Ciao ragazzi <3
I have another 411 post today for you, and this one is on all the basics of the Japanese healing technique- Reiki. For those of you who have followed my blog for a bit, you may have gathered that I love alternative healing methods, and Reiki was actually my first introduction to them when I was a child, so it is extra special to me. 🙂
The practice has been gaining some traction in recent years, so many of you may have heard about it, had a Reiki session, or even practice Reiki yourself. For those that aren’t too familiar with where it comes from, how it works, and even what it is, I’ve put together some main points. If you’re curious about Reiki, keep on reading 😉
Like I mentioned in my post about reflexology, any alternative health practice should be used as a supplement to other medical care, and not as a replacement for it. Sending light and positive energy to your body is always a beautiful thing, but it should not be a stand-alone method for curing a serious illness.
a little background
Reiki was developed in 1922 by a Japanese Buddhist by the name of Mikao Usui. The word “Reiki” is made up of two parts: “rei” which means “God’s wisdom or the higher power” and “ki” meaning “life force energy.” So what Reiki is then, is life force energy guided by a higher power.
The Reiki practitioner taps into this life force energy and transfers it to another (it can also be done to oneself) through their hands for the purpose of alleviating stress, promoting relaxation, and healing.
Reiki is life force energy, guided by a higher power.
what is “ki”?
Understanding what “ki” really is is crucial for understanding the beauty and value of Reiki. The concept of ki is also represented is different cultures by different names: qi (“chi”) in China, and prana in India. Ki is a non-physical energy that flows in all living things- humans, plants, and animals.
“When a person’s Ki is high, they will feel strong, confident, and ready to enjoy life and take on it’s challenges. When it is low, they will feel weak and are more likely to get sick. We receive Ki from the air we breath, from food, sunshine, and from sleep. It is also possible to increase our Ki by using breathing exercises and meditation. When a person dies, their Ki leaves the physical body.” (source: http://www.reiki.org/reikinews/whatislg.html)
Drawing in this ki, as guided by a higher intelligence to go where it is needed in the body, is how we can benefit from Reiki- be it a relief from stress, or even a larger effect such as a healing of some kind.
A session experience
All that is involved in a session is the practitioner setting their hands on or slightly above the body of the person receiving the Reiki energy for as long as they want. Usually formal sessions are 30 minutes to one hour long, but when I do Reiki on myself, for example, while watching TV I will sit as long as I feel I need to.
The hands don’t need to be placed necessarily where the “problem area” is (if there is a problem area, of course). This is because, as stated above, the energy is guided to where it needs to go in the body in order to help dissolve problem areas where ki may not be flowing well. I always like, on myself and on others, spending at least a few minutes with my hands on the heart, because it is a powerful place to send positive energy.
Most people can feel some heat from the hands of the practitioner, and report feeling relaxed and peaceful overall.
How do you become a practitioner?
To become a Reiki practioner you go through what’s called an “attunement” by a Reiki Master which allows you to tap in to the life force energy. The attunement process opens the chakras to create a special connection with the Reiki source.
Personally, I have done two out of three levels of attunements, but I’m not always convinced this is necessary in order to access this special energy. I think it is a capability we all have, as humans, to draw from this source. The attunement is valuable though, as a kind of ceremony to initiate you into your practice.
I had my first attunement when I was about six or seven years old, when my mother discovered Reiki and she, my sister, and I all received our first attunement.
There are three attunements to become a Reiki master, but with just the first, you can practice and access the ki.
I probably most frequently use Reiki for when I get headaches, and I do experience relief when I just rest for a minute and put my hands on my head. It is a really cool tool to have in your toolbox, and I hope I did a good job explaining the basics of it in this post. 🙂
Please let me know your questions and comments below, and I will see you all very soon. <3