Setting up your perfect day

scared-on-coaster4

Part two of my monthly theme of living with Reiki is about how to set up your perfect day. There is a great metaphor given by Esther Hicks where she describes momentum. She explains that in many ways our thoughts, feelings and intentions for the day gather momentum much like a car rolling down a hill. It is possible to step in front of a car when it first starts to roll and stop it rolling any further, but if the car is allowed to pick up momentum no one in their right mind would try and stop it.

In much the same way we stand a better chance of stopping the momentum of negative, thoughts, feelings and intentions if we catch them early. If we allow them to build momentum then it becomes very difficult to do anything about them.

Author of ‘breaking the habit of being yourself’, Dr. Joe Dispenza was once asked during a seminar what his personal routine was to set up his day. He said; “I don’t get out of bed until I have got my head right” This really resonated with me because I know from personal experience, my day reflects my mental and emotional state. If I start the day without first getting my thoughts and emotions right, then whatever state I am in will just build momentum and my day could become a complete roller coaster nightmare.

The Reiki practice has great tools for preparing ourselves but so often we forget to use them and many people only utilise them when giving treatments to others. When we realise living with Reiki is about using the practice each and every day of our lives we can begin to appreciate what a great tool it is.

So what can we do to get our head Right?

Fortunately there are two incredibly useful tools we have that are designed to serve this very purpose. Hawayo Takata when telling the history of Reiki emphasised, over and over again, the message that the monks gave to Mikao Usui. “The mind requires purifying before the physical body can be healed”. She talked of Mikao Usui feeling like he had failed after his experiences working with the beggars in the slums and why he included the five precepts into the system;

The inclusion of the 5 precepts in our Reiki practice teaches us to consider what is essential for our well-being. To reset our thinking, to focus our minds and emotions on the principals for health and happiness. They do not need to be chanted but simply contemplated. The best place to do that is in Gassho.

Gassho is so incredibly valuable to our practice and as well as serving to generate energy flow this Mudra is a place where our intention is established and we focus our mind and return ourselves to balance. It is a traditional gesture formed by placing the palms of the hands together with all fingers pointing upwards. It symbolises the oneness of all beings and is often used in the East as a humble greeting, a sign of respect or to give thanks. Called Namaste in Sanskrit. [‘Namah’ means bow ‘te’ means to you]. It literally means, “I bow to you” and is regarded as an honouring of the divinity in someone we meet. The two hands brought together are symbolic of our human and Buddha nature. The left hand represents our human nature and the right hand our Buddha nature. Bringing them together over the heart is symbolic that both aspects reside within us and we are never far away from our Buddha self.

It is essential to remember is it is not the quantity of time but the quality of time that you give yourself that gets your thinking right. Even when you think you don’t have time, MAKE TIME each and every day to be still, connect to Reiki and consider the 5 precepts.

 Part 1.

Sit quietly and place your hands in Gassho (Prayer Position) over the heart and bring your attention to your breath.

Whist breathing in, imagine drawing in energy, through the full surface of your body, from all around you to your Hara (Belly).

Whilst breathing out feel the spread of energy up through your body, to your heart and hands

 Part 2.

Begin to consider the five precepts and the significance of them in your life for the day ahead.

Just for today

Release anger

Release worry

Be Grateful

Be honest in your endeavors

Be kind to all.

Part 3.

Bring all of your attention to your belly, feel grounded and supported by the earth below you. See yourself as an intimate part of the world and connected to everything and everyone in it. When you feel centred, balanced and connected, your ready to start your day!

 

Thanks for listening

RR

Creating your very own Healing Centre

DSC_0046

Over the years as a result of the Reiki classes I run, I have witnessed a fair number of people having moments of revelation, accompanied by a deep desire to drop everything, change the course of their life and head off somewhere to heal the world or open a healing centre. It’s a lovely idea and in those instants I watch as imaginations get to work and the inevitable idyllic visions of the possibility of living bathed in the utopia of Reiki all day long are born.

I know exactly what that feeling is like because I had it myself. In fact I did drop everything to change my life and head off to live in community with other like minded people. I embraced wearing socks with Birkenstock sandals, grew my hair long and ate a purely vegan diet. I meditated every day, wore a crystal pouch around my neck and communed with earth angels and devas. I was constantly hugging people and developed the art of gazing deeply into the eyes of another for ridiculously long periods of time. I knew all the words to ‘Puff The Magic Dragon’, retreated in solitude to the islands of Iona and within a year my metamorphism from London Fashion Photographer to Way Out Tree Hugging Hippie Healer was complete.

