One of the tools of a Reiki practitioner is Distant Healing. Distant healing is simple and effective, and can be as profound as an in-person session. Distant healing has two characteristics. One aspect is that of distance through space. In other words, a practitioner can send Reiki to a recipient that is not physically present. The other aspect is that of distant healing through time, both past and future.
Distant healing through space is quite common amongst Reiki practitioners. It is typically done by intentionally sending healing energy while in a state of meditation. Distant healing through time is also done in a state of meditation, sending healing energy to a past or future event or circumstance. The intention of the distant healing through space is not to try to change the conclusions of the past, nor influence the outcome in the future, but rather to surround the circumstance or event with loving, healing energy. The desired result is the highest good of all involved.
Many people that have experienced a distant healing session report that the experience is very similar to an in-person session – a deeply relaxing and profound experience.
In the past few years there has been a rise in the awareness in the practice of Reiki, with a huge increase in interest in the last two years during the pandemic. And because of the increase in interest, there may be some confusion around what Reiki is, how Reiki works, and why one should consider Reiki when choosing a self-care practice.
Simply put, Reiki is a light touch method of deep relaxation that promotes healing. And although Reiki is simple, it is very profound. Reiki is the highest form of universal energy – the energy of love. Using a gentle touch, the practitioner guides life force energy to the receiver with a healing intention.
Reiki will support the body to heal itself by clearing out energy blocks – physically, mentally, and spiritually. Reiki will cleanse the body and mind of poisons and toxins, both physical and mental, and will revitalize and restore power to the physical and spiritual body.
A Reiki session provides the time to go within and get in touch with your inner self – or in other words – connect with your gut. Why is that important? Because your gut is an internal sensor, always perceiving, recognizing, discerning the best course of action. Sadly, we too often do not listen to our internal voice but follow the self-absorbed voice of the ego. Not a big surprise, the voice of the ego is seductive with the promise of quick and easy gratification. But our true source of purpose and joy is our inner voice, the still, small expression of the soul.
When we begin a practice of self-care that creates space to listen to our inner voice, we will begin to step into a life of purpose and prosperity, a life that allows us expansion, expression, and deep joy.
Although the world-wide COVID pandemic has created many challenges and hardships, there have also been many good things that have come of these circumstances. And one of the gifts that has emerged is the renewed interest and awareness in holistic practices, specifically in energy medicine. As Reiki practitioners we will have many opportunities to make a difference in many lives, as we support people through positive change.
One thing we all face is the reality that healing does not always mean curing. We typically observe so many little moments of magic in our practices, and our faith in the process becomes so much deeper, that it is sometimes hard to accept that Reiki cannot provide a physical cure in all circumstances. Because we operate in the physical world, the body will eventually begin to break down, until it no longer serves us. This is inevitable, and no one escapes this process of decline and death of the physical body. No amount of energy work can prevent this natural progression.
Healing on a high vibrational level is always conceivable, but healing on the physical level is not always possible. Curing is not the same as healing. To cure is to eradicate physical symptoms. To heal is to create a state of completeness, a state of wholeness. Healing is to treat the whole body – mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical. As healers we support others in their search to attain wholeness, an overall sense of well-being, regardless of the outcome of palliative medicine.
When the physical body is in its natural decline, Reiki will still offer support and strength to the emotional, mental, and spiritual body. When faced with life-threatening circumstances, that will not ultimately be cured, healing will still occur. Buried feelings can be unlocked and released, fear associated with an unknown future can be soothed, mental anguish due to regrets can be processed and let go, relationships can be mended, and love can be given. And on a physical level, Reiki will help reduce stress and anxiety, produce deep relaxation, and mitigate some of the physical discomfort from some treatments. Healing of the whole person promotes the peaceful transition of the physical body as it begins its process of releasing the soul.
Reiki will also help with the grief felt by those who are left in the physical world. Grief following the death of a loved one can be distressful to the point of becoming debilitating. Reiki will help to soften the edges of grief, eventually relieving the pain, and allowing the grief to transform into memories of laughter and love.
Although curing is not always the result of energy healing, Reiki has an important role to play in healing the emotional, mental, and spiritual body as the soul begins its shift to another plane of existence. Healing in the form of peace to the person leaving the physical world, or healing the grief of those that are left behind is a gift as well as a responsibility for all Reiki practitioners that are taking their place in the world of integrative health care.
