Article by Deborah Lloyd, Reiki Master
Another student shooting happened within two hours of our home this past week, leaving two college students dead and several injured. During a conversation at work the following day, something interesting occurred. The topic subtly shifted from this event, to other mass shootings, to telling the stories of where each of us were at, and what we were doing, when we first heard about the plane crashes on the morning of September 11, 2001. We realized how our reactions to these traumatic events bring up certain emotions within us.
We reflected on how the emotions associated with public and personal traumas in our lives continue to “pop up” every time another terrible event occurs. Personal traumas can include such events as experiencing some form of abuse and violence, witnessing accidents, watching sad events on the news, and similar situations. It seems when emotional responses are similar, past events can affect us emotionally, again and again.
The following day, two Reiki clients mentioned how much the recent shooting left them with feelings of fear and sadness. They talked about how fearful students who saw the shooter, and those locked down in classrooms and buildings across the campus, had to have been. While Reiki energies certainly helped to decrease the negative emotions for these clients, the effects of traumatic events may not be alleviated in a short period of time. Cognitive processing by talking with others, journaling and thoughtful reflection are also important steps.
Certainly, Reiki practitioners will likely work with clients who have been traumatized. Usually, that is not why a client seeks a Reiki session. Often, people do not realize the extent of the effects of a traumatic event, but Reiki can help bring the emotional impact to the surface. It is a sign it is time for the feelings to surface and to be healed. Or, it is possible the healing has been in process for some time, and more healing vibrations will assist in the process.
As everyone reading this article is already a Reiki practitioner, we must understand we can experience trauma on two levels.
- Primary trauma refers to experiencing the event itself; or experiencing it through television, the internet, reading, etc.
- Secondary trauma refers to those who help people with primary trauma – this can refer to those compassionate listeners of a family member or friend. It can also refer to the professional helper – and this includes Reiki practitioners. While there are mental health professionals who work with veterans, police officers, firefighters, emergency responders, and the like, all professionals who work with others may experience secondary trauma. Hearing these stories, or seeing the aftereffects, can be a traumatic experience.
Fortunately, Reiki practitioners have a special tool to deal with these emotions – Reiki! Doing a Reiki self-treatment session, or receiving Reiki from another person, is a wonderful way to decrease any effects on you. Working with other people can be challenging; working with people with traumatic memories and feelings can be especially difficult. It can also be very fulfilling. Another way to bring Reiki healing to others….
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Deborah Lloyd is a Usui and Karuna® Reiki Master and certified holistic therapy practitioner, providing Reiki sessions and training in Asheville, NC. Deborah is the author of two books, 22 Messages from the Archangels; and, Believe and it is True: A Story of Healing and Life Lessons. She is also one of the co-authors of Reiki 101: 101 Answers for Your Reiki Questions. Reach Deborah at http://www.deblloydhealing.com/, firstname.lastname@example.org and at Deb Lloyd Healing on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/deblloydhealing)