It is a normal part of life as a human being to experience difficulty. We will have aches, pains, and health issues. Our struggles may include anxiety or depression. These things are true for every one of us. There is no escaping pain, illness, loss, death, and struggle. These are things we will all encounter at some time in our lives, even those of us who become Reiki Masters and Teachers.
Some new Reiki Masters (and I was one of them) confuse this with an idea of an eventual physical ideal, with no health issues, pains, or need for medical care or medication. This confusion between the benefits of our spiritual practice in Reiki and an expectation of a perfectly functioning body can cause a great deal of suffering, both physically and mentally. We can unconsciously shame ourselves for the very ordinary course of human life, with all its ups and downs. We can shame ourselves from seeking medical help when it is needed. And, we can unintentionally project those feelings onto our friends, family members, and clients, who may then question themselves before seeking treatment or medical advice.
You are NOT failing as a healer if you still experience pain and illness. You are NOT failing if you still experience difficulties in your life. One of the best spiritual teachings I ever learned was that each of us will, at some point, experience loss, sorrow, death, illness, and pain. Have compassion for yourself and all others, knowing this truth. Reiki can guide us through and help us cope with these things, but it does not remove us from life’s experiences.
Reiki gives us a spiritual practice. The connection with Divine Life Force Energy, the meditative practice of self-Reiki, and the Reiki precepts give us tools that support our spiritual well-being. Supporting our spiritual wellness provides good support for our physical and emotional well-being. Research has shown that healthy spiritual practices, such as prayer or meditation, nearly always support or improve physical and mental health in some way. Sometimes this is simply to increase one’s sense of happiness. Other times, there is a more dramatic improvement. Of course, the effect is different for everyone, but the research demonstrates that having a consistent personal spiritual practice as part of one’s daily life makes a difference.
However, that doesn’t mean that having a personal Reiki practice will provide us with a life free of pain, illness, loss, struggle, suffering, or death. And that does not mean you are failing in any way. Unfortunately, I believe a misunderstanding has evolved regarding a piece of guidance taught years ago. New students learned that a Reiki practitioner shouldn’t practice with others when sick. I recall years ago seeing this advice turning into statements like, “She shouldn’t be practicing Reiki; she has arthritis. What kind of healer can she be if she has that?”
However, Reiki practitioners should not practice when they are not feeling well is because they are the ones that need energy. They need to focus on their own self-care and healing at that time. Remember, Reiki is first and foremost your personal spiritual practice. It can never be much to others if you don’t embrace it as your private spiritual practice first. So, when you are not feeling well, allow the energy to flow to you. If you attempt to practice with someone else, you will likely find that the session doesn’t go well, that you feel as though you are trying to force energy to flow to them, and that you feel drained afterward. That doesn’t mean you are failing. It just means you need healing and care. Divine Life Source Energy recognizes the energy is needed and sends it to you.
This underlying thought process of feeling as though we have to be perfect, super-human, and resistant to modern medicine has become very common in the Reiki world and many complementary healing practices these days, and it is regrettable. Please be cautious of this. At one time, it led me to avoid doctors and treatments that would have significantly improved my quality of life today.
Unfortunately, quite a few of my healer friends have died in recent years because they avoided medical advice and treatment, believing they were failing if they couldn’t heal themselves. Because they held this belief, they didn’t seek the help they needed, and now they are forever gone from this Earth. Their light and their friendship will be forever missed by so many.
The fact is, human bodies are very vulnerable, which is part of what makes them so very beautiful! And over time, they all eventually wear out, no matter what we do. That’s what makes this life so very precious! That means we should be very kind to our bodies and nurture our spiritual practices like Reiki. Eat well, sleep well, get fresh air – all the beautiful things we can do to be well. These enrich our lives in these human bodies. But our healing continues, even long after we have left these human bodies behind forever.
We are all already enough, already worthy, already perfect in the eyes of the Divine Source/Reiki. You are already whole, even if you don’t feel like it. Just allow Reiki to bathe you in Its Love and let go of any ideals that tell you your human body (or anyone else) has to be free of pain, need, or illness for you to be a good healer (or a good person.) You already are. That is so important to remember, but sometimes we need help to do that. Spiritual practices can help. And sometimes, we also need support from the medical community or therapists. So never be afraid or ashamed to seek that support.
Have you ever heard the quote, “if you can’t make it yourself, store-bought is perfectly fine!” This quote refers to the numerous chemicals our bodies may not process properly, leading to things like anxiety, depression, Parkinson’s, immune deficiencies, hypothyroidism, diabetes, etc. Fortunately, modern medicine has made medications to help our bodies when we can’t make or process these neurochemicals as we need to. Having these medications available is a blessing from Divine Life Force! I am grateful for each medical advancement that saves lives, improves the quality of life, and prevents illness or decline. I include these in my gratitude as I do the Reiki principles each day.
I encourage you to look inside and see if there are elements of shame you have picked up from other healers, teachers, or even the internet. Many healers also have medical trauma due to a long history of personal illness. Many of us come to Reiki because we have a history of chronic illness or cancer. Please look honestly at these and consider doing self-healing if you find any evidence in yourself of this. You may save a life. Maybe even your own.
Article by Angie Webster
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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).