The word Scrying is believed to have come from the Old English word descry, meaning, "to make out dimly" or "to reveal". A Scrying mirror can be a powerful psychic tool which can bring the user hidden knowledge and act as a portal to possible planes of existence.
To scry, you need a reflective surface to go beyond what the physical eyes see, and letting the inner psychic eye open and reveal hidden information.
As a child, I was fascinated by Michel de Nostredame (1503-1566) and his prophecies. How he would gaze into a bowl of dark ink or water and then precede to make notes on what he saw. What interested me was other peoples opinions on him; there seemed to be a divide between some people thinking he was evil and insane, when others clearly listened to what he had to say, thus my curiousity in all things divinatory was born.
A child of the eighties, without the use of a computer at home, when not reading, in the summer, I would be outside lying on the grass watching the clouds (Nephelomancy) and writing down the things that I saw. It was at this time in my life I started to really delve into the possibilities of hidden knowledge and the opportunity and clarity that they could bring.
Throughout history and across cultures there are stories and documentated use of many different forms of scrying. I have made a list on the Divination page, which is by no means complete, but its a start to get you going. Scrying is a skill anyone can learn, different things work for different people, so I would recommend experimenting! Be it crystal balls, puddles or candle flames!

Here, I'm going to talk about Catoptromancy, which is a form of scrying and divination using a mirror. It is a very old technique, where the mirror was turned to face the moon in order to catch its lunar rays, the answers that you were seeking would be found in the characters of blood on the face of the reflections of the moon. historically, they would hang a mirror by a thread over a pool of water, until the base touched the surface of the water for medical prognosis, if the image was healthy looking then the outcome would be good, if the image was sickly looking it was seen as a harbinger of doom. Rather dramatic!
Black scrying mirrors can come in various sizes and were usually made of obsidian. I made mine with an old mirror I sprayed black, I prefer a circle mirror with a silver frame or decoration for the moon connection but everything is personal preference. You don't need to be rushing out spending money on an expensive item when I find home made and decorated to my style works just as well.
Before we begin scrying it is important that we create our sacred space, or cast a circle of protection if your path requires it. Ground and centre yourself, make sure that you will not be disturbed or distracted by outside noise. I tend to light some incense with relevant scents for the outcome I wish to achieve, or have some herbal tea and be in the right possible head space for the task in hand. Then we are ready to extinguish all other light sources apart from the moon or your candle flame.

Below, are two examples in which to do mirror scrying.

Using a mirror as a scrying plate

A mirror is placed flat on the table, or you could have it at a 90 degree angle, this is to avoid seeing our own reflection in the mirror. A small candle or light is placed near the mirror, close enough to allow the light to reflect onto the surface of the mirror. Either put the candle behind the mirror, or you could have one at either side.
Sit quietly and pay attention to your breathing and when you are ready, open your eyes and gaze into the mirror, remain relaxed and don't forget to blink when necessary! After a while the surface of the mirror will begin to change and fade, a mist may appear and your third eye, or inner eye will open and the journey now begins.
What you must remember is the inner eye sees inside of the mind, Most people when scrying do not see the images with their physical eyes on the mirrors surface, but within the mirror and in the minds eye. The mirror acts as a focus point, a gateway to within.
When you have completed your journey or work that you set out to do, begin to return to yourself and your body and its senses. Be aware of your breathing and breathe fully and deeply whilst remaining still until you have completely returned to the room. Think on your experiences and write them down in a journal. I cannot stress how important writing down your experiences are!

To stand before a mirror and stare into your reflection.

The start up will be the same, create your sacred space, making sure that you are not disturbed by noise or outside influences. Extinguish all lights apart from a torch held slightly under your chin. When you relax your vision, images will appear in the reflection. You will begin to see your features change shape, and keep changing. Some say this is past lives, or who you are in a parallel life. For more information you could try using a candle instead of a torch, and read the wax that falls after your journey or messages. * please use the candle safely and tie back hair and loose clothing to avoid becoming an inferno!

Scrying Tips

Keep your Mirror clean, use a soft cloth and alcohol or similar.
Only use it for its intended purpose, It is, after all, a sacred tool.
Store the mirror away when it is not in use, you could use a dark bag or wrap it in black silk.
Avoid letting other people handle or use your mirror, we wouldn't want anyone else influencing what you see.
Allow nothing to reflect in the mirrors surface, it should appear as a dark window.
Keep a journal and record your experiences.
Scrying is best at night, the most favourable times would be New or Full moon, depending on your intention.