"We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place
for the first time."
(Rosemary is a friend of
mine and this area is her speciality at the moment) - the following is part of a conversation I had with her by email, and
because it is so relevant to conscious awareness I asked if she minded me putting it on the website:
Kishibi (Particle Physicist):
Inside each brain cell is billions of tiny "microtubules"
made up of long chains of carbon atoms arranged side by side to form semi-conducting "tubes".
This research has only been possible since the advent of Quantum Tunnelling Microscope , (this is what I work in)
. It is the individual carbon atoms in the walls of these tubes that form the "computing units" that the brain uses.
(I will notgo on about this here or try to explain it all , a) , my English writing is not good enough , and , b) it wiould
What it means is that a brain has theoretically UNLIMITED information / memory
storage "capacity" (although am using the expression "computing units" a lot here , this IS NOT like a
"digital" computer that we know and use , dont think of it like that! IS MORE LIKE "ANALOGUE" if you described
it in terms of technology.
THE IMPORTANT THING THOUGH IS THIS ; It almost certainly means that
what we call "consciousness" , and also "thought" CAN EXIST OUTSIDE OF THE PHYSICAL CONFINES OF THE BRAIN.
Much research is going on with this right now , is fascinating stuff . It suggests that "we" , our "conscious"
selves , what people have been calling "spirit" or "soul" or whatever you want to call it is very real
and we are not as "physical" as some people like to think.
BEYOND "UNIVERSAL ENERGY":
While the term "Reiki" is used to describe both the system of healing & spiritual
development developed by Mikao Usui, and the therapeutic 'phenomenon' at the heart of the system, it is this latter - the
'Reiki' itself, rather than the system - that I wish to focus on here.
When it comes to the matter of
a definition of Reiki, a commonly held view amongst Reiki practitioners, it seems, is: "don't think too much about it
- Reiki is experiential - just do it.." - and of course, in one sense, this is true.
But, on the
other hand, as the Shakyamuni Buddha is credited with saying: "With our thoughts we shape our reality".
too, I would venture to suggest: "With our thoughts we shape our Reiki..."
Explanation of Reiki:
When asked what 'Reiki' meant, Takata-Sensei frequently gave a very simplistic
answer, along the lines of: Rei means 'Universal', and Ki means 'Energy'.
[Yet it has been said on more than one occasion
that this particular explanation was something that only came to prominence, probably during the latter 60's, to fit a more
generalised 'frame of reference' of the people drawn to her as potential students]
However, in attempting
to transmit a deeper understanding of the meaning of Reiki to her students, Takata-Sensei spoke of Reiki as:
universal force from the Great Divine Spirit"
"...a cosmic energy
to heal the ill..."*
and yet more specifically, as:
" It is not associated with any visible material being.", she said of it, "It's an unseen spiritual
power that radiates vibration and lifts one into harmony. This power is incomprehensible to man, yet every single living being
is receiving its blessings..."
[This interpretation of Reiki as: 'God Power' has lead many to the
conclusion that, in giving the 'simplistic' interpretation: "...Rei means 'Universal', and Ki means 'Energy'...",
Takata Sensei was actually using 'Universal' in the sense that many mystics have used it, i.e.: as being a contraction of:
'the Universal' - an alternative (and intentionally less religious) term for 'the Divine', ' the Numinous' or 'God''.]
The usual way in which Reiki Teachers tend to explain Reiki to new students, is to opt for the simplistic approach
[generally a very good place to start] - the "Rei" part of the name being translated as "Universal" (though
some do explain that in essence, it refers, more properly, to something Spiritual or Sacred, and can mean "Soul"),
and "Ki", translated simply as "Life-Force Energy" (though a few mention that it also implies 'Spiritedness',
'Feelings', or the effect of energy in action.)
Some Reiki Teachers, seeking a middle ground between,
on the one hand, the more ''Newtonian' / 'scientific' concept of 'Reiki as Energy', and on the other, the more 'Spiritual'
concept of 'Reiki as the Power of God', express Reiki as: "Spiritually-influenced (or "Spiritually-guided")
Life-Force Energy"; or even as "Charismatic Healing Radiance".
