by Patsy Matsuura, Advertiser Staff Writer
There's power in them palms. Mrs. Hawayo Takata, the only Reiki master in Hawaii, claims to possess the key to energy. No, it's not a key to ease the energy crisis. "It's a cosmic energy to heal the ill", said the youthful-looking 73-year-old matron. "Reiki, which is applied by hand, goes to the cause and effect. When the cause is removed there will be no effect. It is not associated with any visible material being. 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.
"I believe there is only one Supreme Being - the Absolute Infinite - a dynamic force that governs the world and the universe. It is a universal force from the divine spirit and is available to anyone interested in learning the art of healing. "Reiki helps attain health, happiness and security which leads to the road of longevity."
Born in 1900 in Hanamaulu, Kauai, to the late Mr. and Mrs. Otogoro Kawamura, immigrants from Japan, Mrs. Takata was named "Hawayo" after the Territory of Hawaii. Immediately after her birth, she said the attending midwife held her up, patted her head three times and predicted she would be a success.
The Kawamuras envisioned a long and useful life for Hawayo since her older sister, Kawayo, who was named after Kauai, had died at an early age. They wanted their younger daughter to be worthy of her name for to them she "represented" the Hawaiian Islands.
As foreseen by her parents, Mrs. Takata reached her "heights". From her 10th-floor suite in the McCully district, she viewed the city with an air of fulfillment. When I finally caught up with her, she had already played nine holes of golf and had given Reiki treatments to several patients. "I've been playing golf every morning for nearly 30 years", she declared. "And I don't ride the cart either - I walk. It's good exercise. Before coming to Honolulu I lived on Hawaii for several years because I wasn't satisfied until I had been on the Big Island. I bought some land, built a home, and remained there for several years".
Recalling her past, Mrs. Takata said she wasn't always a picture of health. In 1935 when she was 35, she suffered from several illnesses, the major one being asthma. She entered a hospital in Tokyo for an operation. While there she heard about Reiki and decided to try it first. While under the care of Reiki master Chujiro Hayashi for four months, Mrs. Takata recovered. She remained in Japan for one year and mastered the art of healing. During the 39 years of practicing Reiki in Hawaii, she acquired clients from all corners of the globe, including Barbara Hutton and Doris Duke. The latter broke her wrist in 1957 and was treated by Mrs. Takata. She became a pupil. "Reiki is available to anyone who seeks it," said Mrs. Takata.
"When a student is ready to accept it, he is shown the way. With the first contact or initiation the hands radiate vibration to the ailing spot. If there is pain, it registers on your fingertips and palms. The ailment disappears when the body responds to the treatment.
"A proper diet enhances the treatments. Vegetables and fruits are excellent foods, but never eat when you're worried. Go to the table only when you're in a pleasant mood. We came into this world for a purpose so we must have health and happiness to achieve our goals. I owe my good fortune to my late husband, Saichi, who was a guiding light until his death in 1930."
Mrs. Takata said she plans to teach Reiki until December 24, 1977, and if she can find a successor she hopes to build a Reiki Center on the three acres of land she owns in Olaa, near Kurtistown, Hawaii. In the event she cannot find a capable replacement, the lot will be turned over to the county of Honolulu.
Meanwhile, she is busy writing a book, "Look Younger, Feel Stronger, and a Way to Longevity" and lecturing at the University of Hawaii. (Editors note: While teaching in Hawaii, I looked in the card catalogs at the University of Hawaii library and the Hawaii state library, but could not find this book. Apparently it was never published, yet, it may be possible that the manuscript exists somewhere.)
This spring she will give lectures and lessons on the Mainland, and this summer she had been invited to Indonesia to take part in a five-day festival in the art of healing, sponsored by the Indonesian government.
This article is reprinted with permission from the Honolulu Advertiser, February 25, 1974