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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Has your Reiki gotten rusty?

Sure, you know Reiki. You took a Level 1 class several years ago, maybe even a Level 2 class. You've got a certificate in a drawer or a dusty frame. You gave a treatment or two to a friend or family member right after the class, and for awhile you used to do a little hands-on self-care at bedtime. But you never got into the habit of using it daily, and you forgot a lot of what you learned. Recently, however, something reminded you about Reiki, and you'd like to get back in practice.

Sound familiar? It does to me, because quite a few of my clients have already studied Reiki some time ago with other teachers, but now they or someone close to them might have a health issue or other situation that has renewed their interest. They may not remember hand positions or techniques, but they do remember how good it felt and how much it helped them way back when. They may -- or may not -- have discovered the new information about Reiki that has come out of Japan in recent years, some of which contradicts what they learned from their original teacher (turns out Usui wasn't a doctor after all). They're ready to revive their Reiki practice, but they aren't sure where to start. Oh, and they're wondering if their attunements have worn off.

I've encountered so many of these lapsed practitioners that I've developed a new program just for them: Reiki Personal Training. Students meet with me regularly for one or two hours, weekly, monthly, at their convenience. I provide ongoing support by email and phone, along with daily assignments and longer-term projects. It's open-ended: some students may need only a quick refresher, some may want to combine training with treatment, and others may want to continue developing their already advanced practice. The only prerequesite is Level 1 Reiki training with any teacher in any lineage. Because this service is tailored to the individual, costs will vary.

I believe so strongly in this kind of ongoing training that I hope other Reiki teachers begin offering it as well. It's unfortunate that people who made the investment in both time and money to become Reiki practitioners weren't able to follow through to develop an ongoing personal practice, but it's never too late to start again. And it isn't necessary to start from scratch.

A regular personal practice is the foundation we build on with the system of Reiki. In fact, if you are going to a professional Reiki practitioner for treatment and trying to find the right practitioner, ask them about their personal Reiki practices. If you get a brief, vague answer, or if the practitioner admits they don't have a personal practice, steer clear. That's even more important in seeking a teacher, especially a teacher offering ongoing training. Your teacher needs to speak from experience and share some of the insights that come from that in guiding you along your own path.

I also urge other Reiki teachers to provide ongoing personal training because I know that many students would love to go back to their original teachers, but they don't want to go through the whole class again.

If you felt a strong connection with the person who taught you Reiki, look up your teacher and make contact. Ask about the possibility of Reiki personal training, and maybe you can work something out. Also ask about your teacher's own continuing education: ideally even masters and teachers continue studying, and in more than one lineage. Personal Reiki training isn't just for lapsed practitioners: advanced practitioners need guidance and specific goals, too.

Unlike many practitioners, I don't like to use the word Reiki as a verb. I'm not one to say, "I Reikied" something or ask, "Did you Reiki it?"But I can understand why many people do, because verbs are the way we depict action, and practicing Reiki requires action.

That doesn't contradict what Pamir Kiciman wrote last week about being rather than doing when it comes to Reiki, because while at its best Reiki is a practice of not-doing, it doesn't get done by not practicing. Or as Lao Tse wrote so many years ago, "When nothing is done, nothing is left undone."

Ongoing personal Reiki training is available both in-person and remotely. Contact editor@thereikidigest.com for details or call 917-512-1330.

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