Obsidian is the jewel of the volcano, made from hard volcanic glass. It is quite common to find this mineral with grey or white spots, which are called “Apache tears”. This name came from a Native American believe that the Earth wept obsidian when an Apache warrior was killed.
Obsidian knives and arrowheads have been found that date back thousands of years; for example, the Egyptians used obsidian knives in rituals. Polished mirrors of obsidian have been found dating back to 7000 BC and, because of its formation at volcanoes, obsidian is also linked with volcano deities. Both the Aztecs and the Mayans used obsidian extensively--in the absence of iron this mineral was their main cutting tool. To the Aztecs, obsidian was a bringer of life and death. They used obsidian powder to heal wounds, but they also made their sacrificial knives from carved obsidian. Several Aztec deities took obsidian as their namesake. The name of Itzpapalotl, the goddess of souls (for example) means “obsidian butterfly”. In Mayan culture, obsidian was sacred to Tezcatlipoca, the god of magicians, whose name means “the mirror that smokes”. This title refers to the use of the mineral to make magic mirrors.
Obsidian has been widely used for making both scrying balls and magic mirrors. The black polish of the volcano stone provides one of the best mineral surfaces for scrying on.
It has been called the “warrior stone” due to its use in making weapons in the past. It is also considered a stone of healing and is thought to work well on the Stomach and minor Solar Plexus Chakras, providing benefits for people who have problems asserting themselves.
Obsidian has also long been used as a protective stone. It is thought to block out negativity by absorbing this energy and “earthing” it like a lightning rod.