As amusing as it sounds, I was loving my life, I felt deeply connected and had a sense of purpose that for the first time felt absolutely right to me. But the decision to depart this Spiritual Oasis I lived in occurred as rapidly as it had arrived. The catalyst for me was the departure of a group of American students with whom I had built strong bonds. My heart had felt that deep sense of aloneness that only goodbye’s can give you and I understood in that moment Living with Reiki was less about creating a sanctuary outside of myself and more about creating it within.

I learnt to locate a place within that told me I was connected. When self treating, I could give Reiki to myself and feel it filling up. I started to view it as a sanctuary inside of myself and in time, it became my source, my healing centre. I realised as long as it was there, I had no need for an outer sanctuary. In the ensuing years I lent my experiences to others facing the urge to drop everything and make dramatic life changes. I encouraged a more balanced approach than the one I had taken, allowing Reiki to transform them without causing great disruption and fall out in their day to day lives.

When we attend a Reiki course we are provided with a safe space in which we can be open, share and feel supported. It is deeply nurturing and most of us who experience it want to remain there for as long as we can. But just like returning from a weeks holiday on the beach can be difficult, many are immediately challenged by the need to go back home after a workshop. I have heard so many stories of people getting home and their stressed out partner says, well I am glad you had a nice time, welcome back to ‘the real world’ and hands the sugar laced kids over.

But here’s the thing, Reiki is as much a part of ‘the real world’ as anything else, it’s just a case of grounding it into our reality. Some compromises may be required depending upon where we live. We might have to consider those around us who haven’t been zapped by the Reiki Ray! We may need to find flexibility in our Reiki practice, make it less dogmatic, refrain from trying to convert everyone to our Reiki Religion and generally be a little more subtle in our approach. For me, it meant the socks and Birckenstocks had to go, the crystal pouch around the neck was replaced by a deep knowing that Reiki was in my heart. The deep gaze into another’s eyes for long periods of time replaced by a handshake or an appropriate hug.

As we ground and integrate Reiki into our lives we learn to use our increased sensitivity to navigate by and our vulnerability becomes an opportunity to inspire openness in others. We become to the best of our ability an example of the precepts. When faced with challenging and unsympathetic environments we are taught humility and to reflect upon the strengths of our beliefs.

A Reiki workshop is designed to offer us a glimpse into the possibility of a way of being where we live with awareness of being intimately connected to everything in this Universe. In a workshop we can bathe in the luxuriousness of all the participants focused on the same intention of love and healing. But the real work starts when we go home. Integrating what we have learnt and ensuring we complete our spiritual homework. Creating an inner sanctuary, a healing centre within, is an essential part of that work.

So the next time you meet people or situations that challenge you and are difficult to digest, remind yourself. How I respond right here right now is the full measure of my personal development. Drop into your inner sanctuary in that moment and see it as an opportunity to demonstrate a way of being that echoes your beliefs.

Thanks for listening Reiki Rich

For more go to www.practicalreiki.com/blog/

Don’t Let Dramas Hijack Your Day

no person place or thing

I had a wonderful start to the day today indulging myself with a swim, sauna and hot tub. Whilst there, I was contemplating what to write about emptiness and the nature of flow this week. The pool was really quiet, with a few lanes marked out on the right side for a swimming club, which left half the pool for the two ladies already swimming and myself. Not wishing to disturb them, I followed swimming etiquette, made myself visible, nodded politely and kept my stroke as tidy as possible. Within a few lengths It seemed I was accepted and we had all settled into our own rhythms. Phew!

It struck me that each individual finding their own rhythm and flow positively affects the rhythms and flows of everyone else. For thirty blissful lengths, I could feel my body relax completely and I was left to explore the grace of moving as effortlessly as possible buoyed by the support of the water.

Suddenly though through the peace and synergy a red faced gentleman fresh from the sauna jumped in and proceeded to swim the fastest length of front crawl he could muster. As he splashed and kicked his way, arms flailing, I watched as everyone’s stroke went from relaxed grace to desperate avoidance! Frowns etched on foreheads, whites of eyes magnified by tight fitting goggles, they stood shaking their heads and tutting at his ungainly progress towards the end of the pool. Fortunately there wasn’t a second length, his exertions for the day ending on lap one blissfully unaware of the chaos he had just left in his wake.

As the turbulence from his efforts subsided and the waters calmed, I was left pondering what had just occurred. It reminded me how on a motorway, one persons impatience or inconsideration inevitably leads to the rest of us having to be more patient as we wait in a tailback whilst the police clear up the mess. It’s as if one individual’s desperate desire to go faster than the flow of traffic allows leads to a karmic debt having to be paid by all.

With personal awareness and development comes the ability to respond to situations like these with maybe a little humour or in the case of someone driving too close behind us, just getting out of the way and letting them go. But ultimately it shows us that one individual’s behaviour has the potential to not only be felt by everyone else but also affect us.