Others, seeking to play
down the (I personally feel, undue) emphasis on the concept of 'Reiki as Energy', without necessarily using terminology implying
'Things of the Spirit', prefer to speak of Reiki as an 'Experiential Phenomenon'.
'Reiki' - in
common Japanese usage:
In many modern Japanese-English dictionaries, the term Reiki, (written using the
modern style kanji-pair) is given (in common usage) as meaning: 'Aura'.
'Reiki' can also refer to the
'Holy Atmosphere' one experiences at a Shrine, Temple Holy Mountain, or other sacred site.
And of latter
years, probably due to the re-surgence of interest in the modality and its growing popularity - 'Reiki' (written using the
'traditional' or 'old style' kanji-pair) is beginning to appear in some modern Japanese-English dictionaries to denote the
The Reiki Kanji themselves:
As a general guide, the meaning
of a kanji-pair is derived from a synthesis of meanings of the individual kanji making up that pair; and so, the meaning of
'Reiki' is ultimately derived from meanings attributed to the individual kanji: 'Rei' & 'Ki'.
We should always remember that the 'romanised' five-letter word: 'Reiki' is simply a transliteration of the Japanese, and
just as in English where (for example) the words 'rite', 'write' and 'right' all have the same sound, so too in Japanese there
are often many words that sound the same, yet are written in different kanji - and have very different meanings.
distinct from 'Reiki' i.e. the spiritual/therapeutic 'phenomenon' associated with Usui-Sensei, there are also several other,
un-connected, written forms of the double-syllable: 'rei-ki', each having their own distinct meanings - including: sacred
ground or sacred precincts; established rule; cold, chill, cold weather, cold wave, cold air; & (electrical) excitation.
Here, obviously, we are concerned solely with the 'Rei' and 'Ki' kanji as used to denote 'Reiki' - the spiritual/therapeutic
As is the nature of kanji in general, the kanji 'Rei' & 'Ki' can have many levels of
A linguist (or for that matter, a good academic Japanese-English Dictionary) will explain that
'Rei' encapsulates/refers to:
The Divine, the Numinous
A supernatural Being or Spirit
The Spiritual nature
Luminosity of the spirit; the luminosity
of a God or Sage
Charisma, charismatic power
Inconceivable spiritual ability
Something wonderful; a wonder
A shaman, a
person or being with spiritual or supernatural powers
A rainmaker, a diviner
'Ki' primarily encapsulates/refers
Spirit (in the sense of 'Spiritedness')
The generative forces of Heaven & Earth
The material force of the Universe
Steam (the kanji for 'ki' implies steam rising from a covered
pot of rice cooking over a fire, with the lid of the pot being lifted by the steam.)
The effect/result of energy being
Reiki as 'Energy' or ...
When we speak of Reiki in terms of 'energy',
what do we understand by this - many have a perception akin to that of electricity flowing through a wire, to others it may
be one of 'emoting' or motivating force, yet others still will hold a perception of 'Love'.
Takata-Sensei also referred to Reiki as 'God Power' - something Spiritual or Sacred.
It is commonly expressed
that "Reiki has its own Intelligence" - that it is "Spiritually-influenced" or "Spiritually-guided".
Would this not put it more in the category of 'Energy-Presence' or 'Energy-Sentience'?
the latter part of the 19thC, when metaphysical, mystical, and spiritually minded people began to adopt a 'more scientific'
vocabulary in which to attempt to express their conceptualisations, it has been a common (and often unconscious) practice
to substitute terms such as 'energy', 'energies', 'vibrations', etc. for supposedly 'less scientific' terms such as Spirit,
Spirits, Presences, etc
So just where does 'Energy' end and 'Spiritual Entity' or 'Presence' begin?
Depending on the given context, the word Reiki can be used to suggest a Spirit, an Aura - even, in certain
cases, to refer to the influence of a Ghost or Ancestral Spirit.
The manifestation of some form of Numinous
Being or Presence is a common concurrence with instances of kantoku (visionary mystical experiences) or satori (lesser-enlightenments)
in Japanese Culture.
