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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The Reiki Digest for December 13, 2006: The Year-end Revue of Reviews

The Reiki Digest for December 13, 2006: The Year-end Revue of Reviews

Welcome to the final full edition of The Reiki Digest for 2006! We'll be taking a break for the holidays, so we won't be publishing on December 20 or 27. During the last two weeks of the year, it will be up to you, the reader, to publish your own comments and links here in a special year-end Open Thread Edition beginning next Wednesday. That's right: you can write for The Reiki Digest, simply by adding your comments to the Open Thread Edition. What's an Open Thread? On sites that get a lot of comments, an open thread is an easy way to let readers discuss the issues among themselves. We hope you'll take advantage of the opportunity during the remainder of December.

But the year's not quite over yet, so this week we have a special edition: The Year-end Revue of Reviews, focusing on books that may be of interest to readers of The Reiki Digest. Some of the reviews are new, and others are from previous 2006 editions.

First up, a scoop: This book won't even be published until March 2007, but The Reiki Digest was able to read a prepublication version in order to do this advance review:

Your Reiki Treatment
Bronwen & Frans Stiene
(March, 2007)

Once again, prolific authors and Reiki Master Teachers Bronwen and Frans Stiene have outdone their previous outstanding efforts. This time it's Your Reiki Treatment, their first book about Reiki aimed at clients rather than practitioners. In fact, it's the first book written specifically for Reiki recipients.

With the reverberations of their groundbreaking first book, The Reiki Sourcebook (2003), still rippling through the Reiki world, the Stienes went on to write The Japanese Art of Reiki (2005), a practical, illustrated guide focused on the roots of Reiki as well as its foundation: self care. This year they followed up with two publications: the A-Z of Reiki, a handy guide to all things Reiki in a book the size of a deck of cards, and an actual deck of cards, the lovely and very useful Reiki Techniques Card Deck (which includes an illustrated booklet as well.)

In Your Reiki Treatment, Bronwen and Frans have topped all that off with a thoughtful, graceful distillation, blending their impeccable and extensive research with insights and anecdotes drawn from their years of experience as Reiki practitioners and teachers.

Your Reiki Treatment rightly envisions the reader as a potential Reiki client who isn't so interested in the name of the founder or the practitioner's lineage or how many branches of Reiki there may be. Potential clients, i.e., everybody on the planet who hasn't already received a Reiki treatment, just want to know what Reiki is and what it might do for them -- or to them. If you're one of those potential Reiki clients, this book will satisfy your curiosity, though not as well as an actual Reiki treatment, of course!

I plan to keep a copy or two in my office to lend to potential Reiki clients, and I can envision a lot of other practitioners doing the same. If you know someone who's curious about Reiki, show them this book and you may end up with a new client.

Although Your Reiki Treatment won't be on sale for several months yet, it is available for pre-order at

Speaking of the Stienes, their weekly podcast, The Reiki Show, is on holiday for the rest of the year, but meanwhile you can vote on your favorite episode of 2006, perhaps even the one I guest-hosted so that Bronwen Stiene could be the guest for a change and answer some questions about her books.

And stay tuned for details soon about the Stienes' 2007 world tour, including a Shinpiden (Level 3) class in New York.

We discovered, and reviewed, all their previous books in 2006. Rather than repost the reviews here, we'll just include links to them:

The Reiki Digest review of The Reiki Sourcebook and The Japanese Art of Reiki
The Reiki Digest review of the A-Z of Reiki and The Reiki Techniques Card Deck.

Punk Science: Inside the Mind of God
Dr. Manjir Samanta-Laughton, M.D.

If I hadn't read beyond the title, I probably would have taken no notice of this book. Apparently "Punk Science" is a British concept, or at least a British educational comedy team. The subtitle, "Inside the Mind of God," doesn't offer much more about what this book is about. Even after reading it, I still have no suggestions for other titles, however. Whatever the title might mean, Punk Science is an invigorating, enlightening read for any of us who are fascinated with quantum physics but are not quantum physicists ourselves. Dr. Manjir Samanta-Laughton, M.D., asks us to reconsider some of the 20th-century dogma about such things as the Big Bang and black holes, hyperspace and dark matter, and she backs up each concept with solid documentation and footnotes.

If the word "punk" is a reference to those morose young people dressed in black who used to go around (especially in Europe) drawing anarchy symbols all over the place, then the title fits, in a sense, as the model of the universe put forth by Dr. Samanta-Laughton is more anarchic than the currently popular version. Could the chakra in the palm of your hand have a tiny black hole at the center? Dr. Samanta-Laughton suggests that it might. Could there be an even tinier black hole at the center of each and every atom? Maybe so, she argues. Besides which, where DID all the antimatter go? And what if the Big Bang wasn't a big bang at all? To complete the picture, Dr. Samanta-Laughton weaves in the Gnostic Gospels, ghosts, angels, string theory, the concept of the divine feminine, and more.

Heresy? Why not at least consider, or reconsider, all the possibilities?

