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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Book Review: Reiki for Children by Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, ND

By Beth Lowell, Managing Editor

Reiki For Children was originally conceived as a text book for teaching children Reiki, but as author Kytka Hilmar-Jezek reflected on her manual, she decided it would serve more people if presented as a stand-alone piece. Written from the heart, Hilmar-Jezek hones in on the importance of teaching children Reiki, if possible, while they are still young enough that they have not started to develop negative thought patterns and before their creativity and sense of wonder are squelched, which can often occur merely as a result of the growing up process.

This 135 page book is filled with great affirming quotations that help children understand from an early age their value, and the values that Reiki teaches. It's written in a tone that makes it suitable for reading to children, while seeking to tackle complex issues like connection to the universe, the chakra system and the impact of our thoughts. Many of these concepts lie outside the realm of Reiki, like the author's use of angels and heaven as a way to describe what many call Source, or the Great White Light, which may resonate with children and help them understand more easily concepts that many adults struggle with, but not being an expert on the developmental stages of children and their comprehension, I'm not sure how well different age groups will integrate esoteric/new age/ holistic side topics like spirit guides, auras, crystals and the benefits of a raw diet.

Sections are devoted to the symbols, the attunement process, a Reiki treatment (complete with photos of hand positions), methods like scanning, and grounding ones' self and there is ample room at the end for note taking.

Reiki history students may take issue with the story of "Dr." Usui and the founding of Reiki, as it does not coincide with what current reasearch has shown, but by and large, the book is a valuable tool for those who looking for help explaining some of Reiki's concepts to children.

Part of the Family Healing Series, Reiki For Children is available in paperback at Amazon.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The weekly waka

has exited
the planet -
these past ten years
have simply disappeared.

by Beth Lowell

Submit your waka by including it in an email and sending it to waka @ Be sure to include the word "waka" in the subject line!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Reiki perspectives: Reiki, medicine and miracles

So many of us have offered Reiki treatment to people undergoing conventional cancer treatment, and we've seen firsthand how much it can help (pun intended!). But when I was teaching in London and Dublin recently, I received a firsthand account from a woman being treated for breast cancer that brought tears to my eyes. Read more

Monday, September 26, 2011

Intuition: do you share it?

Deborah Flanagan's August 18th article on the number one question clients asked generated a few comments.

The subject of intuition is near and dear to our hearts here at The Reiki Digest. Here's what readers had to say.

Em said: Absolutely LOVE this post! It's so true that it probably is one of the more common questions from clients and I also see it pop up during practitioner Reiki shares too. I have to admit, that I too have looked forward to learning what others have picked up when it's my turn on the table. A few times, it has been helpful to confirm something I was already thinking of, but sometimes others have picked up what I had turned a "blind eye" to. I am very inspired by this post to further connect to my own wisdom and to the wisdom of the Reiki energy. THANK YOU!

Bonnie said: I think there's a continuum it's not an "either or" thing here, in terms of share it or don't. I've found that many people are looking for affirmation of their own "inner" feelings...and that kind of affirmation can help lead to them trusting their own intuition and higher self much more in the long run. Just "trust your intuition" is a big leap for many people. They need a little help. Gently giving impressions in a way that helps to guide them toward their OWN knowledge can be extremely helpful. It certainly was for me. You say your own intuition "isn't always correct" so perhaps it's a matter of knowing when ego is in the way...and discerning between true intuition and other things (like a need to fix, etc) Just my thoughts!

Anonymous said: Doing volunteer work in a hospital setting, we have to be careful NOT to share anything that we pick up. And, yes, people frequently ask. Thank you for your response - it is perfect.

What do you think? Do you share your intuition? Why or why not?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The weekly waka

No apologies
Still forest or crashing waves
Each step, transition
Soul’s journey along the path
Wholeness within each moment.

by Kathy Koval

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Reiki perspectves: Finding Reiki at Breitenbush

Reiki master Diane Armstrong of Maryland attended her first Northwest Reiki Gathering at Breitenbush, Oregon and found unexpected depth and support in the community. She shares her experience with us.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Honoring the founder

Located near Granite Falls, Washington, Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America is the only Grand Shinto Shrine in North America. Photo courtesy of Graham Neville.

Rev. Koichi Barrish begins Oharae (purification) with Harae Gushi (purification wand). Photo courtesy of Tsubaki Shrine.