Although we are all in the same storm we are not in the same boat. While some of us are able to embrace the time that we have been given to slow down, get creative, contemplate next steps for our lives, most of us find this time of pandemic to be incredibly stressful. The uncertainty of the future, loneliness that comes with isolation or frustration with being sequestered with others, and financial fears.
Overnight our lives completely changed. Many have had to adjust to working from home, trying to carve out a space where they can concentrate or have an uninterrupted meeting. Parents became teachers, struggling through a new method of online learning, while trying to engage their children who are bored and miss their school and their friends. Now they worry that the schools will reopen before it is safe and are terrified for their children’s safety. Tens of thousands have lost their jobs and are suffering financial hardship. Many are alone and depressed without much social interaction. And all of us are growing weary with the restrictions on our movement. We yearn for the time that we can be with friends and family, engaging in celebrations, concerts, sports events. All the things that bring us joy and nurture our souls. All this change is stressful, and can produce feelings of anxiety, depression, or a deep sense of dread and fear about the future.
An easy and efficient way to find peace amidst the turmoil is by adopting a daily practice of gratitude. Focusing on the good things in our lives will shift your awareness and attention away from difficulties and toward the blessings that you still enjoy. Begin by making a list of twenty things that bring joy to your heart or a smile to your face. Start simple. Grateful for the sound of birds chirping while sipping coffee in the morning? Grateful when the sun is shining? Love the feel of wind on your face? Write it down. Do you smile with the sound of a child’s laughter? Do you savor the smell of freshly baked bread? Write it down. Fairly quickly into the process you may realize there are a multitude of simple, natural things for which to be grateful. Honoring the simple things will lead to a consciousness of bigger things that bring comfort and joy.
An important thing to remember about gratitude is that the practice must be done in the present. Gratitude is not about the past, nor concerned with the future. Gratitude is about being in the here and now, living and appreciating each simple joy as it comes. Beginning a practice of gratitude will change your perspective from lack and limitation to abundance and expansion.
Each Reiki practitioner should devote some time to understanding the body’s energy systems, specifically the chakras. Originating from the Sanskrit word “wheel” or “vortex”, the chakras are swirling transformation centers, the master programs that govern our behavior, emotions, creativity, learning, and development by transmitting energy that coordinate the reception, integration, and transmission of life force energies.
The chakras are located along the spine from the tailbone to the crown of the head. They impact and govern the physical organs located near each chakra. Each chakra is attached to the spine and faces outward toward the front of the body. Chakras can become unbalanced in either a deficient or excessive manner. During a Reiki session a practitioner can often sense differences in the body’s energy, specifically in the area of each of the chakras. Sometimes the sense is a change in temperature, a dense or prickly feeling, or simply a subtle change in the sensation in the palms.
It is important to understand where the chakras are located, as well as how they behave, when detecting energy symptoms in a client. Because the chakras are part of the body’s high vibration energy center, they will be impacted by high vibration energy thoughts and beliefs. Everyone carries negative thoughts and beliefs about themselves. Over time these negative thoughts and beliefs will begin to break down our body’s energy systems, just as repeated exposure to harmful poisons and toxins such as ingesting heavy amounts of lead or nicotine will eventually begin to break down the physical body. The specific chakra that will be affected will depend upon the content of the negative thought or belief.
Crystals and essential oils are tools that can be used to help strengthen the chakras. For example, the root chakra is concerned with basic matters of survival. A dense feeling around the root chakra may suggest fear for physical well-being or distress around finances. Essential oils that are earthy such as patchouli or sandalwood can be diffused throughout the room during a Reiki session, triggering an olfactory response that influences memory and emotions, helping to clear stuck or stagnant energy and creating a sensation of stability and safety. Tiger eye or red jasper are examples of crystals that are in harmony with the vibration of the root chakra and can be used during a Reiki healing by placing them on, around, or near the body. Different stones will correspond to the vibration of the different chakras. These tools can be used to help foster conditions within the body that allow the body to begin or continue the healing process.
There are physical exercises that can be done during a Reiki session that will also help support the chakras. Frequently feelings of grief will settle in the heart chakra. Physical side effects of this may manifest into heart disease, asthma or pneumonia. Breathing exercises can clear and balance the heart chakra, which will impact the health of the lungs. One effective technique is breathing through alternate nostrils. Close off the right nostril with the right hand, breathe deeply through the left nostril. Holding the breath at the top, release the right hand, and use the left hand to close the left nostril. Breathe out through the left nostril. Breaths should be deep and mindful. This simple exercise promotes deep relaxation and can be used at the beginning of a Reiki session to create an inner place of peace.