The following is an extract from the writings of Morihei Ueshiba - the founder of
the Spiritual Discipline and Martial Art: Aikido - describing his 'satori'-like mystical experience out of which the art of
Aikido was created:
"Then in the spring of 1925, if I remember correctly, when I was taking a walk
in the garden by myself, I felt that a golden Spirit sprang up from the ground, veiled my body and changed my body into a
At the same time my mind and body turned into light. I was able to understand the whispering
of the birds, and was clearly aware of the mind of God, the Creator of this Universe..."
the account of Usui-Sensei's experience on Mt. Kurama, recorded on his monument, it states:
"One day he went to
Kurama Yama on a 21-day retreat to fast and meditate. At the end of this time, he suddenly felt a great Reiki over his head
and received spiritual insight into the Reiki healing method..."
"...a great Reiki over his
head..." - this is usually interpreted as meaning he felt 'Reiki energy' but it may in fact be simply stating that he
had a kantoku visionary experience of a great (in the sense of 'important') Spirit over his head. A vision of, as Takata-Sensei
put it 'God Power' - the Power of God - what in western terminology we might refer to as the 'Holy Spirit' - an 'energy' in
the sense of a Numinous Being (in the Japanese conceptual view, possibly: a kami, butsu, or bosatsu) rather than 'energy'
in our Newtonian understanding of the term.
So, while the commonly-held perception of Reiki may well
be that of Healing Energy - possibly even 'Spiritually-influenced' or 'Spiritually-guided' Healing Energy, perhaps it may
help to deepen the quality of our connection if we allow ourselves to perceive Reiki - not so much in terms of a 'Universal
Energy' - as in terms of a 'Universal Spiritual Presence' - a 'Holy, Healing, Spirit Presence'.
perception, Reiki as a system can truly be claimed to be a system of Spiritual Healing - a charism - a 'Gift of the Spirit'.
Copyright © 2002/3 James Deacon
Note: *It seems that in hearing Takata-sensei speak
of Reiki as a "...a universal force from the Great Divine Spirit" and '... a cosmic energy...' , many of her students
took this to mean that Reiki - as an 'energy' - was something outside of ourselves: something 'out there' - beyond us. Something
we 'channeled', rather than something arising within us. And this is the understanding these students passed on to their own
However, this idea of Reiki as being something external is perhaps only part
of the truth...
In a diary entry dated Dec. 10 1935, Takata-sensei wrote about
"...Energy within oneself " - and also about how we must
"...meditate to let the "Energy" come out from within."
the "Energy" she said: "It lies in the bottom of your stomach about 2 in. below the navel."
James Oschman is one of the leading authorities on the scientific understanding of hands-on
healing. His extensive background as a scientist and his experience and understanding of holistic healing place him in a unique
position to bridge the gap between the academic/medical world and the healing community. His book, Energy Medicine, and his
soon-to-be-released new book, Energy Medicine in Therapeutics and Human Performance, are remarkable in the way they easily
convey a scientific basis for hands-on healing. His work makes it easy for doctors and scientists to understand and accept
Reiki, which is valuable for anyone wanting to place Reiki in hospitals or to work in a clinical or scientific setting. His
fascinating ideas and insights give a new perspective on how Reiki works which inspires us to make better use of our skills.
Click link below for interview transcript:
Science and The Human Energy Field James L. Oschman, Ph.D.
|Shou Matsui's Article in Japanese
1928 Reiki Article
Matsui's 1928 Reiki Article: "A Palm-Healing Treatment to Cure Diseases "
This is a newspaper
article written in Japan in the early 20th Century by a man who was taught Reiki by Dr Hayashi.
article appears here for information purposes only in relation to the history of Reiki and is not meant to infer or suggest
that such physical healings can be carried out by someone trained in Reiki. ANY healing that occurs, or any condition
that improves, happens because the recipients own natural healing systems kick in.
bear in mind that Reikipathway teaches the ORIGINAL system which was concerned with personal evolvement and in fact, any physical
help it gave was not considered directly the purpose for passing Reiki. As you know from the Manual, Dr Hayashi was a medical
doctor and had asked Usui to train him in Reiki - Usui and he then adapted the original process to suit his needs.
Matsui (1870 - 1933) had worked as a journalist before becoming well-known as a playwright and drama teacher, and supporter
of the traditional form of Japanese Theatre called Kabuki. He was also one of Chujiro Hayashi's Reiki students.
as a playwright Mr. Matsui continued to write articles and reviews, etc, including one particular Reiki-promoting piece, published
in the 'Sunday Mainichi' [Sunday Every Day] Magazine, on March 4th, 1928.
