Article by Angie Webster
Reiki opens or widens the door to spiritual healing and a spiritual path for most everyone who encounters it. Many people who decide to learn energy healing of any type have discovered or suspect that they are, in fact, beings of spirit, of energy. They want to learn more about this; how to work with it and live peacefully as the being of light that they are. Many thirst for understanding and knowledge. They hunger for their own personal freedom and growth. This is usually part of spiritual development and healing.
The difficulty can become that in this thirst and hunger, we often seek for lots of guidelines. We want rules. We like for our path to be clearly drawn out for us so that we never get lost and so that our way to freedom and healing is assured. It seems to be a very common human need to desire this. A strong urging of the logical mind, which runs contrary to the intuitive mind, which says to stay open, allow, be curious.
Religions are formed by believing that having a set of strict rules and dogma is the only right way to create a true path of spiritual growth and healing. Once we develop the idea that our path, rules and dogma are the only one right path, we become often convinced we must “help” others by teaching them this same way and getting them to leave their old ways behind. We sometimes develop this kind of religious zeal for things other than spiritual growth. How many of you have had someone try to persuade you to eat differently, vote differently or think differently about the environment? People can get pretty heated about these topics, no matter which side they are on! In truth, whenever we get very attached to the idea that one set of beliefs is the only way to see or do things, we are caught in dogma. And yet there are many paths, each one very personal.
We often hear that Reiki isn’t a religion. While that is true, many of us turn it into one. Many people establish lots of rules about what Reiki is or isn’t, how it’s practiced, how the practitioner should feel, the hand position, etc. We need to respect that Reiki is a way to understand that the Universal Source, which most of us call God, and our life force energy are one. It is a way to understand how our life force, and the life force of all, springs from this same Source. It is a way to understand how to work with this force, with great respect for it and for the Ultimate Source that guides it. But that needs no dogma. That only requires you to look inside yourself and do your own healing in an honest way. It only requires you to allow the Source, God, to work through you and in you in the ways that apply to you personally as well as universally.
In the beginning, it is important to learn things like hand positions and where Reiki originated. However, we don’t need to be stuck permanently in doing only the same hand positions, in the same order! This ignores our intuitive guidance, which comes from a much higher place than our own Earth bound mind.
The same can be said for being stuck in the worship of the Reiki lineage and the symbols. There is no need to get stuck in anger simply because someone else heard a different version of the Reiki lineage than you did or because someone else feels differently about the symbols than you do! In the end, the lineage, the story and the symbols are all simply tools. They are signposts that show us what we are trying to understand better, but they are not actually IT.
What we wish to understand–God, our spirits, our life force– are intangibles. That’s why tools are helpful. They help us to talk about and better work with that with is not solid to us. In a 3-D world, that often feels better. But we have to strive to keep in mind that we are still working with an intangible, or we risk making a religion out of Reiki. Our spirit knows intuitively to rest in the flow of the unknown, with a curiosity for what is next, yet without an attachment to the outcome. Be open to this intuition. It is often the doubt and fear of our logical mind that leads us from one snare to the next.
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Angie Webster is a Reiki Master, Teacher, and Author. Angie’s primary focus is animal Reiki, which she adores. She teaches online classes on energy healing, flower essences, herbalism, and personal growth. Angie often works with nature healing and Earth healing, hoping to better understand our connection with Mother Earth. Angie is the author of Animal Reiki: How it Heals, Teaches & Reconnects Us with Nature and Reiki from A to Z. You can follow her at: angie-webster-healing.teachable.com and on Facebook (facebook.com/angiewebsterhealing).