Stress Reduction and Relaxation with Life Force
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Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It is administered by “laying on hands” and is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and is what causes us to be alive. If one’s “life force energy” is low, then we are more likely to get sick or feel stress, and if it is high, we are more capable of being happy and healthy.
The word Reiki is made of two Japanese words – Rei which means “God’s Wisdom or the Higher Power” and Ki which is “life force energy”. So Reiki is actually “spiritually guided life force energy.”
Life force is a subtle energy that surrounds and flows through pathways viz. chakras, meridians, and nadis in all living beings. The life force nourishes all the cells in the body and supports their functioning.When your life force is low, you are likely to feel weak. You will be susceptible to illness. Strengthening your life force will help your body heal and remain healthy.
Thoughts and feelings can affect the life force. If you have negative thoughts or negative feelings about yourself, the flow of your life force becomes disrupted causing diminished functioning of your body organs. Your overall body balance (physical, mental and emotional), medically termed homoeostasis, is disturbed. You then become ill.
An amazingly simple technique to learn, the ability to use Reiki is not taught in the usual sense, but is transferred to the student during a Reiki class. This ability is passed on during an “attunement” given by a Reiki master and allows the student to tap into an unlimited supply of “life force energy” to improve one’s health and enhance the quality of life.
Its use is not dependent on one’s intellectual capacity or spiritual development and therefore is available to everyone. It has been successfully taught to thousands of people of all ages and backgrounds.
How does Reiki work?
A treatment feels like a wonderful glowing radiance that flows through and around you. Reiki treats the whole person including body, emotions, mind and spirit creating many beneficial effects that include relaxation and feelings of peace, security and wellbeing. Many have reported miraculous results.
Reiki is a simple, natural and safe method of spiritual healing and self-improvement that everyone can use. It has been effective in helping virtually every known illness and malady and always creates a beneficial effect. It also works in conjunction with all other medical or therapeutic techniques to relieve side effects and promote recovery.
Reiki treatment increases your supply of life force energy and helps you heal quickly. It promotes relaxation, makes you feel at peace, and reduces your stress. You start moving toward your unique physical, mental, and spiritual balance, and your body’s own healing mechanisms begin to function more effectively.
Reiki is administered by the hands, placed lightly on or near the body of the patient. The healing energy from the body and hands of the Reiki practitioner flows to the patient. The patient then experiences feelings of relaxation, mental clarity, pain relief, decreased anxiety, and a sense of well-being. Research has shown that this occurs because the activity of parasympathetic autonomic nervous system in the patient increases significantly.
Benefits from Reiki Healing
1. Helps in stress reduction and promotes relaxation
Stress reduction and relaxation are the best proved health benefits of Reiki. Actually, this Japanese energy healing therapy is designed to trigger your body’s relaxation response and reduce stress. Most ailments today are somehow linked to the stress factor, be it environmental stress, work stress, or emotional stress. In fact, most of the therapy’s health benefits are based on these factors.
- Stress can lead to irregular heart rhythms that could result in angina or stroke.
- Stress triggers gastrointestinal problems because common hormones such as leptin and ghrelin regulate the brain and stomach.
- Eating disorders are a common consequence of stress, since you tend to overeat when you are stressed out, or you have an aversion to food.
- Mood disorders and many psychological problems arise because of stress.
- Stress can lead to sexual problems in men.
2. Reduces depression and anxiety by changing your mood
Changes in mood are very much associated with anxiety and depression. A number of studies have demonstrated overall mood benefits with Reiki. The benefits are specific to those with negative mood. The studies showed that once your mood improves, the improvements are accompanied by reduced anxiety. Not only does your anxiety reduce, you can also see significant decrease in depression, anger, and confusion. Your positive energy increases and the loss of vigour that comes with depression also improves.
3. Increases mobility in case of shoulder pain, wrist pain, lower back pain
An interesting study published in the journal Evidence Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine which compared the effectiveness of improving range of motion through physical therapy and Reiki, found that both showed the same effect in improving the range of motion (ROM) of the affected part.
These results suggest that the beneficial effects of Reiki and on ROM may arise from alterations in local joint or muscle structures rather than the pain system.
4. Heals infections and inflammations
‘A friend of mine went into the hospital for some reconstructive surgery due to breast cancer. After a couple of weeks, I saw her husband and inquired about her health. He was devastated and told me that she had developed a severe infection and had been running a fever of 104 degrees for several days and the doctors did not know where it was coming from. He said they believed her organs could begin to shutdown. I began to send Reiki to her immediately. Upon my arrival the next morning, she looked wonderful! I asked her how she was and she said it was amazing. She woke up that morning and her temperature was completely normal. She felt great! The doctors had no explanation for her healing.’ – As told by Kathleen.
This may sound like a miracle, but one intriguing finding reported in the journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed a similar result with Reiki. An obese hypertensive patient was treated for Hepatitis C. The side effect of the treatment was anaemia and neutropenia (severe deficiency of neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, leading to susceptibility to infection). Reiki therapy was administered to him to relieve anxiety and to enhance his sense of well-being. Incidentally, the doctors noted that his neutrophil count and hematocrit improved significantly, which in turn improved bone marrow function. So much so, that the patient was infection-free even after one year of treatment.
5. Improves indices of metabolic syndrome
Metabolic syndrome, a cluster of symptoms associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions, affects a substantial and increasing percentage of the world population. Physical activity is perhaps the best way you can improve the outcomes of metabolic syndrome, but Reiki too has shown to be equally effective.
