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Monday, June 30, 2008

Ask and you shall receive . . . more replies

Thanks again to Scott K. for asking the question that has sparked so much discussion. Here it is again, followed by the latest replies:

The other week I watched the secret and learned about the law of attraction for the first time. I was wondering what the opinion of the Reiki community is on the law of attraction. My understanding from the movie is that as long as you focus your attention on something, and it does not matter if it is in a positive way or negative way, that something will come your way. If this is true then focusing on the precepts will bring one more anger and worry.

Our first reply this week is from Frans and Bronwen Stiene, authors of The Reiki Sourcebook, The Japanese Art of Reiki, The A-Z of Reiki, The Reiki Techniques Card Deck and Your Reiki Treatment:

Hi Scott,

Unfortunately the Secret misses the point. First of all it is all about material possessions. What happens when that brand new car we wished for and got gets a dent - then we get very upset and angry!

In turn, the precepts are about our spiritual path. Remember they are precepts not affirmations. Many people confuse these two very different teachings.

Definition of precept (on-line dictionary): A rule or principle prescribing a particular course of action or conduct.
Definition of affirmation (on-line dictionary): Something declared to be true; a positive statement or judgment.

You wrote: and it does not matter if it is in a positive way or negative way, that something will come your way. If this is true then focusing on the precepts will bring one more anger and worry.

We are not saying in the precepts "I want more anger and worry". The precepts are about "do not worry" and "do not anger" so according to your statement you will get "no worry" and "no anger" - isn't that wonderful?

Intent is the initial, directed thought that flickers across your mind - often before you are even consciously aware that you have begun the thinking process. This directed thought sets a process in motion. It stimulates your energy to trigger an action. The action might be picking up a tea cup, talking to someone or beginning a personal healing process. As an often unconscious act, intent can be vague and unclear or misdirected due to pre-set judgements and understandings that have accumulated during one’s life time. This can weaken one’s intent and the resulting process. To work consciously with your intent and to train your intent to work for you is a part of your personal healing practice. The more you consciously you work with intent, the less often you will revert to unconscious patterns. The deeper we go into our own spiritual practice the clearer our intent becomes.

One other very important aspect is that if you consciously intend something you want, you are required to actively follow it though with the right actions. Say, for example, we want more clients for our Reiki practice,. If we just set our intent to make this happen and that's it - then we can wait till we are old and gray, not a lot is going to happen. But, if we set the intent and follow through with the natural motivation inspired by intent, we begin to make plans and perhaps start making flyer's and handing them out - actively being involved in our intent. Your intent has stimulated your actions and the result will be more clients.

For more information about intent please read these related articles:

Hope this helps.
Frans and Bronwen Stiene

Thanks, Frans and Bronwen.

By the way, Frans will be in New York City in October to teach a Shinpiden (Master/Teacher level) class, followed by a One-Day Advanced Workshop, sponsored by The Reiki Digest and The Reiki Dojo.

Next, Jean Bromage, Reiki Master/Teacher and proprietor of Dancing Light Candles:

Scott's question is very interesting for me this week and I thank him for bringing it up. Several days ago something happened that stirred up more anger for me than I had experienced in quite a long time. It wasn't the kind of anger over silly annoyances that I can just shake off with a few minutes of Reiki and a few repetitions of the precepts. No matter how much Reiki I gave myself, repeating "Just for Today Do Not Anger", and no matter how much I pictured myself in a sphere of peaceful light, it wouldn't go away. However, when I was able to, I did some yoga stretches and felt the physical aspect of my anger start to dissipate a bit. I then lay down on my mat and put my hands over my navel and the Reiki energy began to enter my emotional body more deeply. When I got up 20 minutes later, I felt ten times lighter. By the end of the day I was laughing and back to my happy go lucky self.

Sometimes we have to remind ourselves that we are human which means having very real emotional bodies and the more we honor our that, the easier it becomes to transform the negative emotions no matter how deep the anger, worry or sadness may be. I think that is what this Reiki precept is about. It's allowing room for our human nature which sometimes includes anger, but if we are compassionate with ourselves and work with where we are at "Just for Today" (not yesterday or tomorrow) the anger won't fester and grow into something more destructive. As Katherine Simonton mentions, we don’t “bear” our anger, but it is simply an experience that passes and we aren’t attached to it. What a great conversation to have on the Reiki Digest and I hope more people share their thoughts.

Thanks Scott!
Jean Bromage, Reiki Master, owner of Dancing Light Candles

Thanks, Jean!

For our previous discussion on this topic, see here and here.

To add your comments, just click on the word "comments" at the bottom of this post on our web site, email your thoughts to, or click here to leave your spoken comments on our 24/7 GrandCentral voicemail.

