Reiki for Health, Healing, and Life

Laurie's Reiki Hands by Len Buchanan

Laurie's Reiki Hands by Len Buchanan

What is it?
Reiki is an ancient healing art thought to have originated in Tibet thousands of years ago. The Japanese word, Reiki (pronounced ray-kee) consists of two syllables:

Rei —  “Universal”
Ki — “Life Force Energy”

The word Reiki refers to the energy itself, or the actual practice of healing with the energy. Simply put, Reiki is the method of channeling healing energy through the practitioner into the recipient. It is important to understand that the energy does not come from the practitioner; rather through the practitioner for the good of the recipient — energies needed to heal oneself, loosen internal energy blockages, reestablish mental and emotional equilibrium, and revitalize the body and soul.

Reiki is versatile in that it can be used as a stand-alone treatment, or combined with any other type of intervention to treat almost any disease, the most common being stress-related disorders. Research shows that 90% of all illness stems from stress in one way or another. Reiki helps to relieve the body of stress and triggers the body’s innate ability to balance and heal itself naturally. Reiki can be used for physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual healing. It is a ‘hands-on’ method of energy work, although Reiki energy can be sent as ‘distance healing’ also. 

How Can It Help Me?
For healthy individuals, Reiki is a simple, effective way to relax, relieve stress, and restore energy.  For those with acute or chronic health problems, Reiki is a valuable complementary therapy. Reiki blends well with interventions such as medications, surgery, acupuncture, chemotherapy, and psychotherapy. By enhancing a person’s sense of well-being and helping their system to regain balance, Reiki can strengthen the benefits received from other health interventions. 

How Does Reiki Work?
Without conscious intervention by the healer, intelligent healing energies flow through the healer to the recipient in exactly the right amounts to precisely the right places in the recipient. The healer’s job is to “get out of the way” — to keep the healing space open, and to watch and listen for signs of what to do next. The Reiki energies are multi-dimensional and can heal the root of a problem on whatever level it may exist — body, mind, or spirit. Because it is a channeled healing, the Reiki practitioner’s energies are never depleted.

The energy flows out the palms of the practitioner’s hands, and the recipient’s energy does not flow back into the practitioner. The Reiki practitioner can stay in one place projecting the energy on or towards the person who is receiving it, but typically moves around the body. While the Reiki energy fills and surrounds the recipient’s body with its gentle vibrations, if there are parts that require more balancing of energy (called energy blocks), the Reiki energy naturally focuses more in those places.

Garden Hose - A Reiki Analogy by Laurie Buchanan

Garden Hose - A Reiki Analogy by Laurie Buchanan

An Analogy
Consider whenever a person goes outside to water the garden. They turn on the water tap, pick up the hose and focus the nozzle of the hose toward the garden. The person is not usually concerned with the water running out, or with the possibility of anything foreign coming in through the sides of the hose. The person does not worry about anything coming back up through the nozzle because the water pressure is too strong. While this person could just let the water run and it would work its way to all parts of the garden, they enjoy directing the water to their favorite plants, then possibly the balance of the garden. However, if there is a part that is in greater need than the rest of the garden, the water will accumulate more there and balance the entire garden’s water content.  And it is usually obvious where these spots are, as more water gets absorbed there than elsewhere.

The water can be thought of as the Reiki energy. It comes from a source outside of the Reiki practitioner, and seems to have no limit to its availability. The hose is like the purified Reiki channel that is opened within the Reiki practitioner. It is pure and strong and nothing can penetrate it. The energy flows out the palms of the practitioner’s hands, (the nozzle, as well as other chakras in the body), and the recipient’s energy does not flow back into the practitioner. The Reiki practitioner can stay in one place projecting the energy on or towards the person who is receiving it, but typically moves around the body, starting with the recipient’s head (just like watering the favorite flowers first). While the Reiki energy fills and surrounds the recipient’s body with its gentle vibrations, if there are parts that require more balancing of energy (called energy blocks), the Reiki energy will focus more in those places. The end result is a balancing of the energy in the recipient — body, mind, and spirit.

