If It’s Broken…Don’t Fix It

If It’s Broken…Don’t Fix It

Please forgive my adaptation of the familiar saying ‘if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it’. In this case, I refer specifically to broken crystals. It may feel sad when a beautiful crystal breaks, in any way – whether a chip, a crack or into many pieces. However, Cerridwen has shown me how to work with these wonderful little wounded healers and how, if you believe in them, their power can be increased through their brokenness, rather than reduced. 

I have always loved crystals, even before I fully knew what they were and what they can do. I loved the colours, the shapes, the beauty. I remember having a beautiful blue agate pyramid as a little girl, and dropping it by accident onto a stone floor – it cracked badly and soon after broke into pieces. My mum said it was ruined and threw it away. I knew no better. Now, I wish I still had the pieces (but I hope that wherever they are, they are still working magic!).  

Not long after starting my Cerridwen training, I found my first ever crystal dragon. A beautiful tiger’s eye carving, he was fierce and magnificent. I couldn’t wait to start working with him. I took him out with me one day to go to a local stone circle, to spend some time there soaking in the energies. I wrapped him up very carefully (the fate of my pyramid still resonates all these years later!) and popped him into a little compartment at the front of my rucksack to keep him safe. When I arrived, I got out of the car and my rucksack slipped out and landed on its front – yes, right on top of the ‘safe’ compartment where my dragon was travelling! I heard a small but significant – and sickening – crack; and my fears were confirmed as I unpacked my lovely dragon. One of his horns had chipped right off. 

I was so cross at my own carelessness – but I had come to the stone circle to connect with Cerridwen and introduce my dragon to Her, and that is what I did. I said Cerridwen’s prayer and sat down to talk with Her, holding the dragon and his broken horn in my hands. I apologised for my carelessness and offered to gift the broken horn back to the ground. But She told me to do something different instead. 

“Do you remember how your heart responded to my call, child? You have told me so many times how thankful you are that I understand your humanity, your frailty, what you see as your weaknesses. The times when your emotions get the better of you, when you feel far less than perfect. You know that I understand all of this because I have felt it too. I have felt broken and I am with you when you feel broken. 

“Give the dragon his horn back, repair it as best you can and every time you work with him, see the crack and remember the power that can rise out of brokenness. We do not need to be perfection. You can do great work with broken things.”

Tiger's Eye DragonWhen I got home, I glued the dragon’s little horn back on. Ever since then, I have felt Cerridwen nudging me to work with broken crystals – I have not been told to repair any more since the dragon, but rather to work with them as they are and to feel into the power and energy that they bring in that broken state.  

I now seem to have something of a knack for attracting broken crystals – whether it’s the pieces I pick up physically in a shop and find there’s a wee crack, or others found online where the seller will message back apologetically to advise that it is broken or cracked. This only makes that crystal even more attractive to me!  I am often gifted broken or cracked crystals, too. I call them all my ‘rescue crystals’ and I am incredibly glad that they have found their way to me.   

Despite great care with my crystals at home (that early pyramid-drop incident still haunts me!) I do find that some have a tendency to chip or break – and they always make it known when it happens. The little broken piece is invariably sitting right next to whichever stone has decided it’s having a break! I have come to learn that this is Cerridwen highlighting a particular crystal energy that she wants me to work with for a while – and inevitably within a short period of time, a situation or a request will come up which requires exactly that particular type of crystal healing energy. 

Part of that work is to gift the broken piece of crystal to Cerridwen. I have a little ceramic pot (cauldron-shaped) on my altar which holds all of these crystalline gifts to Her. It is part of the contract, part of the work. It directly connects Her to my work with each of the broken crystals and the situations where they are bringing healing energy and power. 

There is a lot of information and opinion to be found online about broken crystals. Some sources will tell you to avoid them altogether – that they are energetically flawed and that their healing properties are weakened.  My personal experience, though, is exactly the opposite.  

My broken dragons, for example, feel immensely powerful and I love to work with them (I have four ‘rescue dragons’ now, including the original tiger’s eye who started off my journey with broken crystals). They bring an incredible compassion to all workings and are wonderful distance healers. I feel that because they have suffered injury, neglect, disregard and more, they are determined to help heal all of this using their understanding of those challenging circumstances to bring even more power and energy into the mix. Just like Cerridwen does for us…

Rescue Dragons

I find that if I focus on the broken part of a crystal with acceptance and love, then the healing properties and energy become even more intense – as if the crystal’s true core is now exposed and able to shine in its full power.  By looking at it in this way, it becomes even more exquisite and special to me – even if it does not fit society’s view of perfection. I have a wonderful rose quartz freeform with a chip at the top – its lines are no longer perfectly flowing but the compassion that flows from that raw, real part of the crystal is beyond words. A little labradorite merkaba star that I rescued on the point of being binned is an incredible personal companion to help with dreams and night-time distance healing work, with the energy flowing from that point particularly potent and crackling. 