We'd love to hear from you! Let the discussion continue. . . .

The Weekly Waka


Life’s crooked pathways
Twist away from one’s desires
With cruel aplomb,
A moment's disappointment
Often leading to great joy.

(by Michael Dagley)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Thank you!

Two years ago, just out of my first Reiki master program, I decided to combine my previous career as a journalist with my interest in this natural healing art by establishing an online weekly publication to serve the global Reiki community, and The Reiki Digest was born on July 1, 2006. I thought it would be like a small-town newspaper, and I suppose it is in a way, although our growing community stretches across at least 110 countries.

Since this publication began I've completed two more Reiki master programs, become a teacher, sponsored classes by other teachers, and founded The Reiki Dojo, which now has branches in Washington, D.C., and Denver, Colorado, as well as our original New York City location. I've also educated myself week after week on how Reiki is portrayed in the media, and tried to clear up some of the confusion and misinformation.

Many readers have written to offer their thanks for this free service, and I'm very grateful for that. But I must thank all of you for the attention you've given to The Reiki Digest in the past two years, because without readers, this publication would not have succeeded. Many, many thanks to each and every one of you.

My favorite part of The Reiki Digest, however, has been not my words, but yours. I value your comments and contributions, and I am pleased that this global community publication is becoming more and more interactive. I send extra thanks to all who have added their comments and guest articles to the Digest, and I look forward to many more in the coming years.

And a very, very, very special thanks to the people who make this publication possible by covering some of our costs: our advertisers.

We would be remiss if we didn't thank our staff of robotic reporters: Google and Yahoo, who have worked every single day since months before our launch to find references to Reiki in the news. Someday, we hope to supplement their work with contributions from human reporters. In addition to reporting on Reiki nonstop for us, Google also provides our publishing platform (Blogger), our email, and our phone service. They found a way to profit from giving away their services, and while The Reiki Digest isn't exactly in the black yet, we are doing our best to follow in their cyber-footsteps.

And of course, my deepest gratitude to all my Reiki teachers, my students, and my clients.

Thanks again!

Janet Dagley Dagley, RM/T, IARP, Komyo Reiki Shihan
Editor and Publisher

What's your Reiki Story?

Every Reiki practitioner has a story: how did you discover this natural healing art? What led you to begin studying and practicing yourself? How have you, your friends and family, or your clients benefited? What did you expect from Reiki that you didn't get? What did you get from Reiki that you didn't expect?

Tell us your Reiki Story: just email it to and you may find yourself (and a link to your web site, if you have one) in The Reiki Digest.

Reiki Roundup

We begin this week in India, where The Times of India features an article headlined "Reiki: Healing with a miracle touch." The feature is illustrated with a photo of a Reiki session on the floor, with practitioners sitting cross-legged around the recipient, and it includes many of the usual errors, referring to Reiki founder Mikao Usui as a doctor (he wasn't) and stating that "Reiki heals by balancing the chakras of the body." The chakra system, originally from India's ayurvedic medicine, was not originally part of the system of Reiki but was grafted onto some western branches in the late 20th century. Since the chakra system came from India, however, it seems natural for it to have returned there with Reiki. The article also includes this unfortunate whopper: "What is most important to let Reiki work on you and others is to have faith in the technique as your body reacts the way your mind accepts or rejects things." That directly contradicts the words of Usui himself in response to the question, "Does one need to believe in Usui Reiki Ryoho so that an illness can be cured?"

". . . it matters little whether you may doubt . . . For instance, there is a positive effect on those who lack consciousness, such as infants and/or seriously ill patients. Barely one out of ten people trust and esteem my art of healing before they experience it the first time. Most people come to trust suddenly after having received treatment once and acknowledged its effect."
(Translation by Hyakuten Inamoto)

And then of course there's animal Reiki, one of the fastest-growing areas of this practice. Do the animals need to believe in order to benefit?

Next stop: Middlesbrough, U.K., where we meet a civil servant-turned manicurist-turned Reiki practitioner in an article headlined "Healing Hands gain popularity in UK." Britons currently spend more than £130 million annually on alternative health care, the article states, and that number is expected to rise to more than £200 million annually in the next four years. And the UK's National Health Service now spends £50 million a year on complementary therapies, according to the article.

In Leeds, U.K., we find a Reiki practitioner in an article about a plan to help people on incapacity benefits go back to work.

Ode Magazine's web site features an article by Pamir Kiciman of the blog Reiki Help titled "Reiki as consciousness." Pamir sometimes contributes comments to The Reiki Digest as well: you may recall his suggestions about using Reiki to improve fuel efficiency.

In Limerick, Ireland, we meet Damhnait Ni Riordan, a "journeywoman" who practices Reiki, among other things.

