But the visions of the scryer often endure for a considerable time.
Sometimes the supposed magician or medicine man himself did the scrying; occasionally he enabled his client to see for himself; often a child was selected as the scryer.
These things may have had some effect by way of suggestion; the scryer may have been brought by them into an appropriate frame of mind; but, as a whole, they are tedious and superfluous.
Others see in the glass coloured figures of men, women and animals in motion; while in rarer cases the ball disappears from view, and the scryer finds himself apparently looking at an actual scene.
People who cannot scry may have these hypnagogic illusions, and, so far, may partly understand the experience of the scryer who is wide awake.
In these respects, and in the awakeness of the scryer, crystal pictures differ from hypnagogic illusions.
But, as a rule, the scryer cannot detect any process of development from such points de mire; though this may be the actual process.
The experiments took this form: any person might ask the scryer (a lady who had never previously heard of crystal-gazing) "to see what he was thinking of."
The scryer, who was a stranger in a place which she had not visited before, gave, in a long series of cases, a description of the person or place on which the inquirer's thoughts were fixed.
On one occasion the scryer could see nothing, "the crystal preserved its natural diaphaneity," as Dr Dee says; and there were failures with two or three inquirers.
Perhaps something depends on the inquirer as well as the scryer.
The scryer may let his consciousness play freely, but should not be disturbed by lookers-on.
These Egyptian experiments of 1830 were vitiated by their method, the scryer being asked to see and describe a given person, named.
He ought not, of course, to be told more than that he is to descry the inquirer's thoughts, and there ought never to be physical contact, as in holding hands, between the inquirer and the scryer during the experiment.
(i.) Crystal-gazing is a world-wide method of divining, which is analogous to dreams, save that the vision is voluntarily initiated, though little, if at all, under the control of the scryer.
If the process commonly styled "telepathy" exists (see Telepathy), that may account for the scryer's power of seeing facts which are in the mind of the inquirer.