by William Lee Rand
Students often ask me how to provide the greatest benefit for their clients during Reiki sessions and of course there are a number of things to consider. An important one is a lesson I learned in my first Reiki class. This took place in 1981 on the Big Island of Hawaii. I met Bethel Phaigh, my first Reiki teacher, in a rebirthing class that was being taught by Leonard Orr, the man who developed Rebirthing-Breathwork. It was a weeklong class, and there was lots of free time. Bethel asked to talk to the group and she talked about Reiki. I hadn't heard of Reiki before, but her description was so intriguing I decided I'd have to take her class. Experiences I had during the attunement and afterwards when we practiced made me realize that Reiki healing energy contained a higher level of consciousness than any other healing method I had experienced, and I was very happy I had decided to take it. The class started me on a journey of discovery, healing and fulfillment that I'm still deeply involved with to this day.
Bethel had been taught by Takata Sensei who had recently passed to the other side, and so the blessings of her teaching and her healing energies were still fresh in Bethel's consciousness. This was a blessing for me and the other students as well. Part of Bethel's teaching involved how to find the best location to treat a specific condition or illness. Bethel told us that sometimes the best place to treat is not necessarily where the symptom or condition is located. She told us several stories Takata Sensei had shared with her during her Reiki training that demonstrate this principle. These stories can also be found in Reiki: Hawayo Takata's Story, by Helen Joyce Haberly. In one of the stories, a man came to Takata Sensei with a headache but rather than treat the head, she began treating the gall bladder. The man complained and said "It's up here. I don't have a stomachache, I have a headache." But Takata Sensei simply said that her Reiki hands felt much vibration over the gall bladder so she continued to treat this area. After this she continued with a complete set of hand placements and by the time she got to his head, the pain was gone. In another story, a young girl who was blind was brought to Takata Sensei . Takata Sensei was guided to treat the ovary area and over the course of several months of treatment, the girl’s eyesight returned.
Bethel went on to say that when treating a condition or illness, first go to the area where the symptoms are located and treat there. If you feel a lot of Reiki flowing, stay there, as the flow of Reiki indicates that this is the area to treat. If neither you nor the client feel much energy flowing there, then take a moment to clear your mind and ask your intuition to show you the best place to treat the condition. When doing this, it's important to not allow your logical mind to get in the way, as often the answer you get will not seem logical at all. This is what happened to me in my first class. While practicing with our new Reiki energy, my practice partner indicated that she had a problem with her hips, so I began by placing my hands on either side of her hip area. Neither of us felt much Reiki flowing, so she suggested that I try the intuitive method Bethel had talked about. I did this, but when I got that I should treat the knees, I was confused, as my logical mind said that this didn't make any sense. But following Bethel's instructions, I moved the logical part of my mind off to the side and opened the intuitive side by simply trusting in it. Then I followed this intuitive guidance and sure enough, as soon as I placed my hands on her knees, my Reiki partner reported that she could feel Reiki enter the knees, flow up to the hip area and begin healing. We were both happily surprised that Reiki would work in this seemingly unusual way.
As I gained more experience with Reiki and inwardly watched the Reiki energy flowing, and also discussed this phenomena with other practitioners, a deeper understanding came to me about how and why this happens.
As you practice Reiki you may have noticed that Reiki will sometimes flow from your hands to other areas of the body. You and/or your client may sense this happening— it may feel like a warm, relaxing sensation in an area other than where your hands are placed. For example, when the hands are placed on the head, Reiki will treat the head but may also travel to the stomach. Conversely, when the hands are placed on the stomach, Reiki will treat this area but could also travel to the neck. Treating the feet might also result in Reiki flowing to the back, etc.
This doesn't always happen, but when it does, it is because you have placed your hands on an energetic doorway that links the two areas of the body or energy field together. The energetic doorway opens to a bridge or pathway through which Reiki flows to the other area. These energetic doorways are specific to the individual client and could change as the client heals.It is important to understand that this doesn’t mean that Reiki will always flow to wherever it is needed as some have thought. It simply means that the best place to treat an area isn’t always over the area where the symptoms exist. Because of this, the best way to treat a condition is to use your intuition to find the energetic doorway to the cause of the condition, which may be in another location on the body or aura than where the symptoms are located.
The reason this works is because we are holistic beings and so one area of our body or energy field is often connected to other areas. This also relates to cause and effect. The energetic doorway is usually where the cause of the symptom is located and because of this it is energetically connected to the symptoms. By treating the cause the symptoms are treated too.
This is an important part of Reiki practice and because it is, it was emphasized by Usui Sensei, the founder of Reiki. When he began teaching Reiki to others, he developed techniques to help them find the best areas to place one’s hands or in effect, find the energetic doorways. One of these techniques was Byosen scanning and another was Reiji ho, both of which make use of energetic sensitivity and intuition to find the right place to treat. (The method Takata Sensei taught was a simplified version of Reiji ho.)
Another way to treat the energetic doorways is to give a Takata Sensei-style full body session using all the hand positions. Because you are treating the whole body, you will automatically treat the energetic doorways and will know when you've found one when you feel the energy flowing more strongly. When this happens, stay there longer and/or return to these areas of stronger flow if you have additional time after you've completed all the hand positions.
Reiki is a wonderful practice that helps us be aware of the miraculous way our bodies and energy fields work. As we continue to practice on ourselves and others, we become increasingly aware of the value of this marvelous gift and become better able to make use of its special blessings.