In response to a request from a reader who
I would like to learn about the treatment introduced in the book presentation by Shou Matsui in the 'Mainichi'
on January 30th.
Mr. Matsui responds:
"I am pleased to discuss this method.
This cure-all treatment
is called "Reiki Ryoho" and is practiced by an elite group of people. It was created, or rather founded, by Sensei
Mikao Usui who passed away a few years ago. Currently, his students have clinics where they practice healing and train others
in Reiki Ryoho. Although remarkable in its effectiveness, not many people are familiar with this treatment. Sensei Mikao Usui
did not like to advertise Reiki Ryoho and so his students are also hesitant in publicising it."
Mr. Matsui goes
on to say that he really can't see why they don't make an effort to publicise Reiki Ryoho. He comments about how various religions
proclaim and spread their teachings - speaks of the positive use of propaganda and how if the truth can make people happy
then it should be a persons duty to spread the truth.
"So it is that when asked, I always promote
this Reiki Ryoho in a positive way. I will write about it if asked. Yet my doing so attracts criticism from other Reiki Ryoho
practitioners. I do think it is a shame to refrain from publicising such a great healing technique. It is a both a moral and
a social shame and I am always pleased to promote it."
Mr. Matsui continues to explain that he wouldn't like readers
or other journalists to get the wrong impression. He does not want people to think that the reason Reiki Ryoho practitioners
generally do not promote their art is because it is all sham and trickery.
"So, I will take on the responsibility
and promote the truth about Reiki, both for the sake of the art and for the sake of those who are suffering. In writing this,
I am acting on my own - these are my thoughts, and I am responsible for them, this has nothing to do with other Reiki Ryoho
practitioners. I find I am so excited about this treatment that I can hardly concentrate on scriptwriting since having learned
how to use it."
It is, Mr. Matsui says, his desire to promote Reiki Ryoho far and wide, so that not only the Japanese
people, but people all over the world will be free from disease, know excellent health and be much happier.
Yet in the
same breath, he mentions how in the years since Reiki Ryoho was first developed by Mikao Usui, only a handful of clinics have
actually been established to provide this wonderful treatment.
Mr. Matsui goes on to speak about how he was initiated
into Reiki by Chujiro Hayashi - a warm-hearted yet serious man, according to Matsui - one who seemed as if he had been destined
from birth to work with Reiki.
He mentions that Chujiro Hayashi gives Reiki treatments to clients in the morning, and
teaches Reiki Ryoho for five days each month.
He then goes on to explain that, because there are numerous other treatment
methods and sects which have the syllable 'Rei' in their name, many people incorrectly assume Reiki Ryoho is connected with
these other groups. [Note: in the early part of the 20th C, several such groups were viewed with suspicion due to supposed
'cultist' behaviour] And, as Reiki Ryoho practitioners are unwilling to speak out and clarify their beliefs and position,
it is little wonder that this much-needed treatment style has not grown in popularity.
"I would like to state that,
of all the treatment methods I have encountered, Reiki Ryoho is the most effective and the most unique. It can really heal,
whatever the disorder. People ask: 'is Reiki Ryoho effective in dealing with psychological disorders?' Yes it is, and it can
also heal all manner of internal diseases and external injuries as well. Intestinal problems, burns, rheumatism, nervous problems
- the lot!"
Reiki Ryoho, Mr. Matsui explains, is considered a spiritual technique - as the "Rei" part
of the name suggests. However, he himself considers it to be a very practical, physical technique.
Mr. Matsui says he
bases this belief on his personal experience, having successfully treating more than a hundred patients. He says that some
people put the effects of Reiki Ryoho on a par with the miracle healings of Jesus, but that he, Matsui, is simply a normal,
practical-minded, and common person - not a great person, not a man of great character. He does claim to be 'spiritually advanced'.
To him, Reiki Ryoho is not something supernatural, but a natural, physiological treatment method.
He then goes on
to give some examples of disorders he has treated, explaining that he has effected many such healings which, though seemingly
miraculous, are simply the result of applying a practical treatment (Reiki Ryoho) which stimulates the body's self-healing
Explaining how he gives treatment, Mr. Matsui says:
"I simply place my hands on the affected part.
