Metaphysical Quartz Crystal Descriptions – An Introduction

The shapes and features of quartz crystals are varied and many. What do I mean by “configuration”? Crystal configurations are the different shapes of quartz crystal, named according to features present such as:

Facets (placement, number of edges) such as:

Transmitter, Dow, Channeler or Channeling, Isis, Eight Sided Face and Windows;

Projections (crystals penetrating one another) such as:

Inner Child, Bridge and Manifestation;

Over-all shape such as:

Elestial or Elestiated, Curved, Empathic and Laser Wand;

Surface features such as:

Record Keeper or Recorders, Trigonic Record Keepers, Etching, Sigils and Lineation;

Internal structures such as:

Fairy Frost, Phantoms, Rainbows and Inclusions;

Terminations such as:

Double Terminated and ET (Extra Terrestrial or Extra Termination);

Crystals on crystals such as:

Barnacles, Drusy, Dolphin and Twin or Soulmate;

Clarity such as:

Yin/Yang, Feminine and Masculine;

Indentations on the surface such as:

Key, Imprint and Growth Interference;

Overall shape in relation to other crystals such as:

Clusters, Twin or Soulmate and Lightbrary or Cathedral;

Thickness such as:

Tabular or Tabby and Sheet;


And finally, specialty crystals such as:

Gas Phantoms, Golden Healers and Overcoat, Snow or Reverse Phantoms.


The tricky part about determining configurations is that almost all crystals will fit in more than one category. Some have layers and layers of configurations. For example, a crystal may be a Double Terminated Tabby crystal with a Window, Record Keepers, a Manifestation point and an Isis Face. What does this mean descriptively? The crystal has two terminations (Double Terminated), is a flat shape (Tabby), has an extra facet (Window), has triangle shaped surface features (Record Keepers), has a crystal completely enclosed inside the main point (Manifestation point), and has a balanced five sided facet (Isis Face). This is why you need to be familiar with how to identify each feature separately and work your way down the list. To do this, it helps to break features up into groups as I have done in the examples above. When you do that, then you look at each grouping and see if you have one (or more) of the configurations in the grouping. For example, you would begin by checking facets, then projections, overall shape, surface features, internal structures, terminations, clarity, and so on.

Another tricky thing is that not every attribute of a particular crystal will fall perfectly into one of these descriptions. In cases like these, it is handy to know the general characteristics of a certain type of configuration or attribute and then you will be able to tell when a crystal doesn’t quite fit A or B, but you can determine it is more like B than A or vise versa.

This post is the introduction to configurations, and the posts following will be covering each configuration more in depth. I’m not going to list every crystal configuration that has ever been named. Instead, I will list the most frequently occurring configurations that I have encountered (and yes, there are frequently occurring rare configurations, although that is a bit of an oxymoron, I know).

Naming the configurations helps to provide us with a general guideline from which to begin if we need assistance in selecting a crystal for specific assistance. That having been said, I don’t believe that just because one person says this type of crystal is good for this one certain thing, that it is gospel. Your crystal may have come to you to help you with something entirely different than its structure may suggest. Always keep an open mind, and try not to pigeonhole your crystal into a specific category.

Most crystal books include what seems like an endless list of properties for each type of crystal; so many that, when I first started learning, I couldn’t hold even one of them foremost in my mind. For that reason, I will intentionally keep the metaphysical descriptions brief and general.

With each configuration, we will discuss the name (or names) most commonly used and then we will consider three things:

  1. A drawing of the configuration and some photographic examples;
  2. The physical description or identifying characteristics;
  3. And the most common metaphysical characteristics.

I strongly encourage you to discover what each configuration means to you. So, in upcoming posts, I will begin listing the different configurations, what they look like and how to determine them. You can look through your crystal family and see if you have any of the configurations we are discussing so that you can get to know how that particular configuration resonates with you.

Having said that, crystals are as individual and varied as people. Keep this in mind as you are working with your crystal friends.

We’ll see you next time, starting at the beginning of the alphabet, with BARNACLES.

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About Genn

Genn John has been acting as the legs for the Crystal People as the Keeper at Arkansas Crystal Works, an internet-based source for crystals and crystal knowledge, since 1995. Having accepted the honor to be their voice as well, she is the author of Understanding The Crystal People: A Handbook for Lightworkers; a crystal reference book for people who desire to fully understand their connection to the crystal kingdom and who wish to enhance their working knowledge of these majestic beings. Genn has also published a 4 part series of coloring books which are a useful tool for anyone with an interest in learning the anatomical structures of quartz crystals. It features precise, extraordinary hand-drawn designs crafted especially for easy coloring and interactive study. Find the store and more at, or her blog at To connect: email -, facebook -, Instagram - gennjohn or Twitter @GennJohn.

4 Responses to Metaphysical Quartz Crystal Descriptions – An Introduction

  1. yvonne says:

    hai Genn, beautiful site! , thx. I just started a crystal course online, really fun. I like crystals about all my life.
    I have to learn about a crystal configuration named: channel. do you have some information and pictures about it? I would be very grateful, thank you and I come back to your site it’s really beautiful to see and very well explaned. I hope to start a shop and healing place with crystals. thx again.

  2. Hi Genn,
    I have just published a metaphysical book called The Paradigm Shift. The original story came from a dream and involves an astronaut entering another dimension and using crystal technology to return back.
    The crystal was given to him by his wife who received it from a Shaman in Sedona.
    If you are interested in receiving a copy, I will be happy to send you one or you can see some reviews on Amazon.
    With best regards,
    Author (UK)

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