What is Reiki?
Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It is based on the idea that an unseen "life force energy" flows through us and animates all life. Reiki is similar to the Chinese word Qi (Chi) and Prana which is the Sanskrit word for the same concept.
The word Reiki is made of two Japanese words - Rei which means "God's Wisdom or the Higher Power" and Ki which is "life force energy”.
Reiki may be seen as “spiritual” in nature, but it has no dogma and is not affiliated with any religion. There is nothing you must believe to receive Reiki. In fact, it will work whether you believe in it or not, however, Reiki energy respects the free will of an individual and will not be received if the individual wishes to not accept the energy.
Reiki falls under the umbrella of Biofield therapies. A Biofield is a field of energy and information or “energy blueprint” that surrounds and penetrates the organism. Other Biofield therapies include Biofield tuning, Qigong, and therapeutic touch to name a few. This means that Reiki not only addresses issues within the body but also issues that live in your Biofield or aura.
For a thorough history on the foundation of Reiki and how it came to be, please click here.
What are the benefits of Reiki?
Reiki is a powerful yet gentle treatment, it is holistic and intelligent, it moves to where it's needed and addresses the mind, body, and spirit. The benefits of Reiki are endless, people use Reiki for relaxation, stress reduction, and symptom relief, in efforts to improve overall health and well-being.
Below is a list of benefits that may occur in a Reiki treatment:
Bring about a peaceful, deep state of relaxation, boosting mood and lowering stress.
Relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Bring awareness to your own energy field and where blockages, leakage, or excess energy might exist.
Dissolve energy blockages and tension
Detoxify the body.
Promote better sleep.
Help relieve pain.
Stimulate tissue and bone healing after injury or surgery.
Stimulate the body’s immune system.
Support the well-being of a person receiving traditional medical treatments that are debilitating (e.g., chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, kidney dialysis).
Increase the vibrational frequency or resonance on physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels.
Supplies universal life force energy to the body.
Reconnects you with yourself and the Source.
* Disclaimer: I am not a doctor and don't claim to give medical advice. Reiki is not a substitute or replacement for traditional medical or therapeutic treatments, but complement these types of treatments. The above information is sourced from here.
How is Reiki Facilitated?
The method of receiving Reiki is simple. Reiki energy does not come from the practitioner; rather it comes through the practitioner from the universal source. A practitioner may lay their hands on or above the client.
It can be facilitated either in person or remotely.
How is distance Reiki possible?
As much as I would like to give a good answer here, I can’t. However I can tell you that it does work, I have both performed and received distance Reiki numerous times with success (both myself and the client had powerful experiences). I am not a scientist and therefore will not go into theoretical explanations on the physics of energy. What I can say is that with intention, the energy goes to where it's needed.
How does the practitioner know where to place their hands?
With more practice and experience, the practitioner's hands get more sensitive to energy deficiencies and blockages. For some, the practitioner's intuition also becomes stronger, sensing and receiving information through feelings, words, images, and sounds on where to focus the Reiki energy.
What does a Reiki session look like?
In the first session, clients will fill out an intake form so the practitioner can learn more about the client and their needs for the session. The practitioner will take notes after the session on how the session went and any information they received. If the client chooses to return, the practitioner will build off the first session and so forth with consecutive sessions.
In person, the recipient remains clothed and lies in a comfortable relaxed position on a massage table. The practitioner will gently place their hands in a series of non-intrusive positions on or near the body. There is no massage or manipulation.
Remotely, the clients will lay down in a comfortable place away from distractions. Playing any type of relaxing music is welcomed. The practitioner and the client may remain on a video or phone call during the duration of the session just in case any communication is needed and to debrief after the session.
How does a Reiki session feel?
Receiving Reiki is a very personal experience. Here are some of the ways people have described the experience: going into a deep meditative state; feeling completely relaxed; having feelings of peace and warmth; feeling the energy moving throughout the body; or completely falling asleep, to name a few. Reiki can also be emotional, it can bring up unaddressed or sensitive topics in one's life through a very lovely and healing perspective. Reiki is intelligent, it goes to where your body needs it and it shows you what you need to see. Listening to client stories after a Reiki session can be very beautiful, I am always surprised and in awe of the grandness of Reiki and the human experience.
What does modern Medicine and Science say about Reiki?
Reiki is starting to gain acceptance across the United States and in western medical institutions as a way to supplement medical care. It is used in hospital and hospice care. Duke, Yale, and John Hopkins are some well-known hospitals that use Reiki. Reiki is also being studied in such Universities as Harvard, Drexel, and The University of Arizona, to name a few.
How Reiki works from a scientific standpoint is not clearly understood yet. However, science is constantly expanding and changing and in recent decades, the definition of what “energy” is and the different types of states that energy encompass have evolved as well.
If you are interested in learning more about the science of the human Biofield, the theory of energy healing, or studies performed relating to Reiki, please see the resources below:
Electric Body, Electric Health - Great book by Eileen Day McKusick
CHI - Consciousness and Healing Initiative
Biofield Science and Healing: History, Terminology, and Concepts
Reiki Is Better Than Placebo and Has Broad Potential as a Complementary Health Therapy
A Large-Scale Effectiveness Trial of Reiki for Physical and Psychological Health
Effect of Reiki Therapy on Pain and Anxiety in Adults: An In-Depth Literature Review of Randomized Trials with Effect Size Calculations
Is Reiki safe?
Yes, you can not receive too much Reiki.
Can you still use Reiki if you are in good health?
Yes. It promotes well-being, stress reduction, and new levels of self-awareness.
How many sessions are suggested?
It really depends on the needs or expectations of the client. One session, a series of sessions, or continued sessions might work depending on what needs to be addressed. The client will usually come to figure that out on their own.