December 2

Reiki and Religion

I have to admit that it takes a lot to bring up my ire, but as I was browsing for topics and groups on Reiki, I came across some beliefs that are worth discussing – especially since I teach Reiki classes for all levels, was raised Catholic, and have a strong daily spiritual practice. The beliefs from well-known people (including someone whose work I’ve admired and used in classes – Dorene Virtue) and/or organizations (especially from a few Christian organizations) state that Reiki is less than pure, and that its source, including the symbols, stem from something other than Source, God, or the highest vibration. Interesting, isn’t it? So let me clarify just a bit with another perspective so that you can form your own, unbiased opinion. Also, since this is a very broad topic with lots of potential angst and disagreement, I’ll just keep it brief and general with the hope that you’re willing to explore your beliefs and not be limited by dogma.

The Multiple Nature of Spirit

1. What is God, Spirit, Source, or any of the other names for God to you? In fact in Hebrew, there are 72 names of God including El, Elohim, Eloha, YHWH, Adonai and more. El becomes the suffix for many angelic names used throughout many religions. Consider Gabriel (“Strength of God”), Michael (“Who is like God?”), Raphael (“God’s medicine”), Ariel (“God’s lion”), Daniel (“God’s Judgment”), Israel (“one who has struggled with God”), Emmanuel (“God is with us”), and Ishmael (“God Hears”/”God Listens”). These (and all) angels are the many aspects of God. They interact with humans (and other life forms) to bring God into physical awareness.

2. Is God masculine or feminine? Perhaps God is neither and both – perhaps “Whole”, “All”. In Christianity, God is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Yet, in shamanism, Father Sky gives masculine gender to the heavenly plane where the astral body dwells (the soul), while Earth Mother gives the feminine gender to the physical plane from which we are created with the elements of earth. One cannot exist without the Other and together form the Whole, or even the branches and roots of the kabbalah, Tree of Life.

3. What is grace? Compassion, wisdom, unconditional love, understanding, etc., all give us aspects of God’s grace. There’s an understanding and acceptance that humans, though they try, aren’t God. Yet, if we are made from God and are composed of God’s unconditional love, how can we not be also aspects of God in human form? It’s through the grace of God that we bring God’s wisdom, compassion, and unconditional love to others. Aren’t we then like God or aspects of God?

4. What is sin to you? That’s perhaps a loaded question and the answer also depends on your belief system. You might think that what I’ve written is blasphemous, depending on your beliefs. Sin implies “against God”. Yet, our purpose here on this planet is to experience, grow, and become more like God. In other words, it’s our job to remember who we are – aspects of God in physical form. Perhaps the only sin is that we’ve forgotten who we are and why we’re here.

Where Does Reiki Fit?

Objectors to Reiki say that the Reiki symbols are limiting. I believe they’re a physical representation of God’s language, giving us words to use when we do acts of service. The symbols themselves provide a written representation, much like the alphabet writes the bible. I’m sure you’d agree that the alphabet in itself is not sinful. Why, then, would symbols of pure intention be considered sinful, especially if they help us remember our connection to the divine?

Christian objectors to Reiki question the source and secrecy of the symbols. The secrecy that originated around the Japanese symbols has historical and cultural significance – that those who would appreciate these symbols the most are the ones who have been trained in how to use them and become skilled in healing arts. Otherwise, the symbols are meaningless to the untrained user. Consider this. Energy IS, and when we begin to use the gifts we’ve received, the gifts to continue to grow. The gifts transform us, spreading far and wide in a ripple-effect to those seeking enlightenment, forgiveness, and transformation. The Reiki symbols – gifts from the language of God (or whatever name you choose to use) – become a way for us to communicate with grace.

Objectors to Reiki say that Jesus never used symbols for healing. That may or may not be true (at least if we’re talking Reiki symbols as presented by Mikao Usui). Yet Jesus’ spiritual practice likely included a diverse and robust communication with God – in whatever language they used . . . prayer, dreams, intuition, “knowing”, etc. This communication is not unlike what Reiki practitioners use to call in the divine for guidance and healing.

Objectors to Reiki question the source of the symbols to be from something other than God. I maintain that both intention and action are powerful tools for any devoted practitioner – whether one practices Reiki, medicine, shamanism, or religion of any kind. If we intend for the highest good, trust that we are guided only by the highest good, and act on behalf of the highest good, how is that different from the work of Jesus, God, or any aspect of God?

The Truth About Spiritual Practice

We’re all finding our way in the world. Religious systems, beliefs of others, dogma, limitations, and the many influences that come our way sometimes cloud the truth and offer limitations. The possibility to heal is unlimited. The possibility to offer healing – through Reiki, shamanism, or spirituality – is unlimited. Transformation and remembering who we are is a constant journey we call life (everlasting) as we move toward enlightenment. Our transformation makes God bigger (greater). When you develop your spiritual practice, you may want to include Reiki as a fine art of healing, on which great wisdom can be nurtured and offered.

It is my belief that we don’t live in sin. We’re just perhaps a little farther from the light. By light I mean God, not actual light. Darkness also offers healing, silence, reflection, retrieval of what was perhaps lost. Darkness is not evil but rather a part of the whole, and part of God. Even Jesus had his moments of trial and suffering. We call it darkness and know that it’s just part of the journey – not something to be feared or condemned.

If you’d like to explore your spirituality, your growth of spirit, Reiki may be a wonderful opening for you. I can teach you the Reiki symbols and how to use them. I integrate Reiki and offer shamanic experiences and training. You’ll find workshops and classes to fit your needs for spiritual growth.

I invite you to contact me or check my calendar for upcoming classes that fir your needs for healing and spiritual growth.


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