And in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, we find Dr. Mary Ann Allison, an oncologist who is also a Reiki practitioner, in the pages of the Review-Journal.

The Chicago Tribune takes us to Bellmore, New York, where an Iraq war veteran who attempted suicide was punished by the U.S. Army for "malingering." The article, headlined "Army's battle: Mental illness," mentions that Reiki and yoga are among the modalities the U.S. military is experimenting with to help troops suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder -- something we featured here in a previous Reiki Roundup.

Ann Dexter-Jones, re-Celeb-Reiki

Reiki Master Ann Dexter-Jones earned her first Celeb-Reiki distinction in June 2007 when she was honored for her work in pediatric intensive care. A year later, she's a re-Celeb-Reiki, although this time there's no awards banquet, just an item in the gossip blog Gawker headlined "A Guide to the Weird Ronson Family."

". . . She's also a reiki master!" Gawker exclaims breathlessly. And a freelance writer, for that matter. She's also the ex-wife of Foreigner guitarist Mick Jones, and the mother of celebrity DJs Mark Ronson and Samantha Ronson and fashion designer Charlotte Ronson.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Ask and you shall receive . . . replies

Last week, Scott K. asked, and this week the replies have started to come in. Here's the question once more:

The other week I watched the secret and learned about the law of attraction for the first time. I was wondering what the opinion of the Reiki community is on the law of attraction. My understanding from the movie is that as long as you focus your attention on something, and it does not matter if it is in a positive way or negative way, that something will come your way. If this is true then focusing on the precepts will bring one more anger and worry.

Katherine Simonton from New Hampshire was the first to respond. Longtime readers may recall Katherine's article "Reiki Paradigms" from a January 2007 edition of The Reiki Digest. She is a nurse as well as a Reiki teacher. Katherine writes:

Greetings to the Reiki Digest cyber community! I am moved to reply to Scott's query. I am a Reiki Master- level practitioner for many years and am also a student of the Abraham material via Esther Hicks. Abraham is actually a group of non physical entities who offer guidance on the Law of Attraction through Esther. It has been my experience that their teachings offer a much deeper and more complete understanding of the principles of Attraction. The Law of Attraction is about vibration - the vibration that is created by our thoughts and the feelings they generate - not so much our fleeting thoughts but those habitual thought patterns that are frequently unconscious until we bring them into the light of observation & attention. We attract whatever is harmonious with the vibration of those thought patterns. Reiki is so wonderful because it helps to calm the mind, relax the body and raise our vibrational level.

When we are resisting something or saying no to something (like anger, for example) - it is vibrationally the same as saying yes to it. Whatever we resist, persists.

However, I don't look at the precepts that way - as resisting or saying no to anger. My intent is to not bear anger and within that practice, I have looked within at what that means for me. I have become more aware of those thoughts that lead to anger for me, of the ways in which my ego wants to hold on to anger at times, how I do or do not express anger, etc. As a result of that practice (and studying the Abraham material), I am learning how to shift my thoughts to align with my intent to not bear anger - some days it's a walk in the park and other days, I may need to use another precept - being compassionate with myself & others - to help me slowly turn my thoughts up the Emotional Scale ( this is a guide that Abraham uses with Bliss/joy/love at the top and fear/anger near the bottom). It is not denying the anger, but using it as a "sign" that I am out of alignment with my higher Self & my intent (not to bear anger) and noticing how it feels in my body - then (without judging myself) looking for the next best thought I can find that will help me move toward my intent and toward feeling better. Here again, self Reiki can be a wonderful helper!

I also know some Reiki folks sort of spin those first two precepts into an intent/affirmation that is more positive -ie, just for today, I will be peaceful.

I thank you for raising the question, Scott, and for giving me the opportunity to respond. If it is helpful, great and if not, just delete it!! I look forward to reading other responses.

Katherine Simonton

Thanks, Katherine. Before we go further, I think it's important to explain here that the concept of non-physical entities is not part of the system of Reiki, nor are the Abraham/Hicks teachings.

The next response to Scott's question is from Wendy Kirpanos:

I was just thinking that exact same thing the other day! However I also started thinking of how the precepts have helped me....Every time something happens that I would normally blow up about, my higher self says "Do Not Anger". Whenever the bills come in and we don't have enough funds in the bank, my higher self says "Do Not Worry". Every time my ego starts to show it's ugly head, my higher self says "Be Humble".

No one can "Be Happy" all the time, but everyone can work on "Do Not Anger".

Wendy Kirpanos

If you'd like to join the discussion on this topic, just click on the word "comments" at the bottom of this post on our web site, email your comments to, or click here to speak your comments into our 24/7 GrandCentral voicemail. We'll continue posting comments as they come in. If you've been working with the Reiki Precepts, tell us: Have they had a positive or negative impact on your life?

