In just a few minutes, Reiki can change everything. Shifting longstanding patterns and leaving behind peace and possibility.
Yesterday, I was stuck, not quite writing, not quite stopped. Today, I freely pick up the task of putting words down, editing, honing. The work may be a challenge, but getting there is easy. What used to be difficult now just flows.
I love the beautiful simplicity. It is so powerful, so gentle, so simple. So much can change for the better in just a few minutes of Reiki.
I love my bike. Um… Bicycle for you motorcycle enthusiasts… I love my bicycle.
I love the simple process of spinning the cranks and the glide of the tires. I love the balance, the repetition, the wind. I love the forward momentum generated by my own efforts. I love that the goal of every trip is to return home.
That simplicity and ease became my intention for my last Reiki session with a few of my graduated master students.
I am in the process of finishing my book and I have been experiencing perfectionism rise up and derail my progress. I used Reiki to begin the process of shifting that unproductive pattern. And every Reiki session starts with a positively worded intention.
What if… What if writing the remainder of the book could be as easy as riding my beloved bicycle?
Can it really be that simple?
I believe so.
Reiki is amazing. It shifts and transforms the underlying patterns. Old memories and past hurts are just gently released and then filled with light.
I feel calm. I feel peaceful. I feel ready to make some mistakes. I am prepared to publish my imperfect book, to create something that can help people.
I am ready.
Ready to do the work. Ride through all the gears. Patiently crank through the pages. Ride up the long, slow hill of editing. All just to complete the book only I can write.
What if it could all be that simple?
Just show up. Just push off of your support base. Lift up and get down to business. Find your rhythm. Balance. See new sights. Take pleasure in the experience. And return again and again to your home, altered, better, happier. Just gliding through life, free to be real, honest, and vulnerable.
It is so.
I say this every time I teach Reiki, “I love this one!” And I really do. Each class offers it’s own source of revelation and inspiration. There is working through the material, sure. But the sharing that happens in every class always has something to teach me. I’m always excited to learn something new. As much as I love teaching, I find these many moments of learning to be a delight.
At the beginning of each class we spend a few minutes in meditation and then we share what we experiences over the week before. It is always enlightening, I am often blown away by the patterns within each share and how our individual lessons often revolve around one larger theme. We are all learning the same lessons,but with our own unique perspectives. Some random comment made by one person, creates a radical shift for another. It often comes down to how we phrase the idea, just a slightly different usage of words makes all the difference.
This is why the world needs you. Your voice, your perspective, your unique experience and sharing. The way you describe these concepts, of health, development, manifestation and energy, is so very different than mine. How you describe things is different, which means that you can reach a different group of people than me. And more than ever before, people need to hear these messages of worthiness, empowerment, and healing.
It can be easy to hide behind our mentors and teachers. Thinking that we cannot possibly say it any better than them, so why is there a need for my words on the subject. Why should I write my book when there are hundreds out there basically saying the same thing, It is easy. So simple. There is no one exactly like me out there. There is no one exactly like you either. It all comes down to the paradox of humanity, we are all the same, with the same basic wishes and desires, and yet we are each our own unique expression in the world.
This is so mind blowingly difficult to grasp, same yet different, that we need many, many, many different versions of the same message for it to get through. So yes! Your voice is needed. Please share it.
Many books have been written about the history of Reiki and how it travelled from Japan to the west. I won’t try to reproduce that all here, but I do want to give you a little context about how the system of Reiki was developed.
Dr. Mikao Usui (Master Usui) lived from 1865 to 1926 in Japan. From most accounts he received his doctorate degree in Literature, though many of the details of his life have been muddled along the way. He was a Buddhist and studied a tantric Qigong method called the “Lightning Flash”, originally developed to achieve enlightenment, with physical healing as a by-product. Some accounts say he developed Reiki as a way to bring the powerful healing method to the masses. Many accounts tell a story of how he received the instructions on how to use Reiki and the symbols in a deep mediation at the base of a waterfall at Mt. Kurama.
