16/5/2017 0 Comments
People come to Reiki for many reasons: Some wish to heal themselves, while others want to offer the gift of Reiki to the public by becoming a practitioner. There are those who don't know or understand why they're drawn to Reiki, but are compelled to learn. (I was one of those.)
But then, there is another group that comes to Reiki because they believe they were born with a gift of healing and want to further develop it, or they want to legitimise it. (I was one of those, too.) Society tends to look at us somewhat askance if we calmly state we're 'healers' or that we can take pain by placing our hands on someone, and in general, there's good reason for that.
Reiki gives us the opportunity to normalise, legitimise and enhance an ability we were born with.
Because I came to Reiki having acknowledged my own natural ability to ease physical and emotional discomfort, it seemed obvious for me to use the benefit of my experiences to explain to my students that there are many different roads going to a destination. None of them is the 'wrong' road - only different. There are more ways to heal than you can shake a stick at. All of them work to varying degrees, all should be acknowledged. But NONE of them are Reiki unless a Master has physically passed attunement and has taught the student the necessary Reiki symbols.
In Usui Ryoho Level I, the student is taught that for the first 30 days (minimum), the practice of Reiki is solely for the student, and there are multiple, tried and tested reasons for this.
1.) 'Physician heal thyself'. If you're ill or out of balance,(which most of us are because of life experiences, poor diets, or stressors), you're not going to be very helpful to anyone else.
2.) Individuals newly-attuned to Reiki tend to go through a period of detox. The symptoms can be as mild as extreme thirst and multiple trips to the bathroom as your body flushes toxins, to nasty flu-like symptoms. None of this lasts long, but you're definitely tired and in general, not feeling your best.
3.) Learning 'constructive selfishness' is harder than you think. From childhood, we're taught to share everything and give of ourselves to others selflessly. What we're NOT taught is how to create a boundary defining just how much we're willing to give - and when we should just say 'NO'. It's staggering how many people are unable to use that tiny, but oh so powerful little word!
While it's true that Reiki energises the practitioner as they give Reiki, that doesn't mean that you should give up your life and your needs to give healing to others. As a human being incarnated at this time, you have your own lessons to learn, your own work to do on yourself. Learning to draw a boundary and more importantly, learning to gently but firmly defend it is critical.
4.) Learning to listen to your own body. If you have little awareness of your own body, how will you be able to sense what's going on in the body of your human or animal client? While Reiki is known to guide the practitioner to the symbol(s) necessary for healing, there are times when the practitioner acts intuitively. In this way, Reiki is very fluid - and that's part of the reason it's so powerful.
I've just given four reasons why the first month(s) after Level I are just for the individual who is newly-attuned.
Yet, despite this information being given both verbally and in writing to Level I students, I never cease to be astounded at the fact that many offer to 'send Reiki' to those in need well before the first 30 days has ended. The majority of those doing this are people who have come to Reiki with natural healing abilities. While those methods of healing are legitimate, they are NOT Reiki, and should not be called such. To me, that's like offering someone an orange, calling it an apple and expecting the recipient to accept the difference in taste and appearance unquestioningly. The bottom line is, though, that no matter how much we may want it to be an apple - it's still an orange.
That having been said, I love seeing the enthusiasm. After practising and teaching for 30 years, I still get just as excited as I was Day 1, and I love seeing that in the new Reiki practitioners I teach.
When I teach Level I, I attune the student to only one symbol as is traditional. This symbol, however, isn't the Long Distance Healing symbol - it's a Power Symbol and it's given in attunement to students to kickstart the flow of Reiki energy, to empower the student, and to increase the student's ability to heal themselves. So each time the new student attempts to 'give' or 'send' Reiki to anyone other than themselves, the Reiki energy just reverses and flows back to the student. This too, causes the student confusion, because they say the person receiving the healing energy showed improvement. They would do: the student already had latent healing abilities and Reiki attunement enhanced them.
One of the things that doesn't seem to be affected by Level I attunement in those with natural healing abilities is protection against fatigue while attempting a 'Reiki healing'. Invariably, there seems to be some level of fatigue involved with each person/situation I've encountered this in over the years.
When a student has completed a minimum of thirty days of self-healing, they're then able to continue on to Level II attunement. It is at that point that the student is attuned by the Master in a further two symbols; one that heals Emotional issues, and the second being the Distance Symbol. They may now begin working on other people and even animals, both in person, and at long distances, and may call themselves a Reiki Practitioner. They can charge for their services (Indeed, it was recommended by Mikao Usui that all practitioners should charge a fee, to show value for service. I parted company with Usui belief that all students should turn over their earnings to their Master for a period of two years! In that way I am definitely untraditional.)
A Level II Reiki practitioner will seldom if ever feel fatigued at the end of a session. (I get 'supercharged' during each Reiki session, which proves to be very interesting if I'm doing more than two!) Many who practice a 'natural' healing method complain of fatigue, exhaustion, stomach upset, headaches and more. My own experience has been that part of the reason for experiencing these symptoms is a lack of self-protection and grounding prior to beginning the session, and partly because the healer has taken the symptoms of the person into themselves rather than releasing them during the healing process.
When Reiki is used, this no longer becomes an issue as the practitioner isn't expending their own energy, but rather the symbols are providing the energy. The practitioner becomes a vessel through which the Reiki energy flows once a symbol is drawn or visualised. The practitioner benefits from the Reiki energy as they're giving Reiki, but is protected from sickness or fatigue by the use of the symbols.
I'm sure that this is used as justification for attuning a Level I student to more than one symbol, but in my experience, I feel it's putting too many expectations on the student too soon. Reiki attunement opens a flow of incredibly powerful energy with just one symbol. Add a second symbol, especially one that serves so many more purposes, and that energy inflow can double or triple. For someone unused to that level of energy, even with guidance, working with it can be overwhelming.
As Masters, the onus is upon us to not just attune a new line of Reiki practitioners, but to ensure that each student is ready to experience it in a manner that will allow them to practise Reiki to their fullest potential.
Marisa Ward is the founder/CEO of White Light Enterprises UK, Reiki Master and Teacher, and professional Psychic/Intuitive Reader.