The Weekly Waka


Each graduation
Is a peak that one ascends
In pursuit of truth,
A high point from which to glimpse
Infinite mountain ranges.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Seek and ye shall find: The law of attraction, the Reiki Precepts, and Google

These days the law of attraction isn't just a concept: it's an industry. Thanks to the 2006 film and book The Secret, the books of Esther and Jerry Hicks, and word-of-mouth among spiritual seekers -- not to mention the powerful endorsement of Oprah -- everybody's talking about the effect of our thoughts and intentions on the world around us.

We aren't offering any definitive answers here on whether our thoughts and intentions create our reality. You'll have to answer that one for yourself. But we've been reminded of the "seek and ye shall find" concept this week by the somewhat frustrating behavior of our star reporter: Google.

As most regular readers know, The Reiki Digest has a staff of robotic reporters: Google and Yahoo. They work nonstop with no pay, no benefits, no desks or offices, constantly scouring cyberspace for news about Reiki, turning in their reports to our editing staff (yours truly).

This past week, Google has been a bit overeager, reporting finds about Reiki that really aren't. That's because it has started including its own ads in the search results. There may not be a word about Reiki in the article it turns up, but if Reiki shows up in the Google ads on that site, our robotic reporter thinks it's found a scoop. That overenthusiasm on the part of our reporter then requires much more work on the part of our editing staff to find which articles, if any, actually have anything to do with Reiki.

Now the reason so many of those Google ads have something to do with Reiki is that our reporter has another boss: the lucrative advertising division of Google. Our reporter tells the Google ad computers that I've asked it to be on the lookout for news about Reiki, and they respond with more and more ads about Reiki. The more I search for the word "Reiki" online, the more likely I am to find it in the ads based on my searches. Seek and ye shall find, indeed. So whether or not the law of attraction applies to the real world, it definitely applies in cyberspace.

The other day I was watching a rerun of Oprah's follow-up show on The Secret, featuring one of my heroes: Louise Hay, and guest Martha Beck pointed out that if she suggested that we think of the color blue, we couldn't help but notice all the blue things in our environment. (That reminds me of the cliche, "Don't think of an elephant." Hmmm. Wonder if I'll start getting Google ads for blue elephants now. . . .) I'd heard that before, but my robo-reporter has put it in a whole new context and made me a believer all over again.

I was sorting through some of Google's false Reiki finds early today when an email showed up from frequent contributor Scott K. with a very interesting question:

The other week I watched the secret and learned about the law of attraction for the first time. I was wondering what the opinion of the Reiki community is on the law of attraction. My understanding from the movie is that as long as you focus your attention on something, and it does not matter if it is in a positive way or negative way, that something will come your way. If this is true then focusing on the precepts will bring one more anger and worry.

I hope you'll get lots of answers on this, Scott, and I'll contribute mine as well. If your attention is focused on anger, i.e., if you are angry, then that will build. If your attention is focused on letting go of anger -- because being human, we're never going to be able to avoid it entirely -- then you will develop a habit of letting go of anger. If you are in the habit of being afraid, you are probably going to build on that and become more and more fearful. Whereas if you practice letting go of fear -- like anger, something that will happen to us from time to time no matter how much we meditate -- you get better and better at releasing your fears. And so on with the other precepts. Law of attraction or not, our habits perpetuate and build upon themselves.

Readers, what's your experience? Has following the Reiki Precepts led to more anger, fear, etc., or less for you? Add your comments by clicking on the word "comments" at the bottom of this post on our web site, email them to, or click here to use GrandCentral to speak your comments into our 24/7 voicemail.

Happy Solstice!

Here in the northern hemisphere we're celebrating the longest day of the year this weekend, but for our readers in the southern hemisphere it will be the shortest day. Wherever you are, whatever the season in your part of the world, we wish you a happy solstice!

A Bollywood Celeb-Reiki

photo by Ramkrsna (Some Rights Reserved)

She's been away from the big screen (and the small one, too) for awhile, but Bollywood actress Gracy Singh has been keeping busy with, among other activities, her Reiki practice, she tells The Times of India. She's also been busy filming recently, so our readers in India may see here in theatres soon, or maybe even on television.

110 countries and counting

As we approach our second anniversary next month, The Reiki Digest now has readers in 110 of the world's 194 (or so) countries. Yes, we're proud, but we're also humbled: that statistic is clear evidence that Reiki is truly a global practice. Meanwhile, we continue to work toward our goal of reaching the other 84 (or so). So if you happen to have a Reiki friend or colleague in one of the following countries who has Internet access (that's asking a lot for some of these places), please let them know about us: Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, the Bahamas, Benin, Bhutan, Brunei, Burkina Faso, Burma (Myanmar), Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, the Comoros Islands, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, East Timor, Ecuador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, the Republic of Georgia, Grenada, Republic of Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guayana, Kenya, Kirbati, North Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, the Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia, Naura, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Rwanda, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, the Seychelles, Sierra Leone, the Solomon Islands, Somalia, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Togo, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vanuata, Vatican City, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Our guess is that one or more of those nations may not have any Reiki practitioners yet.