I don't push or pat. To me, this is the interesting point about this healing method. I scan the patient's whole body, sense
the source of the disorder, treat that area, and the healing effect is dramatic. I can discover the source of disease because
I will feel pain when I place my hands there. Depending on the disorder, the intensity of pain differs, but I am not sure
of the precise relationship between the condition of the disorder and the intensity of pain felt. I don't just feel this pain
in my hands at the point indicated by the patient, I also feel it at the point which is the source of disease, so I can find
the treatment point easily. Unlike doctors, I do not need the patient to tell me where and how they experience their disorder.
Patients may be suspicious about my treatment, but no matter, within thirty minutes to two hours their condition will undergo
a noticeable change.
As an example, take a man with serious heart disease. His pulse is 85 beats per minute and he feels
pain in the heart. His doctor says there is cardiovascular constriction. Yet I don't feel any pain in my palms when I place
my hands over his heart. But as I move down to the area of the stomach, the intestines, and the kidneys, I experience sensations
of pain and so I give Reiki treatment to these areas. In a short time his condition improves.
So why is the heart condition
healed? And why do the healer's hands experience pain? These are important questions. It really is a mystery how disorders
which the doctor has given up on can be healed by laying hands on the body. While it cannot be truly explained, it is generally
seen as a spiritual phenomenon.
In my opinion, the blood circulation in my hands has increased since I was initiated
by Mr. Hayashi.
I am unable to reveal Mr. Hayashi's teaching method and initiation process, but certainly this was what
gave me the healing ability, and strongly sensitised my hands.
Anyway, I believe the increased circulation in my hands
stimulates the patients own blood circulation when I place my hands on their body."
Mr. Matsui then explains that
in his view, the patient's circulation and pulse rate become synchronised with those of the therapist and this is how healing
He goes on to say:
"When I speak to them about Reiki Ryoho, most 'intelligent' people will say, "It
must be 'Animal Electricity'."
But, he continues, current science doesn't clearly understand the nature of electricity,
and likewise the true nature of Reiki cannot be easily explained or defined now. Mr. Matsui says that, in his opinion, the
effect of Reiki treatment could be due to something such as the 'ether' - but as the 'ether' has not been not examined scientifically
either, people will laugh at him.
"But when I need to explain to a patient about the Reiki effect, "ether"
is a good analogy."
He says that he cannot explain clearly and correctly - that he does not have the mathematical
" Anyway, now I am satisfied with the practical effect of Reiki. And at first, even I laughed at the idea
of this treatment."
He explains that one day he told a friend that as he was feeling unwell he thought he might
take up playing golf. The friend, whose opinion Matsui valued has told him about Reiki.
"I became interested in
it, and while not really believing in it, I and my family took training in it."
Mr. Matsui says that, soon after
starting to learn Reiki, he had occasion to try Reiki Ryoho on a man who had a fish bone stuck in his throat.
I tried Reiki Ryoho on him without expectation, and the pain was gone. It was then that I understood the essence of this treatment.
I cannot laugh at the Reiki method anymore."
"I was introduced to Mr. Hayashi by a mutual acquaintance and
I paid a large sum of money to learn this treatment method. There are several grades including Shoden (elementary level) and
Okuden (advanced level), but I am still at the elementary level - not yet having reached Okuden.
I am not sure of all
the details yet but I've heard there are further grades to achieve. Those involved with this Ryoho are very modest and don't
like to boast about the wonderful treatment. It is odd that such modest people create grades and charge for initiation into
this method, but I suppose we must accept that it is their prerogative.
For this reason, I am not free to discuss the
means of initiation into this healing ability, or the precise details of its application."
However, Mr. Matsui
does say that he feels he can speak briefly about some aspects of Reiki Ryoho training:
"To begin learning Reiki
Ryoho, you train for an hour and a half a day for five days. Some people can heal others from the very first day of training.
It's so easy to learn this treatment. A special inherent state of consciousness, like a sixth sense, is awakened by the training
and the ability to heal is activated. The Teacher gives clear and simple instruction. The ability is common to all people
and everyone except babies can use it to heal others. The treatment involves simply placing your hands on the affected part.
