Braencandy: New Age Healing, Age Old Faith
2019 has been a rather tumultuous year for me, I started it off on the wrong foot I guess and I’ve been searching for solid ground ever since. If religion is the opiate of the masses, spirituality is the millennial approved drug of choice. I’ve spent a good nine months diving headfirst into wholesome trends and came across the concept of healing crystals, which eventually led me to the Instagram account of Braencandy.
If your eyes have rolled all the way to the back of your skull I’ll give you a minute or two to readjust your vision. I realize that healing crystals might seem like a load of mumbo-jumbo to most, I know they did to me. But I’ve recently found a lot of solace in the concept of right-alignment and manifestation techniques (and since I’m a cautious optimist). I knew that I had to try my hand at this.
I’m not sure if I was interested in going full circle with my birth-chart analyzing, tarot-card reading, horoscope trusting vibe, or simply adding a touch of mysticism to my minimalist bedroom. I’d be lying if I said my faith was one hundred when it came to healing crystals but I found myself drawn to the anchoring and stabilizing energy it promised. Additionally, the crystal decked Instagram account of Braencandy got me a little riled up.
After a particularly tough week, I found myself sliding into their DMs at 2 am, and within five minutes I managed to snag a Monday morning meeting with Braencandy. I spent the rest of my night dreaming about the Rose Quartz that I had my heart set on and bookmarking all the other stones I planned on buying.
At 11 AM I stood outside the Braencandy studio in Gulberg. A guard led me through the hallways of an old house towards a central courtyard and pointed me towards an iron stairway. As I climbed up and closed the door behind me I came across a display area of sorts. Crystals of varying colors, sizes, and shapes were laid out all across the room and sunlight from a large corner window flooded the entire room, bouncing off of the multi-colored surfaces. I felt like I was standing inside a kaleidoscope.
I eventually managed to pull myself out of the rainbow-induced stance and made my way to the office of Shehrbano Salahuddin who is one half of the whole operation. An architect by profession, Shehrbano, along with her friend Amann Omar, has arguably introduced crystals to a whole new segment of Pakistanis. Braencandy will be adding various crystal centric paraphernalia to their stock soon, but for the time being, they’ve got an array of stones, crystals, pendants, and rollers available for purchase.
When I first sat down with Shehrbano I had every intention of being the prim and proper Editor that I play pretend to be. Her warm smile, and a well-timed cup of karak chai, quickly tore through my barricade and we spent the next two hours in deep conversation. We spoke about everything under the sun, from our shared love for tarot-readings to our disdain for Lahore’s primitive elite structures, and it quickly snowballed into a free therapy session of sorts. We discussed heartbreak, healing, friendships, and food- ties that bind us all as humans.
She listened attentively and eagerly and told me of all the interesting people that she’s come across over the past year of Braencandy, I was just relieved to be talking to someone who didn’t scoff at the mention of birth-chart compatibility. I might’ve gone on for hours if I didn’t have a Monday schedule to stick to and so decided to wrap up my venting, Shehrbano seemed far too kind to have cut me off anyway.
I expressed my interest in procuring a few stones and crystals to tide me through this time of change and evolution. We made our way to the display space and she started talking me through each item on display, it’s unique abilities and strengths. Each stone has a distinct set of properties and one is almost instinctively called towards a stone that serves the need of the hour. Shehrbano lets you pick and weigh the stones and settle on one that feels right, she’s there for support and guidance. Once a stone is picked she cleanses it and packs it up for you. I already knew which crystal I had my heart and eyes set on: a spherical rose quartz.
Rose Quartz, also known as the heart stone or the stone of unconditional love, is said to dissolve emotional wounds, fears and resentments. It’s a century-old love talisman that reawakens the heart to its own innate love and allows one the capacity to truly give and receive love from others. I weighed the options and settled on one that was slightly smaller than a ping-pong ball. I also quickly bagged a Flourite (The Rainbow Keeper) for stability, a Pyrite (Wise Mans Gold) for protection, and a newly shipped in Kunzite (The Stone of Empathy), for kindness and spirituality. If I had more cash on me I would’ve quite possibly grabbed every crystal insight, but at least I have an excuse to go meet Shehrbano again.
I spent the entire ride back rolling the Rose Quartz sphere between my palms and marveling at the golden lines speckled within its center. Unfortunately, Shameel, who is the most skeptical pessimist I have ever encountered, stole my briefly prized heart stone within minutes of my arrival. He’s too proud to admit if the stone worked for him, but I have it on good authority that it did. I’ll be heading back to Braencandy to get another, maybe a Lapis Lazuli for some clarity too.