Many thanks to our hundreds of readers around the world!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The weekly waka


Borrowed future woe
Over what might come to be,
Or borrowed past angst
For what could or should have been,
Cost high interest rates of stress.
(by Michael Dagley)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Reiki now has its own wiki!

What's a wiki? It's "a collection of web pages designed to enable anyone who accesses it to contribute or modify content," according to the world's best-known wiki, the Wikipedia. Wikis are popping up all over cyberspace, from the closed wikis of corporate intranets to indie wikis on every imaginable topic.

Now Reiki has its own wiki, the Reiki Wiki founded by Bronwen and Frans Stiene of the International House of Reiki and their students worldwide. Launched just days ago, it already has hundreds of pages and is expanding rapidly. You can register and contribute your comments even if you're not one of the Stienes' students, so the site is open to all. "Basically the motivation behind creating the Reiki Wiki comes down to a love of finding out about, and supporting the education of, FACTUAL information about this wonderful Japanese spiritual practice," according to the site's home page.

Rather than write hundreds of words about it here, we'll keep this brief and suggest you check out some of the hundreds of pages there, and maybe even add a few words (or pages) of your own.

Reiki Roundup

Lansing, Michigan, USA: A fairly mundane article about Reiki has drawn some biting comments from readers of Michigan State University's States News, and we recommend them to all Reiki practitioners, not because we agree with them but because it's good to be reminded of how some people see us.

The article makes extensive reference to the chakra system, a concept from India's ayurvedic medicine tradition that is not part of traditional Reiki but was grafted onto some Western Reiki branches in recent decades, so the practitioner interviewed must have been trained in one of those. One commenter jumps on that point, writing, "Other thing I don’t get, how the F is it a Japanese thing if it has “chakra”, a sanskirt (India) word?"

North Attleboro, Massachusetts: a newspaper columnist becomes a Reiki practitioner and writes about it. She's of the belief that crystal are used in Reiki, something that also was added to some western lineages in recent decades but is generally considered a separate modality. Still, the article is an interesting counterpoint to those caustic comments in response to the Michigan story.

Peterborough, UK: Reiki practitioner Delya Tebbs is featured as a nominee for the local Women of Achievement award.

Kirriemuir, Scotland, UK: Reiki practitioner and web indexer Rebecca Linford has won a major award for web indexing.

Edwina Froelich (1915-2008)

La Leche League International co-founder Edwina Froelich, 93, died June 8 from complications of a stroke. One of six women who gathered in a suburban Chicago living room to discuss what was then a controversial topic: breastfeeding. In later life, she became a Reiki and tai chi practitioner, according to her Chicago Tribune obituary.

Sheldon Firth, 1932-2008

Sheldon Firth of Santa Clara, California, a Reiki practitioner and mountaineer who led groups on wilderness hikes for more than 20 years, died May 3 at age 75 of bone cancer. The local Sierra Club will hold a memorial service for him on June 14, the day he was to have led his next hike.

New comment on the Reiki precepts

Hi Janet,

I thought I'd drop a line and say a few things about my experience in working with The Reiki Precepts.

In general, I'd have to say that the more I work with them the more profound my experience with them becomes.

Two or three times a month I get together with another Reiki Master to practice various Reiki techniques. Sometimes we exchange treatments, sometimes we practice techniques such as Gyoshi-Ho, and other times we talk about topics such as intention, the Precepts, what is and is not Reiki, etc.

A couple of months ago, I had the idea that we needed to keep a record of our discussions and experiences. Since we both do some of our journaling online, I had the idea to set up a private blog, just for the two of us. That way our respective Reiki thoughts are all in one place and we each have instant access to each other's posts, yet we still have complete privacy. Surprisingly (or perhaps not so), we've discovered that we talk about the Precepts more than any other topic. It's been a richly rewarding practice.

Since it's a private blog I can't very well share it or the link, but here's an excerpt from a post on the precepts that I wrote last month:

I have been taught, most notably by Frans Stiene, that the Reiki Precepts are the foundation, the very heart and soul of Reiki. I try to be ever mindful of this both in my own practice of Reiki and in my teaching. Therefore, I often reflect on this connection so as to increase my own grasp of it and to improve my ability to communicate it.

