The “Soul Mirror”
The Soul Mirror, otherwise known as the Black and White Soul Mirrors, The Elemental Mirror, or Metaphysical Mirror, depending on the circle you roll in, is a very important part in self discovery be that for spiritual reasons or general self betterment. The purpose is to find out the positive and negative traits about your person so that you are able to change the more negative aspects about your personality.
The “Mirror” can be created in different ways, depending on your intentions. Whichever way you choose to make it, I would just advise that you create one for your own benefit later on down the road. Some time ago I created one, and to this day still look back on it and work on some of the negative traits that I found within’ myself. Unfortunately this can be slightly daunting, seeing how many negative traits you can find about yourself is never something fun, but honesty is the best policy because it is for you and should only be seen by you. Once created you can begin the task of making the changes that you feel should be made, be that through self awareness or meditation.
The first method we’ll be discussing is one that is most famous among hermetic practitioners. To begin you will need either a piece of paper to work on, or in my case whichever word processing program you choose to work with.
I like to set mine up in various sections, I feel that it’s a method of organization that is beneficial because it helps you to concentrate on the task at hand, rather than trying to think and categorize at the same time.
Begin my writing words that describe you. No phrases, just words.
Irritable, Strong Willed, Procrastinate, Kind, Forgiving, etc…
Do this until your list is exhausted with any and everything that you feel describes you, being fully honest. Sometimes it may take more than one day to actually accomplish this simply because it can get quite time consuming. If you are open to help and helpful criticism I would suggest that you find someone close to you to perhaps give you some help in this department. Someone who will be honest and unbiased.
This list can be as long or short as you need it to be, but don’t feel insecure about creating it. Being honest with yourself is of the utmost importance right now and this is by far the most important step in the entire process.
This is where you will get into the categorization of the list you just created. Sometimes people fail to mention this step or disregard it in it’s entirety, as it does seem to be sort of a bordering step for those who are doing this coming from a Hermetic background. Depending on space if you are writing you may need an entirely new sheet of paper or the back. As opposed to drawing a line down the middle of the paper I would suggest that you just do one part and then the other, in more so paragraph form than list. Just as a means to save paper.
You will need two categories, Positive, and Negative. It’s fairly self-explanatory but you simply take each word from the first list and place them into their perspective groups. All the positive traits go under positive and negative ones under negative. If you have a word that you feel can be both positive and negative then you can place it in both categories.
Using the short example list created earlier our lists would look something like this:
Positive: Kind, Forgiving, Strong Willed…
Negative: Irritable, Strong Willed, Procrastinate…
Once you have done this you are done with step 2.
This is the final step in the process but also one that takes a bit of insight into the elements. For those of a Hermetic or general Magic(k) background this step will be far more easy than someone who has zero understanding of these topics.
What you are going to be doing now is grouping these same descriptive words into their respective elemental categories for both the Positive and Negative.
Fire, Water, Earth, Air.
A way to set up your page would be as follows;
And repeat for each respective element.
Doing this is not as difficult or daunting as it may seem. Just go through the entire list you made in the beginning and for each word you see place it into a category that best describes it. Sometimes a word may fall into more than one elemental category and if that is the case than place it into both of them respectively. Because this step is so much like the previous one, going into it further is fairly irrelevant, all that is required is a brief understanding of the elemental properties which you can find HERE. This step is not required, depending on your goals and intentions.
It is to get an understanding of where you stand and what element you are most “attuned” to currently. From here elemental meditations and self-awareness are enacted to help “balance” a potential unbalanced individual. To work on swapping out a more negative trait for its positive counterpart. An example would be |Hate| = Love, etc… If you are honest many times this list will be fairy long, and overwhelming, it’s never expected of you to accomplish these character changes over night. You should start with one single trait and work your way down the list from there.
The second method is exactly like the first one, only you remove the final step. This method is for those individuals who choose not to associate themselves with the elemental affiliation. Either the less spiritual type or anti-metaphysical. I personally don’t see the issue with it, but some do for whatever reason they may have, and so this is simply an alternative.
The end process is the same, you should go through the list one by one to either improve on a positive trait or work to counter a negative one.
This is a method that was taught to me early on in the Art of Living, and one I was able to utilize in group lectures and talks with the Red Cross. It’s a more upfront method and I’d advise everyone to use this along with the previous one, though, it can be used in place of it as well. It’s more informal and one you can teach to large groups of people without bringing in metaphysics or spirituality.
What you need is either a piece of paper or whatever word processing program you choose to use and make three categories either by folding the paper, spacing, or drawing two lines. The categories should be labeled: Stop, Continue, and Start.
From here you should write exactly what you want to stop doing in your life, what you want to continue doing, and what you would like to start doing. Unlike the first and second methods you can write entire phrases and sentences if you need to.
Stop: Day dreaming in class, starting something and never finishing it, staying up late, etc…
Continue: Maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle, etc…
Start: Keeping in touch with family and friends more often, looking for a job where I will be happier, etc…
This list is for your eyes ONLY and can be as long or short as needed. From here you can either be done or move on to an optional yet highly recommended step.
Take out another sheet of paper as needed and write down the steps you are going to take to change, continue, or discontinue anything you previously wrote down. I like to write everything in a list form to make it easier to read later on.
Stop > Starting something and never finishing it. > When I start something I’m going to try to work on it until I’m done by limiting the distractions I have around me, and rewarding myself when I finish.
The majority of things we actually write down and set our minds to we accomplish. If you just tell yourself to do this or that, more often than not we put it aside and rarely get back to it. So listing steps and setting out to do them is a great way to get started. Some even write this up as a contract to themselves and sign it at the bottom. Making themselves a personal promise that this is what they are going to do and nothing is going to get in the way of it.
Either way, regardless of your reasoning or method behind it, these are important exercises. Self betterment is a large part of life and a great first step to anyone who has spiritual, hermetic, or other aspirations.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” ~Mahatma Gandhi