by Reiki Master Alexandra Juliani, M.A, Director
American Reiki Academy

Reiki (pronounced “Ray-kee”) is a simple and powerful hands-on healing method that works on all levels of being. For many years Reiki was practiced only in the Far East. However, today we are fortunate to have this technique available in the West. If one desires to help others, to become happier, healthier and clearer oneself, and to have direct access to healing energy, then Reiki provides a most suitable and accessible path for transformation.

The Reiki system of healing originated in India where it was originally recorded in palm leaf scrolls. Later the teachings became available to Tibetan monks but still remained primarily a secretive practice until the late 1800’s when a Japanese man, Dr. Mikao Usui, rediscovered Reiki during a spiritual quest. Dr. Usui gave this energy technique the name “Reiki” from two words: “Rei” meaning “universal spirit or soul” and “Ki” meaning “energy.” Together the two words indicate “universal life-force energy.”

During his lifetime Dr. Usui shared with many people in Japan both the knowledge of Reiki and the ability to work with this energy, until the Reiki system eventually came to the West through one of Usui’s disciples who taught Reiki to a woman from Hawaii, Mrs. Hawayo Takata. When Mrs. Takata passed on in 1980, she had personally trained 22 teachers of Reiki or “Reiki Masters.” Today, there exist thousands of Reiki Masters in many countries worldwide.

Traditionally Reiki is taught in three levels of training. Level I is considered an introductory level in which Reiki energy is activated in students who then learn how to perform healings on themselves and others. Level II offers advanced Reiki training, giving students methods for long distance healing and mental/emotional/spiritual healing, as well as opening intuitive, psychic abilities. Finally, Level III represents the Mastership level in which students learn how to teach others Reiki and consciously dedicate themselves to a life spent promoting wellbeing in people, animals and the environment through Reiki.

Reiki is an interesting method because it cannot be fully accessed or learned in an intellectual manner. Although there is some theory and technique involved, the actual energy must be acquired through an initiation process done by the Reiki Master with each student. This ritual is considered sacred and thus the Reiki Master is discriminating about whom he/she teaches. Both the Reiki Master and the Reiki student have a responsibility to use the energy wisely.

Reiki healing is both extraordinary and simple at the same time. Typically the one receiving healing lies on a massage table fully clothed. For the next hour

the practitioner moves through a sequence of hand positions on the recipient’s body. The touch is light and relaxing and the practitioner’s hands usually become quite warm. During a session, the Reiki practitioner is guided to discern energy imbalances within the system, and as the Reiki flows into the recipient, Reiki creates healing by dissolving "negative" thought forms, beliefs, emotions or even physical conditions.

The entire healing process is perhaps a bit mysterious--Reiki floods the recipient with positive energy, thereby creating mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual wellbeing. One man received a single Reiki session and was moved to tears, saying the experience had released pain he had been holding over a loved one’s death; he claimed, “This is the first time in 9 years that I have felt the presence of God in my life.” Another woman came for Reiki treatments and reported that her long-standing stress and anxiety seemed to have disappeared, with the peaceful effects of her weekly Reiki treatments spilling over into her daily life. Although it is hard to generalize the effects of Reiki, it is safe to say that following a healing session, people typically feel relaxed, happy, hopeful and rejuvenated.

One additional benefit of Reiki is that both the practitioner and the client receive these positive effects. Although self-healing is a specific aspect of Reiki--wherein the practitioner transmits Reiki energy from the universe into themselves--Reiki practitioners also receive Reiki when they give treatments to others. Because this universal life-force energy has to pass through the practitioner while treating another person, some of the Reiki energy is naturally absorbed into the practitioner’s own energy field, so that the healer is also healed in the process of giving Reiki to another. After giving Reiki, practitioners feel better themselves--simultaneously energized and peaceful. Over time, working with Reiki energy helps practitioners become empowered, healthier and closer to the Divine, since the energy causes the heart to expand, the intuition to strengthen and the "chakra" energy centers to become clear. When practitioners achieve such balance in their own lives, they become powerful facilitators for healing and transformation in others.

Reiki energy embodies an innate wisdom to bring us what we need, desire and are ready to accept. Not merely a physical healing technique, Reiki is also a spiritual tool for connecting with the Divine on subtle levels. When this connection occurs, our health, relationships, careers, communication, and self-esteem all naturally improve. Ultimately Reiki allows us to shift, grow and expand, so that we remember to spread love amongst one another, helping to create a peaceful, healthy and happy planet.


Psychic Palmist of India Professor Sasi Velupillai

Vedic Healing Institute & Sanskrit Mantra Chanting Classes

American Reiki Academy's blog

Vedic Healing Institute's blog

Professor Sasi's blog

Yoga Acharya V.V.R. Ganesh

Angelique Myrick--for photography, hair or make-up in the Los Angeles area