• Andrea Kennedy

No Need for Reiki Rules

I absolutely love Reiki for its simplicity. Reiki is the energy of creation in action on the earth plane. It is as simple as placing hands and intending Reiki to flow. That is all that is required. Reiki does not discriminate and dictate who may channel it or who may benefit from it. In fact, there are no beliefs a person must ascribe to, either. It is so natural and simple that any person and even children can successfully learn and practice the healing art of Reiki.


However, I’ve become aware that more Reiki teachers and practitioners are choosing to complicate the system of Reiki by redefining it with rules. We can see the effect of this in posts and threads on social media and especially in online groups meant for the purpose of educating people about Reiki. Some insist that in order to be a good Reiki practitioner, one must eat a certain way and if one chooses otherwise, their ability to channel effective Reiki is diminished. Therefore, they have created a system to judge Reiki practitioners based on personal beliefs. Of course, the rules of the right diet are highly debated and subjective. I have read very heated and harsh posts stemming from judgement that get quite personal. The message is one of fear from the implication one cannot be an effective Reiki channel if certain foods and drinks are not excluded from the diet. The judgements and criticisms in these posts are written in an effort to be ‘right’ and validate the authors’ own choices, and therefore, fears. When we insist on being right, we condemn every other person to be wrong. This does not sound like Reiki to me.


Some insist we must heal ourselves of chronic illness and not be on any prescription drugs before helping others with Reiki. Therefore, only the healthiest of people are worthy to offer Reiki to others. I recently read a post declaring no one should ever offer Reiki to another if they are tired or stressed and it’s the practitioner’s responsibility to ensure they are at their absolute best for each session, implying that otherwise, they are somehow harming the other person or being irresponsible. If that is true, I’ve been doing it all wrong. And Usui must have as well. After fasting for 21 days, he received Reiki in a weakened physical state, healed and went on to develop the system of Reiki healing—helping countless people. Four years later, he suffered a stroke and died. It is doubtful he could have been in the best physical shape leading up to the stroke and helping people with Reiki. I am certainly very grateful he practiced and taught Reiki regardless. The truth is, if practitioners were required to be healed and without issues prior to offering Reiki to anyone else, we would not be practicing today. Reiki would have died out long ago due to the lack of qualified practitioners and teachers. Furthermore, under these rules, simple aging of our physical bodies would dampen our ability to channel Reiki. Contrary to these ideas, I continue to observe my own relationship and ability to channel Reiki as strengthening over time which, of course, means with increasing age. I know this to be true of fellow practitioners as well. We are human and to expect practitioners to deny this does not feel like Reiki to me.


The judgement in the Reiki community continues with more rules concerning what the client is allowed to wear to ensure a good Reiki treatment. To some, it seems that jewelry, watches and leather items must be removed. In fact, I learned this in my first Reiki class and it is still being taught. Now activity trackers like Fitbits have been added to the list of items a client must remove or just leave at home. From the time I learned Reiki in 1995, technology has grown immensely. Consider the fact that we did not have cell phones in those days but today, wi-fi and bluetooth signals invisibly and continuously bathe our bodies. Many believe these wavelengths of energy negatively influence Reiki. However, my own Reiki practice has only grown stronger and delivered better results over time despite the increase of this type of potential negative influence.