Reiki – An Introduction
What is Reiki?
Reiki is system of channelling and cultivating Universal Life Energy for spiritual development and healing. In many Eastern and in modern Western Healing traditions, Ki (also known as Chi in China or Prana in India) is believed to need to flow freely throughout the body for optimal health. If we suffer spiritual, emotional or physical trauma, the flow of Ki becomes blocked, causing illness to develop. The healthier someone is, the more Ki they will have running through their body.
Reiki energy works to dissolve the energy blockages in the body and thus allows the body to restore itself back to health. It can also help to gently heal trauma whether physical, emotional, mental or spiritual.
In essence, Reiki helps to balance the mind, body and soul.
A Brief History of Reiki
Confusingly, what we call Traditional Reiki was actually discovered in the late 19th Century. Mikao Usui was a Buddhist priest living in Japan when he received divine inspiration which became the basis of Reiki. It came to him on the last morning of a 21 day fast atop Mount Kurama.
The system was revealed to him complete, as a simple method for anyone to reconnect with their innate spirituality. For most of his life Reiki was merely used as a system to lead his followers on to the path of self-enlightenment and it was only in the last few years of his life that it also became a method for healing others.
Mikao Usui went on to train a handful of Reiki masters during his lifetime, who have since spread his knowledge and teachings throughout the world. Because these teachings were sacred and until the 1980s not written down, there is a diversity of symbols and rituals amongst Reiki practitioners.
Many people believe however, that Reiki works through intention. Any and all lineages, symbols and hand positions work if the intention is for the highest good of the client.
How can Reiki help me?
Rigorous medical studies have shown that Reiki has many effects including lowering blood pressure, heart and respiration rates, reducing pain and bleeding, raising the red blood cell count and helping insomnia and reducing anxiety.
One way Reiki is believed to do is this is by triggering the switch from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system is often described as the fight or flight response and puts the body in a state of heightened stress. The parasympathetic nervous system, on the other hand, is known as the rest and digest system. It allows the body to repair and heal itself.
Please note, Reiki does not constitute a cure for anything and should not be used instead of seeking medical advice. And as with any treatment (traditional or otherwise) there are no guarantees. Nonetheless, Reiki works perfectly as a complement to all other methods of treatment, allopathic or alternative.
Regularly observed benefits include:
- Clients cope better with drug treatments
- It balances the chakras and restores the whole person to a state of harmony
- It helps to release blocked emotion and trauma
- It relieves stress and anxiety
- It can help to cope with chronic conditions e.g. asthma, headaches, eczema
- It aids in the breaking of addictions
- It induces a deep level of sleep
- It supports and activates the body’s natural healing ability and boosts the immune system
- It can also be used on babies, children or animals to soothe and calm them
Most people feel calmer and more peaceful after a Reiki treatment; better able to cope, more positive and less affected by stress.
What Happens During a Reiki Treatment
Before Reiki is given, I will send you a consultation form to fill in. This would ideally be completed and sent back to me the day before a treatment. While the consultation form can seem quite lengthy, it is important to build up a full and thorough history.
When you arrive for your Reiki treatment, we will go through your consultation form and discuss any issues that arise. You will also have the chance to ask any questions that you may have about Reiki.
You will then be asked to lie down, fully clothed, on the treatment couch. Blankets, bolsters and pillows will be offered to ensure you are fully relaxed during your treatment. I will leave the room to allow you to get into a comfortable position.
Once I return the Reiki treatment will begin. Sometimes I’ll carry out an initial ‘scan’ of your body to see if there are any particular areas that need focus. You’ll not feel anything during the scan and I will simply be sweeping my hands above you (about 6 inches away).
After that I’ll sit at the head of the treatment couch and place my hands in certain positions. Depending on energy flow, this will either mean my hands will be placed directly onto you, or 1 – 2 inches above.
The first hand position is over the eyes, and continues down the body finishing at your feet. If there is a specific issue on the back, I’ll ask you to turn over, otherwise the full treatment is carried out face up.
At the end of the session you’ll be given time to come out your relaxed state (which often includes waking up!). You will never be rushed, and once you feel ready, I’ll come back in the room to discuss the treatment and any further questions you have.
What does it feel like to have Reiki?
Understandably, some people are a bit apprehensive about Reiki. They wonder what they will feel like during a treatment and how they will feel afterwards.
Whilst people can feel many different ways during a treatment, here are some of the most common feelings:
- Intense heat where the hands are
- Falling into a deep sleep
- Pulsation or throbbing throughout the body
- A feeling of something being drawn out
- Pins and needles or feeling tingly
- Intense relaxation and calmness in an almost hypnotic-like state
- Sensations of floating or sinking
- Emotional release or memories coming to the surface
- Yawning, burping and twitching are all signs that blockages are releasing
Aftercare and beyond
It is common to feel a bit ‘spaced out’ after a Reiki session. Please allow yourself time for your body and mind to adjust after a treatment. Try eating lightly for the rest of the day and getting an early night if possible.
Often people find the effects of Reiki are cumulative, particularly for long-standing or more complex issues.
If you have any further questions please feel free to get in touch with me, Lucy, at firstname.lastname@example.org
There will also be a special offer on Reiki treatments in October, to introduce you to this wonderfully gentle form of healing. Sign-up to our newsletter below to find out more.