Reiki (pronounced ray-key) is a Japanese word representing universal life energy, the energy which is all around us. The word Reiki is made up of two Japanese words: Rei, or universal spirit (sometimes thought of as a supreme being), and ki.
Thus, the word Reiki means "universal life energy."
Reiki practitioners channel energy in a particular pattern to heal and harmonize. Unlike other healing therapies based on the premise of a human energy field, Reiki seeks to restore order to the body whose vital energy has become unbalanced.
Reiki energy has several basic effects: it brings about deep relaxation, destroys energy blockages, detoxifies the system, provides new vitality in the form of healing universal life energy, and increases the vibrational frequency of the body.
The laying of hands is used in Reiki therapy also as in spiritual healing.
Reiki is believed to have begun in Tibet several thousand years ago. Seers in the Orient studied energies and developed a system of sounds and symbols for universal healing energies. Various healing systems, which crossed many different cultures, emerged from this single root system. Unfortunately, the original source itself was forgotten.
Dr. Mikao Usui, a Japanese Christian educator in Kyoto , Japan , rediscovered the root system in the mid- to late 1800s. He began an extensive twenty-one-year study of the healing phenomena of history's greatest spiritual leaders. He also studied ancient sutras (Buddhist teachings written in Sanskrit). He discovered ancient sounds and symbols that are linked directly to the human body and nervous system which activate the universal life energy for healing.
Usui then underwent a metaphysical experience and became empowered to use these sounds and symbols to heal. He called this form of healing Reiki and taught it throughout Japan until his death around 1893.
The tradition was passed through several grandmasters of reiki such as Dr. Chujiro Hyashi, Hawayo Takata, and Phyllis Lei Furumoto.
The Usui System of Natural Healing balances and strengthens the body's energy, promoting its ability to heal itself.
People have sought Reiki treatment for a wide variety of health-related purposes. Some examples include:
A person does not need a special background or credentials to receive Reiki training. Many who seek the training are health care professionals. Students must learn the practice from an experienced Reiki teacher or Master, as it is not a therapy that can be self-taught.
There are four levels (or degrees) of expertise. Each level begins with an attunement, or initiation into that level.