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There are two distinct type of Alabaster. Gypsum is said to be soft and easily scratched by a fingernail. It is considered to be the modern variety. Calcite Alabaster is the ancient variety and is hard enough that it can not be scratched by a fingernail, but by a knife. Alabaster is said to have gotten its Greek name from the city of Alabastron in Egypt.
The ancient Alabaster of the Far East was often used to make small perfume bottles and canopic jars in Egypt. When cut into thin enough sheets, it was used in medieval times for small windows. Calcite alabaster can be found in caverns deposited in several layers, giving it its banded look.
Modern Alabaster can be found in England. It is satiny and is considered to be an ornamental stone, but it does not hold up well to the elements. It is easily carved into detailed shapes because of its softness. Sometimes known as “plaster stone” Alabaster can be used to make plaster of Paris.
Alabaster is good to use during times of hardship and levels of high stress, promoting maturity and self control. This helps to cleanse, release grudges and promote forgiveness. It can aid in physical healing when sickness is brought on by such hard and stressful situations.
Hold Alabaster when meditating and it will help concentration. It is well used for cleaning other stones and increasing their powers.