Q. Should I buy rough stones or tumbled/ shaped/ cut and polished? 

A. I get this question a lot so I wanted to write something brief to explain the differences. 

When you are studying the metaphysics of crystals or begin making crystal jewelry, you will be amazed at the array of crystal kinds and the surface variations in which they come. Certainly, you will meet other crystal lovers that promote one more than the other. I’ve studied rocks and crystals all my life and I can vouch that it can be confusing to know which version you should use. 

First, all stones possess energy and one mineral is not going to suddenly go dormant or stop working because it was altered by man. This, of course, does not include lab created stones. That is another subject altogether that I will get to… someday. lol 

For example, if you have a piece of Carnelian, it does not matter whether the stone is rough/ raw, tumbled, shaped or cut and polished. Each stone type possesses the same attributes and/ or healing benefits, for example, Carnelian energy is Carnelian energy.  

Raw stones are how they come out of the Earth. They are not widdled down and carved to be a certain shape or size. The tumbled and polished stones have been crafted possess a more glamourous appearance, shape, or design. 

Raw stones have passed through less hands of other people and have endured less trauma than tumbled stones. This includes crystal clusters that have not been polished. Tumbled stones endure 30-days straight of being tumbled. The tumbling process bounces the stones and crystals around, banging and throwing their oscillatory rate off kilter, which eventually inhibits their strength and healing ability. The energy of stones and crystals is not as pliable as ours as humans but when banged around relentlessly, as they are in the tumbling process, they certainly need to be cleansed and healed once you receive them. (*All this said, many raw stones do go through a physical cleansing process that can cause a little bit of trauma to the stone. It depends on what kind of mineral it is, where you got it from, etc. But it is not as traumatic as tumbling.) 

So, the point is, raw stones have passed thru less hands, therefore; their energy is more pure and authentic than stones that have been cut and polished or tumbled. 

...so how do you know which type is best for you?... 

Raw stones are great for people that like that super, raw crystal energy. Or perhaps you are not as sensitive to crystals as others and need something a little stronger. Or like me, maybe you love that crystal wave so much, the more you can get is best.  

Tumbled stones are great for people that are easily distracted by the awkward shapes and rough textures of raw stones. It can cause some to become too distracted during the meditation process. This also goes for the cut and polished stones. 

The conclusion is: It just depends on your sensitivity to the subtle energies of minerals and your personal preference for aesthetics and texture when deciding which stone type is right for tou. You can use either type of stone for the same purposes.