There is nothing easier than our Reiki Ryoho. I should really like to share this treatment process, not just with an elite
group of people, but with the general public, but I am unable to do so for the reason stated above. All I can do is to speak
about Reiki Ryoho's existence so that as many people as possible will know about it."
After giving a further three
examples of cases of healings he has effected with Reiki treatment, Mr. Matsui concludes:
"I could go on recounting
my stories of healings brought about by Reiki Ryoho.
However, there are, no doubt, many skeptics who wont believe me,
and this is only natural if you haven't experienced it yourself. If you have some simple disorder, I can cure it easily. But
I've little interest in treating easy cases because doctors can cure them, too. If you know of someone with a serious disorder
- one beyond the help of doctors, please bring them to me, or if they are not able to come to me, I can visit them.
as you can appreciate, I am a busy man - with several scripts to complete for a couple of theatre companies in time for next
month's productions. So I am unable to deal with many patients but, to test my palm-healing ability, I will treat a single
patient suffering from a serious complaint."
Copyright © James Deacon
USUI-SENSEI AND REIKI
or The terms Reiki, Reiho, and Reiki Ryoho revisited
2006 James Deacon
Usui-sensei did not re-discover 'Reiki' - nor did he create or develop 'Reiki' ...
did was to create/develop a system of spiritual practice - the primary purpose of which, it seems, was to act as a medium
for (incrementally) sharing with others the actual transformative phenomenon he himself had experienced during his now-legendary
meditation on Kurama Yama.
Yet he did not call this spiritual practice 'Reiki'
We need to remember that our useage
of the word Reiki - to identify the system developed by Usui-sensei - is a very modern, western, mis-application of the term.
Likewise, our use of the word as a verb, indicating the actual performance of a treatment.
[Also, the modern understanding
of Reiki (i.e the phenomenon itself) as 'energy' may be somewhat different to the understanding Usui-sensei had]
if Usui-sensei's spiritual practice was not called ‘Reiki', what was it called then?
Well, some would have us
believe it was called "Usui Teate", others, "Usui Do".
However, the only solid source of information
we have [and I use the word ‘solid' in a very literal sense - I refer to the Memorial stone which stands at the side
of Usui-sensei's tomb], disagrees with both these suggestions.
The title of the inscription on the Usui memorial clearly
identifies Usui-sensei as the founder of 'Reiho'.
Now while some folk have attempted to make us believe that 'Reiho'
was a contraction - a shorthand version - of the phrase 'Reiki Ryoho', it seems this is quite incorrect.
refers to a 'Spiritual method' - in this case: Usui's spiritual method: Usui Reiho
Yet, the spiritual practice: this
‘spiritual method' developed by Usui-sensei - whether it was part of the original intention or not- was also perceived
to awaken in the individual, strong therapeutic abilities.
And this therapeutic aspect of the practice (i.e. what we
commonly refer to as ‘Reiki') was identified by the name Usui Reiki Ryoho
or: Usui's ‘Reiki' healing method
So, what exactly is ‘Reiki' (in this context)?
Many people still incorrectly state that 'Reiki' translates as
- and it must be said that the other common translation: 'Spiritual energy', while perhaps moving
far more in the right direction is, it seems, still not quite correct
There are many words in Japanese that may be described
as ‘ki-words' - compound-words formed by adding the familiar ‘ki' (as in Rei-ki ) to the end of another word.
Examples include: genki, inki, and tenki.
Unfortunately, if we attempt to translate such compound-words by simply translating
and combining the meanings of the two individual original words, this will not necessarily give us an accurate translation
of the compound-word itself.
Let us take, for example, the word tenki - as a stand-alone, ten signifies heaven, or sky.
Ki is of course most commonly translated as spirit, energy (or feeling).
So the compound tenki would therefore perhaps
"Heaven Energy" (as opposed to Earth Energy)?
actually it simply means: Weather!
Likewise, combining the literal meanings of the two parts of the compound ‘Reiki'
does not really give us a truly accurate understanding of the compound itself.