However he came to know Reiki, Usui gave Reiki its name and created a system for teaching it and passing it down to others. He developed Reiki into a method of healing which is powerful, effective and non-invasive. He removed much of the religious aspects to the teachings so that there were no limitations on its use and benefit to all humankind. Reiki is not aligned with any political or religious organization and is open to all. Much like the Divine Energy that it accesses, Reiki is loving and accepting with no boundaries.
Since then, many styles of Reiki have been developed and the original 5 symbols have expanded to over 60. Reiki has spread throughout the world and is taught in many languages and cultures. Ultimately, though we can all trace back our Reiki lineage to Master Usui.
Gassho means meditation with hands together, a foundational practice of Reiki. Holding your hands together, in prayer position or anjali mudra, in front of your heart, signals the beginning of any Reiki session. It centres us in the Reiki energy and activates the flow of energy through the body.
This activation of energy in Gassho is amazing as part of a meditation practice, whether or not you know Reiki. Your hands and your heart are two important ways that you interact with your world. By taking a moment and stilling both in meditation, you are able to deeply transform yourself and your world.
Give it a try now.
Notice the energy between your hands. Listen to your quiet heart beat. This is the stillness your soul is longing for. Just taking the time to be aware of the the YOU that is beyond the physical you.
I always open my Reiki classes with a short guided meditation with everyone’s hands in Gassho. I close the meditation with Rei-Ji-Ho, a practice used in Reiki to set your ego-self aside from the healing that occurs and a surrendering to the Divine wisdom that you can sense with your hands.
Both Gassho and Rei-Ji-Ho are important to help build a strong focus and intention in the practice of Reiki. But they can be used by anyone as part of a meditative practice.
Rei-Ji-Ho is simply a prayer to put your mind, your intellect in the service of the energy in your hands. You bring your hands, still palms together, to your forehead as a signal that you are putting the wisdom of Reiki above your own ego-centric thoughts. Ego here means the part of you that views yourself as separate; separate from other people, separate from the earth, and separate from the Divine.
The prayer itself is one I wrote, using the principles of healing as guided by Master Usui. In the final line of the prayer, I use the word surrender. Here I am using the word surrender in the sense that we are letting go of our own ideas about what is needed for a person and solely focusing on where the Reiki energy is guiding us. It is listening in the deepest sense of the word.
You are perfectly healthy whole and complete.
You easily align yourself with your highest good and you work in harmony with the healing principle of the Universe.
Everyone and everything in the Universe is moving easily and freely toward perfect health.
Every motion of this Universe is towards pure love and light.
The Universe is moving steadily toward this state of pure being and you are perfectly aligned with this motion.
You move with love and light because you are love and light.
Every motion of your hands and movement of your energy is guided by the infinite wisdom of the Universe.
I surrender to the wisdom in my hands.
I’ve been using this little exercise with my son lately to help him settle in at home after a busy day at school and to help alleviate his nightmares. Kids, just like adults, need time everyday to connect into their power and access the spiritual energies that are available to them. Adults, or children with experience, have the ability to sit still in meditation to rejuvenate themselves. Kids, however, tend to not have the patience for sitting still, especially after a long day at school being told to do exactly that!
This Rainbow Tree exercise is an active, standing meditation that let’s kids have some fun while they are grounding, filling up their chakras and aura with light. At the end, they feel safe, protected, and balanced. Their natural sweetness rises to the surface and they are more themselves, their true selves, the magnificent beings they really are.
This is wonderful to do before and after school or before bedtime. Sensitive, spiritual kids really love it and will even teach you a thing or too about healing with energy! Be prepared to learn more than you teach!
Plant your roots!
Get your child to stand up tall and go through the actions together. Be a role model and keep it fun and upbeat. Talk them through each step.
Plant your toes into the ground and grow your roots right into the middle of the earth. Nice big roots that go down, down, down, into the ground. Nice and strong!
