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Meditating with Dr. Usui. August 30, 2014

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We’re now in the final week of the Usui 21-Day Virtual Retreat, the celebration of Mikao Usui’s life that begins on his birthday (August 15th) and continues for three weeks, with a special Reiki exercise or meditation each week. The retreat is hosted by Mari Hall, and for the past several years, the meditations/exercises have been provided by Frank Arjava Petter. Gassho to Mari and Arjava for providing this wonderful, deepening, free event to all Reiki practitioners with access to the internet!

I especially loved Arjava’s meditation exercise for this week, in which he suggested that we visualize Usui Sensei sitting in our crown or heart chakras or in the palm of our hand, and just rest for an hour with him in the Reiki energy. He said you could do this sitting or lying down, so if your busy day doesn’t give you a free hour, I imagine that this would be a beautiful way to drift into sleep.

As I continued to think about this meditation, I began to wonder, what about inviting Usui Founder into all three centers at the same time? Here’s the exercise I came up with, should you wish to try it:

Sit comfortably upright, with your back well supported (or unsupported, if you’re used to meditating and holding your spine upright). Invite Usui Founder to come sit with you and share his Reiki energy with you. Picture Usui Founder arriving and sitting over the top (crown) of your head, in your heart, and in the open palm of your left hand. (Consulting a photo of Usui Sensei, especially the one where he’s smiling benevolently, before beginning this exercise will help you visualize him, in his traditional dark robes, if you have trouble bringing his image to mind.)

Now, allow yourself to feel that, each time you breathe in, Usui Founder’s Reiki energy pours into you through your crown and descends into your heart, filling you with healing light. Then, as you breathe out, the energy flows down your arm into the palm of your hand and spreads from your fingers out into the world. Breathe slowly, calmly, deeply, holding the image of Usui Founder in each location as you feel the energy flowing from him through you and out into the world. Relax. Enjoy the feeling of the energy, enjoy your breathing, enjoy this time with Reiki’s Founder.

When you feel that the session is over, visualize Usui Founder standing and bowing to you, his hands in gassho (together in prayer position). Put your own hands in gassho and bow very deeply to him in turn. Express your gratitude for his spending this precious time with you and for sharing the transformative power of Reiki energy with you and all the world. Then watch as he turns and walks away. Call after him to say that you’ll do your best to stay on the Reiki path until you meet again. Sit quietly for a bit and let your awareness return slowly to your surroundings. The exercise is over.

How delightful to think that you can spend time with Usui Founder himself, every day if you wish! Even if it’s just for 15 minutes or a half-hour, I think it will strengthen your practice (and your Reiki) no end. Soon, visualizing and calling in our Founder will become instantaneous, so you can ask him to be with you during a healing session or while teaching or taking a class or giving Reiju or attunements.

If you’d like, you could ask another teacher, such as Hayashi Sensei or Takata Sensei, to join you instead of Usui Founder, if you feel particularly close to them. (I love the idea of Hayashi Sensei, in his Hawai’ian shirt and lei, with his twinkly glasses and happy smile, sitting in my palm.) And of course you could call in whichever one you feel you need at a given moment. But I’d begin with our Founder first until you get used to the practice. Then you can see if the energy feels different when you call in the other Teachers! Arjava suggested only calling in ascended (dead) Reiki Masters/Teachers, those in your own lineage(s), and I agree with him. Your living teachers already have plenty on their own Reiki plates!

Just for today, spend some quality time with our Founder.


Lucid dreaming. August 19, 2014

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“We are such stuff
As dreams are made on; and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.”

William Shakespeare, The Tempest

Shakespeare is, of course, encapsulating the human condition, its beauty, breadth, and brevity (the “sleep” he refers to being death). But the beloved quote came to mind today because of an article I read on LiveScience about lucid dreaming—that is, when you’re asleep and dreaming, but realize that you’re dreaming. Researchers found that people who engaged in lucid dreaming were more aware of their surroundings and the people they interacted with in their waking lives than those who were not lucid dreamers. They tended to be more imaginative and more successful than their non-lucid peers.

What triggers lucid dreams? According to the researchers, an illogical element in the dream that the dreamer knows simply can’t be true, and therefore recognizes that s/he must be dreaming. Let’s say you’re having a lovely dream about vacationing on the beach. You’re sitting on the warm sand, watching the waves wash ashore, smelling the salt air and enjoying the sea breeze. You dig your toes into the sand, only to see that they’re elephant toes, not human toes—your legs end in elephant feet! The lucid dreamer realizes that this is a dream, since s/he obviously doesn’t have elephant feet on the ends of his/her legs.

