While it’s pretty common knowledge that selenite, kyanite, and citrine don’t require cleansing, there isn’t a lot of reasoning given to back that up. There isn’t anything in their structures or chemical composition that would lead one to believe that they shouldn’t be cleansed, so why them and not, say, any of the other crystals witches and healers commonly work with?
That’s a good question. And it’s not one I’ve been able to find a satisfying answer to.
Should a stone that doesn’t need cleansing, like selenite, ever be cleansed anyway?
Really, I’ve always been about simplifying my practice. Yes, It’s good to have a vast amount of specific esoteric knowledge, but it comes in somewhat less-than-handy when you know that the absolute perfect ingredient for your prosperity incense also happens to be one you’re completely out of, which is, by the way, also about $7 a gram and considered a threatened species. Those are times when it may be best to apply some kind of rule of thumb and try not to let it get to you.
This is how I feel about cleansing crystals. While I’ll pass on the idea that selenite and its ilk don’t need cleansing, I’ve never felt quite right about leaving a stone uncleansed myself. Regardless of what common knowledge says, if a stone begins to show symptoms of needing a cleanse (feeling vaguely “sticky,” having a heaviness or sluggishness to it when I try to feel out its energy, et cetera), I’ll do so.
What about ametrine?
Take, for example, ametrine. A variant of quartz that displays characteristics of amethyst and citrine, it might make you wonder if it really needs cleansing. Neither amethyst nor ametrine are ever mentioned as a stone that can go without a cleanse, but citrine is. So… Does this mean that only the amethyst portions need cleansing? Does the citrine act as a sort of energy sink, drawing away any gunk that might be attached to the amethyst? What if the stone was broken, removing the citrine-colored portion from the amethyst-colored portion? Some people use citrine as a way to keep other tools cleansed and charged, would it work to do so for the amethyst bits?
Really, just cleanse everything. If a stone feels like it needs a cleanse, don’t listen to what a gem guidebook tells you. A properly done cleanse never hurt a stone.
What should be done with broken crystals?
Speaking of hurt stones– I’ve seen a lot of questions pop up on tumblr about broken stones, and what to do with them. I can understand why, since it seems that a lot of people subscribe to a school of thought that if a crystal is broken, it is either too damaged to use or the break (especially if it occurs on a crystal’s point) will cause any energy sent into the crystal to scatter unpredictably. Some resources suggest that broken crystals should be properly discarded, usually by burying, or else just group up to use in incense or oils.
If you like to include powdered gemstones in incense or oils, rock on! That said, there’s no reason not to use a broken crystal. If you pick up a natural, rough quartz point, for example, you’ll see that they aren’t exactly mint-in-box. Even tumbled stones tend to have small pits or chips in them where the crystals they were tumbled from had preexisting fractures or inclusions. When it comes to highly polished, faceted stones, well… Considering that the stones they were cut from were likely far larger than they were, why don’t the man-made fractures they endured during cutting and polishing render them too broken to use? The idea that a natural stone could go through millions of years of natural phenomena (and its attendant damage), be chipped out of the earth, cut down, polished, and then be rendered virtually unusable by a tiny chip in its point has always struck me as a bit silly.
Tl;dr? Feel out your stones. Cleanse them when you feel it’s appropriate, regardless of what kind they are, and don’t sweat a little break or chip. Your stones have endured far worse just to get to you.