“For I would ride with you upon the wind…”

That W. B. Yeats sure can furnish a pretty quote — the title of this post was lifted from his The Land of Heart’s Desire.  It provides a handy segue into the point of the post, too: what do you do if you really would like to summon the wind…?

I’ve posted before about the classic Four Elements: Earth, Air, Fire, and Water.  I’ve also made mention on occasion of various types of crystals: for instance, I once did a post about the Moonstone.  So, it’s not uncommon knowledge that people who are into the Occult will often combine these interests, and use various crystals to invoke one or more of the Four Elements.

Almost any stone can stand in as a representative of the Earth Element, given that, quite simply put, rocks come from the Earth.  It’s possible to get even more specifically “earthy” about it, though, and use something like, say, Nuummite, a black stone first discovered in Greenland that’s said to be several billion years old — now that’s a rock that’s been in close contact with the Earth for a very long time!  Earth properties might also be captured in metals, resins (like Amber), and wood (Petrified Wood is a good choice here).  The Water Element can be exemplified by such stones as Larimar — found only in the Dominican Republic, in the Caribbean, at times right in the water — or Ocean Jasper, which looks like a cross-section cut from the sea itself, and which even bears the ocean’s name.  The Fire Element might be seen as embodied in something like a Fire Opal, which looks and “feels” like Fire…

The Fire Opal: a veritable blaze of color!
The Fire Opal: a veritable blaze of color!

So that’s three out of the Four Elements…but what to do for Air?  Unlike the other three Elements already dealt with above, Air is largely invisible to us, and far less tangible than Earth, Water, or even Fire (Fire itself may not have any substance we can feel, but its heat is unmistakable).  So the key here is to focus maybe not so much on Air itself, as on capturing the way in which we perceive Air: that is, we can see and feel the results of its presence.  We can see and feel Air in motion.  We can see and feel wind

With that in mind, my suggestion here is that if you want to get hold of a stone that can do a good job representing the Air Element, concentrate on one that evidences the actions of wind.  Consider, if you will…the Ventifact…

A Ventifact -- photo by Daniel Mayer, taken at Ventifact Ridge in Death Valley...
A Ventifact — photo by Daniel Mayer, taken at Ventifact Ridge in Death Valley…

A Ventifact is a rock that’s been abraded and polished over long periods of time by grains of sand or crystals of ice driven along on the wind.  The result of this kind of extended erosion is a unique texture and appearance not generally found in other types of rock.  The Ventifact is a clear product of this erosion, a child raised and shaped by the touch of the wind itself — it’s a creation, in a sense, of the Air Element.  This ability of the wind, by the way, to shape the Earth or the things upon it, is referred to as an Aeolian process — named for Aeolus, the keeper of the Four Winds in Greek Mythology…

Aeolus: Lord of the Winds, for whom the Aeolian processes are named, and who would certainly know his way around a Ventifact!
Aeolus: Lord of the Winds, for whom the Aeolian processes are named, and who would certainly know his way around a Ventifact!

Ventifacts can range in size, from the small, pocket-scale examples that can be carried around and used comfortably in practices such as meditation, to the kinds of enormous specimens that would dwarf a Winnebago.  An interesting facet of the Aeolian process is highlighted in these latter, larger types of Ventifacts: given that particles of sand or ice can only really be lifted so high and borne aloft for so long by even the hardest-working of winds, most of the erosion activity they can effect happens closer to the ground…so many standing boulders in Ventifact-producing environments will find themselves worn away at their bases, but not in their midsections or at their tops.  The result is often a structure that looks a bit like a great stone mushroom:

The distinctive shape of an Aeolian landform -- photo taken in Bolivia by Thomas Wilken...
The distinctive shape of an Aeolian landform — photo taken in Bolivia by Thomas Wilken…

So the ultimate point here is that while it’s all but impossible to find a stone that looks or feels like the invisible and well-nigh intangible Element of Air, it’s very possible to find one that’s had that Element indelibly etched into its very physical being by action of the wind.  It’s very possible to obtain a Ventifact of a nice, user-friendly size, and then happily put it to good use, representing the Element of Air.  Your local Occult/Metaphysical shop might carry a few, and almost anything in our modern Internet Age can be ordered online (although as with anything being purchased sight unseen, it’s obviously best to try to gather up some recommendations for a good source before just plunking down some cash).  And with all that said, I’ll turn once again to one of my heroes, the eternally fab George Harrison, to sum things up on the topic of the wind-related (lyrics drawn from his ultra-catchy tune, Blow Away):

Wind blew in, cloud was dispersed
Rainbows appearing, the pressures were burst
Breezes a-singing, now feeling good
The moment had passed
Like I knew that it should.

All I got to do is to love you
All I got to be is, be happy
All it’s got to take is some warmth to make it
Blow Away, Blow Away, Blow Away…

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