Transforming Competition Into Cooperation

by Janis Alber Groppi

Not too long ago, I discovered that a local Reiki master had been using non-Reiki-like tactics to lure my clients and students away from my practice to hers. My initial reaction was anger, followed by hurt. Pretty soon fear and self-doubt had consumed me.

Fortunately, I remembered to give myself Reiki. Soon I began to calm down and to think more clearly about the situation. First, I realized that they weren't “my” students. After all, I didn't own them! As soon as the Reiki classes were finished, they became “former” students. They were free to study with whomever they chose, just as I had done. I also recalled that in fact, many students in my advanced classes had studied earlier levels of Reiki with other teachers.

As Reiki continued to bring my energy into alignment, I also remembered that in my early Reiki training, I was taught that the Law of Abundance eliminates the need for competition and that the Law of Attraction would draw to us whatever we focus our energy on—whether desired or not. Yes, and that the more we cooperate and direct our collective energies toward promoting Reiki, the more the Law of Attraction will help us to manifest abundance in our practices and in our lives. Through this process, I began to develop greater acceptance and respect for all Reiki practitioners and teachers.

Competition and the Law of Abundance
The Law of Abundance contends that there is more than enough in the universe for everyone to be fulfilled and happy. The more we give to the universe, the more we receive in return. So then, shouldn't the Law of Abundance eliminate the fear of —and need for—competition?

One of the first lessons I learned in my Reiki training was that there is no place for competition in Reiki. The Law of Abundance tells us that until every single individual in the world is treated with or trained in Reiki, there are more than enough clients and students to go around. My energy would attract the clients and students who were energetically compatible with me. Moreover, they would be drawn to me because I offered something that they—and I—needed to grow and heal.

Furthermore, I learned that our collective mission as Reiki practitioners and masters is congruent. Our relationship with each other needs to be one of amity and cooperation in spreading the message of Reiki. Indeed many teachers encourage students to study with more than one instructor or system of Reiki if they are so guided. So why was I so hurt by “my” students doing this? After all, I have taken Reiki master training twice. Perhaps my first Reiki master teacher, whom I respect, love, and adore, felt hurt too if and when she found out that I had repeated my training with someone else. She need not have; it was because of her special teaching that I was guided to open up to Reiki and learn as much as I could.

Competition and the Law of Attraction
The Law of Attraction asserts that like attracts like. We attract whatever energy we put out into the universe. Therefore, when we embrace abundance, we attract abundance.

Likewise, I learned early in my Reiki training that the fear of competition would create negative energy and separateness. Reiki’s wisdom is all about unity and love and the free flow of energy for the highest good and highest healing of the universe, the planet, and each soul within. Negativity and separateness can actually discourage potential clients and students from pursuing Reiki at all. This of course reduces the benefits Reiki could provide to promote well-being and healing for everyone. The fear of competition actuallyattracts the competition that people fear. In fact, they create the underlying scarcity, which is what they truly fear—that the success of other Reiki practitioners will lessen their own.

However, neither life nor Reiki is a zero-sum game. We can all attract abundance into our lives. We don't need to lie, cheat, compete, or steal to get it. We just need to ask for it. If we focus on what we want in a positive way, it will come to us. If we focus on the negative aspects, on scarcity, on our fears and self-doubts, that is what will manifest.

It is in this context that the results of the elimination of competition within the Reiki community become clear. We, as Reiki teachers and practitioners, are all free to recruit students into our classes and promote our practice to clients. When we do so from a place of competition and fear, we believe that someone will win and someone will lose. So that is what we attract. But when we approach it from a place of harmony and abundance, we create a different reality: inclusiveness, opportunity, and success, not just for ourselves but for others as well!

Competition and Cooperation
There is competition in the business world every day. Yet consider members of industry trade associations who accomplish a lot for their business communities. They take their competitive hats off for the betterment of the industry and they understand the positive results that accrue to their own companies as well. In fact, I was active in one such association many years ago. The securities industry came together to develop messaging standards to eliminate the costly and risky need for faxes, telephone calls, and manual data entry. We broke down the walls of competition and cooperated for the benefit of the entire industry. Only by working together could we achieve significant cost savings and risk reduction for each member firm as well as the industry as a whole. Not only did the group succeed in its original mission, it continues to thrive and bring positive influence to the securities industry today.(1)

In the Reiki community, we, too, can step outside our fears and unite for the higher healing that Reiki offers. If we each stay bottled up in our fears and self-doubts, we are obstructing the flow of abundance and hence the flow of Reiki. We are actually blocking Reiki from helping the world in general.