Samantha Parrott, “The Reiki Baker” has provided delicious cake for both of the celebrations.
By Marianne StreichOn my first visit to the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America near Granite Falls, Washington, I immediately recognized connections between Reiki and Shinto in the ritual, in the pure, calm energy of the place, in the power of the ceremonies, and in the exquisite beauty of the Shrine and its grounds. A strong intuitive sense told me that Mikao Usui must have practiced Shinto as well as Buddhism,* and since that initial visit I have taken Reiki students for shrine visits and returned myself for seasonal ceremonies. When there, I always feel a stronger connection with Usui Sensei.
Early in 2010, Senior Shinto Priest Rev. Koichi Barrish connected me with another Seattle Reiki practitioner, Kris Klohe, who envisioned a celebration at the Shrine to mark the 145th anniversary of Usui Sensei’s birth. A planning committee was formed and the ceremony took place on August 15, 2010. The event brought Reiki practitioners together from around Puget Sound, and afterwards it was decided to have a yearly celebration to be held on the Sunday closest to Usui’s birth date. The second annual event was held August 14.
The celebration begins with welcoming remarks, followed by repetition of the Gokai (Reiki Precepts) in both English and Japanese, a brief explanation of the ceremony, and then the ceremony itself. In addition to honoring Usui Sensei, the purpose of the ceremony is to raise the vibration of those in attendance. It begins with a preliminary purification and progresses to a final drum song connecting each soul with all that is—a moment that can bring extraordinary clarity to participants (and has for me). Following the ceremony, participants share birthday cake on the Shrine grounds.
Shinto emerged and developed spontaneously as an expression of the deep intuitive connection with Divine Nature enjoyed by human beings in ancient Japan. Shinto as natural spirituality is based on this harmonious primal relationship with the “infinite restless movement of Great Nature,” rather than on the written or revealed teachings of human beings. Important tenets of Shinto are gratitude, purification, raising one’s vibration, and strengthening one’s ki.
No, Reiki is not a religion, but Mikao Usui was a deeply spiritual man, and his practice of Reiki was an outgrowth of this spirituality. The Annual Usui Birthday Celebration is a meaningful way of connecting Reiki practitioners and of exploring a tradition that had great meaning for Usui Sensei, and, I believe, has much to teach Reiki practitioners today. As Reiki Master Lou Orsan of Bellevue, Washington commented, “It was wonderful to experience the energy of that sacred place and to participate in the ceremony…I felt an altered state of consciousness [afterwards]…and feel energized and more connected to Usui Sensei than before the ceremony.”
*My intuitive sense that Usui Sensei practiced Shinto was confirmed when I read Don Beckett’s Reiki, The True Story, an Exploration of Usui Reiki. Beckett reports a statement made by a Buddhist nun closely associated with Usui who said he practiced Shinto as well as Tendai Buddhism and that he also underwent three years of Zen Buddhist training.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The weekly waka

Heart stopped, journey starts
The grass is getting longer
Dishwasher broken
Meeting tomorrow morning
One grey hair doesn’t matter.
by Kathy Koval

Monday, September 12, 2011

Reiki perspectives: Just an another (Un)usual Reiki class

It is always an honor and a pleasure to teach a Reiki class. And from time to time, a class that looks very usual from outside brings so much to their First degree training that they somehow carry the process far beyond the usual. Read more ...

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Please welcome guest editor Eileen Dey!

Eileen Dey

Dear readers,

Please join us in welcoming guest editor Eileen Dey. Over the last 15 years, Eileen has taught over 1000 students and presented Reiki to various groups including veterans, environmental organizations and staff and families in the Ronald McDonald House organization.  We reviewed her book, Touching the World Through Reiki here last August and she was also featured in the Reiki Roundup for her work at the Duwamish River in Seattle Wahington.

Thanks, Eileen!

In the footsteps of Takata

Photo courtesy of Rick Bockner

By Eileen Dey

What might it have been like over 30 years ago to be the last Reiki master student to receive training with Hawayo Takata? Where might you be now? 

Since his powerful attunement experiences of years past, Rick has been an active member in the Reiki Alliance, as well as cultivating his career as a well-known guitarist, songwriter and performer who has spent over 50 years exploring folk, blues and early jazz styles of music.

He began playing guitar when he was seven. Some of his teachers have included Pete Seeger, Mel Bay, Stefan Grossman, and Woody Mann. Rick was a member of the seminal 60’s San Francisco band, Mad River (Capitol Records). He is known for his lush fingerstyle arrangements and penetrating, intelligent lyrics.

He grew up in St. Louis, Missouri (USA) where his father worked as a social worker, using the music of Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, and Pete Seeger in his work with children. Seeger was a frequent house guest, and the family home was a stopping point for some of the best folk and blues musicians on tour in the 50’s. Music was in the home and Rick soon became attracted to learning the guitar. 

Later in his career, Rick gravitated toward the study of Reiki. His teacher was Hawayo Takata. Mrs. Takata has been revered by many Reiki practitioners and masters as the teacher who brought Reiki to the West. She had initiated 21 Reiki masters between 1970 and 1980 when Rick attended Mrs. Takata’s last advanced Reiki class and received his master attunement a few months before she left this world. He became her 22nd and last master student.

At each level, Rick experienced profound changes in himself and his own worldview. 
In my conversations with Rick, I've come to understand that he is devoted to the original way that Reiki was taught and which was brought forth to the US as  Hawayo Takata first taught.
He is committed to the way of the Reiki Alliance, and their protocol for learning each level with plenty of practice in between.

I know myself, after practicing Reiki over 15 years from a Takata-taught teacher, the benefit of learning the 'old school' method of working with this system. By spending time practicing between levels and advancing when one is truly ready, one is able to integrate the wisdom of each Reiki symbol.

The power of tradition is inherent in this method and I feel, allows each student ample time and ability to integrate the learning according to their own style.

Eileen Dey, M.A., LMHC, is a licensed mental health counselor and founder of the only state licensed vocational school of Reiki.

The Reiki roundup

Victoria Harbor, Hong Kong: Reiki at Peninsula Spa

Celeb-Reiki Bret Spiner

This month's Celeb-Reiki feature includes my own experience in presenting Reiki to Bret Spiner (Data on Star Trek: The Next Generation) and how celebrities embracing Reiki affects our own thoughts about it. You may need to click the Facebook icon to read the second article.

Music we love to practice Reiki by: Reiki OM

I put Reiki OM into play as background music for several Reiki classes I taught. My students commented that the music and sounds were tranquil and soothing and allowed them to go deeper into each session. As a practitioner and facilitator, I felt the music was aligned to the Reiki flow and also permitted me as a channel to tune in on a more profound level.

The Weekly Waka

This world of ours
Is but a passing thing.
A mountain stream's
Clean purity in my gaze,
I would find the Way.
Yakamochi 2001