Be True to Yourself and Others

“I’m so glad I just said it!”  Do you ever feel like that?  You hum and haw, running it over in your mind, thinking: what if it sounds silly, what will they think of me?

But then you just go ahead and say it… and it connects with someone.  It opens up a new avenue that you wouldn’t have known about if you hadn’t been brave enough to share what was inside you.

I’ve experienced a lot of these “connections” recently through reiki, and I’m learning that’s it all part of the wonder of this amazing healing modality.

It wasn’t always this way…

My interest in energy healing began way before I’d even heard of it.  I was caring for a loved one in my late teens and early twenties, and I became aware that there seemed to be a way to soothe pain and suffering just by using my intention and energy, without necessarily doing anything physical.

I didn’t look into it at the time, and although the memories of those “healing” moments stayed with me, it wasn’t a subject I thought of much over the next couple of decades; I was growing up and my corporate career and my family became my focus.

However, as is so often the way when there is something in your soul that wants to be heard, reiki found its way to me again.

I can’t say there was a breakthrough moment when I suddenly discovered reiki; it just started to gradually work its way into my consciousness – probably as I developed my understanding of yoga and meditation over the years – but to be honest it was so subtle that it seems like it just emerged into my life without me really noticing.

As I began to read about it, the hands-on type of reiki healing was no problem for me to understand because I felt I’d had a little experience of this myself all those years ago.  But then my friend mentioned that she had received a distance reiki session and I just couldn’t get my head round it.  She’d been in her own home to receive the treatment while the practitioner had sent the energy to her from somewhere else.  It sounded ridiculous and I was really sceptical about it, but my friend insisted that it had been an amazing experience for her.

The logical part of my brain (which has spent most of its life in accounting and business) was desperate to dismiss the whole thing as nonsense, but I couldn’t get over the sense of intrigue about it and found myself thinking about distance reiki a lot.

I kept talking to people about it and saying how crazy and unbelievable it was – looking back I guess it was that analytical, survival-driven instinct causing my brain to try and to gather evidence and agreement from other people that this was a load of rubbish and not something I should get involved in!  It was trying to protect me from getting into something unknown, something that lots of people wouldn’t believe in… ultimately something that would take me out of my comfort zone.

Admitting my interest in reiki, and distance reiki especially, would be very much outside of the familiar comfort zone of processing and analysing data in a logical fashion, being cautious, and sticking with the conventional way of thinking. 

Why would I want to do that?  What would people think?!

But I’m learning though, as I go through life, to stop ignoring those nudges that come from deep in my soul.  Even if it means I have to defy my logical brain sometimes.

Leaning in to reiki

As my interest in the subject grew, eventually my curiosity got the better of me and I booked myself in to receive a distance reiki session.  To say it blew my mind would be an understatement.

I’ve practised meditation and yoga a lot over the years, and I’m used to the sensation of taking my awareness to different areas of my body.  So I was expecting to maybe feel some tingling throughout my body during the session, much like I would feel if I was doing a “body scan” in a yoga class.  I guess I expected to be in control of it.

What I experienced was so different from that – right at the start there was a burning sensation on the right side of my face, then there was a rippling feeling in my feet, later followed by a heavy and then floating sensation, and at times I saw bright flashes of light in front of my eyes and then colours.  I couldn’t believe it.  None of this was being controlled by me; I wasn’t directing my awareness or thoughts anywhere, and yet I could feel this energy travelling all around and through me.  It only took a few moments into that session for me to be convinced.

My soul had been telling me all along that reiki was real, and important to me, and finally my logical brain had been given the proof it needed to let go and allow me to follow my instincts.

Months of research and learning followed from that first experience of distance reiki, and initially my interest was in finding out how it could help people physically, especially those who may be suffering with illness and pain.  But I had no idea what a fascinating and enlightening journey I was embarking on, or that what I was learning was going to make so much sense to me on an emotional and spiritual level.

I practised reiki on myself and the willing volunteers in my house for a long time until I felt ready to offer distance treatments to other people.

Those first few distance sessions were so interesting – I knew exactly what I needed to do, and I trusted fully in the process, but at times it was a little battle inside my head to stay focused.  That ego / survival brain was still concerned for me, still trying to protect me from failure. I’d hear those thoughts rising… what if it’s not working for the person; what if they can’t feel anything; what if they tell me I’m no good at this?