How many of us remark at how great the energy is when we are in a room with other Reiki practitioners—that a group’s energy is so much more evident and powerful than that of a single individual? As Reiki practitioners, we've all experienced it. Likewise, as we release our fears and self-doubts and open up our energy to the collective possibilities that Reiki offers, the energy starts to flow. There are many examples of Reiki groups that have been able to do this. They support each other, come together for the benefit of others, and even refer students to each other based on their needs. The sum is greater than the individual parts. Their collective energy is greater than the total of each in isolation. Everyone wins. The individuals who participate in these groups do it in a loving way. They've put fear and self-doubt aside and have consequently thrived in their practices and their personal lives. Reiki has thrived along with them.

Laurelle Shanti Gaia serves as an inspiration to us all in this regard. Many years ago, another Reiki master felt threatened by her too, and took action to thwart Laurelle’s practice. With the help of her guides and Reiki friends, she not only engaged this Reiki master, but through this process, helped to create a Reiki community in Louisville, Kentucky. The group, United in Healing, was formed by the Reiki masters in the area who were previously competing with each other. Laurelle, along with her friend, Kathy Lipinski, invited all of them to a meeting and helped them to get to know each other. They discovered that once they got to know each other, their fear subsided, and it was much easier for them to begin working together. They focused on common goals and realized that together they could do so much more than by trying to act on their own. Because of this they were able to organize larger projects. They reached out to support groups for breast cancer, fibromyalgia, diabetes, and other diseases and conditions to give Reiki demonstrations and show how Reiki could be helpful to their groups. They also sponsored Reiki marathons for the critically and chronically ill. They even developed a free Reiki clinic cooperative. Their membership spread. As they continued their mutual support, each of their practices prospered as a result. One of their really successful undertakings was that each member shared his or her entire contact list with the whole group. When any one of them scheduled a class, everyone on their combined contact list was notified about it. Every member began doing better than they had before. In fact during a single weekend in 1998, their members had more than 100 students in their combined Reiki classes!(2)

A wonderful example of Reiki practitioners working together for the benefit of the community comes from the Reiki Room in Scotia, NY ( Sue Vazal and a team of Reiki masters volunteer for a day every year at each of the camping events held at the Double H Ranch for Camp Bravehearts, a support group for female cancer survivors. Working as a team, they have reduced campers’ physical symptoms by as much 70% and emotional symptoms by 75%!

Reiki shares are an excellent way to connect with other Reiki practitioners for mutual and community support. For example, our local Reiki share meets twice a month, once in the evening and once during the middle of the day to accommodate people with different life situations. People come from all levels of Reiki and a variety of lineages. In addition to the opportunity to practice giving and receiving Reiki, we offer a forum to ask and answer questions, to share our experiences, exchange support in so many areas, and to introduce Reiki to welcomed newcomers in a loving and nurturing environment. Everyone learns and everyone benefits. We have recently set a new goal to offer our collective Reiki services to a charity, and are currently taking the necessary steps together to bring that to fruition.

Not all such groups are local. I am very fortunate that my 2008 Karuna Reiki â class bonded and has stayed connected. We help each other through difficult times and celebrate our joy. We assist each other in developing our Reiki practices and classes, and support each other through our life choices and transitions. Through our weekly distant Reiki share, we've participated in the healing of our loved ones. The father of one member recovered quickly and completely from a major heart attack and subsequent surgery, which his doctors declared miraculous. Another member was able to grieve the loss of her sister and move forward in her life. Yet another member was able to forgive his mother and share a loving relationship with her before her passing. There are many such stories. Our work together during these three years has reaped so many benefits for us and for our friends and families; we could not have accomplished all of this individually. It takes a group.

I offer this challenge. Let’s all take off our competitive hats and bring together our collective experience and gifts of Reiki for the benefit of our communities, the world—and ourselves. If you find that it is difficult to let go of your fears and self-doubts with respect to other Reiki practitioners, you may use your gift of Reiki to help. Here are some ideas that may work for you:

  • Meditate and send Reiki to that place in you that can't let go of your fears.
  • Ask your Reiki guides for help and support. Listen carefully for their guidance in ways you don’t expect.
  • Send Reiki to the people whom you consider “competitors.” Remember the Law of Attraction!
  • Join a Reiki share. Look in and Facebook. If you can’t find one, start one!
  • Reach out to other Reiki practitioners in your community. Try doing something together and see how it goes.

When we move away from a place of fear, self-doubt, and competition to one of harmony and cooperation, we will all attract abundance. Just imagine a world abundant in Reiki!

1. International Securities Association for Institutional Trade Communications,

2. Laurelle Shanti Gaia and William Lee Rand, “Creating Harmony in the Reiki Community,” 

This article appeared in the Summer 2011 issue of Reiki News Magazine.