With all the potential dramas occurring around us on a daily basis, it’s no wonder we lose touch with ourselves. So what can we do to take personal responsibility for our interactions with the external world and prevent ourselves losing our own inner sense of rhythm? Being pulled into a drama is generally a result of being caught off guard and allowing our mind and thoughts to become invested in it. How often do we arrive home and recount the story of the idiot we encountered on our way home from work? As soon as the mind is not home we lose touch with reality and our own sense of inner rhythm.

So firstly we have to notice that we are getting hijacked by a drama. This means we have to be awake and mindful enough to notice it. Secondly we have to let go of the desire to be pulled into it, which is usually pretty strong and instead focus our mind somewhere else. But where?

I suggest the Hara is a great place to focus the mind because we cannot be conscious of the Hara without dropping back into the now. That is why fulfillment is said to arise out of sinking the mind into the Hara. The Hara is our belly region and placing our hands upon it whilst breathing deeply into it and allowing our mind to settle back into ourself is guaranteed to help us feel centred and in contact with our inner flow once again.

I would also suggest repeating this very simple affirmation;

“No person place or thing can disturb my sense of peace and calmness within.”

Thanks Reiki Rich

If you like this blog and would like to read more about Flow you can find my new book The Heart Of Reiki Here.

‘Wu Wei’ The Way Of Emptiness.

 

illust 17 Yin Yang copy

One of the Kanji found in the middle of the Reiki pictograph is the character Wu which literally translates as ‘Shaman’. Wu also refers to the empty void from which flows the primordial essence of the universe and becoming one with this essence is the principle path of Taoism.

In keeping with my theme of emptiness this month, I would like to discuss the ‘Wu Wei’, which epitomizes the Taoist philosophy of becoming empty like bamboo, so that we can feel the flow of primordial essence through us. ‘Wu Wei’ is the art of non-action or following the path of least resistance. It refers to the cultivation of a state of being in which our actions are effortlessly efficient and in alignment with the natural flow of our environment and is achieved by first becoming conscious of an inner flow within. It is said when we do, the potential is there for us to become aware of our intimate connection to everything in the outer world and realize we are part of the universes unfolding story and an expression of its infinite creativity. The more still and empty we can become, the more we are aware of our own formlessness and the more we are able to sense this creative expression of universal energy through us, as flow.

I love this appreciation of emptiness because it encapsulates the approach we must cultivate when it comes to practicing Reiki. So often we can get caught up in our own ability to give Reiki that we inadvertently make the healing about ourselves, even though we are told throughout our training that it is not us that is doing the healing and to let go and trust Reiki’s innate intelligence to know what is needed and where to flow.

So can we learn from the Taoist philosophy of Wu Wei? Can we embody the notion of emptiness, not make it about us, get out of the way and allow space through which Reiki can flow? I believe this is the real key to successful Reiki treatment. To experience the quality of the interaction whilst reminding ourselves; everything that takes place is what is required. Being empty means we let go of preconceived ideas of what is to take place. It is to realize that trying to direct Reiki is as futile as trying to push a river, for like a river, Reiki flows where it will.

Being empty is to surrender and allow an unfolding of the healing process that is congruent with the needs of the client. The more we push someone towards some desired outcome, the less congruent we are. The more we try to fix someone and send them home healed, the more we have robbed them of their own opportunity to heal themselves.

Wu Wei is effortless action, acting when the time is right and achieving, without the appearance of trying. When we allow ourselves to be inspired by spirit [in-spirited], we are allowing ourselves to become in that instant intuitively directed by the flow of energy through us. The emptier we become the more we are guided to be appropriate for the given moment because we are present with what is. The emptier we are, the greater the Ki flow and the greater the potential response.

The person who is most effective at becoming empty and open is usually the one who is not trying because quite simply, Ki flow is interrupted by our own needs and wants. It’s not easy to be deeply surrendered and not make things about ourself. It’s not easy to release outcomes and simply hold a space for someone else unconditionally. We like to feel useful, we like to think of ourselves as making a difference. We want to know that we have helped facilitate change. But all that just gets in the way and prevents us really being completely open and surrendered to what is.

Wu Wei as a concept, teaches us that rather than trying to force a result upon another, we must allow it to unfold naturally. Allow flow to reveal what is required and guide us to the right outcome. This is our task, to become like empty bamboo so that we can feel the vital essence of life through us. Fortunately we are beautifully designed for this purpose, we are the point at which the Yin of earth and the Yang of heaven converge. The more still and the emptier we become, the more we can realise ourselves to be a manifestation of them. As we develop this relationship to these two polarities, the greater we experience their flow until we arrive at a very simple truth, we are intimately connected to everything and a part of lifes unfolding story.

