Reiki is an ancient method of self-mastery (or self-growth, if you prefer) and healing using the chakras (energy centre’s) along with several energy/power symbols. The symbols are merely, in my opinion, a training guide for new initiates to get used to using intent and focusing on the different levels/frequencies of energy.
Reiki is a set of five principles for living (precepts), has three degrees or levels to learn, a set of hand positions for treating yourself and others, and the receiving of an Attunement to connect to the Reiki energy. An Attunement is a simple ceremony that helps you to reconnect to the energy that IS Reiki performed by a Reiki teacher or “Master”.
A Brief History of Reiki
There is a lot of research currently being carried out in Japan into the history and tradition of Reiki. New knowledge is coming to the fore both in regards to the history and in how Reiki was used in the past. Currently the most popular theory is set out below. Historical Hierarchy of Reiki as practised in the West. Knowledge and use of Reiki has been traced back to Sanskrit and Tibetan sutras written 2,500 + years ago. The practice and knowledge was kept secret and passed from teacher to pupil over the generations. In the early 1900’s Dr Mikao Usui came across some old writings and founded the modern school of Reiki.
Dr Usui was born 15th August 1865. It is believed he entered a Tendai Buddhist school at age 4 where he studied Kiko, a Japanese version of Quigong. This is a form of healing where the healer uses their own energy to heal others. It is from this, his interest in healing began. It is believed he travelled to Europe and China to improve his knowledge, his studies included medicine, psychology, religion and fortune telling.
There is very little known about the time between his early life and 1914 when he returned to the Buddhist temple and enrolled in a 21 day training course. At some point he had come across the ancient sutras but had not been able to interpret them. As a believer in the power of meditation he visited a power spot, a waterfall on Mt Kurama. Even today people visit the waterfall to meditate allowing the water to flow over the body and strike the head, which is said to activate the crown chakra. After this experience he realised that he had the power to heal others without depleting his own energy.
It was whilst under the waterfall that the Reiki energy is said to have entered him and the meaning of the ancient sutras and symbols became clear to him.
Dr Usui used this new healing ability to help others and for the next 7 years he is worked with the poor people of Kyoto. In 1922 he moved to Tokyo and started a healing society which he named Usui Shiki Reiki Ryoho and where he taught classes and gave healing.
In 1923 after the massive earthquake in Tokyo Dr Usui began treating as many people as possible. His reputation as a healer spread. He personally taught more than 2000 students and initiated 16 teachers.
One of the teachers initiated by Dr Usui was Dr Chujiro Hayashi who opened his own Reiki School and treatment clinic in Tokyo. It was at this clinic that Mrs Takata, a rich Hawaiian women of Japanese descent came for healing. She came specifically for asthma but also had been diagnosed with a tumour, gallstones and appendicitis. She received daily treatments and after 4 months found herself completely healed. She decided to learn this system and worked at the clinic for a year where she received the second degree Reiki. She then returned to Hawaii and started her own clinic there. In 1938 Dr. Hayashi initiated Hawayo Takata as a Reiki Master.
Mrs Takata became a well-known healer and travelled to the US and other parts of the world teaching and giving treatments. She initiated 22 Reiki Masters who practised travelled and taught in the West. This is how this ancient eastern system of healing came to the west.
How does Reiki Work
Reiki is a laying on of hands touch healing system of incomparable ease and power. Reiki energy is naturally available to all living beings from birth, but what makes Reiki so different from other healing methods is the attunements (also known as the initiations.
Once you have received the Reiki attunements you are able to offer healing to all. Attunements are designed to open and raise your vibrational level to connect to the universal life force energy of healing and pure unconditional love.
Anyone can lay their hands on another person to help accelerate the healing process. For example a mother placing her hand on her child’s forehead because the child has a fever. The energy is the life force itself. But a person attuned to Reiki has fine tuned the physical 7 etheric bodies (chakras – see page ? ) to a higher vibratory level, clearing out and opening all the energy centres of all obstructions, thus allowing the healer to receive an increased amount of life force energy (ki) to heal with. The healers connection to the source is much stronger and easier.
Reiki is structured along three levels and with each set of empowerments and attunements you will raise your vibrational level enabling you to channel stronger energy as you progress through the three degrees.
