Over the last several weeks I have been asked the question “What is Reiki?”.  In this post, I offer my own definition and personal experience.

Last year I participated in a year-long Reiki Master Apprentice Program under the mentorship of the Reverend Shannon Chada of Full Circle Harmony Ministry.  My first assignment was to create a 30-second definition of Reiki that could be offered to anyone who asks said question.  Here is what I wrote:

“Reiki is a complementary modality where I channel energy either through hovered hands or light touch.  Reiki promotes stress reduction and balance to the mind, body, and spirit of the client.  Healing is an inside job, and that is where the reiki journey begins.”

The word reiki is a Japanese word meaning “Rei” (Universal) and “Ki” (Life Energy) which was discovered by Mikao Usui on Mount Kurama (Japan) in the early 1920’s and brought to the United States by Hawayo Takata (Hawaii).  Reiki energy is passed on through an attunement (activation) from teacher to student.  I am in the 9th Lineage under Master Usui.

Is Reiki a real thing?

Many times, when I offer my definition, I receive either verbal or non-verbal cues of skepticism as this topic is often viewed as being abstract.  How can a person share healing energy (that cannot be seen) with another person?  I would like to take this time to talk about energy in general.

One of the greatest phenomena about energy is that contained within the human heart (which has its own electrical conduction system).  It is known that this system is powered by electrolytes and originates in the sino-atrial node, can be seen on an EKG, and felt mechanically by a pulsing artery.  However, at the end of the day, where did this wonder come from?  We trust that our heart continues to beat throughout the night – thereby gifting us another day of life come morning.  All this happens by something whose origin is somewhat a mystery itself.  Now let’s look at a reiki session in brief.

As a practitioner, I hover my hands over the body of a fully clothed client (or animal) and scan the energy centers(chakras) to sense those that may be out of balance (indicated through heat or tingling).  I then channel the reiki energy that is received from (source, universe, creator- however one defines it), and concentrate on the areas needing greater attention.  When I work with a client, they are the healer – as healing is an inside job.  When I do self-reiki, I am the healer for the same reasons. After a period of time, I rescan the body to sense any changes to chakra alignment.  A session always begins with the client setting an intention for what they want to receive from reiki and ends with feedback from both client and practitioner.

Although this may still seem abstract, we have all felt the energy of another person that can change how we feel in the moment – both positively and negatively.  We cannot see it, but know it is there as our mood changes.  Reiki has had a powerful impact on my life, and I will leave you with a few of my own experiences to show you how it can happen when least expected.

A Farm, a Wedding, and a Horse

“While attending a wedding at a farm, I took the opportunity to approach the paddock where two horses were grazing under the night sky.  I silently asked permission (of the horses) if I could share reiki with them.  Only one approached the rail where I was standing.  I extended my hand and the horse allowed me to touch the bridge of its nose.  After several minutes, the horse turned its hind quarters and directed me where to place my hands, as it instinctively knew what areas could use some reiki love and light.  Ten minutes later, this beautiful creature walked away as I expressed my gratitude for this shared moment in time.”

Letting Go of Control

“Nine months into counseling for PTSD, I had yet to surrender the control I held over my emotions.  I received one of the most powerful reiki sessions from Shannon where it felt as if my body was on fire.  It was during this treatment that she assisted me to energetically let go of the control issues that had plagued me the better part of my life.  I returned to (what would be my last counseling session) and with the assistance of reiki, I was finally able to relinquish control of my emotions.  This was something my therapist had waited to see happen during the entire course of our professional relationship.  This is the most peaceful I have ever felt in my life, and all I had to do was bow to the teacher within.”

To Quiet a Child

“Recently, I had my first reiki session with a child who was four years old.  During the entire session, this young girl was very restless, yet curious about the whole process.  Mom was present and quietly meditated in the corner of the room.  Most of the treatment was completed hands off, as mom voiced that she did not know how her daughter would respond to a stranger’s touch.  My intuitive side led me to lightly touch the bottom of both of her feet, and instantly her body became still.  I looked at her, and she smiled back with gratitude.  In that moment I realized that reiki is a gift that will quiet the mind, so the soul can awaken.”

To learn more about the chakras, see my previous post titled Chakras: Spinning Centers that Express our Vital Life Energy. https://centannilife.com/chakras-spinning-centers-that-express-our-vital-life-energy/

 If you would like to continue this conversation on an individual basis, reach out to me at timothygrutzius@centannilife.com and I would be honored to guide you through this journey.


Until next time- be well and take care,