Reiki comes to the modern world through the teaching lineage of Dr. Mikao Usui. Dr. Usui lived in Japan during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. For many years he persevered in a quest to achieve a deep understanding of healing. While on a 21 day meditative retreat and fast on Mt. Kurama, outside Kyoto, Japan, Dr. Usui had a mystical experience and received Reiki healing energy and the ability to transmit this power to heal. From this experience, he developed the Reiki healing system. Dr. Usui taught Reiki to many people, including Dr. Chujiro Hayashi, who became a highly respected Reiki Master. Dr. Hayashi established a Reiki clinic in Tokyo, at which a Japanese-American woman, Hawayo Takata, was first given a Reiki treatment. Mrs. Takata stayed in Japan and studied and practiced with Dr. Hayashi. In 1938, Dr. Hayashi initiated Mrs. Takata as a Reiki Master and allowed her to take Reiki out of Japan for the first time. Mrs. Takata taught Reiki in the United States and abroad for over 40 years. Because of Mrs. Takata, Reiki was able to spread beyond Japan, and today there are several million Reiki practitioners spread throughout all areas of the world.
Five Principles of Reiki
As outlined by Dr. Usui, there are five principles for living and practicing Reiki. Each of these principles may seem more important at some times in the life and practice of the Reiki practitioner than at others. Each principle can be used in many ways, including as a meditation, an affirmation, or a guide for living. Over time practitioners develop a deeper understanding of the relevance of the principles to all areas of life and practice. Like the healing system of Reiki, the principles are simple at first meeting but hold deeper meanings with further practice and contemplation. The five principles are as follows:
- Just for today, do not worry.
- Just for today, do not anger.
- Honor your parents, teachers, and elders.
- Earn your living honestly.
- Show gratitude to every living thing.