In Reiki I, the student learns to use the Reiki and to heal using hands on healing for themselves and others. The student receives four Attunements.
In Reiki II, the student learns three Reiki symbols and learns distant healing for those not physically present. The student receives one Attunement.
Reiki III is the Master/Teacher’s degree. The student receives one Attunement and two symbols are taught. The Attunements for Reiki I, Reiki II, and Reiki III (Master) are also taught. A Master is someone who knows the Reiki system, and has been trained to teach and Attune others to Reiki.
Benefits of Reiki
There are many benefits to learning and practicing Reiki. At its most simple level, Reiki is an effective way to bring mind, body and spirit into unison. Reiki helps to increase the body’s ability to heal itself. It seems to bring about a balance in the body’s organs and re-establish harmony in the system. Reiki helps balance the energy in the body, and loosens up blocked energy. Reiki can enhance all other forms of healing. It can relieve pain. Reiki can also help to relieve ailments such as headaches, stress, anxiety, fear, colds & flu, et al
Attunements are similar to clients’ experiences during treatment. Not all students will feel anything but most will feel something. This helps you to understand what will happen to clients during a treatment.
1. Physical feelings
You may feel heat, cold or tingling sensations. You may also feel a breeze of energy outside you or a movement of energy inside. Muscles may twitch or you may break out in a sweat. The most common feelings are:
- Light headedness – This often occurs when you have been low in higher/healing energies for some time, eg, if you have been living on your nerves, the sudden input of the highest healing energy can make you feel faint. Just relax and sit or lay down until you feel better. When the light headedness goes you will feel much better than you did before.
- Energy draining – This is similar to light headedness, but is less common. This is normal and the Reiki energy is realigning your inner energies. It usually isn’t exhaustion but rather a feeling that your nerves or stress has been taken away.
- Pain – This can be quite frightening, but the pain is there for one of two reasons:
- Injuries – The Reiki energy has gone straight to the point in the body where healing is needed. Sometimes the injury is very old, eg, a bone that was broken many years before. The Reiki energy is healing residue problems to do with the injury.
- Chronic conditions – pain can also be felt in an area that doesn’t seem to have any apparent bearing on your current health problems. This is because the Reiki has gone to an energy meridian, as is found in acupuncture.
You may get powerful experiences to do with sight, ie, colours or glimpses of past lives:
- Colour – You can discuss any colours they see during attunements with us. These colours are related to chakra colours, ie, root/base – red, sacral – orange, solar plexus – yellow, heart – green, throat – blue, third eye – indigo, and crown – violet. The nearer you get to the violet, the nearer you are getting to your higher consciousness. After violet comes white, silver then gold. Anyone seeing floods of gold is on, or has been attuned to, a very high vibratory consciousness.
- Past life – Rarely a student may get a glimpse of a past life. You can discuss any possible past life vision you may get with us if you wish.
Often students see their guides or have a vision during attunements:
- Guides can come through during an attunement. Often Dr Usui appears to students. He certainly came to Alec during one of his attunements. The guides are helping you through the healing and attunement process and you should accept their presence gracefully. Do not go into a trance.
- Visions – These vary from the student getting an insight into themselves (specially to help you on your spiritual and healing journey), to a vision of a health problem on a microscopic scale, ie, seeing a bone fracture as if from the inside of the body. All visions should be allowed to work for the highest good.
Sometimes you may laugh or cry. You may find that you are laughing or crying about something mundane. It may be a release of blockages or there may be a spiritual reason. The spiritual option is less common but it is important to understand. During an attunement, you may suddenly connect to the highest source of Reiki energy. This can be a very short experience that will last you a lifetime. Awareness will be opened and acceptance levels will rise. All the positive emotions will be felt at once. For you to laugh or cry at that moment is not important. You have had a wonderful gift which may never be repeated in your lifetime. It should be acknowledged and savoured for all time.
Reiki is pure, simple, powerful and gentle and can be used in any situation you can think of.
- It is always safe to use Reiki.
- It is impossible to give too much Reiki.
- All other therapies can be used in conjunction with Reiki.
- You should always treat holistically.
- It cannot be used for harm, only good.
- You are not a doctor therefore never diagnose a medical problem.
- If the client has any medical problems they should consult a doctor.
- Reiki is not a religion. You do not have to believe in it for it to work.
Keywords: history of reiki