Reiki Session by Len Buchanan

Reiki Session by Len Buchanan

What to Expect
Every practitioner is slightly different in their approach. During a Reiki session at HolEssence the client lays fully clothed on a Reiki table that is lightly heated in the fall and winter months. The head and neck are comfortably supported by a pillow, and the legs are elevated a bit to insure that there is no pressure on the lower back. The client then enjoys a somewhat cocoon-like effect that is created by:

– A lightweight blanket
– Comfortable stereo headphones softly playing Reiki-specific music
– An eye pillow

This ‘cocoon’ serves to diminish, if not eliminate, any outside distractions — providing the client with the opportunity to simply ‘float away’ during the session. The treatment room is filled with our gentle Signature Scent—a proprietary blend of essential oils specifically designed for profound relaxation. 

During the session my hands are placed in specific positions slightly above, or very lightly on, the recipient. Breathing becomes slower and more comfortable as the recipient moves toward a deeper state of relaxation. The client may encounter a variety of responses. Some people feel a sensation of warmth from my hands. Others feel a soft wave of subtle pulsations flowing throughout their bodies, or a sensation of tingling or humming energy; while others feel somewhat like they are floating. Some people simply fall asleep.

After a Reiki treatment people generally experience contentment, greater mental clarity, feelings of deep relaxation and greater vitality, encouraging a return to wholeness and well-being. What every person agrees with is that Reiki is very comforting and relaxing. 

A few other things about Reiki…
There are few limitations to Reiki, but there are some things that Reiki will not do. Reiki, by design, can not do harm to anyone or anything. Reiki can not change the course of an illness when death is imminent. It can, however, smooth the transition for the dying person and even their family. Reiki cannot violate free will. A person is free to refuse the benefits of a Reiki session if they choose, consciously or subconsciously.

Reiki is not faith healing. The belief in Reiki by the recipient is not important for it to work. Belief in Reiki, or lack thereof, does not validate or invalidate its effectiveness. Reiki is not a religious belief, principle, or dogma as it encompasses all systems of thought, but the results can be spiritually uplifting. A single person or organization does not own Reiki, and there is not one particular ‘right’ way to practice Reiki.

Listen with your heart,

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing.”
               – Laurie Buchanan
Copyright © 2010 Laurie Buchanan — All Rights Reserved. 

28 thoughts on “Reiki for Health, Healing, and Life

  1. Wonderful in depth description of What, How and why Reiki can and does work!
    Beautiful ! If I was not already a Reiki practitioner, I would sign up.
    Reiki is a wonderful way to be intune with nature energy around us, that surrounds us.

    I am Love, Jeff

    • Good morning, Jeff – I just got back from reading your post, Perceptive of Time. And what a fine post it is. As another practitioner, I’m glad you my explanation of Reiki. I’m a practitioner of two types: Usui and Sacred Flames (I usually end up combing the two).

  2. Your garden hose analogy was perfect. My Reiki practice, each morning, keeps the healthy energy flowing throughout my body and untwists the unhealthy spots that are clogged and revitalized. Reiki also helped me heal a very bad burn on my arm. Thank you for you knowledge.

    • Sheila – I’m so glad for your visit and comment! And I’m delighted to know that you have consistent, first-hand experience with the daily use of Reiki and it’s profound benefits. Thank you for stopping by today.

    • Everyone – If you go over and visit Terrill’s blog post today — If I were an owl — you will see a beautiful picture of what Reiki does. Notice her painting that she considers a “mistake.” Now look at her completed work of art — the one she resusciated by breathing life into it. That’s a perfect picture for what Reiki does!

  3. Laurie, this is a wonderful presentation. Many years ago I was blessed to have a lovely friendship with a woman who incorporated many of the same therapies and approaches that you use into her holistic practice. I took the certification training up to Level 2… used it in my daily life and with family and friends for many years but drifted away from it as life pulled in other directions. Reading your description seems to bring it back, as if it has never really been gone…if that is possible. I almost feel as if I have had a session. Interesting.

    • Colleen – I’m so glad for your visit today. I don’t believe in coincidence. It was meant to be. Yes, it’s most definitely possible. Your Reiki attunements never leave you — they are present for your entire life. I’m glad this post sparked that energy back to life. That means the time is right. The time is now. It’s time to use it again.

  4. I love Reiki, Laurie. I have have had numerous sessions and actually taken Reiki I and Reiki II training. I don’t practice, but like I said a few blogs ago, I am going to start treating myself to one thing a month: massage, EFT, Reiki, Reflexology and anything else I can find that makes me feel GOOD.