‘Many individuals, such as those who are overweight and sedentary and at highest risk for the metabolic syndrome, may be unable or unwilling to participate in conventional types of physical activity such as strength training and gym-based exercises. Mind-body modalities are simple, economical, noninvasive therapies, easy to learn, and can be practiced easily by individuals who may experience potential limitations in mobility,’ according to Joel Anderson and Ann Gill Taylor at Center for the Study of Complementary and Alternative Therapies, University of Virginia School of Nursing, Charlottesville, USA.
Although the researchers did not specifically mention Reiki, they supported the potential clinical effectiveness of mind-body therapies as supportive care modalities for management of metabolic syndrome, especially insulin resistance and high blood pressure.
6. Treats symptoms associated with cancers
Reiki, or for that matter, any mind-body therapy cannot cure cancer. But they can effectively treat associated symptoms of cancer such as depression, pain, and fatigue. For example, in a study published in the journal Integrative Cancer Therapy, researchers reported that treatment with Reiki for 5 consecutive days, followed by 1-week no treatment, then 2 additional Reiki sessions, in various cancer patients could significantly decrease tiredness, pain, and anxiety, and improve quality of life.
In the same vein, Reiki relieves pain from migraine, sciatica, and arthritis. It also helps reduce symptoms of asthma, menopause, and insomnia.
7. Enables emotional clarity and spiritual growth
Reiki not only heals you physically, it also heals you emotionally. One of the most endearing effects of Reiki is that it can enhance your capability to love, to empathize as it enables you to deeply connectwith people. It can strengthen your relationships. It can heal your personal relationships. Reiki brings about inner peace and harmony, the essential qualities of spiritual growth. It ‘cleans’ and clears your emotions.
Reiki is thus fast becoming an accepted presence in hospitals and clinics maybe because the healing approach is non-traumatic and easily integrated with conventional therapies.
Mikao Usui (1865 – 1926)
Mikao Usui was the founder of a form of spiritual practice known as Reiki, used as a complementary therapy for the treatment of physical, emotional, and mental diseases.
Mikao Usui was the originator of what we today call Reiki. He was born on August 15th 1865 in the village of ‘Taniai-mura’ in the Yamagata district of Gifu prefecture Kyoto.
Mikao Usui probably came from a wealthy family as at that time only children from wealthy families could get a good education.
As a child he studied in a Tendai Buddhist monastery school entering at an early age. He was also a student of different martial arts. His memorial states that he was a talented hard working student, he liked to read and his knowledge of medicine, psychology, fortune telling and theology of religions around the world, including the Kyoten (Buddhist Bible) was vast. He married and his wife’s name was Sadako, they had a son (born 1907) and daughter.
Usui sensei studied and traveled to western countries and China several times, this was encouraged during the Meiji Era and later, to learn and study western ways.
During his life Miako Usui held many different professions such as public servant, office worker, industrialist, reporter, politician’s secretary, missionary, supervisor of convicts. He also worked as a private secretary to a politician Shimpei Goto, who was Secretary of the Railroad, Postmaster General and Secretary of the Interior and State.
At some point in his life he became a Tendai Buddhist Monk/Priest (what we in the west call a lay priest). On several occasions he took a form of meditation lasting 21 days. On his memorial it says that at one time this took place on Mount Kurama (Horse Saddle Mountain). This is where he is supposed to have been given the inspiration for his system of healing – Reiki. It is very likely that he incorporated ideas and knowledge about healing from other system, both spiritual and physical, like Chinese Medicine, other Eastern healing systems like Chi Gong, the Japanese equivalent Kiko, acupuncture and others.
Mikao Usui found that the healing techniques contained within his spiritul system worked well on various ailments. In April 1922 he opened his first school/clinic in Harajuku Tokyo. Usui had a small manual which is now translated into English and published by Western Reiki Master living in Japan, Frank Arjava Petter, under the title “The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui”
Mikao Usui’s skills as a healer and teacher must have been very good and his fame spread very quickly throughout Japan. This was a time of great change in Japan, opening up to the West and changes both in government and religion. His teachings became popular among the older people who saw them as a return to old ideals and spiritual practices.
His school/clinic was formed not just for the spiritual teachings but it was also a way for people to obtain healing. As people in general at this time in Japans history were very poor, healing sessions were very cheap or free. According to Japanese history articles, healing and other similar practices at that time would be given for a minimal cost or more likely for free.
Reiki students seem to have worked with the teacher as a sort of payment (a small monetary fee might also have been involved).
The Usui teachings included teaching people how to heal themselves (a very central point still in Reiki of today). Healing would be given to them, then they were taught how to heal themselves.
In 1923 on the 1st of September an earthquake shook Tokyo and Yokohama, measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale. The epicenter was 50 miles from Tokyo. Over 140,000 deaths were reported. The majority were killed in the fires started by the earthquake. It was the greatest natural disaster in Japanese history. Mikao Usui and his students started to give healing in the area and the demand and need for Reiki was enormous and as a result of his work he became even more famous.
In 1925 Usui had become so busy that he had to open a new larger school outside Tokyo in Nakano. As he traveled widely his senior students would continue with his work when he was away from his school/clinic.
Dr Mikao Usui passed away on March 9th 1926 at the age of 62. He is buried in Saihoji Temple in Suginami-Ku, Tokyo. Later his students created and erected a large memorial stone next to his grave describing his life and work. Much of the new information about Usui Sensei comes from the translation of this memorial.
The secret art of inviting happiness
The miraculous medicine of all diseases
Just for today, do not anger
Do not worry and be filled with gratitude
Devote yourself to your work. Be kind to people.
Every morning and evening, join your hands in prayer.
Pray these words to your heart
and chant these words with your mouth
Usui Reiki Treatment for the improvement of body and mind
The founder , Usui Mikao
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