Some people believe that if a crystal breaks, it does so because it has taken an energetic hit or attack, possibly on your behalf. Others believe that it means it has done its work and should now be retired – that it has no power left to give. I believe that either scenario can be the case, but that you should connect and listen to your crystal and come to your own conclusions together. 

Of all the broken crystals I have and work with, there is only one where these scenarios apply. It is a shungite plate, which sat on my work desk daily until one day I went to pick it up as I cleared up after work, and it shattered into three pieces. Shungite is a powerful protector against negative influences and energies – given the challenges I was facing at that particular time I do believe that my poor little shungite had given above and beyond to help me cope. 

However, as I connected with it to thank it for its work and sacrifice, it was clear that I was to hold onto the three pieces for a future purpose rather than retire them altogether. Their need for rest was very strong, but not a permanent retiral; just a period of recuperation and the purposes for the three broken pieces would be revealed in time. The three shungite pieces have been resting in a full moon singing bowl ever since and, as I picked them up for a photograph for this article, I can feel that their energy is most definitely restored and flowing through their rough exposed innards. I am sure that they will let me know what their next task is when they are fully ready!  

Shungite pieces

While I love any activity with crystals, I am particularly grateful when Cerridwen brings me another broken crystal and sets me to work. There is always an incredible, exquisite, delicate beauty to be found in brokenness, and I appreciate so very much the deepening of connection with Her that also comes through, from both the crystal healer itself and the people or situations it is destined to support. 

It is a privilege to receive that kind of trust, particularly in the darker, fragile times of life. It is humbling to remember that Cerridwen holds me in my own brokenness; that flaws may be visible and ever-present but do not wholly define me or others. It is a reminder that whether working with crystals or not, it is important for me to remember to extend the same kind of love to people that Cerridwen gives to me – to seek to understand and accept others in their frailty and humanity and to be mindful of the challenges and difficult emotions that they too have to deal with. That every single one of us has at least one little crack or chip somewhere, some raw place exposed – and if we look at that place with compassion and love there is wonderful power and energy to be found. 


Aileen initiated as a Priestess of Cerridwen in October 2022, by the shores of Lake Bala. She lives on the wild west coast of Argyll in Scotland. You can find her on Instagram at @crone_in_training or on Facebook at @Sounds Fyne  