Intention is a keystone of Reiki and affirmations are statements of intention. Once a deficient or excessive chakra is identified affirmations can be used to reinforce an intention for each chakra. For example, when setting an intention before a Reiki session to clear the root chakra an affirmation such as “I am immersed in abundance” or “My needs are always met” affirms the power and influence of the root chakra. When working with the heart chakra through the effects of grief, avow the intention of mending with the affirmation “All past hurts are released into the Universe” or “Love and compassion for myself and others release me from past wounds”.
These instruments are just a sampling of the many ways to enrich a Reiki practice, but knowledge of the chakras is key. The chakras are vibrant spheres of life force energy. They are the information exchange centers of the body – physical, emotional, and spiritual. Understanding the characteristics and meaning of each of the chakras is essential for a balanced, resilient Reiki practice. An intimate awareness of the chakras, and the tools that support them, will enhance the practice of Reiki by assisting others in moving deeper into discovery of the self, leading to an improvement in physical health and an enriched life.
We have all been humbled by the events of recent weeks. Seemingly overnight our lives have been plunged into tumultuous waters of fear and uncertainty. We are dealing with the anxiety and foreboding that accompanies sudden and unwelcome change. And we are suffering from the effects of isolation, trying to move through new and unfamiliar lives when slowing down, staying home, and being present in the moment are required.
For many of us, the prolonged isolation feels suffocating. Once we complete our busy work, finishing our to do list, we realize that we can only clean our homes so often. When the closets are organized, the junk draw is cleared, and the oven is cleaned, what do we do next? We find ourselves with extra time. Time can be stifling because we often avoid it by keeping busy. And, that busy-ness allows us to avoid deeper thoughts that may threaten to smother us with the truth of who we are, and who we must become. When we are not busily engaged with the tasks that we have set upon ourselves, the mind begins to wander, and the imagination takes hold.
And thus, we begin to navigate the new world in which we now live. Not just the new limitations of our physical lives, but also the expansion of our spiritual lives. Now we read a book, play a game, cook a meal. We allow the quiet and still moments into our lives. Regardless of whether the life that we are experiencing right now may feel a little chaotic, there are still moments of peace. Those are the nuggets that we grasp, little bits of joy when seeing the delighted smile of a child or noticing the sparkling dance of sunbeams through the kitchen window.
This time that we are being given is a gift. Time gives us the chance to think, to contemplate, to dream. Although quiet has been thrust upon us, we can use this time to create peace in our lives. And in that new-found peace, we can find a connection to our divine selves. We are being forced to pay attention to the quiet, where the inner self has a chance to speak. Why is this time sacred? Because we have an opportunity to explore this slowing down of our lives. When we strip away the frustration, the fear, the insecurity of the future what are we left with? We are left with only what we dream about and how we see ourselves. When we see ourselves, we can begin to dream about what kind of life we want. And that vision starts to become rich with color, with flavor, with texture. We vision because we have the time. And in the discovery of who we are, we will begin our lives anew. With a purpose that allows us to acknowledge and pursue our passions. This is our sacred time.
When we come out of quarantine, we will return to lives that may initially look familiar but are very much changed. It will be a while before we can even begin to understand the far-reaching impact that this global pandemic will have on our community – both local and universal. And the underlying influence that it will have on our personal lives cannot even be anticipated at this time. The changes will creep up, without us being aware, until we look back six months or a year from now, and we suddenly realize just how different things have become. This is our opportunity to embrace the change and use this pandemic as a chance to create a new life for ourselves of purpose, prosperity and peace.
Reiki practitioners, as any other holistic healer, are not immune to the fear and insecurity that are prevalent in the world right now. But we are called to a higher standard because of our practice of energy medicine. We are charged with the responsibility of being Light Leaders. We know this when we begin our Reiki training. But how can we, as Reiki facilitators, be of service right now? Particularly when we are also having this human experience of tumultuous change?