Ongoing research would suggest that Reiki
- as the term is used in the name Usui Reiki Ryoho - more immediately translates simply as ‘spirit' or 'spiritual';
thus Usui Reiki Ryoho translates most clearly as: Usui's spiritual healing-method
In certain usage, the kanji-pair used
to write Reiki can indicate something like 'spiritual essence' or 'spiritual influence'
As the term Reiki is used in
the name Usui Reiki Ryoho, there is not necessarily any direct reference to ‘energy' - in this context, the ki part
of the compound would simply seem to speak to the dynamic - the effect of spirit in action.
As stated above, Usui-sensei
did not re-discover, or for that matter create or develop, something called 'Reiki' ...
Nor did he re-discover or create/invent/develop
Simply meaning 'Spiritual Healing (Method)', the term ‘Reiki Ryoho' had apparently been
used by various people in connection with their own particular therapeutic practices.
For example, in 1919, a therapist
named M. Kawakami published a book entitled: Reiki Ryoho To Sono Koka (Spiritual Healing & Its Effects); and Fumio Ogawa
tells us that a Mr Daiseido Tanaka also practiced his own particular method of ‘Reiki Ryoho', prior to Usui-sensei developing
his Spiritual Healing Method.
Usui-sensei did not invent ‘Reiki Ryoho'. What he actually created was 'Usui Reiki
It would seem that what he created was named Usui Reiki Ryoho out of a need to differentiate between it and the
Reiki Ryoho practiced by other Spiritual Healers of the time. Apparently there were also other healers who referred to their
practice as Shinrei Ryoho and research would seem to suggest that the terms Reiki Ryoho and Shinrei Ryoho are interchangeable
expressions. - - the terms Reiki and Shinrei both translating as ‘spiritual'.
The term Reiki also appears in the
philosophy of the Omoto Kyo spiritual group (who were particularly influential during the early 20thC) - indicating, not 'energy'
per se but rather the energetic-effect of the innermost aspect of the human spirit.
Omoto Kyo talks of the ichirei ['one
spirit'] - that spark of the divine that resides in everything living thing in creation.
This ichirei [- the 'rei' here,
indicating spirit, is the same rei as in Reiki] - this spiritual essence - is seen to manifest more profoundly in higher lifeforms.
As perceived in human beings, the divine spark is referred to as nao hi - ‘spiritual presence' or ‘spirit
direct (from Kami)'
Nao hi is "... the simplest, purest, innermost aspect of the human spirit, embodying supreme
good and ultimate beauty....That which is able to save your body and soul ..."
and Reiki can be seen as ‘the
manifest effect of Nao hi in action.
[It is also interesting to note that the kanji for nao hi can also be read as choku
rei - without any change or loss in meaning...]
Notes:In the Reiki Ryoho Hikkei (Treatment Companion/Guide), Usui-sensei
is quoted as saying that he did not go in search of special powers
This term is used in the Hikkei
The whole concept
of Reiki being understood to refer to "universal/life-force energy" (i.e. in the sense of an energy outside of ourself)
seems to really be something quite modern - a Western conceptualisation that was imported into Japan in the 1980's.
a diary entry dated Dec. 10 1935, Takata-sensei wrote about Reiki being:
"...Energy within oneself " - and
also about how we must "...meditate to let the "Energy" come out from within." Concerning the "Energy"
she said: "It lies in the bottom of your stomach about 2 in. below the navel."
This would seem to be a very
different view of Reiki from that commonly held by many people today...
Again in the Hikkei, Usui-sensei is quoted as
saying that he "did not receive this method from anyone else"
Compare with this quote from the Hikkei: "Every
living, breathing being possesses the spiritual ability to heal. This is true of plants, animals, fish and insects, but it
is humans - the culmination of creation - who possess the greatest power. Our method is a practical manifestation of this
being is part of a whole, called by us the ‘Universe' -a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his
thoughts, and feelings, as something separated from the rest-a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness.
This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires
and to affection for a few persons nearest us.
Our task must be to
free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature
in its beauty."
The Paradoxical Commandments
People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will
accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot
down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
People really need help but may attack you if
you do help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world
the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have
Dr. Kent M. Keith
Below is a
link to James Deacon`s website AETW. Well worth a visit and bookmark.
My Ongoing Research into the Origins, History & Evolution of the Japanese Method of Spiritual & Therapeutic Energy-work
commonly known as REIKI.