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How to “Hold Space” Using Reiki

Article by Kriss Erickson

You’ve probably heard about “holding space” for various reasons. To hold space means to be present for someone and support their process. Whether that process is healing, clearing, releasing, a job, a new house—whatever the issue, holding space for another is a helpful support.

The nature of Reiki is to hold space. At the heart of the universal lifeforce energies of Reiki is the concept of asking the universe to open a helpful, supportive energy portal (the First Pillar of Reiki),  thanking the universe for hearing and responding to your request (the Second Pillar of Reiki) and then holding that space as you share Reiki with your recipient (the Third Pillar of Reiki).

Holding space means that once you have opened the portal, your own energy and ego step aside. You observe the energy coming through and how the recipient is choosing to work with it. You offer bits of insight, if appropriate, and encouragement, as the energies shift.  That might not seem like a lot, but it is really all you need to do.

The nature of holding space is a powerful tool that sends a specific message to the recipient: that you care, that you, as a human, are supporting the process between the universal healing frequencies and the recipient, and that you are quietly observing and honoring that process.

Hold Space Reiki

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5 Simple Ways to Hold Space Using Reiki

  1. Observe. Just as you are aware that a healing portal has opened at your request, so you can be aware of the process that occurs as that energy interacts with the recipient’s energy. Your calm presence encourages the recipient to work more deeply with and trust the universal energies.
  2. Stay Calm. No matter what you observe, or what responses the recipient has, remain calm. It is not unusual that you will see or hear something you have never heard before. No matter how amazed or awed you are, remain calm and steady. This will encourage the recipient to move deeply into his or her own processes.
  3. Remain Open. Many sources compare the Reiki practitioner to a hollow reed, like a bamboo stalk. Once the Reiki portal is open, simply feel its flow. Follow it to the areas of the recipient’s body and energy field that you feel, supporting the process by placing your hands in those areas.
  4. Be Open to Learning. No matter how many years you practice Reiki, there will always be things to learn. If you notice something different, be aware of that. If it would be helpful for the recipient, talk about it after the session. Be grateful for any new information and understanding that comes through.
  5. Focus on the Recipient. No matter what you see, experience or learn, the focus of the session is the recipient. It is their sacred space, their healing portal. Holding space means to be present to that and be respectful of the sacred space that has been created.

The points above make it clear that, once you have opened a Reiki portal, there is nothing more than that you need to “do”. The act of opening the portal is the most active thing you will “do” for any session. Being mindful of the fact that you are holding space for a recipient releases any desire to “fix” or “make something happen.”

It is much more powerful for the recipient if they know they are working directly with lifeforce energy. Your presence, holding space for that process, points them to that interaction.


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Kriss Erickson
Kriss Erickson

Kriss Ericksonn is an Usui/Tibetan, Atlantean. Crystal, Karuna®, Ra-Sheeba and Lightarian Reiki Master Teacher, a certified Acutonics Practitioner and the founder of the Elemental Frequencies Dragon Reiki system. She teaches and shares Reiki from her home in Everett, WA. Kriss also creates energetic art that she sells at art fairs, composes original music and is a published author. Reach Kriss at www.risingspiralsreiki.com/ and at slverkriss@aol.com.


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