Paramahansa Yogananda taught that eliminating anger and worry, two of the Reiki precepts, increases one's ability to "control the life force." He emphasizes and often reiterates the concept of being "calmly active and actively calm."

In Reiki, we are not so much interested in "controlling the life force" per se as we are in becoming better conduits for the Reiki energy, but I think this concept of active calm and calm activity can be used to tie together the Precepts and improving our energy pathways so as to be better vehicles for channeling Reiki.

Focusing on the past or future ("for today only"), anger ("do not anger"), worry ("do not worry"), pride and arrogance ("be humble/grateful"), greed and sloth ("be honest in your work"), and intolerance and unkindness ("be kind to yourself and others"), all create mental and emotional states that stir us up, agitate and irritate us, thus creating clouds and storms in our energy fields. We cannot have clear energy pathways in those states. Thus, practicing the precepts enhances our energy pathways.

Similarly, receiving and giving Reiki heals us such that our capacity to practice the Precepts calmly and actively is enhanced.

This is all just another way of saying that practicing the Precepts in our lives enhances our ability to channel Reiki and giving ourselves Reiki--or receiving it from another--helps us to practice the precepts.

Doreen Gordon
Reiki Master
Sycamore, Illinois

Thanks, Doreen! I'd love to hear what others have to say on this topic.

Is Boy George becoming Man George at last?

This week's Celeb-Reiki was one of our very first, featured in the premiere issue of The Reiki Digest on July 1, 2006. He's known as Boy George, but it seems he's grown up some since his first Celeb-Reiki appearance, so perhaps its time for a nickname change for the Karma Chameleon?

George's Reiki connection was his late father, Jerry, who used Reiki (among other techniques) to help his son break a heroin habit.

Back in 2006, the former Culture Club frontman spent a week sweeping the streets of New York City after he falsely reported a burglary at his Manhattan apartment and the police who responded found cocaine there. He cursed at reporters covering the story, but by the end of the week he had become what sanitation department officials called "a leader of sorts for the other people performing community service."

He makes The Daily News again today, and from there The Reiki Digest, because he's scheduled a private concert in August for sanitation workers and their families to thank them for their kindness while he worked among them.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The weekly waka


At the horizon
Heaven touches lowly earth
With blazing sunsets,
Rain to slake the prairie’s thirst,
Wind-blown snow to robe great peaks.
(by Michael Dagley)

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Ashley's Reiki story

As regular readers know, we've been inviting Reiki practitioners and clients to tell us their Reiki stories. Today we meet Ashley, an 18-year-old Ohio girl who suffers from Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, an extremely painful condition. Her Reiki practitioner tells us more:

My name is Julie Romanko and I would like to share this interesting true personal account about the power of Reiki.

Where I live in NW Ohio, it seems Reiki is either unheard of or misunderstood by the general public. I am a Reiki Master/Teacher and trying to get the good word out and to help enlighten people about the possibilities that exist for them through Reiki. I would like to help people understand more about our own power to heal on many levels, to understand the origins of disease, and to know that we have other options available to us. We are energy beings. When we have energy disturbances, we eventually manifest problems in our health and well being. Technically, Reiki is considered a relaxation technique. . .but through that relaxation, many benefits, seen and unseen, begin to take place within our cells, in our minds, and in our energy systems. Legally or technically, I cannot call that 'healing', but, nevertheless, what I have witnessed is nothing short of miracles. Miracles ARE possible and miracles are real.

Here is one example. In November 2006 I read an article in the newspaper telling about the plight of a local girl with her incurable disease called RSD (reflex sympathetic dystrophy). She has a chronic pain syndrome that left her with her whole right side paralyzed from pain. Even as much as a drop of water hitting her leg from the shower would cause horrific pain. She was in a wheelchair and could not attend school. She was 17 years old. In the newspaper article, the family was asking for donations. Rather than send money, I told them a little about Reiki and offered my services. About a month went by and then I finally got a call from her family asking to set up an appointment. They told me that they had no options left and would try anything at this point. We had our first session on Dec. 13, 2006. When I met Ashley that day I felt a bit intimidated. I didn't know that she would be in such bad shape physically. I thought that this would be a real challenge to say the least. Her leg and foot were bright red, inflamed, she had no shoe or sock on, and she could not move or touch these affected parts. Her toe nails were untrimmed and skin was peeling off her leg and foot. Her hand and arm were atrophied from lack of use. Somehow we managed to get her up on to the massage table and I explained a little about what we would do. We went through a brief relaxation period and then began the Reiki. I noticed that Ashley relaxed almost immediately. She looked so peaceful. I felt the energy flowing down my arms and through my hands as I held them above her. Two days after this session, I got a phone call from her Grandmother. She told me that she was amazed. Ashley was using her right hand and, in fact, was helping her Mom decorate Christmas cookies, and had plans to help wrap some Christmas presents! I saw Ashley again the following week and she told me how she had perspired so heavily. To me, that means a release of built up toxins and poisons in the cells. She was very optimistic as we had our second session. The new changes had prevailed and she was feeling better with each session. She was sleeping better, had less pain, and her digestive problems were stabilized. Her regular family doctor was surprised when she came for a visit and hopped up on the exam table unaided. He couldn't get over the changes he saw in her. He told her that it could only be attributed to Reiki as he hadn't done anything different for her. He told her to continue with the Reiki because it was obviously working. When Ashley saw the neurosurgeon who had treated her, he had the same observation. Previously he told her that there was "nothing else he could do" to help her and that she had a "miracle waiting somewhere". He was getting his first eye opener to the power of Reiki.