First, we need to practice self-care. Practice Reiki on ourselves, and those around us. Meditation is best, but if that is not possible taking at least take 5 minutes per day to have a few minutes of quiet is essential. Diffusing essential oils or smudging, and carrying crystals are great tools to use for protection from toxins and poisons – be they physical or emotional. Create a loving, Reiki field of protection around yourself and your family.
Then we need to embrace the change that is happening. With all the fear, the anger, and disappointment. As with all change, there is a lesson to be learned, a blessing to be bestowed. This is the most difficult part, and the most important. We must be the Light Leaders, and truly lead by stepping over the bridge of what has been to what is, and then reaching out a hand to help others across it.
Finally, we stay calm and we breathe. When the panic starts up – How do I pay my rent? How do we eat? Remember your Source. Seek to stay connected to your divine self. And remember that we have access to a life of abundance and prosperity, regardless of how circumstances may appear.
We can hold the space for healing in our country and in the world. We can do that by sending Distant Reiki to our Global Community. Take time each day to intentionally send healing energy to all of those that suffer with the virus, to all of those who work in the public sector – health professionals, emergency responders, truckers, retail workers, etc., to our leaders and medical experts who are tasked with navigating the world through the crisis.
We can practice Reiki on our families, or those that we live with. Keeping the energy body strong and supported is as important as keeping the physical body safe and protected. Reiki will also provide deep relaxation and stress reduction. It will help to decrease worry and fear.
We can continue to deepen our Reiki practice by exploring the Reiki principles, remembering that “Just for today” has a Universal meaning. Just for today we can be who we are, where we are. And tomorrow we start over, a little bit bigger and a little bit brighter. Now is the time to step further into our Reiki calling, welcoming each occasion where we can be of service.
Practicing self-care is critical right now, as we need to be present and available to do our work. Staying calm and embracing the changes will assist us in getting through this time and allow us to be of support to others. Our world is shifting, and right now our work is to help usher in the changes.
I hear the term “unconditional love” bandied about as a solution to the increase in racism, bigotry and misogyny that our current administration has brought out in some of our country’s citizens. And when I hear the term it sometimes gives me a start because practicing unconditional love is a responsibility that needs to be understood in order to apply it. How do we practice unconditional love for those who have hurt or abused us? How can we practice unconditional love toward those whose faiths or philosophies differ from our own?
One thing to understand is that while love may unconditional, relationships are not. If a marriage falls apart because of infidelity, one can still view the unfaithful partner with unconditional love. But that does not mean infidelity is acceptable in an intimate relationship. If a family member is repeatedly abusive, one can still wish for them love and happiness, without placing oneself in harms way. In fact, sometimes we can find it far easier to practice unconditional love toward a stranger or a group than to an individual that we have history with. Relationships have conditions that create the framework in which the relationship operates. It is healthy and wise to set boundaries and to expect to have them honored. It is by honoring and protecting ourselves that we can find a way to love and wish joy to those in our lives, no matter the circumstances.
What about on a larger scale? How can we love unconditionally those whose opinions or beliefs are different than our own? Because of our political climate, many unpleasant things have been brought to light about our society, and about the people that live in our country. The image of white supremacists spewing hatred and terrified children in cages, the dismantling of women’s rights and decreased services to the helpless and needy, and an overall increase in awareness that there are millions of our citizens that operate from a place of hate and bitterness have all served to create an environment of mistrust and disdain. Still, we can hold a vision of love and happiness toward those who operate from a place of anger and hate. Our wish can be for those to find a place of peace that will bring forth happiness.
To love unconditionally is not easy. Because we are having a human experience we can, and probably will, fall into the trappings of the ego. We feel justified in hanging onto anger toward those who have wronged us. We can’t fathom how to wish joy to those that we view as monsters. The solution? Fake it until we make it. We try to notice when we are feeling angry, bitter or hostile toward an individual or a group. And with that acknowledgement we can make a choice to wish them well, bear them no ill will. This simple practice can be done without having to change one’s beliefs or to accept abuse. Eventually the practice will become a habit, and then a way of living with compassion. Loving unconditionally is not about condoning vicious behavior or agreeing with principles that we believe are damaging or dangerous. Loving unconditionally is realizing that we have the power to wish others well, and to use it without compromising ourselves.
We have all had that feeling at one time or another. Something that shows up in the gut, an inner knowing that cannot be explained, or explained away. And yet, our mind tells us that what cannot be seen cannot be trusted, so we ignore the feeling of anticipation or foreboding, and we push it way down into the energetic body, where it can no longer disturb us. How much of our lives are spent engaged in the internal and ongoing argument between the ego and the soul? And how do we move from a place of human experience to a place of divine inspiration?
