I came up with this multipurpose meditation awhile back to help solve the issue I kept encountering of meditations for otherkind that involved externalizing your “other” side in a meditative setting. Another thing I found frustrating was that, as a soulbonder, my soulbonds had a hard time using the meditations I found if they needed to. Basically, if you didn’t see yourself as a single, partially-human soul, the meditation was clunky or outright useless.
So I brainstormed awhile to come up with a method that could be used by virtually anyone with some minor tweaking of intent but keeping the overall method the same, which is where we get the name of this meditation: the Inner Mirror. This mirror can be a permanent structure in headspace/soulspace/wonderland, your inner/astral temple, or other permanent nonphysical location, or it can just be summoned up mentally for the purpose of these meditations. Its appearance can change each time, stay the same, or change depending on purpose, what’s important is that you know it’s a tool to connect with your subconscious, your soul, your true inner self, and/or your Higher Self/Oversoul. Headmates and soulbonds can use this mirror as well for personal discovery in the same methods singlets and system hosts can.
Please note that some people may still be uncomfortable with this meditation, and I apologize for this. I don’t currently know of any alternatives to work around any fears that may revolve mirrors and reflections moving on their own because they are central to this method. While you are heavily encouraged to envision your ideal/true self in the mirror initially, I can’t help with any other potential problems besides that. Sorry.
The Meditations and Methods
All methods of using the Inner Mirror start the same way. What you do with it depends on what you want to do, and none of them involve mentally “splitting” yourself like many of the meditations I came across. When you see your reflection, remember that even though it changes and moves independently, it’s still you. This is just a way to actively communicate with the deepest parts of yourself.
- Get relaxed and comfortable, put on some music if you like, light some candles and incense if it helps. This is a personal exploration meditation, so you’ll need to set aside some time to really reflect on yourself (pun absolutely intended). If you have any other typical meditation prep you do, now’s the time to do it.
- Travel to your inner world, or simply visualize a space that feels comfortable and safe to you, like your own bedroom, your backyard growing up, a favorite outdoor spot, or a place from pop culture or your own imagination. What matters is that you feel at home here, and you know nothing can hurt you or invade on this space. Spend some time exploring the area to get a feel for it and warm up your inner/astral senses.
- In the middle of this space, see your Inner Mirror in whatever way you want it to appear to you, or let it appear on its own. It should be a full-length mirror, one you can see your whole form in. Spend some time examining the frame and taking note of anything that seems prominent or important, as it may be symbolic to you and your working. You don’t need to envision your physical body in the Inner Mirror, simply your ideal one, because the image you see will change to reflect the part of yourself you’re working with.
This is where you can decide what you want to do with the Inner Mirror if you haven’t already. You can look for information on currently undiscovered kintypes, communicate with your Other side to see how you can better express that side of yourself or how to curb unwanted shifts or behaviors (or even how to harness your Other nature and skills in magic and ritual), search for memories and explore your home, and any other things you may want to do.
- Follow the steps of the basic method to reach your Inner Mirror. Sit or stand in front of it, whichever feels more right for you, and allow yourself to let go of any preconceived notions about the exact details of what your kintype may be while gazing at yourself. Know that what is reflected is you, and always will be you, but it takes on the ability to move and talk on its own by embodying your subconscious, soul, Higher Self/Oversoul, or any number of things you believe to be the cause of your otherkinity.
- Allow your reflection to morph and change without willing it to do so. You may see flashes and glimpses of features that present themselves as phantom limbs, or your facial shape and hair color may change, or your whole body may shift to look very different from how you see yourself. Make sure to note the colors, shapes, sizes, and placements of various parts, and do some research to see if these features match up with any known creatures, characters, animals, or beings, and see if anything didn’t match up.
- You may need to do this meditation several times to narrow down specifics, and make sure to do other introspective work to determine your kintypes alongside this meditation. You very well might run into things in this process that surprise you and turn out completely differently than you initially thought.
Communicating with the Self
- Follow the steps of the basic method to reach your Inner Mirror. If you experience shifts, and are currently experiencing one, it doesn’t matter if you wish to learn more about a specific side of yourself. Sit or stand in front of the Inner Mirror and know that what is reflected is you, and always will be you, but it takes on the ability to move and talk on its own by embodying your subconscious, soul, Higher Self/Oversoul, or any number of things you believe to be the cause of your otherkinity.
