Scrying crystal ball

A Beginner's Guide To Scrying and Crystal Gazing

Scrying, or crystal gazing, is a form of divination that involves gazing into a clear or dark reflective surface. This opens the mind's eye until symbols or images appear. These can be interpreted to help answer questions, make predictions, or just help you with problems you are experiencing. Though scrying is not always easy to perform, it is very simple to learn.

Using Scrying Materials

Most people are familiar with the image of a person gazing into a perfectly clear, flawless, natural quartz ball. While this is one way to scry, it is not the only one. Many materials can be used for scrying, including similar-looking glass crystal balls about 5-6" in diameter, a clear quartz egg, or large pieces of black tourmaline.

If you are just starting out, you can even learn to scry using a black mirror or a bowl of water (dark-colored bowls worth the best for this) with a pinch of sea salt. Experiment and practice with a variety of materials to see which suits your abilities the best.

How to Scry

Scrying works best in an area with low light. Make sure it is free from distractions before you begin, so your meditative state is not interrupted. Then:

1. Dim any artificial lights in the room, close the curtains, and light a few candles. (Make sure that the candles are placed behind you, so they are not distracting.)
2. If you like, light some incense. Burning dried mugwort on a charcoal tablet can help with scrying.
3. Sit comfortably in front of your scrying object, and begin to take deep, regular breaths.
4. Allow your eyes to relax as you get into a meditative state.
5. Continue to gaze at the object until you begin to see things within it. These can be anything, from colors to moving mists or clouds, to images like a video.
6. It may help to have some kind of recording device handy. This is so you can describe what you see in a stream-of-consciousness style, and listen to it afterward to interpret it. Writing them down can also be helpful, but may be distracting at the moment.

There is no right or wrong way to scry. Whatever helps you get into the meditative state and open your mind's eye is fine.

The Ganzfeld Effect

"Ganzfeld" is German for "complete field." The ganzfeld effect describes a neural phenomenon that happens when you gaze at a uniform surface for a while. Since your physical eyes are not taking in any images, your brain begins to produce them to make up for it. This can happen when looking at scrying objects, snow, or even a wall. Inducing the ganzfeld effect with scrying objects while in a meditative state allows you to use this phenomenon to obtain information.

Interpreting Images

Many people think that crystal gazing will always produce moving, video-like images, but this is not true. Not everyone will see moving pictures when they scry, and that is okay. Some people may see nothing more than a swirling mist, or shifting colors, but these can still yield useful information. A "yes" answer to a question may be seen as mists moving to the right, or a "no" moving to the left.

Colors can be interpreted based on their symbolism -- green for prosperity, pink for love, and so forth. It is also important to pay attention to how the images make you feel. Do you feel positive, or a sense of foreboding? Sometimes, it might not be obvious what the symbols mean right away -- this is why it is helpful to record what you see.

Caring for Scrying Objects

Crystal balls, crystal eggs, tourmaline chunks, scrying mirrors, and other objects used for divination need to be taken care of properly. Keep them free of dust, and do not wash them with harsh cleaners that may damage their surfaces. In some traditions, scrying objects are washed with a tea made of fresh or dried mugwort and a pinch of sea salt every full moon.

Crystal gazing is an ancient art that is still very popular among diviners, magic practitioners, and lightworkers today. While it may take time to perfect, it is very easy to learn. Similar to other divination methods, like tarot reading or using a pendulum, scrying provides a helpful look into the unknown.