Scrying is a form of divination and fortune telling that uses a reflective surface as a medium. Scrying is also known as crystal gazing as more often than not crystal balls are used as a medium of divination. Other than crystal balls, the most common media for scrying are crystals, precious stones, polished quartz, or other similar transparent bodies. Using all these media for scrying is also known as Crystallomancy.

Of course, mirrors, and even water has been used as a medium for scrying. Scrying comes from the Old English word – descry – that means ‘to reveal.’

Scrying goes back far into the mists of time, and is known to have been practiced as long back as 2000 BC in ancient Greece, as well as in ancient Britain by the Celts. It is understood that beryl, crystal, black glass, polished quartz, water, and other transparent bodies were used, then, as media for scrying. The Celtic priesthood of Druids was known to have used crystals for divination as far back as 2000 BC.

Since then, scrying has been in use in most cultures across the world. During the Medieval Period in central Europe, scrying with the use of crystals, such as Beryl, was widely used. Highlanders form Scotland called beryl and other crystals ‘stones of power.’ Though initially crystal balls were made from Beryl, later rock crystal and other more transparent rocks were used.

A noted British mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, and geographer – Dr. John Dee – was a consultant to Queen Elizabeth I in the 16th century. He often employed a crystal ball for his divination. Nostradamus, famous for his prophesies, was known to have used a bowl of water for scrying.

Objects Used For Scrying

Over the centuries, a number of objects have been used as a media for scrying. A look at some of the specific objects:

• Egyptians – A pool of ink in the hand
• Ancient Greece And The Middle Ages – Mirror
• Polynesia – Water filled hole
• The Incas – A crystal
• North-West Indian Frontier Tribes – Liver of an animal
• Apaches – Quartz crystals
• Huille-Che of South America – A slab of polished black stone
• The Zulus and the Siberians – Water in a vessel

Other cultures and peoples have been known to use fingernails, sword blades, ring stones, a glass of sherry, a polished portion of Obsidian, among others.

The Method For Scrying

Scryers see visions in the media they use. The variations in the media cause the visions. The color, the ebb and flow, or the ripples in the water can cause visions. In a similar manner, the minute inclusions, and the web-like faults in the crystals, and the cloudy glow inside the crystal ball can also cause visions.

The medium one uses basically serves to focus the attention of the scryers, to the exclusion of unwanted thoughts. Once that self-induced sort of a trance is achieved, the scryers try to associate with the perceived images. The association with these vague images, howsoever irrelevant, helps in deepening the state of the trance. This process leads to a stage where the images are visually rich, with the stories either projected within the medium or in the mind’s eye of the scryer.    


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