Shortly after this, Ashley had a revelation which she told me about. A reoccurring dream she had finally made sense. In this dream she could see a boulder in her path and each time she would try to climb over the big rock, she'd get halfway over and would be stopped. Then out of the sky, a letter came falling down. She grabbed the letter and tried to read it, but each time it was blank. . .no words. She came to the realization that the letter was the one written by me and might be the key to her getting her life back again. . .and successfully getting over this boulder in her path.

On Feb. 22, after our weekly Reiki session (we had a total of nine sessions thus far) Ashley took her first steps. . .out of the wheelchair. . .and without crutches! The inflammation is gone. The redness is gone. Her skin looks normal. She sleeps better at night. She wears her shoe and sock. Her outlook is so positive. She will graduate normally from high school where as before it was feared she wouldn't. She is actually ahead of her class now on studies. She has a total sunny outlook and disposition. She wants to help other people who have RSD and wants to become a Reiki Master this summer.

To be a Reiki practitioner is to be a channel for healing energy which is drawn in by the client. The Reiki Master is a conduit and the client is ultimately responsible for bringing this energy to themselves! As a Reiki practitioner, I have witness other miracles as a result of using Universal Life Force Energy. I have witnessed spontaneous healings of animals. To me, that is PROOF that Reiki is real. Many people are skeptical and have tried to dissuade me to think that it is only the people's own minds that were doing the healing (as in a placebo effect). A dog has no belief system. He is not 'trying' to heal. He is not thinking anything about Reiki. He only 'receives'. This is all the proof I needed that it is a real energy and it works. Ashley and I are here to give hope and to teach others about the beauty and possibility of miracles through Reiki.

Thanks for reading my story. Good health and many blessings to all.

And Ashley tells the story in her own words:

I'm a believer in Reiki!

In the beginning of my problem, I didn’t think there was anybody that could help me. I have RSD (reflex sympathetic dystrophy). I lost my whole rightside of my body. I couldn’t use it because of pain and the burning feeling. I’vebeen to alot of doctors and tried different surgeries, therapies, and medications with no luck. The surgeries actually made my RSD worse and spread it. The medicines caused me even more problems. Finally the doctors said they couldn’t help me and that I had a miracle waiting 'somewhere'.

I was 15 when my problem started. After a year I was wheelchair bound and had to depend on others to help me. I'm 18 now. What a way to spend your teen years. Then one day my Mom received a letter in the mail from Julie Romanko, a Reiki Master. She had seen an article in the newspaper about me and decided to write to us and offer her help. My Mom researched Reiki on the computer. We still weren’t sure of it, but we thought “what did we have to lose”? We didn’t have many options left, so my Mom made the appointment. That first appointment was Dec. 13, 2006. The day came and we went to my appointment. The Reiki Master asked me to lay on a massage table and take deep breaths and relax. She put some relaxing music on. My Mom watched from the next room. She said she couldn’t believe what she was seeing…the fact that I was so relaxed and didn’t have a care in the world when normally I would be very tense and scared about the pain. The Reiki Master was holding her hands above me but didn’t touch me. I felt this warm feeling come into my body and it was so relaxing. The master did this for about an hour. Then when it was done, the Reiki Master woke me up and asked me how I felt. I said I felt different. I knew something happened but didn’t know how to explain it. My Mom made another appointment for the next week and we left. That night I slept a little better. But the next morning I woke up andI was wringing wet in sweat and I also had to use the bathroom a lot. The Reiki Master told me I would, because it's the toxins coming out of my body. Do you know that 2 to 3 days after my appointment, I got my right hand back. I started to use it and my hand didn’t hurt as bad. It was amazing, and I couldn’t wait until my next appointment. The next appointment came and we went. I still sweated alot. The color of my right foot used to be bright red and it was inflamed but now it was starting to look normal. My doctors were amazed at how different I looked. They also liked that I was more positive (that’s one of the keys to Reiki, the positive attitude along with the healing energy). My mom told the doctors what it was that I was doing different, which was the Reiki sessions. The doctors told me to continue because it’s working, so we did. I went to see Julie and had a Reiki session once each week. Each time I went felt a little better. My foot looks better each time. And after a couple of months now I have my leg and foot back. On Feb. 22, 2007, I took my first steps. I am now walking again. My pain level is down. I will continue appointments for Reiki and I'm feeling great! I am so glad I kept going! Reiki is amazing! It’s like someone up above us is healing you through the Reiki Master. I have better spirits about life. I'm glad I had continued with Reiki sessions. They are wonderful. This coming summer I want to learn how to do Reiki myself. Thank you Reiki Master, for giving me my life back.