I knew not to indulge the thoughts, so for those first few session it was a case of consciously putting them aside and making sure I kept re-focussing on what I was doing.  It’s funny though, how those kinds of thoughts subsided quickly after only a few sessions.

From leaning in, to learning

Getting feedback from people after my sessions was amazing.  It provided the ego-brain validation I suppose I needed, but more than that I started to see how it was helping people.  And not just physically, but emotionally too.

I realised that I was no longer having those doubts or fears that someone might message me after a session and tell me it was all a load of rubbish!  My understanding of reiki was developing.

Once each session was finished, I felt complete satisfaction knowing that I had sent reiki energy to someone and that their body and mind would know how to draw that energy in and use it for their highest good, no matter what their conscious brain might think.  So even if I did have a client who told me they felt nothing and didn’t believe in the healing, it wouldn’t matter because I knew that they would be receiving the benefit of it regardless.

Each session is different and in the beginning I would get all sorts of combinations of colours, hot and cold sensations, vibrations and visions.  Some of the other senses are starting to get involved now too and I’ve had sessions where I get a distinct smell, or I hear a piece of music in my ears.  It can all be very random at times, and it’s similar to the feelings and sensations we have when we’re meditating, or just on the verge of sleep.

But sometimes when the session is finished and I jot down my notes, I start to see how it all ties together – there can sometimes be a theme that comes through.

It fascinates me to think that our energy can say so much about how we are, physically and emotionally, if we just listen to it.

I’m still amazed by it all, and every time I get feedback from a client saying that something I picked up on during the session has resonated with them, I become even more in awe of this incredible invisible lifeforce energy that surrounds us.

But what I love about reiki is that it’s not anything to do with me personally – I’m simply the conduit for the energy.  So I don’t feel any pressure that I need to perform some kind of magic!  All I have to do is be there for the person, guide the energy to them, and fully trust in the process knowing that their body will receive the energy and will know exactly where it needs to be sent for their highest good.

If I’m able to sense some things throughout the process and feed them back to the client, that’s probably of some help so they can understand what their energy needs are, but even if I didn’t see or feel anything, it would still work just as well.

Keeping my own judgements and analysis out of things is, I suspect, going to be an ongoing lesson that reiki will continue to teach me.

I’ve had a few sessions where I’ve had clear visions of things that seem really silly or comical.  I always jot down notes after each session and I have to admit my pen has hovered over my notepad on quite a few occasions, while I think: do I even write this down on paper and acknowledge what I saw?  When this happens, it can be hard not to entertain those worries about what someone might think.  Do I tell them?  Or do I just keep it to myself and save any risk of feeling like an idiot?  What will they think?

I know though, that reiki is all about dropping any judgements or expectations.  Each time I know, I just have to say it.

In these moments of uncertainty and questioning, the replies I’ve had back from clients have given me goose bumps.  One person replied that the image I had seen related to a child their family had lost a long time ago.  Another sent me a photo of their dog, the same kind as I had seen during the session.

I have no doubt at all that reiki energy heals both the physical and emotional states.  It sends healing energy and it sometimes delivers messages for us.  It is infinite wisdom.

Being true

It makes me think how often in life we hold back from saying things or expressing ourselves completely, because we’re afraid of what others may think of us or how we might be judged.  But isn’t it the case that most times when we’re truly honest about something, that’s when a new connection opens up?

One of the reiki principles is to be true to yourself and others.  We have to do this.  We have to be honest about who we are, be aligned with our beliefs and values, our soul.  It’s what creates and deepens the connection with ourselves and others.

I know the word “journey” can be over-used, but I can’t think of a better way to describe my relationship with reiki.  I feel like I will never stop learning from it – each session I do brings with it a new experience and awareness.  There’s not really a reiki destination for me as such, it’s just a beautiful, meandering path where I get to enjoy every new view along the way.  Looking back, I think it’s something that’s been with me throughout my life; it’s just taken a bit of courage and honesty to accept it and embrace it.

It’s worth taking time to think about what moments you’ve had in your life when you had a breakthrough, or you found a new path.  Did it stem from a moment of pure honesty from you, or a “leap of faith”?  I think we all have these times of truth, where we let go and allow our souls to speak.  And invariably we learn something from it.