We move to a place of divine inspiration by listening to the voice of the soul. Listening to the voice of the soul is a practice and a process. Creating space to be quiet and become comfortable with being alone with our thoughts is critical. Start by dedicating a time each day, just five minutes to begin, and finding a peaceful spot, unplugged and quiet. This is a time to let one’s thoughts wander through the hills and valleys of the imagination.
Once we establish connection to our quiet self, we need to ask what is the inner voice, and how can one recognize it? It may come with a feeling in the pit of the stomach, an expansion of the heart-center, or a tingling sensation within the body. An awareness is sparked, an awareness of emotion and/or beliefs that we hold dear because they are familiar and comfortable. With this awareness, contemplation will follow. And we may discover that those beliefs no longer serve us.
Once we establish a practice of being quiet, and begin to recognize our inner voice, then what? Again, listening to the sacred inner voice is a practice. Sometimes listening to the soul is easier than others, particularly when what the soul seems to be saying is contrary to our expectations. We need to have faith and choose our inner voice even when it is awkward or uncomfortable. Each time we choose our inner voice with success we will feel a deeper connection to our higher-self, and we will experience more of the truth of who we are, who we are meant to be. We discover a deeper meaning to our lives and feel more joy. Eventually we will trust our inner knowing and begin to speak and behave authentically from the heart.
Each Reiki practitioner is familiar with Usui’s five precepts; principles by which to live a happy life. The more we align with the five principles, the more heightened our practice becomes. And each time we experience a little miracle, a drop of magic, within the practice of Reiki, we deepen our belief and faith in the process.
Each precept begins with the term “Just for today”. This reminds us to stay in the present moment, doing the best we can at any given time. Regretting a past that cannot be undone or worrying about a future that hasn’t arrived only hinders us and keeps us from living in the now. Just for today gives us permission to forgive ourselves for past transgressions and frees us from the impulse to try to control the future.
The first principle is not to turn to anger. Anger is a secondary emotion, a fierce reaction to fear or hurt. If we dig down to the source of our anger, we will discover a raw feeling of pain or fear. For example, if we are cut off in traffic, nearly escaping an accident we may get angry, but the underlying feeling is one of sudden fear. Or if we are treated disrespectfully, our anger stems from hurt feelings. Recognizing the feeling that is at the core of our anger is key to bringing ourselves back to an emotional center, allowing us the opportunity to move into the present moment.
The second principle is not to worry. Engaging in constant worry is extremely destructive to both our mental and physical health. There is absolutely nothing to be gained from worrying about the future or fretting about the past. There is a difference in being concerned about a situation and taking appropriate action and worrying about a future in which we have no control. Gaining clarity around how much control we have over the situation will help guide us back to a place of acceptance and peace.
Living in a place of gratitude is the third principle. We can all come up with things to be grateful for, and some days the list is longer than others. Gratitude can encompass both the big things and little things in life. Good health, loving family and friends, and financial flow are all big things that we are grateful for, but how about when one of these main areas is challenged by illness, loss of a loved one, or financial hardship? We can still be grateful for the sun shining, a place to lay our head each night, or the opportunity to brighten someone else’s world. Even in our darkest hours, we can be grateful that we lived to see another day. Practicing gratitude keeps us in the here and now.
The fourth principle is to do the work that is ours to do. This precept has more than one meaning. First, we are reminded to complete the work that is ours to do each day with honesty and integrity. Next, when one of our tasks is to support and be of service to another, we recognize that our work is not to fix anyone or try to take on their work. This principle is also a reminder to get out of own way and allow Spirit to work in our lives. Discerning the difference in what action is ours to take, and when to let go and let things unfold.
Loving and respecting all is the fifth principle. Sometimes when we strongly disagree or find ourselves engaged in conflict it is hard to remember that we are all divine souls having a human experience, and as such we are far more alike than we are different.
The key to living these principles is to take it one day at a time, acknowledging that we will not live each principle 100% on any given day. But by being mindful of when our thoughts stray to anger, worry, self-pity, frustration, etc. we can more quickly move back into our heart center. Practicing Usui’s precepts will ultimately lead us to more peaceful, joyful and fulfilling lives.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.