Traditional teaching of Reiki shows that Reiki is most effective if applied instantly after an injury. We naturally know this – if a child falls and hurts her elbow, she will immediately put her hand over it, instinctively intending it to return to the natural state of health it was in before the fall. If an adult stubs his toe, he quickly grabs it with his hand, helping the pain go away. These reactions are not fanciful, they are based on common sense and a deep bodily understanding that our intentions can help us heal.
Here is an interesting thought: the perception of an injury often makes the injury appear in our reality. For example, just last weekend my partner and I were visiting some of her extended family. Her cousin’s three year old daughter was rocking her head back in a chair when she rocked back too far and banged her head against a banister, making a loud “thwack” that we all heard. She continued smiling, looking around at everyone as if nothing had happened. The sound had been so loud , though – none of us could help but look concerned and say, “oh my goodness – are you okay? That must have hurt!” With that – the unified look of concern and the worried commentary, she burst into tears yelling “Mommy!” and had a crying spell to get over her injury.
This same weekend, a friend who was there told of a similar incident that morning when her young daughter was playing at the park. She took a fall, and the mother saw that she had scraped her elbow badly. The little girl, however, did not see it, so she kept biking and playing, for perhaps ten more minutes. After that time, when she got off the bike, she looked down and saw that her elbow had actually been hurt in the fall. Only then did she start crying, upset and in pain, ostensibly for the first time.
I tell these stories to show how important our perception of injury is to creating a reality for that injury. An adult may be perfectly functional and fine, then go the doctor and find that she has high blood pressure, a tendency towards hypothyroidism, low insulin, or any other test that puts her in a label or a category. The knowledge of this label will most likely change her behavior, make her feel tired, make her worry about every little physical variation she notices about her body. Just as the little child playing in the park continued to bike happily until she saw the “boo-boo,” the adult also lives happily along until the official diagnosis of some sort of abnormality.
Ignorance truly is bliss!
Reiki and other forms of energy healing work to speed the body’s own healing processes, and they also work with the mind, giving the intention of health and healing. Richard Bartlett, the founder of “Matrix Energetics,” another modality of energy healing, actually teaches his students a method where they place their hands in certain positions around the injured area then they count backwards intending to take that area back in time to a state of total health. His results are impressive with spontaneous healing of injuries that commonly take days or weeks to heal.
If one chooses the belief that one can heal, that the body’s tendency is to be in a state of balance, that any abnormal state will gravitate back to normal with not only our intention to heal but also our choice to be in a place of joy, gratitude and a relaxed way of living, one has a much higher chance of remaining in a naturally healthy state. The body naturally functions well – “Use it or lose it” is a truth for body, mind, spirit, and emotions – all facets of us are made to function, so function well!
Andrew Weil discusses this in his book Healthy Aging. In the chapter on mental function, he claims that the mind is similar to the other muscles of the body. If we use our minds as we get older, our minds will naturally retain their cognitive abilities. If we stop learning and trying new things and retreat into a pattern of subsistence rather than excitement about all there is to learn and do in life, our minds may atrophy just as our muscles can. Weil gives two recommendations for things that “expand” your brain’s abilities: learning a new language later in life or learning a new operating system on a computer. When you learn a new technique with a computer or some other kind of technology, he says, sometimes it can take a few days (or at least a few hours) or frustration. That frustration, he says, is helping your mind to grow. That frustration is actually what you are looking for!
Treat any life experience as a challenge rather than a chore – each challenge is helping us grow in some way, and as long as we are growing, we are staying healthy. A healthy body wants to stay in that state. As I said at the beginning of this entry, putting immediate Reiki on a hurt can help it heal. On the other hand, the longer you have something and the more chronic it becomes, the more chronic it becomes in your mindset, as well. You start to think, “that is my hurt knee,” or “I cannot do that, I have high blood pressure,” (or any such label that keeps you from living fully). Think of yourself as healthy and whole, willing and wanting to embrace life’s challenges, and you have a better chance of living a healthy and whole life. Think of yourself as vulnerable and weak in the face of life as a metaphorical bulldozer coming your way, and you have a greater chance of being vulnerable to life’s challenges. When I can, I try to remember in each moment that “this is my life.” In the same book, Andrew Weil quotes from Kathleen Dowling Singh, “a transpersonal psychologist and former hospice worker..” She says, “If I remembered that my breaths were numbered, what would be my relationship to this breath right now?” (283). When we remember, we become present. When we become present, we live fully.
Weil, Andrew. Healthy Aging. NY: Anchor Books, 2005.