Reiki – An Ancient Healing Method for the Modern World
By Laura Sadler, CMT

Reiki is pronounced "ray-kee". Rei stands for spirit and Ki stands for energy. When put together it means life force healing energy. Reiki originated in India 5000 years ago, and shortly after it spread to Tibet. It wasn't until Dr. Usui of Japan rediscovered it in the early 19th century that Reiki found its way into the modern world. Dr. Usui taught Reiki to many students, one of whom was Mrs. Takata of Hawaii, who eventually brought it to the U.S.

A Reiki practitioner/healer is in essence a channel for the healing energy. The way Reiki works is that the healing energy flows through the practitioner's hands and fills the client's body with positive energy, thus pushing out any negative blocks that may be responsible for any physical, mental or emotional condition. Sometimes disease starts in one's spiritual body and Reiki will in effect cleanse the aura and potentially rid the patient of an impending illness. Reiki works on all levels, not just the physical. The energy is subtle, but powerful.

Reiki has been gaining popularity in the traditional medical field over the past few years. More and more RN's are using it on their patients and many studies have been done that show improvement in most medical conditions when Reiki is used along with prescription medicine or other therapies. The website, reikimedresearch.com posts data from cases ranging from the treatment of arthritis to fibromyalgia to migraines to cancer. Reiki healing doesn't always result in complete recovery, but the studies show that the conditions do improve. For most medical conditions, several Reiki treatments are required to cure or improve the condition. Sometimes only one session is necessary, for instance, one of my clients had a small rash on her hand from an allergy to latex gloves. After only 10 minutes of doing Reiki on the rash, it disappeared.

Reiki treatments are usually performed on a massage table and take about an hour to complete. The patient lies on the table, fully clothed and the practitioner places their hands on them in a specific sequence. Some people feel heat coming from the practitioner's hands (most common), other times they feel cold from the practitioners' hands or they feel a breeze on their feet or other part of their body. Every treatment is unique to the individual. A good practitioner also follows their intuition and feels for energy blocks and may hold a position longer or place their hands in a customized sequence. Most practitioners do healings on themselves which helps them to keep the Reiki they send strong, keeps them clear as a channel and increases their intuition.

After a person receives a Reiki healing they usually feel relaxed, calm and rejuvenated. Among many of the benefits one can receive through a Reiki treatment, some include: reduction of stress, the balance and harmony of the body's energy, strengthening of the immune system, relief from allergies, arthritis and chronic disorders, promotion of personal awareness, clearing toxins, enhancing meditative states, promoting relaxation, clearing blockages and suppressed emotions, balancing charkas, etc. Reiki is an intelligent energy which goes to the greatest need of the patient.

Dr. Usui used the following words of wisdom as a principle of Reiki: "Just for today, do not worry. Just for today, do not anger. Honor your parents, teachers and elders. Earn your living honestly. Show gratitude to every living thing."

Laura Sadler is a Certified Massage Therapist and Reiki Master in Los Angeles. She also has a B.A. in Psychology from UC Irvine. Laura became a healing arts practitioner after living with chronic pain due to sports injuries. It was through her experiences in healing herself that she learned she has a special gift and true compassion for those dealing with pain or stress.