Being a lucid dreamer has great advantages that go far beyond being more observant, sensitive, and successful in the waking state. It can save you from horrific nightmares. And the best news is, you can train yourself to be a lucid dreamer under those circumstances.

Now, I suppose everyone has a nightmare now and then, even the folks who seem to sink into blissful, dreamless, healthful repose every night. This is for those of us who fall into incredibly detailed variations on the same nightmare themes every night, dreams that may start out harmlessly enough but then inexorably twist and build to play on our deepest fears—abandonment, fear of heights (or spiders or whatever), unrealized neglect of animals in our care, helplessness, being lost.

Perhaps your nightmares revolve around being invisible, completely ignored by your so-called friends, colleagues, parents, love interests, you name it. Or that old classic, finding yourself in a physics (math, chemistry, engineering) classroom and being forced to take the final exam when you’ve never had a physics class in your life and didn’t realize you were enrolled. Or that you’re 7 years old and are driving your 4-year-old sister in rush-hour traffic when you have no clue how to drive. Or the alien killer bunnies or the murderers or whatever are coming for you.

Awake, you’d instantly realize that these were nightmares, however detailed and real they seemed, however long they went on. If you’re self-aware, you’d probably understand exactly why they were troubling you. And of course, your unconscious knows all that, too, which is why it continues to send them to torment you when you’re trying to sleep. Eventually, when the nightmare gets bad/scary enough, you probably wake up, sweating, heart pounding, the metallic taste of terror in your mouth, another wonderful opportunity to sleep and heal through the night ruined.

But you don’t have to let it reach that stage. To let lucid dreaming rush in and save the day, first ask the Teachers—Usui Founder, Hayashi Sensei, Takata Sensei, and, if you wish, the Holy Ghost Sensei—to stop the nightmares, grant you peaceful, healing sleep, and show you another way to deal with your demons. Next, do Reiki self-healing in bed and let yourself fall asleep while your hands are encouraging the flow of Reiki energy through your body, relaxing and recharging you.

Then, remind yourself that you have a choice. Let’s say you fall asleep and you’re having a typically incredibly detailed dream: You’ve gone to a conference center with colleagues, or to an elaborate dinner at a plaza with your partner, or to a resort. Thing is, you would never do any of these things in real life. And suddenly, nightmare aspects start to slowly creep in: your date has vanished, you can’t find your purse/wallet, so you have no money and no way to call a cab, you don’t know where you are or how to get out of there, you see your dog running loose in the distance and don’t know how to get her back, everybody else is eating lavish meals but every time you try to get food the service has just shut down. Let the idea float up that you’re having a nightmare and need to wake up. And then do it, drag yourself out of sleep.

Get out of bed. Go to the bathroom. Drink some water or hot herbal tea, check your e-mail, make a grocery list. You don’t have to stay up forever, just long enough to break the chain, to make sure you don’t drift back into the nightmare when you go back to bed. Ten minutes is plenty. Listening to a favorite song or watching a few minutes of a favorite film or reading a chapter of a favorite book can help, too. Like brushing your teeth, you’re just trying to brush off the gunk of your nightmare and reset yourself for peaceful, healing sleep. Try it, it works.

Will training yourself to have lucid dreams make you more observant, more imaginative, and more successful? I have no idea. But getting a good night’s sleep certainly can’t hurt.

Just for today, ask for healing sleep.

Spiritual exercise. August 4, 2014

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“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.”

—Fortune cookie

Reading a good book is like going for a long walk. You may not know what’s around the bend, but you do know that, without even realizing it, you’ll be getting a good workout along the way. This is the best kind of exercise, and we all know how important regular exercise is, be it mental or physical. But what about spiritual?

Taking time for a daily spiritual workout is every bit as important as physical and mental exercise. Whether you begin the day with a Reiki self-healing session before you get out of bed; or meditate on one of Usui Founder’s Five Reiki Principles (aka Precepts, Ideals) each day of the week, remembering to call on it whenever you need it that day (such as “Just for today, be grateful” or “Just for today, don’t worry”); or focus on one of the Reiki symbols, chanting its name or trying to draw it as a calligrapher would, you’re getting a good spiritual workout.