If you're already somewhat familiar with the weirdness of quantum physics, this book will challenge some of what you might believe and take that weirdness to another level. If you haven't read much about quantum physics, this might be a good place to start, as you'll have fewer preconceptions.

We published our first book review with our premiere issue back in July: Here's a link to our review of Reiki: A Comprehensive Guide, by Pamela Miles.

Other books read and recommended by The Reiki Digest staff this year include:

Mending The Past And Healing The Future with Soul Retrieval, by Alberto Villoldo, Ph.D.
The Four Insights: Wisdom, Power, and Grace of the Earthkeepers, by Alberto Villoldo, Ph.D.
Coyote Medicine: Lessons from Native American Healing, by Lewis Mehl-Madrona, M.D.
Coyote Healing: Miracles in Native Medicine, by Lewis Mehl-Madrona, M.D., Ph.D.
Coyote Wisdom: Healing Power in Native American Stories, by Lewis Mehl-Madrona, M.D., Ph.D.
The Joy of Ritual: Spiritual Recipes to Celebrate Milestones, Ease Transitions, and Make Every Day Sacred, by Barbara Biziou
The Hidden Messages in Water, by Masaru Emoto

Finally, The Reiki Digest welcomes a new sponsor: Our regular Celeb-Reiki feature is now brought to you by Miriam's Well Healing of New York, New York, specializing in the health and well-being of performing artists. Miriam's Well Healing now offers a discount exclusively for Reiki Digest readers. More about that in a moment, but first, this week's Celeb-Reiki report.

First, an update on a previous Celeb-Reiki: New Zealand cyclist Hayden Roulston, who had to retire from the sport at age 25 a few months ago because of a heart ailment and turned to Reiki in hopes of getting back on the bike. He has now officially unretired, has won his last two races, and will be representing his nation in January's six-day, 667-kilometer Tour Down Under in Australia.

From New Zealand, we travel to India, home of Celeb-Reiki cricketer (and Reiki aficionado) Sachin Tendulkar who last week achieved new fame on the TV game show Jeopardy! -- not as a contestant, but as a question: "Sachin Tendulkar of India is a leading bowler in this sport. (What is cricket?)"

On to Toronto, Canada, for a dramatic first-person piece in the Toronto Star by our next Celeb-Reiki, Jessica Holmes, a regular on the CBC show Royal Canadian Air Farce and the wife of a Reiki Master, headlined "Surprise, I'm (still) pregnant!"

If you are a celebrity who practices or receives Reiki, we hope you'll speak out about your Reiki connection so that more people can discover this natural, safe form of healing.

Now a few words from our sponsor: We asked Reiki Master Claire M. Schwartz, proprietor of Miriam's Well Healing, why she decided to focus her practice on Reiki for performing artists.

As an actor and singer myself, I know the toll taken on the mind, body and spirit. Auditions, rehearsals, classes and performance are all challenging. Not long after I discovered Reiki, I was in the theatre and I watched an experienced actor go up on his lines. My first thought was that Reiki could have helped him steady his nerves and focus him!

How can Reiki help performing artists?

Actors, dancers and singers in particular rely so deeply on their physical being to create their work. The wear and tear of the performing lifestyle is constant and can grind you down. Health is simply not an option. So the first tenet of my healing philosophy is Self-Care, which is also the first thing students learn in Reiki 1.

Self-knowledge is also key to growth and clarity for the actor. As a performer taking on a role, Reiki energy brings you to a higher vibration of being, to balance self with character, work through personal issues that might interfere with your process, and provide clarity so you can work at your highest level. Therefore, my second tenet is Personal Empowerment. And building a career in the arts requires SO much energy and fortitude, the endeavor deserves as much support as possible

Among the benefits of Reiki to help optimize the conditioning of any performer are:
- Vocal and Breath Support
- Joint Support
- Focus for Performance Days
- Goal-Setting for Auditions
- Support for tired eyes, sore knees, and tense necks
- Regular Sessions to address performance anxiety
- Ongoing Support for injuries, doubts and challenges.

I also utilize Affirmations for boosting confidence, facing emotional issues and connecting to your Inner Wisdom, as well as Chakra Balancing and sending Reiki to the Past or the Future. These are tools I use every day for myself, as well as my clients. I also have designed specific protocols for musicians’ fingers and dancers’ toes.

Thanks, Claire.

As you know, The Reiki Digest is a free publication, supported by advertising. If you'd like to advertise here, please email or call my office at 201.653.7700, ext 6.

That's it for this week, and this year as well. See you back here in 2007, and remember to participate in our Open Thread Edition (starting December 20) as well as our Reviewing Reiki Online Project if you get the chance over the holidays.

New Year's Resolution: The Reiki Symposium at the New York Open Center is just over a month away -- January 15, 2007 -- and if you register now, you can save $25. Among the many interesting workshops: my Qigong for Reiki Practitioners and Reiki in Cyberspace with Reiki Master James Rosenow and myself.

Happy Holidays!


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