In Qigong there is a physical stance called the Wuji. This is the standing posture from which all movement arises. Wuji has been likened to empty bamboo because, before any forms are learnt, first we learn to stand as emptiness. We could call it the shaman’s stance. It relates to the infinite possibilities before the creation of Yin and Yang. As a stance it informs us of what is misaligned and out of balance that prevents wholeness within our being. Through the Wuji we learn to root ourselves, take our place on the ground and stand tall. We learn where to focus our centre of gravity and become mindful of what is obstructing flow within. Most importantly of all, we learn to view earth as a living entity that we have grown out from.

Through the Wuji we can experience the integration of Yin and Yang energies in the body and begin to notice the focal point for these energies in the Hara. It is here that Reiki can be gathered as part of our daily preparation. The Wuji is an incredibly useful exercise that helps us become aware of what we are holding onto that prevents the flow of Ki within.

emptyness 2

Exercise for Wuji 

Place your feet approximately shoulder width apart, heels and toes parallel.Imagine yourself in the saddle of a horse and allow your knees to flex gently

Begin rocking forwards and backwards from your heel to your toes whilst maintaining full contact with the earth through the soles of your feet. This will activate the yong quan [bubbling spring] points in your feet. As you continue to rock gently, allow the hips and pelvis to become fluid and part of the movement.

After a few minutes, allow the rocking to slowly reduce, winding you in, finding the perfect point of balance and stillness.

Allow yourself to become aware of your breath and gently bring your breath deeper down inside your body to your belly.

As you begin to feel what you notice inside that requires unwinding, make minute adjustments to your posture so that your skeletal system is supporting you and your muscles can relax as much as possible.

Become aware of your spine and allow it to extend upwards vertebra by vertebra as it feels supported by the foundations of feet, legs, hips and pelvis below.

Allow your shoulders to open and relax and your arms to sink downwards

feel your neck lengthening and your jaw relaxing. Allow your head to find a point of balance on the top of your spine.

When you feel a synergy between, breath, balance and stillness, whilst staying nicely rooted to the earth, imagine opening the top of your head and connecting with the space above you.

Breathe, relax and feel the connection between the earth below you, the heavens above, your breath anchoring you to the now and Ki flowing through the emptiness of you.

Enjoy

Charging for Reiki

Charging Money for Reiki

Today I wish to discuss the rather contentious issue of charging money for Reiki. I am not going to advise what you should charge here, but rather discuss the reasons in my opinion why it’s a good idea to do so.

Continue reading

Mindfulness

I remember when I was in my twenties and starting out on my personal journey of self discovery, I met an ex Pan Am Captain who had a wrist watch with the words NOW repeated all around the face of the watch in place of the numbers. It was a great reminder of the importance of staying present with what is.

In this second blog on improving your relationship with yourselves and your environment, I want to discuss mindfulness and give you a great meditation to use on a daily basis. Aside from being an essential aspect of living with Reiki  and giving a Reiki treatment, mindfulness extends to every waking moment of your life when you live with awareness of the NOW. Continue reading

Do we direct Reiki or just let it flow?

One of the first teachings my Reiki Master June Woods gave me in 1993 was “Just relax and let it flow dear.. Reiki knows where to go”. I still tell my own students this and when they are doubtful of their own capacity to give Reiki, I suggest, not making it about them but instead make it about the person receiving. I was also taught that there was no need to be concerned about the outcome of a healing or get myself involved in diagnosis because I was simply a channel through which the energy flows. The idea that Reiki flows to where it is needed most and is an intelligent life force energy that requires no direction is still taught today but there are questions that have arisen in me through my practice of Reiki and this week I wish to discuss the question; “Do we direct Reiki or just let it flow?” Continue reading

Distant Healing

This week I am writing about Distant Healing. I use the practice of distant healing every day in many different ways and It’s effectiveness never fails to amaze me.

Distant Healing is the name we give to the process of sending Reiki outside of time and space. This could be to someone or something that is in a distant location from us or in a different time to us either in the past or future. We use a specific symbol sequence which enables us to do this grouped around the Distant Healing Symbol. Continue reading

Reiki And Energy Clearing

This is the third and final blog in my series on preparing yourself for a Reiki treatment. This week I am giving some useful tips on how to clear your energy after a Reiki treatment and alter your perception of the energies you encounter.

In the mindfulness meditation given in my previous blog you will have developed a sense of your own thoughts and feelings as a present day process. The importance of this is to develop self awareness and know what you’re feeling and where prior to the treatment so any changes that occur to your mood or energy as a result of the Reiki experience are attributed to the effects of merging with your client and you don’t think of them as yours. Continue reading

Reiki & Space clearing

In the next three weeks I will be writing a series of blogs describing in detail great methods for space clearing and preparation. Also how to prepare ourselves for healing so that we are mindful of what we are feeling before, during and after a treatment and also how to release the effects of the session with our client once the treatment has ended.

Continue reading