The same is true of attending a Reiki share or receiving Reiju or attunements (or giving them) or reading a great Reiki book or article or taking (or resitting, or teaching) a Reiki class or attending a Reiki retreat. Or simply taking a few minutes to reverence the Teachers—Usui Founder, Hayashi Sensei, and Takata Sensei, plus any of your own teachers you’d like to add—and then having a nice chat with one or more of them. Or giving your pets or plants or partner or spouse or kids some hands-on Reiki before you rush off to work. (That goes for your breakfast and car, too. And don’t forget to be grateful.)

As you can see, a Reiki workout doesn’t have to take longer than ten minutes, though a longer workout, like a long walk, is even better, as long as it’s gentle. Don’t forget essential practices like Hado breathing and Hatsurei-ho. Hado breathing takes just minutes and is not just the perfect closure to Reiki self-healing, but a wonderful way to banish worry and anger, balance the spirit, and relax the body*.

*Insomniacs, this exercise is for you! Do NOT drink caffeine after lunch, but do drink plenty of hydrating fluids. Do NOT watch the news or violent movies or TV shows before bedtime; instead, read Reiki books or catalogs or cookbooks, something that relaxes you. Lie down, turn off the lights, turn on a fan if it’s too loud to sleep, put light-blocking shades or boards in your windows if the light from the street or neighbors’ floodlights keeps you awake. Do Reiki self-healing, then do Hado breathing. Draw your breath down deep into the pit of the stomach, hold, and then release with a loud “Haaaaaa!” Repeat a total of five to seven times. That’s it!

Just for today, get your exercise.

Laws or lives? June 17, 2014

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“It is God’s children who are sacred to God, not laws. Laws are to protect or assist God’s children.”

—Fr. Joseph F. Girzone

Throughout history, the people who’ve exalted laws (or rules, or what have you) above lives, who are the most rigid and unbending, who punish every least infraction and refuse to tolerate any imperfection, are also the most insecure and paranoid. If you don’t think exactly like me, write exactly like me, perform a ritual exactly like me, why, you must be implying that there’s something wrong with me and my way of doing things! And I can’t tolerate that. Fifty lashes and ten nights in the black cells for you, heretic! And next time, it’ll be the stake.

This is in such dreadful, ironic contrast to the great souls who often inspired these shriveled little souls to follow them. The Lord Jesus broke rules all the time, eating with sinners and even—gasp!—tax collectors. Mahatma Gandhi was jailed numerous times for practicing ahimsa, nonviolent resistance to bad laws. The great Sufi mystic Rumi was a rigid follower of the rules until his wild and wonderful teacher, Shams of Tabriz, showed him the truth of what was indispensable and what was not, and freed him from the chains of conformity. Dogen Zenji, the founder of Soto Zen, was relentlessly persecuted by other orders of warrior monks who felt his pure teachings made them look bad.

Mother Teresa, Saint Francis, the Dalai Lama, Thich Nhat Hanh—all bent, broke, or discarded laws and rules when they ceased to serve “God’s children.” So did Martin Luther and Martin Luther King. I’m sure you can think of many other examples, past and present.

Let’s look at this from a Reiki perspective. From what we’ve learned in the past couple of decades about Usui Founder and his practice of Reiki, the only rules were the Five Reiki Principles (aka Precepts, Ideals). Usui Founder instructed those who undertook the practice of Reiki to recite them aloud, morning and evening, with hands in gassho (prayer position, i.e., palm to palm). And, of course, to try to live them as well: Just for today, not to get angry, not to worry, to be grateful, to work hard, and to be kind. In other words, to live fully in the moment and see its wonders and possibilities.

This is true healing. How can you be angry (worry turned outward) or worried (fear turned inward) if you are fully present in the now? And if you’re not afraid—not worried, not angry—you have all the inner room in the world to feel happy and to be grateful and kind. You’ll have burst the fear balloon that’s filling you and preventing you from enjoying life to the full in every moment and sharing that enjoyment with every living creature you meet. Yes, it’s hard work to learn to live in the perpetual present, which is why “Work hard” is one of the Reiki Principles. But this form of work will set you free.

But I digress. Point being, Usui Founder apparently imposed no other rules on his students. He used no symbols, performed no attunements, had no set hand positions, and taught his students differently according to their abilities, strengths, and aptitude for learning the teachings. Almost everything that we thought we knew about Reiki was added later, by his students and their students, including the exclusive focus on hands-on and distant healing as opposed to the inner teachings, the Reiki Way, the road to anshin ritsumei, satori, enlightenment. In other words, the road Usui Founder himself had taken.