Ashley has since gone on to study Reiki and is now a Level 2 practitioner.

Thanks to Ashley and Julie for sharing this Reiki story.

What's your Reiki Story? Tell us by emailing it to

The Celeb-Reiki Report

This week's Celeb-Reiki is former model Laura Toner of Northern Ireland, who had to retire from her career after she developed Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, the same disorder that afflicts Ashley, the young Reiki practitioner in Ohio featured as this week's Reiki Story. Laura went public with her story to help raise awareness about the illness, which is also known as Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Like Ashley, Laura has found some relief from the pain with Reiki.

Reiki Roundup

El Paso, Texas, USA: Reiki is among the offerings at the U.S. Army's Ft. Bliss Restoration and Resilience Center, where veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are finding ways to recover and go back to active duty with coping tools to prevent its recurrence. Unfortunately, the article in the El Paso Times refers to "Reiki massage" -- for the record, Reiki is NOT massage.

In Charleston, West Virginia, USA, a State Journal article features a naturopathic doctor who is also a Reiki Master Teacher.

Next stop, Lincolnshire, UK, where preschoolers at the Rainbow Cherubs playgroup receive Reiki and other natural therapies to help them deal with stress, even though a doctor representing the British Medical Association says " there's very little in the way of hard evidence that it produces any effect over and above the undoubted placebo effect."

And from a place called Tough near Aberdeen, Scotland, the story of a sheep called Harry who had no choice but to be tough: rejected by his mother shortly after he was born, Harry suffered from epilepsy in his youth and arthritis in his later years, but he was helped by Reiki and acupuncture. Harry died last month just after his ninth birthday. His fleece was knitted into a memorial jumper (that's a sweater to our US readers).

Recent comments

From Pamir:

Thanks for keeping this topical Janet. I didn't drive until I started living in Florida where development is horizontal rather than vertical. I do really enjoy seeing the consumer truck or SUV that should only be allowed in the military, end up right next to me at a red light, after aggressively riding my bumper, then overtaking me with engine sounds that make angels cringe! Hey I'm going to pick up my kid too! It would be worth pondering & starting a campaign to get Reiki in the boardroom. Ultimately it's going to be decisions based in wisdom & not just scientific intelligence & innovation, that are going to be effective.Take corn ethanol for instance. After heavily investing in it, the verdict is that it consumes as much or more energy to make it as it saves & contributes to food shortages. Brazil is near oil independent because they went with sugar ethanol. See this investigative video, it's worth it. I wrote about Reiki & worry recently, touching on the precepts more from a healing angle, but I agree with you. Practical application is one of Reiki's best features and benefits.

Thanks, Pamir!

An anonymous commenter wrote:

Hi ,,, i would like to know more about reiki and where can i find it in kuwait ?

Thanks for your question, anonymous. To help you learn more about Reiki, here's a recent article from the International House of Reiki on what Reiki is (and isn't). As for where you might find it in Kuwait, we linked to an article a few months ago on a Reiki practitioner in Kuwait, so that might be a place to start, as well as this 2007 article featuring a different Reiki practitioner in Kuwait.

In response to the pretty precepts photo that Scott K. contributed, Carrie Ann wrote (in reference to Scott's Reiki is One CafePress shop:

To Scott K.:

How about making the Reiki is One spiral as a print? As a mandala to contemplate, it would be great!


Thanks for the suggestion, Carrie.

And continuing our discussion on the Reiki Precepts, Twilight Serenity wrote:

I repeat the Reiki principals every morning when I take a shower to
center, destress and begin my day fresh. Note to self..take a shower in the
evening too. It may help falling asleep sooner and more restful.

Thanks, Twilight!

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Rest in peace

Malaysian human rights activist and Reiki practitioner Zaiton Kasim, 41, died of cancer this week, according to The Star online. Our condolences to her friends and family.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The weekly waka


My aching muscles
Remind me of the struggle
To climb each mountain
To rise from hot humid plains
And taste the peak’s cold crisp air.
(by Michael Dagley)