Grow your tree!
Now stretch your branches (your arms) way up into the sky. Stretch way up to the sun! Now wiggle your leaves (your fingers). And sway in the wind (move your arms from side to side over your head while keeping your ‘roots’ firmly planted.)
Fill up your Rainbow!
Next you will be guiding your child to place her hands on each chakra and fill up with that chakra’s colour. Go from crown to root (hips) and slide your hand all the way down your legs.
Fill up the top of your head with purple light.
Your forehead with dark blue light.
Your throat with light blue light.
Your heart with green!
Your tummy with yellow light.
Under your belly button with orange light.
Fill your hips with red light and fill up all the way down your legs right down to your toes.
Fill up your Energy Bubble!
Guide your child to fill up his aura from fee to above his head. Move your hands in a big arc around your body as you stand up. Finishing with your hands above your head.
Fill up your energy bubble with white light. All the way above your head and all around your body to 100%!
Let me know how you and your kids respond to this little exercise!
Everything that you have, accomplish, own, or do, begins with an intention. Whether it is aloud, or not, whether it is known or not, whether it is a conscious choice or a subconscious one, intention is the force that moves energy.
The goal of most self development work, and Reiki is no exception, is to begin to make deliberate conscious choices in every aspect of our lives. To choose what we focus our thoughts and feelings on is our true power. Much of our day to day lives are driven by instinctual behaviour and habitual thoughts. We respond without thinking and think without reason, we reason without intuition, and we cloud our deep intuitive impulses with numbing behaviours that drown out the very loud, very persistent calling of our souls.
Or, at least, that is what can happen if we do not spend the time to turn inward toward your Inner Being or Higher Self, your soul, if you will. Turning inward can be as simple as taking a deep breath; a few moments of meditation in a busy day; a stroll in nature; a gaze and the moon and stars in wonder of the mystery.
Quiet times like these are when your deep intuitive voice, your soul’s voice, can be heard the clearest. That wise voice gives you insight, understanding and context to your current life situation. It can provide the wise guidance you need to set an intention that is in your highest and best good.
Reiki can help this process of turning inward and focusing on your soul’s voice. As soon as you set your intention, the energy begins.
The fifth Reiki Ideal is “Be kind to your neighbour and every living thing“. Often I find that people in my classes do not need any help in being kind and compassionate to others. They offer their love and support and time to anyone and everyone. Except one. Themselves.
There is something about being kind to ourselves where we stumble and fall short. Our kind and loving nature is externally focused. By focusing outside of the self, it is far more likely that we come to expect that external conditions will satisfy our inner needs. We vacate our own emotional house, so to speak, and leave its care and maintenance to others.
I love Reiki. I love teaching it, self-healing with it, and helping others with it. The list of ways that it has substantially improved my life is a long, long, long list. But here is a start…
The Reiki Principles are very simple, but checking in with how I am doing with each one every day can completely shift my mindset in a matter of seconds. Here they are:
Just for today:
- I will not anger.
- I will not worry.
- I will be grateful for my many blessings.
- I will do my work (meditative practice) honestly.
- I will be kind to every living thing (including myself).
Just doing a quick check in on my level (from 1 to 10) on each of these principles lets me know where I am going in life. I have the chance to course correct before things go off the rails. I start with my anger level. Today, I am pretty happy so my level is at a 2. Next, I visualize how it would feel in my body if my anger was at a 1, and then at 0. I picture a sliding switch in my mind, like the ones you see in a sound studio. I slide the level down to 0 and then I stick it there with imaginary chewing gum.
Then I move on to worry. This can be a tricky one for me. I am continually striving to rein in my capacity to blindly worry about everything and everyone. This one principle has probably given me the greatest benefit from my practice of Reiki. Today, my worry level is at 4. Pretty great day for me. But worry, just like anger, can spike up for me depending on what is happening in my world. Even if it is at a 10, I still find this process incredibly helpful. It feels like draining out the bad before you put in the good. It’s like changing the dishwater in the sink. So, I’m at 4, 3, 2, 1, and 0. Stick!