There is a history within the Western Reiki tradition of teaching each according to their abilities and aptitude, as Usui Founder did. Hayashi Sensei did so, giving Hawayo Takata Sensei different teachings from those he gave his Japanese students, and Takata Sensei did so when she tailored her teachings to each of her Masters, drawing the symbols slightly differently for some, changing the order of the Principles for one, the Rev. Beth Gray, who was an intuitive, so they made more intuitive sense, and so on. From this tradition, many forms of Reiki have arisen in the West, which enables those who are drawn to the Reiki path to choose the one or ones that speak to them, and which ultimately allowed Reiki to bloom around the world. Thank you, Usui Founder, Hayashi Sensei, Takata Sensei, and all teachers for allowing this flexibility!

Not that precision has no virtues: Like meditation, like hado breathing, like many other mental and physical exercises, it can strengthen focus. Placing your Reiki hands just so on someone’s body; sending distant healing just so; drawing the symbols just so, and in an exact series of patterns; performing attunements just so, and so on, can be part of the “work hard” Principle that helps you develop the inner and outer focus you need to proceed on your Reiki path. But becoming attached to doing things just so, rather than seeing the need for compassion and evolution, or even worse, attacking those who seek or practice a different way, is to become attached to the rigidity of the law and to abandon God’s children.

If you find yourself straying in this direction, ask yourself: What are you really afraid of? That your Reiki isn’t as “good” or as “powerful” as someone else’s Reiki? Then bring your attention back to the recitation and practice of the Reiki Principles. They are the broom, the wind, that will sweep your heart and mind and soul clean.

Just for today, practice the Principles.

Hit the road. May 7, 2014

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“As the Buddha was fond of saying, the spiritual teacher only points the way; we must do our own travelling.”

—Sri Eknath Easwaran, Words to Live By

This is such a valuable lesson. Spiritual teachers, including Reiki teachers, can set our feet upon the path, but it’s up to us to find our own Reiki Way rather than clinging to our teacher(s) for continual guidance. Usui Founder, himself a Buddhist, was very aware of this, and he sent the students he felt were ready, such as Chujiro Hayashi Sensei, out into the world to find their own Way and transmit it to others, as he himself had done after his momentous satori (enlightenment) experience on Mount Kurama.

There is a beautiful story in the movie “Zen” about how Dogen Zenji, the 13th-century founder of the foremost Zen school, Soto Zen, is asked to come to the rescue of the leader of Japan, who’s suffering from a nervous breakdown because of all the horrible deaths he’s inflicted on his enemies. Dogen agrees, because he, like the lord who asked him, is convinced that all Japan will disintegrate into chaos if this ruler can’t keep his grip on the reigns of rule.

After arriving, Dogen asks the ruler if he can cut up the reflection of the moon in the water outside his castle. Well of course I can, the ruler replies, grabbing his sword and hacking into the water. The image of the moon splits in half. But, even as the ruler is smirking in triumph, the ripples his sword made in the water calm, and the image of the moon reforms, whole and pristine as ever.

The ruler realizes that Dogen is pointing the way, and begs him to stay and continue to teach him. But Dogen knows his work lies back at his modest monastery far away, so he resists all the ruler’s promises of vast wealth and influence and a huge monastery and goes his way. As he departs, the ruler recites one of Dogen’s own poems, proving that he, too, is ready to do his own travelling.

Did the ruler stay in touch with Dogen? The film doesn’t say, though it shows all of his closest disciples finding their own and varied Ways after his death. Should we stay in touch with our Reiki teachers? Absolutely. Should we find our own Way? Absolutely. Are these things incompatible? Absolutely not. The spiritual teacher sets our feet on the path, but we are the ones who have to walk it.

Just for today, keep walking.

West of Bree. February 13, 2014

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“An adventure? No, no, no! I don’t think anyone west of Bree would be interested in going on any adventures.”

So says Bilbo Baggins at the beginning of Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit,” passing up Gandalf’s offer to join him on an adventure, something no respectable hobbit would even consider. And yet, as all of us who love J.R.R. Tolkien’s novels know, in the end, Bilbo does go on an adventure, sees and experiences incredible things, and comes back much changed for the better, a friend of elves, dwarves and wizards. His world has been cracked wide open and his spirit expanded along with it.

I was thinking of this today, and of Bilbo’s song “The road goes ever on and on, out from the door where it began,” because those of us who follow the Reiki Way have also set foot outside our comfortable hobbit holes and onto the road to adventure. By committing ourselves to Reiki, we have embarked on the unknown, a journey that could take us anywhere, a path we have not traveled.

