Crystal Ball Gazing
There are many tools used by fortune tellers, magical practitioners, and psychics for predicting the future. The crystal ball is a tool that most everyone is familiar with through popular culture, though very few people actually know the theory behind the use of the ball for gazing.
The practice of using a reflective surface to "receive" psychic images is an ancient one. A variety of reflective surfaces can be used for scrying such as mirrors, crystals, crystal balls, and still pools or bowls of water. Nostradamus is said to have used a scrying bowl when divining the future. Scrying mirrors are pieces glass that is painted black on one side so that the surface gives a dim but clear reflection.
The art of scrying itself involves meditating while staring at a reflective surface in a dimly lit room. The room is usually only lit with the light of a candle. After a short time of staring at the reflective surface, images will begin to flicker before the eyes of the person who is scrying. The images are then interpreted and a description is written down. The traditional crystal ball gazing method is usually used when scrying for someone else and the images are interpreted aloud for the client. This method is the one that has been popularized and has been seen in countless television shows and movies.