"You are the light of the world."
– Matthew 5:13
Reiki is a gentle method of natural healing where the practitioner places his or her hands lightly on or near the client and channels healing energy to the client. There are specific hand positions to follow during the course of a Reiki session, although the practitioner may vary this based on the client's needs, or may even position her hands completely intuitively, following the guidance of the Reiki. While Reiki can look very like the practice of "laying on of hands", it is in fact different, because neither the client or the practitioner need to "believe" in Reiki for it to work — it just does. Many a skeptic has been surprised by the positive effects of Reiki energy! Some Reiki practitioners pray silently before or during a session to ask for guidance and focus their efforts, but Reiki is not a religion, and it is entirely "non-denominational".
Reiki is a Japanese term that is usually translated as "universal life-force energy", but now is often translated as "spiritually-guided life-force energy". (You may recognize ki as the Japanese form of the Chinese chi or qi, as in tai chi or qigong.) Every living being has not only a physical body, but also a subtle body, which is made up of the individual's life-force energy; like acupuncture or shiatsu massage, Reiki acts upon the subtle body. The Reiki hand positions correlate to the body's chakras and meridians, following energetic "road maps" used by healers for thousands of years, in many cultures. Reiki goes where it needs to go, increasing energy levels, speeding and enhancing physical healing, and relieving emotional and spiritual pain, especially stress. Reiki seeks to restore balance.
Reiki energy cannot harm you; it is always healing.
During a Reiki session, you remain fully dressed, except perhaps removing shoes or jewelry for greater comfort. After a discussion of your needs and wishes, you will lay down on a massage table, and may have a blanket or sheet for warmth if you wish. (If you are having a remote session, you simply make yourself comfortable in your own home; you and Heather will talk on the phone before and after the session.) There can be music, or silence; it's up to you. During a session, each hand position takes about five minutes, although it can be more or less, depending on that area's needs. Sometimes an area not covered by the standard positions will need additional work. You are free to ask questions during a session; since the Reiki itself directs the energy, Heather will not "lose focus". Once the session is complete, you can rest for a while, and gradually "return to earth". You will feel relaxed and refreshed.
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