- Tell your reflection that you wish to establish an inner dialogue with a specific kintype. Allow the image to morph and change in its own time to this form, and remember that it is still you you’re talking to (like when you go over things in your head and it feels as though more than one person is talking at once but it’s all still you.)
- After your reflection has finished changing, talk to it. Ask yourself things you want to know about yourself, such as why you’re having trouble with shifts or instinctual behaviors, how you can change that, what this part of yourself wants or needs, how you can be the best possible version of you, how you can truly embody this in daily life and ritual, what skills you may be able to recreate and utilize… the list goes on. You may find yourself being told things without asking, as well.
- Be sure to log your interactions somewhere, and keep track of the things you try and how it affects you and your overall wellbeing and self-awareness. Repeat and ask for clarification if needed.
Exploring Memories and Worlds
- Follow the steps of the basic method to reach your Inner Mirror. Once again, if you experience shifts, it doesn’t matter which one you are in now because the Inner Mirror will allow you to explore other times and worlds through yourself as you were then. This method can even be tweaked for cladotherians and people who do not believe they ever physically lived as an animal, character, or other being yet still have the soul or psyche of that thing, in a way similar to “riding” an animal or person during astral travel to experience what they do. Sit or stand in front of the Inner Mirror and know that what is reflected is you, and always will be you, but it takes on the ability to move and talk on its own by embodying your subconscious, soul, Higher Self/Oversoul, or any number of things you believe to be the cause of your otherkinity.
- Tell your reflection what you wish to do, what life you wish to explore, what world you wish to see, what things you want to feel. Allow it to change form, becoming the shape you wish to take while exploring, and when it’s finished, approach the mirror and step through, merging with your reflection but fully taking on the qualities of who or what they became.
- Allow your reflection-self to guide you, taking you to what you need to see most first. Even if you had a specific request, it may not be time to see it yet, or you may not have experienced it at all. Especially with this variation, be sure to let your reflection-self guide you without any preconceived notions of what you will experience.
- If you can confirm anything you see in the outside world, do so. Research places and things and people and events, and return if you need to, just to ensure consistency. Keep notes so you can check back on them.
Ending the Meditation
- Before you go about your business in the physical world, it’s a good idea to disconnect from the Inner Mirror and allow your reflection-self to just become a reflection again. If you were journeying, exit the mirror first. Allow your reflection-self to morph and change back to your ideal form if needed, allowing it to match you, then gradually becoming just your reflection again as opposed to a window to your inner self. It moves when you do, it blinks when you blink, everything is back in its proper place. Be sure to thank yourself, not only for showing you parts of yourself you weren’t aware of, but for being open enough when so many things in this world tell you not to be. You deserve the positive reinforcement, even if it turns out you saw something that turned out to be false. Your perception can trick you and you can make mistakes, but you are still deserving of a chance.
- Stand up if you were sitting down, and walk away from the mirror. You can examine the frame and the landscape of this spot again, to see if anything’s changed since you began your work, and make note of it. Know that this place is still secure and protected and safe, and you can visit it again whenever you need. See it fading from view as you begin to return to this world and to your body.
- Be gentle and take your time becoming conscious again. Wiggle your fingers and toes, gently at first, and feel yourself back in your physical form more and more. Settle into your body and open your eyes last, slowly, and blink a few times if you need. Extinguish any candles and get something to eat or drink, you should probably also stretch a little.
This meditation was made to be versatile and open-ended, due to the fact that it’s more of a tool and a personal pathworking than a traditional guided meditation. Because of that, you can use it for more reasons than listed here and its potential uses can stretch well beyond self-exploration and into astral travel, archetypal work, invocation, and anything else you might want to do with it. This is your Inner Mirror, it is your tool and your platform to experiment with, and as usual I highly encourage this!
I created the Inner Mirror meditation as part of an answer to the strange gap in modern otherkind circles between one’s nature and magical and/or spiritual practices. Of course, one doesn’t need to be from another world or of another species to practice magic, or vice versa, but I do think it’s something that should be brought back into wider discussion and recognition. I hope this method helps people in multiple ways!