What is Reiki?
The word Reiki is of Japanese origin - Rei meaning ‘spiritual’ and Ki meaning ‘energy’. Ki is perhaps more commonly heard of in its Chinese translation of ‘chi’.
The teachings of Usui Reiki Ryoho (meaning Usui’s spiritual healing method) are a system or method of ‘hands-on’ healing. A system that aids in the balancing and enhancing of one’s mental, physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.
Ki can be described as the spiritual life force energy that flows through everything in our existence. Often when we feel ‘out of sorts’, in poor health or emotionally unstable, the energy within our systems is undoubtedly unbalanced or blocked. The concept of Reiki is to help restore the flow of this energy within us, which in turn leaves us feeling relaxed, focused and back to our balanced selves.
There is more than one system of Reiki available. Some methods that have been introduced from the traditional teachings into western society may differ in practice; however, what links them all is the use of Ki. A Reiki practitioner learns to develop various meditations, self-healing and breathing techniques that focus the flow of ki. Later on, these techniques can be expanded on, to include helping another person to re-align their own ki.
This is why a Reiki practitioner cannot really be thought of as a ‘healer’, because it is the person receiving treatment that is taking what they need from the experience in order to feel more balanced. The practitioner cannot magically take away an illness or an imbalance but can provide a platform with which to help another focus their own energy, so that they may heal themselves in whatever way they need to.
What can Reiki help with?
Reiki can help with any physical, psychological, emotional or spiritual condition. There are no limitations as to what it can help with, however, it is important to note that it is in no way a replacement for any medical treatment. It is purely intended to be used as a tool for the improvement and re-alignment of mind, body and soul.
What happens in a Reiki treatment?
You will normally have an initial chat before beginning the treatment to discuss any concerns or ask any questions, and then you will be asked to lie on a treatment couch or comfortable mat fully clothed but with shoes off. I will then proceed to place my hands over the body, sometimes starting at the head and moving along to shoulders, torso, legs, feet and the back of the body. Some practitioners will work intuitively on whichever areas are needed, some will work in specific sequences, and I work in both ways according to individual needs. Each treatment normally lasts for an hour, and each hand position can last from 5-10minutes, whilst some treatments can be shorter.
Whether the hands are placed hovering slightly above you or resting on the area being treated is a personal choice. I prefer to rest my hands on the area as many recipients of the treatment find the warmth relaxing; both methods will still contribute to a relaxing and beneficial experience.
How a Reiki treatment feels can differ, however, often a practitioner’s hands will feel very warm from the concentration of ki.
As a recipient of Reiki some have described it as a deep relaxation and meditative experience, and some even fall asleep.