Scrying is done by focusing our gaze on something in which we can see symbols or scenes that reflect the past, present or future. One of my prized possessions is a very old crystal ball used by my mother as she gave readings that is now safely stored in a large trunk along with her Tarot cards.
Scrying has long been highly valued as possibly the original divination skill and its history actually goes back as far as the dawn of ritual.
Scrying’s ancient past
What I love about scrying is that it has been around since the dawn of civilisation – the very first people probably screed and everyone was at it! Archeologists discovered polished obsidian discs in the graves of women in the Neolithic city of Catal Huyuk which is considered the cradle of civilisation. These are believed to be ceremonial scrying mirrors buried with the Priestesses who used them. Ancient Egyptians are said to have used the reflective surface on pools of ink, whilst the Romans favoured crystals for scrying.
Enochian magic, talked about in the writings of the 16th century occultist and consultant to Elizabeth 1, Dr. John Dee, and The Golden Dawn, a magical order established in the late 19th century, both refer to scrying but warn against overdoing it or leaping in without the right amount of training and preparation!
Developing the skills
You can develop scrying skills without going through years of training, but it’s important that you only attempt scrying when you feel well and grounded in yourself and then use it infrequently and without becoming dependent on it!
Like so many other psychic skills, your success in scrying relies on your ability to really clear your mind, nudging anyone who is serious about their psychic development to adopt a regular practice of meditation which really helps us do this.
When you are confident that you can close down the chatter of your mind, pick whatever you want to use for scrying purposes, such as a mirror, a crystal ball or a beautiful piece of crystal. Basically, you can use any reflective object to scry. You can also concentrate on the flames of a fire burning in a grate.
Once you have picked your object, you should only really use it for scrying and not for everyday, so don’t pick the mirror you look in when you’re brushing your teeth! If you want to scry by looking into flames, find a place where you can safely light a fire that you can use for a scrying sessions. The idea is that you want to be able to keep a boundary between scrying sessions and your everyday life.
Setting a specific intention about what you hope to see is important. When you’re starting out, this is another time when you can rope in a good friend to move something in their home that you then try to locate through scrying. Or you might want to ask what’s likely to unfold on an upcoming date in your diary so you can check back on what you saw once the date has passed. As with all other psychic skills, no doing anything that violates anyone else’s privacy!
Find a quiet space where you won’t be disturbed, settle yourself and whatever you are using, and then look at it, allowing your eyes defocus slightly and just wait. Don’t be put off if ‘nothing’ happens for a long time, or after a long series of goes. If you keep going, eventually you’ll ‘see’ images, symbols or what might look like films playing out before you. It can seem a lot like daydreaming. Let your mind stay still whilst they unfold as if you try and ‘grab’ at them, you can distort what happens. You’ll know when you should stop as your focus weakens as your attention wanders. Ground yourself by stamping your feet or clapping your hands to signify the end of a session. Make notes of any images or symbols in your journal – especially those that require researching. And if you got a friend to move something, check with them if you were correct in where you ‘saw’ whatever it was!
Another important thing to bear in mind about scrying is that it provides a window on to ‘all that is’. What you see may relate to one possible present, future or even past. To throw in a further potential complication, it’s also possible that you can get caught up in your own projections. That’s why it’s so important to keep a journal, so that you can keep pace with your own progress and give yourself benchmarks to measure how you’re doing.
What can you use it for?
You can use scrying for practical things – the most obvious is looking for lost objects, though it’s best to wait until you’re really good at it before you start trying to use it to find your car keys as you’re rushing out of the door! But as this is one practice that really does come with a warning about becoming dependent on it, perhaps the most benign and beneficial way to use it is when you hit a wall on something that requires a bit of creative thinking. Einstein talked about the importance of generating a mental space for insight to enter and Nobel Prize winning physicist, Paul Dirac, was said to have been inspired during a tussle with a particularly complex theory whilst staring into a fire. If there’s some project that demands a creative solution that you just can’t move forward on, scrying might just reveal an answer.
A version of this article first appeared in Soul and Spirit Magazine
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