones. Obsidian is known as a stone of truth, and its metaphysical properties will help you cut directly to your inner self.
Remember, black obsidian forms out of molten lava, something that emerges deep within the earth. As such, black obsidian stones can help you see the depths of your true self—its shiny exterior can reflect your authentic inner nature. It enables you to know yourself better and move through any blockages that could be holding you back in life or keeping you from expressing yourself more comfortably.
When you’re ready for deep reflection and to see yourself as you truly are, be sure to wear a beaded black obsidian bracelet to support your path of rediscovering yourself.
Tips for Choosing Black Obsidian Stones
Black obsidian is a highly protective stone, so it might be something you want to keep nearby or wear regularly. One of the easiest ways to harness obsidian's power is to wear it as jewelry.
Be on the lookout for authentic black obsidian. That way, you know you're getting the real deal and can take advantage of its healing properties. Always opt for natural stones if you're going to experiment with the healing properties of other gemstone beads as well.
An excellent place to start is with a chakra bracelet. A unisex beaded bracelet is comfortable to slip on and off, and you can mix and match your gemstone beads to address individual chakras. Wearing a bangle protection bracelet adorned with black obsidian healing crystals is another way to protect yourself from negative energy.
You can do the same with an obsidian necklace. With different styles to choose from, you can layer a natural stone pendant with a beaded choker and reap the benefits of obsidian stone throughout the day. Another great jewelry option is to find a natural obsidian ring. High-quality sterling silver is easy to care for and can last a lifetime in your jewelry collection.
Use Black Obsidian to Ground and Protect Yourself
Few gemstones are as powerful as a black obsidian protection stone. This ancient, volcanic crystal that comes from deep within the earth is a safeguard from negative energy and can support your chakra system.
With so many varieties of obsidian, it’s not difficult to find the stone that speaks to you. Whether you're looking for a classic piece of natural black obsidian or a speckled healing bracelet made from snowflake obsidian, there's bound to be a healing crystal that catches your eye and resonates with your energy.
Healing stones have been used by people the world over for their ability to help us overcome obstacles and move through our lives with a greater sense of confidence and security. Obsidian stones can do the same for you, and it can be as easy as slipping on a gemstone bracelet and going about your day.