Like Bilbo, this path could inspire fear and uncertainty in us. Where are we going? We don’t have a map, much less a GPS! What if there’s an orc or troll or dragon around the next bend?! Will we ever find our way home again? And what will people think of us if we do?

But like Bilbo, every one of us who has taken up the Reiki Way has put our faith in our own Gandalfs, our own Elronds, our own Galadriels—Usui Founder, Hayashi Sensei, Takata Sensei, our own teachers—to see us safely “there and back again.” If we stray from the path and lose our Way, they will bring us back.

And we have not embarked on our adventure alone. We may not be travelling with a company of dwarves, but our fellow Reiki students, practitioners, and teachers are on the path by our side. We can count on them to be with us when we encounter difficulties, as Bilbo, Gandalf, and the dwarves relied on each other. As, in the movie, the dwarf Bofur puts heart in Bilbo when he’s ready to give up and head for home, so our companions can help us over the rough spots in the road, as we can help them.

Those of us who follow the Reiki Way are no longer west of Bree. We’ve abandoned our comfort zones and set foot into the Wild. When you leave the familiar and step into the unknown, as Bilbo discovered, it can be uncomfortable, challenging, even scary. And when you come back, “you will not be the same,” as Gandalf tells Bilbo. What Bilbo must discover for himself is that he is, in fact, much more.

Just for today, take up your pack and set foot on the Way.

If you love Reiki, smile. January 31, 2014

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“I cannot imagine a Christian who does not know how to smile. May we joyfully witness to our faith.”
—Pope Francis, @Pontifex

This holds true for those of us who follow the Reiki Way, too. If we aren’t joyful, what are we? There’s nothing like seeing the tense, worried, possibly ill faces of students in a Reiki class or share break into huge grins, literally light up, as you smile, laugh, joke, and spread the joy. Happiness is, after all, our natural state.

Taking ourselves too seriously is an ego trip, the opposite of Usui Founder’s teachings. We did not become Reiki teachers and practitioners to pontificate, to hold ourselves above the lowly masses, for mercy’s sake! We embraced Reiki, as it embraces us, to find eternal joy.

All great spiritual teachers radiate joy and laughter, even in the midst of circumstances that are, to us, unbearable. The Dalai Lama is always smiling and laughing, even after having been driven out of his homeland and position by the Chinese under Mao. Thich Nhat Hanh’s face radiates his joy, even though he saw his people suffer the horrors of the Vietnam war. Blessed Mother Teresa’s homely face radiated love and happiness, even as she pulled maggot-ridden, starving, dying beggars from the gutters of Calcutta. No great spiritual teacher takes themselves seriously; they know the notion of “self” is a tiny thing, and the beauty and delight of the world are huge.

Think of the joy that must have radiated from Usui Founder, the spontaneous, delighted smile on Hayashi Sensei’s face, the radiance shining from Takata Sensei. If you’ve been lucky enough to see them, remember the droll humor teachers like Hyakuten Inamoto Sensei and Frans Steine bring to their classes.

Just for today, remember to smile.

Doctor, Founder, sensei, san? November 12, 2013

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In the Reiki of the West, Hawayo Takata called Mikao Usui “Dr. Usui” and Chujiro Hayashi “Dr. Hayashi.” Why?

Mikao Usui wasn’t a Ph.D., and Chujiro Hayashi wasn’t an M.D.* Hyakuten Inamoto Sensei, the founder of Komyo Reiki, the Reiki of Enlightenment, points out that in Japan, Mikao Usui and Chujiro Hayashi would have been called “Sensei,” never “Doctor.”

But at the most recent Komyo Reiki Zen Retreat this past August, an attendee proposed an answer that I found entirely reasonable. In Japan, medical doctors, teachers, and spiritual leaders (along with many others) are addressed as “Sensei” as a sign of respect. Mrs. Takata, in bringing Reiki to the West, must have settled on “Doctor” as a similar sign of respect that Americans could relate to, since the post-World War II society here was not just ignorant of Japanese culture but actively hostile towards it.

Today, those of us on the Reiki path can certainly refer to the Teachers—Usui Founder, Hayashi Sensei, and Takata Sensei—more authentically, if we wish. Some now refer to Usui Founder as Usui-san, a respectful term that’s the equivalent of “Mr. Usui.” But I prefer to call him what he called himself, “The Founder, Usui Mikao.” It strikes me as most respectful to call him what he chose to call himself. After all, there are many doctors, there are many senseis, there are many, many sans. But there is only one Founder.

But whatever honorific you choose to apply, be it Founder, doctor, sensei, or san, as long as you approach the Teachers with respect and reverence in your heart, you are honoring them, and I’m sure they appreciate and will reciprocate your sincerity.

