Viewing Reiki From A Personal Growth Perspective


In helping our understanding of Reiki, I write a series of articles viewing Reiki from differing perspectives, in this article we look at  Reiki from a personal growth perspective. Firstly I wish to explore Reiki from its original intentions in relation to personal growth and then explore the applications of Reiki to support personal growth in today's modern world.

 Reiki was intended primarily as a practice of self growth, of improvement of body and mind. As termed by Usui sensei himself, the founder of Reiki, who named the Reiki system as: 'Shin Shin Kaizen Usui Reiki Ryoho', which translated means: Usui Reiki treatment method to improve body and mind. Although Usui sensei observed great healing events with people who received treatments in the Reiki system of healing he formed, he also observed that with some people after receiving some healing treatments,  some problems might manifest, or ill health might reappear at a later date in a differing form. Usui sensei realised that where the root cause of the imbalance, or build up of tension within a person’s body was the result of a lifetime of habitual poor thinking, internal conflict, or holding onto feelings, such as anger, worry, resentment, guilt or ill will towards anyone else, then something more than passively receiving a therapy treatment was needed. For example for someone to receive Reiki treatments without making positive adjustments to their own thinking and actions would result in limitations to the long-term results of any Reiki treatments and so reduce the likelihood of a permanent correction of the challenge that person was suffering with. In other words, that person would still be actively contributing to their reality of pain and ill health every day via their own thoughts and actions.

In such an example, resolving the concern would require a combination of Reiki treatments to disperse the accumulated load, supported with a change in attitude, thinking and behavior of the recipient to facilitate the healing, which could be the recipient to take responsibility for their own thoughts and actions and making them more supportive to their health and well-being. The point being that, in this example, the recipient might be required to take personal responsibility for their own thoughts and behaviours in conjunction with receiving Reiki treatments to expect a favourable long-term improvement to their current reality. This point being as relevant to any therapy, or approach as it is to Reiki.

 To address this issue as well as provide a framework to the system Usui sensei complimented the original Usui Reiki system with guiding principles to live by on a daily basis, which are infused with emotions of love, compassion, selflessness, co-operation and respect. These are called the 'Gokai'.  

Kyo dake wa (Just for today):

Ikaru-na (Do not be angry)

Shinpai suna (Do not worry)

Kansha shite (Be grateful)

Gyo-o hage me (Do your duties fully)

Hito ni shinsetsu ni (Be kind to others)

 So there is more to Reiki than the actual Reiki treatments themselves. The ‘Gokai’ are learnt and discussed in depth in terms of interpretation and application within a Jikiden Reiki training course/seminar, but from seeing them in print you can get the idea. In addition, a Reiki training course a person will receive ‘Reiju’ (the event of clearing our connection to our true state). This is a powerful event in terms of a person’s own personal growth, beyond anything you can read in a book, or technical skill you could learn. This event can be the catalyst for personal growth, (personal growth in the fast lane for many).

 So it is no wonder that this aspect of Reiki, as a path of personal growth is commonly seen strongest in those who seriously study and practice Reiki, as both the Gokai and Reiju are specific to Reiki training. However, just to consider the spirit of the above principles as a filter for your thoughts and actions and to incorporate the approach into your everyday life can be a very positive step in itself.  

The Reiki trained group of a population tends to be those who have progressed someway along a path of personal growth already, although there is much variation in the distances travelled between individuals. The further a person develops with their study and practice of Reiki, the more a person is likely to be ‘living Reiki’ so to speak. Reiki teachers, for example, tend to be in this group. However, technical ability and participation in courses to be qualified to teach Reiki is not a determinant of the degree of progress a person may have made on their path of personal growth, or development. Nor is the progression to teaching levels of study a requirement to have a life filled with Reiki, or experience profound personal growth. Many of my own Reiki students have experienced some pretty strong personal development and evolution in their lives! (they read this article with a smile at this point).

 The expression of the personal growth side of Reiki commonly translates to a person living in a more selfless way, which may be actively helping others or contributing to society, living a more peaceful and accepting life towards others, orientation to living in co-operation, and working through personal challenges, life lessons, developing as a person. 

 For those not wishing to study and learn Reiki, much personal growth can still be experienced. Many find the biggest influence to personal growth being your inner voice, gut instincts, or intuition, with your own intuition having a louder voice after receiving Reiki treatments (we all have such a voice - in some it’s too faint to hear, in others it is just ignored). Reiki can act, almost like clearing away the clutter, creating some stillness, allowing you to think with clarity. Many find Reiki also seems to help give people the courage to do whatever they need to do to move forward in their life, or realign to the right path for them at that time.

 The applications of Reiki to personal growth in the modern world are many. For a start it can provide some 'breathing space' to think. Reiki can help you release feelings of anger, fear, guilt, hurt, regret or pain, for example. It can encourage feelings of kindness (to both yourself and others), encourage compassion, co-operation, love, forgiveness and peace. It can serve to support you in your life, as a compass to your intentions, actions and direction in life as well as fortify your resolve. There are many other ways Reiki can promote personal growth, but hopefully you can see its value and potential positive effects from this perspective of personal growth.




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About the author, Shaun Mckeown: could be labeled as a performance strategist, or coach, or a life balance specialist. In essence Shaun is a strategic, creative problem solver, with a holistic view. He has over 15 years professional experience helping people with health, well-being, sport performance, reducing stress and life balance. He has a BSc.(Hons) degree in Sport and Exercise Science, as well as experience coaching and teaching in exercise conditioning, holistic lifestyle and nutrition, sport performance and Reiki. So has both science and holistic perspectives. 


The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this article are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. Shaun Mckeown, disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.