Next is gratitude or appreciation. I’m at 8 today. Gratitude feels like a warm fuzzy emerald hug from the inside out. I let the feeling envelope me. I slide the gratitude switch up to 10. 8, 9, 10, Stick!
Now for doing my work! My true work as a Reiki Master is to master myself. Mastery of the self, the mind, the emotions and the spirit are gained through meditation and self-healing. Today, I am at a 4. Oops. It is okay though, because I always have room and time to improve. Some days are 10, some days are 0. The most important thing is to keep returning, again and again. Back to the zafu, back to the mat, back to the page. I meditate when I sit in mediation, but also in yoga and in writing. I find these activities to be really effective in calming the mind and body so that spirit may enter. So, I can feel in my body how it would feel if I was at a 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 , 10. Hold. Stick! It feels like bright and warm gold and white light flowing up my chest and into my brain and physical heart.
And now, kindness. I’m at a 4 for myself and 8 for others. I find it so easy, natural even, to be kind to everyone else. But me. That has been a work in progress. I am a recovering perfectionist. The antidote is kindness. This also has been a transformative part of Reiki for me. I deliberately choose better thoughts about myself and my feelings toward myself also change. When that happens I feel wonderful, courageous and powerful. I become immune to the opinions (good or bad) of others because I love myself. So, it is okay that right now I am at a 4, because I know I have the ability to shift it. It is also cool, because kindness toward others, goes up on its own when I am kind to myself. Time to shift! 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. Stay. Stick! I feel a full body relaxation, like a deep breath, and at the same time, I am sitting up straighter, taller, more ease in my true and powerful Self.
And just like that, I am different. More myself. More centered. More whole.
Test it out! Let me know how it works for you!
This weekend was the eighth and last class of my first Level I Reiki course, which is an eight lesson course. I developed the longer format for teaching after learning that Master Usui would train his students for years before attuning them to Level I. My intent was to infuse the discipline that comes from practising a new skill back into the format of the western style of teaching Reiki, which is typically taught in a weekend for Levels I and II.
At Level I, I was aiming for teaching my students the basics of energy work, an intro to meditation, and to be able to feel the flow of energy in their hands. By the second class it was overwhelmingly clear that the course would far surpass those goals. Everyone in the course, myself included, had profound and foundational shifts take place in their lives.
We concluded the class with a Reiki share, where one person lays on a massage table and the rest send Reiki healing energy to them. It was then that the sheer magnitude of joy and appreciation flooded through me. It is humbling to teach this work. And it is deeply satisfying to know that I have the opportunity to help others step more fully into their true, magnificent, Divine selves. Tears and laughter flowed in equal measure.
Reiki teaches us to step back from the process and allow the energy to flow through, unimpeded by ego. There is a deep surrendering to the natural healing process and a detachment from the results. Teaching Reiki is a similar, but significantly amped up, process. I got out of the way of what my students were supposed to gain from the course and they received far greater than I could have ever imagined.
I learned so much throughout this process as well. I learned that ego is not just being boastful, but it also plays a part in keeping us small. I had to face the reality that I have developed a life-changing and unique class that has the potential to reach the world. Yes, it is true, I am good at what I do. I had to learn to claim that for myself, because me playing small is not going to help anyone.
I had the opportunity to shift some major mental habits and create new powerful affirmations. I shifted the structure of my life to be more supportive of my purpose. I connected deeply to my spiritual essence and created daily contact with Master Usui, who is an ascended master. All in all, I rocked it!
I will forever be deeply grateful for my students who inspire me on so many levels. The courage and compassion they brought to every class really made it a tremendous experience for everyone. I am so incredibly impressed with their dedication and commitment to the process. I have been very lucky to have had them as my teachers.