    • Barbara – I’m glad for your commitment to treat yourself to one healthy session of something each month. I’m going to hold you to it — you know I will. So what have you got planned for July?

    • barbara (and Laurie) – I like this idea of treating yourself to one healing or beneficial treatment a month. I’m going to put that idea on the back burner and let it simmer a while. That sounds like a valid investment towards your future peace and well being.

      • Nancy – I have some clients who visit weekly, some who visit monthly, some who visit once a season (winter, spring, summer, and fall), and some who visit twice per year. Most client visits are regulated by a combination of three factors: (1) finances, (2) what’s going on with their body, mind, and/or spirit, and (3) their schedule.

  5. Just wanting to echo what everyone else said. This was the most intensive description of Reiki that I have ever heard. The garden hose analogy was wonderful. I have several friends who are Reiki practitioners and have experienced the result of their energetic work.

    • Kathy – You slipped in while I was over on that mountain climb with you and Chris. Hold on a minute, let me catch my breath! Whew — that was a doozie! I’m glad you enjoyed the post. More importantly, I’m glad you’ve experienced Reiki — it’s a wonderful energy-based modality regardless of a person’s condition of health. Now you better hit the sack ’cause you’ve got to get to the airport at the butt crack of dawn, young lady!

      • Laughing–butt crack of dawn, young lady!! Ha ha, I think we’re going to be BEFORE the butt crack of dawn… love that expression! 🙂

  6. Kathy is going to be butt weary!

    Thanks for the description of Reiki, I always enjoy hearing more.

    I try to do the same once a month, trying different modalities. I am more interested these days in EFT and hypnosis…

    Laurie, Thanks for keeping the learning fresh and new every moment!


    • Beth – Once you’ve been attuned to Level 1 you’d definitely be able to do Reiki on yourself.

      But even if you don’t ever have any formal Reiki training, the power of intent (which anybody and everybody has) is amazing and very effective. I teach Reiki Levels 1, 2, and 3 — once each in a calendar year. Level 1 is already complete for this year, but I’ll offer it again in 2011.

  7. I have done a little training in Reiki, and what is done does seem to do something.

    Again I am not at convinced that the explanation involving energies is a close fit to what is actually happening.
    T me it seems more probable that what is actually happening is a complex interactions of beliefs and action. Each of the participants experiencing physical changes in response to belief in action, and those responses have secondary and tertiary effects on others who observe them.

    Whatever the actual explanation, the combination of action and belief seems to have some effects in reality.

    • Ted – Today is the last of the Reiki Level 2 classes for this year. Having obtained your permission in advance, you will once again be our point of focus for distance healing as we wrap up our day (sometime between 4-6pm our time, July 11 — which is 8-10am July 12 for you). I agree that REGARDLESS of the explanation, it’s an amazing energy-based modality.

  8. Aha! so that is what Reiki is! I had an idea but nothing very solid. I should go see my friend, Dr. Eli, who does Reiki work. It is easier to comprehend after the waterhose analogy, that I can understand.

  9. Hi, Laurie — I’ve had this Reiki blog post bookmarked in my memory and have just been waiting until I had a few minutes to really absorb the information. What a great description of the process … especially the water hose analogy, which demystifies the idea and keeps things simple and uncomplicated.

    Do you have any suggestions for identifying or screening a possible Reiki practioner in my area? On my very limited budget, I am considering investing in a (maybe once monthly like Barbara suggested above) session, but have been cautioned that, just as with any business, there are some less-than-effective practioners out there that are posing as practioners but they are really about making money, and not about healing. Since this would be my first experience with Reiki, I would like to give myself the best chance for an authentic and beneficial session. How do I find someone that might be a good fit? Any ideas?

    • Nancy – what you say is oh-so-true. If you reply with your zip-code, I’ll check to see if there are any practitioners in your area that belong to any of the same national/international organizations that I belong to. If yes – I’ll send you a link. Bear in mind, I won’t know if they’re good, but we’ll at least know that they belong to a professional organization (which means they’re certified and licensed) — that’s always a good start. You can also ask for references — see their website — see if they blog — and so forth.

      I’m heading into two more sessions, and then Len and I have an obligation this evening. I probably won’t have a chance to check anything out for you until tomorrow. But I most definitely will.

  10. Pingback: Have Sex for Better Health « Speaking from the Heart

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