If you have experienced Reiki before then you will have an understanding of what it is, how it feels to receive Reiki and how it has benefited you personally. In a nutshell, Reiki is a safe and effective form of energy healing which uses life-force energy to balance and heal one’s whole being. For this blog post I wanted to concentrate on the history of Reiki since it is something which is often overlooked, misunderstood or which isn’t considered as important as the practice itself.
I am a firm believer in knowing who you are, your history and where you come from, which is why I consider knowing the history of Reiki, an important part of both practicing and receiving Reiki.
Reiki originated in Japan and was founded and developed by a Japanese Buddhist priest named Dr Mikao Usui, who is considered to be the ‘father’ of Reiki. Dr Mikao Usui was born into a high-ranking samurai family on the 15th of August 1865 in Japan. His samurai family background meant that he had a fairly privileged upbringing and from a young age he was trained in martial arts, Buddhism and literature. Dr Usui was well travelled and studied many aspects of spirituality and religion during his lifetime including Buddhist and Christian theologies, Taoism and divination to name a few. This combined learning and background provided everything needed for Dr Usui to establish Reiki.
The account of Dr Usui’s actual discovery of Reiki has been passed down orally, as was traditionally the case with all Reiki teachings.
Dr Usui studied Zen Buddhism in order to answer his one burning question: what is the meaning of life? It is said that in March 1922, after fasting and mediating for 21 days at Mount Kurama (a sacred mountain in Japan), Dr Usui was struck on the forehead by a great golden light which knocked him unconscious. It was in this state that he was shown the symbols which are used by Reiki practitioners to focus Reiki’s energy, and also here that his being was infused with Reiki energy.
The story of the inception of Reiki, and of Dr Usui’s discovery of it, also goes on to say that he stubbed his toe while walking back down the mountain and after holding it he realised that it had stopped bleeding and that the pain subsided due to the Reiki healing energy that was running through him.
That same year, after his discovery of Reiki, Dr Usui established his Usui Reiki Ryoho Gakkai practice (Society of the Usui Reiki Healing Method). Dr Usui went on the heal many people during his lifetime as well as to teach Reiki. He passed his teachings and knowledge on to Dr Chujiro Hayashi who in turn taught Hawayo Takata (known to Reiki practitioners as Mrs Takata). It is Mrs. Takata who brought Reiki to the west when she taught Reiki in Hawaii.
Mrs. Takata produced 22 Reiki Masters who went on to spread their teachings throughout Western society. All Reiki practitioners can trace their lineage back to Dr Usui, and most practitioners in the west have Mrs. Takata in their Reiki ancestral line.
Nowadays there are thousands of Reiki practitioners and teachers. There are also some variations of Reiki healing or advanced teachings that succeed the level of Reiki Master (the top Reiki level). One thing is for sure though, Reiki’s history and origins have made it one of the most successful and well-known forms of energy healing in the world. It's energy is pure and encourages harmony and peace right throughout one's life.
Love and Light xoxo
P.S. If you're interested in experiencing Reiki or would like to read a little more take a look at our Reiki information page.