Samhain is one of the most magical times of the year. Often considered the Witch’s New Year, it’s a time to take stock, to reap the last harvest of the year and, of course, to take a look ahead at the year to come. In Pagan communities of all kinds, people will come together particularly at Samhain for celebration and ritual. What if, though, you’re not part of a like-minded community where you live? What if you’re still in the broom closet, but really want to mark this new beginning, to make the most of a magical space and time where the veils are gossamer-thin? What if you’re just starting out and you don’t have any special magical tools? This little ceremony is for you. It is simple and you need only a pen and paper. It can take as long as you wish it to, or it can take a few snatched minutes in a private space at work – what’s most important is the intent, the energy that you put into it. You can do this alone if you want, but you can also build it up into something bigger and do it with other people. We work with Cerridwen, so if I was doing this, I’d start off by saying a prayer to her. She is a Goddess who understands how it feels to be working hard without a break. She understands what it’s like to feel separate and different to the other people around you. She is a Goddess of transformation, of renewal, and Samhain is her time…when you call on her, especially when setting intentions for the year ahead, she can help. You can use your own words or if you would like, I have included the kind of words we might typically use if we were starting out on a ritual with Cerridwen. Welcome Cerridwen, Mistress of Magic and Mystery. You are at the centre of all that we do. We ask you please to bring your healing to this space. To let your magic flow all around us, and work its wonderful transformation and renewal that is so needed in a world that hurries and pushes. Lady, please bring to us the creativity and regeneration that comes from spending time with you. We stand before you, still and quiet, as all of that wonderful power ebbs and flows around us, ready to restore and renew. We breathe your magic in. Hail and Welcome, Cerridwen, Mistress of Magic and Mystery. We bring all of that energy to our centre now, with gratitude. Blessed be. We can draw on these energies, from the Goddess, not only here today but when we leave this space, when we return to daily life and go about our business. Remember that all of this magic has been called in for you, today. We are now going to ground and centre - when the world pulls at us and makes its demands, it can be easy to forget just where we truly are. And where we are, at all times, is connected to the earth itself, and to the skies above. We have both roots and wings, and we will take just a few moments to remind ourselves now. If you can, close your eyes, but if that’s not possible, then please simply relax and listen, again. Focus on your breathing and allow yourself to breathe gently, slowly, naturally. As you give yourself that gift of deep, nourishing breath, notice how you start to feel more relaxed, calmer and more at peace with yourself. Feel where you are connected to the earth - through the soles of your feet, where you sit, where you place your hands. Feel strong roots of connection growing through your feet and reaching down, down to the very heart of the earth, where there is warmth and the love of Mother Earth herself. Feel that warmth and love travelling all the way back up through your roots right into your body and up into your heart, that wonderful direct connection with Mother Earth. Feel a thread of energy travelling up now, up through your body and through the crown of your head, reaching all the way to the stars where it wraps around and connects with one bright, shining star. Feel the lightness and wonder and magic that comes to you, right from the star, as its loving energy travels down that thread and back to your heart. You are beautifully, wonderfully connected to the earth and the stars, right here, right now, and at all times that you take a moment to ground and centre yourself, to give yourself this gift of reconnection, in this way. Bring your focus back to your breathing, slow and gentle. Wiggle your toes and come back to the place where you’re sitting. But know that you come back with all the power of that grounding and centring, that connection, along with the wonderful Goddess-energies that we called in earlier. Now it is time to do some work! With the help of Cerridwen, we are going to think about some of the things that may have held us back over the past year. The things which have not yielded any fruit or useful harvest for us. The things we want to let go, as we move into a new time, a new year… Cerridwen is known for her mighty cauldron - the cauldron that brewed the Awen, the magical inspiration for so much creativity that exists in the world today. Her cauldron is also one of transformation and release, magical alchemy working with us to identify things that no longer serve us and help us change them into more helpful patterns. Today we are going to put into the cauldron some of those things! Take your paper and pen, and take a few minutes to write down five or six of the things that you would like to let go of. These could be things like anxiety, procrastination, fear… or anything else at all that you can see isn’t serving you, or your highest good. Take as much time as you need and, when you’re done, take a look at your list for a moment. Now - for the next few minutes, make a new list on another piece of paper. This list is all of the things that will help you overcome and work towards transforming those challenges. Perhaps it is courage, or boldness that you need…or something else altogether. But please take time to write these down. Now you have two lists - well done for taking this time to focus on yourself , for taking stock and for thinking about the positive things you would like to bring into the year ahead! Look at your first list - the list of challenges and difficulties. We are now going to put those into Cerridwen’s Cauldron – metaphorically speaking… Look at the first item on your list - take your pen and very carefully, deliberately, score it out. (If you have a felt pen like a Sharpie, that would be ideal!). Score over that word until it is no longer visible. It is going into the cauldron to be transformed. Now, do the same for each item on your list. Score them out, with each stroke of your pen think of these challenges becoming less and less... With each stroke of your pen, imagine that these challenges are being burnt away, in a cauldron, going through the transformative, cleansing, renewing, bright energy that Fire brings, to help you move these on. Now, please turn to your second list - the list that will help you to overcome those challenges. Take a look at each of the things you have written down - take time to speak them to your heart and soul, you do not need to do this out loud right now but please do so when you can. Look at each word you have written down. What do you need to do to make them reality? Give these written words value and importance - draw around them, a circle, a heart, any pictures that might help you to bring them to reality. Make them beautiful, for they are beautiful things, and they can be good and helpful companions to you as you set out on this new, fresh time in your life. Keep your list and add it to a journal if you have one, or keep it somewhere safe where you can look at it and be reminded of this time you took for yourself today. Look at it again - add to it if you want, drawing on the energies we have brought to this space today, remembering how peaceful and inspired you felt. These are qualities that we want to keep, we are not throwing them to the fire, but we will ask Cerridwen to bless them. I have added the kind of words that we would use, but you can use your own too. Cerridwen, we have given to your fire those things which no longer serve us. And, inspired by you and supported by your energy, we have set out the things which will help us, which we will work towards, to support us in future times of challenge and to help us grow in joy and vitality. Lady, please consume in your fire that list of challenges. And Lady, please bless the work that we will do to grow and thrive. Blessed be. We hope that this short ceremony helps to restore you and provides inspiration and support to draw upon in the days to come. We can never completely avoid busyness but we can take time out for ourselves so we can cope with it. Thank you for taking that time for you today. As you return to your day and the days to come, I hope you can keep the peace and nourishment of this sacred space and time in your heart. Aileen, Priestess of Cerridwen Argyll, Scotland Instagram @crone_in_training


3 thoughts on “If It’s Broken…Don’t Fix It

  1. Thank you for sharing, Sidika! In the past I have also experienced disappointment when a cracked of piece of a crystal breaks–feeling responsible and saddened. I love the guidance and encouragement you received from Cerridwen, and the analogy that the cracks or brokenness we feel is part of the journey for accepting the true beauty and power of who we are, a reflection of the Goddess in every manifestation. We can be nothing less. Thank you again! Blessed be.
    Connie from Vancouver, Washington USA

    1. Thank you Connie, I’m glad that Cerridwen drew you to read the piece. There is often such beauty to find in our brokenness. Much love – Aileen

  2. Aileen, thank you for your timely information. I have a fluorite dragon named Merlin with a small chip out of his horn. I was devastated when it happened, from my carelessness. He however, did not seem to mine. He is on my alter for healing from Cerridwen. I also have an amethyst pendulum that has a broken point. I have been afraid to work with this because i was afraid it would not give me a clear answer. i will now rethink what I am going to do with this. Thanks Donna

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