* If you believed, as all of us brought up in the Western Reiki tradition believed, that Chujiro Hayashi was a trained physician, an M.D., this may come as quite a shock. But Hyakuten Inamoto Sensei did his homework and found no record of Hayashi Sensei in the Naval Medical Academy, though he was without question a Captain in the Japanese Imperial Navy.

Just for today, honor our Teachers.

Slow food. May 1, 2013

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I don’t know about you, but precious, self-promoting, self-referential “special” in-words drive me crazy. As a wordsmith, I find that these cliquish expressions make it very hard for me to hold true to Usui Founder’s injunction, “Don’t get angry.”

“Slow food,” a precious play on “fast food,” is one of them. How about just “real food” or “homemade food” or “from-scratch food”? “Slow food” is unlikely to win over even one home cook who’s doing everything she can to put food on the table for her family after working a 10-hour day. It screams entitlement, the folks who shop at Whole Foods and spend four hours preparing a perfect and perfectly expensive, pretentious meal. Unless their cooks do it for them.

This reminds me of a book proposal on dog training I once received from a literary agent. The book’s title was DogPerfect. I called the agent and asked why the book had such a bizarre title. “Oh, it’s a play on WordPerfect,” she blithely explained. As though most potential dog owners would even recognize this outdated, also-ran computer program.

This preciousness and pretentiousness has more to do with Reiki and its teaching and transmission than you might think. All of us who wish to pass on the Reiki heritage owe it to our students to use the clearest, cleanest language that we can. We owe it to our students to help them understand the core concepts of Reiki, not to obfuscate them with obscure language and words like “obfuscate.”

One example of this is Usui Founder’s first (or second, depending on your lineage) Reiki Principle, “Don’t get angry.” Hawayo Takata Sensei, for whom Japanese rather than English was a first language, rendered this as “Do not anger.” “Do not anger” is not English; “Don’t get angry” is. But I can’t tell you how many Reiki practitioners I’ve encountered to this day who insist on “Do not anger” as Gospel, simply because Hawayo Takata Sensei used those words because she knew no others.

Do you really think Usui Founder would have perverted his native Japanese in this way when he was laying down the Five Reiki Principles (aka Precepts, Ideals)? No, and no, and no. He would have laid them out as clearly as he could. And the same holds true of Chujiro Hayashi Sensei. So why don’t we? Why do we cling to a non-English version of our own language, when the English is so elegant and simple? Don’t get angry. It may be hard to put into practice, but it’s not hard to understand.

Please, Reiki people, don’t obscure the transmission of Reiki by polluting it with obscure, precious, insider language. Make yourself clear, transparent, accessible. Let Usui Founder and his lineage speak for themselves, as clearly as they can. Don’t sell out the truth, the clarity, the torch in daylight, in favor of slow food.

Just for today, be clear and open.

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There is another Skywalker. September 19, 2012

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This famous quote from “Star Wars,” revealing that Princess Leia is also a Skywalker and Luke Skywalker’s sister, may seem to have nothing to do with Reiki. But it does. Bear with me and I’ll show you why.

Hyakuten Inamoto Sensei, the founder of Komyo Reiki, pointed out in our class retreat this past August that there was no actual Usui Reiki Ryoho anymore. He said that all the Reiki being taught all over the world is based on the teachings of Chujiro Hayashi Sensei, the Master whom Usui Founder sent out into the world to spread the light of Reiki. That all Reiki today is based on Hayashi Shiki Reiki Ryoho, including every Western form descended from Hawayo Takata Sensei, and Japanese forms like Gendai Reiki, Jikiden Reiki, and Komyo Reiki.

Usui Founder in his wisdom and enlightenment clearly saw that if Reiki was to be shared with the world, it needed to escape the confines of a secretive, closed little club like the Gakkai. Hayashi Sensei proved equal to the task; thanks to him, Reiki has spread around the world and is accessible to everyone, everywhere. The debt we owe him is indescribable. Gassho, gassho!

But my understanding is that there is another Skywalker. That Usui Founder also sent out another Master from the Gakkai, a man who went to Australia and taught Reiki there. That he chose not one but two to ensure that Reiki survived and thrived, that it was shared as he intended. Can anyone confirm this? I’m ashamed to say that I can’t recall the second Master’s name and am on a book deadline, so I don’t have time to look it up. But I do remember being told this very clearly. I’d appreciate any clarification!

Just for today, be grateful.

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