History of Reiki

A Japanese monk, scholar, and teacher named Dr. Mikao Usui was born on August 15, 1965 in a traditional and well-to-do Buddhist family in Japan. As a child, he studied at a Buddhist monastery where he learned various languages, arts, and skills. As an adult, he was a well travelled, hard working, and a talented person with special interests in medicine, psychology, and theology. After his schooling, he joined an allopathic medical school and was trained by various expert doctors including some Western doctors from America's leading universities. Later, he was granted a medical degree by the decree from the Japanese emperor and was allowed to practice medicine.

Around the age 27 or so, he was infected with Cholera. During his treatment, he came across a spiritual experience from a spiritual messenger regarding how to avoid the fear, passion, and attachment to the cycle of birth and life. According to the legend, it is during this experience, he learned that 'all suffering of life' is caused by the karmic obstructions and past actions, that the suffering first emanates from the life force energy, and that the life force energy is not separate (or, separable) from the physical body of a human being. He learned that the true healing, beyond the treatment of the symptoms of the illness, conditions, and diseases must come by improving one's moral values and seeking the path of enlightenment. This persuaded him to believe that healing people beyond the use of allopathic medicine was his life's mission and thus seek the true healing knowledge and enlightenment through a spiritual system.

Subsequently, he went to Mount Kurama and fasted and meditated for 21 days. At the end of that retreat, his head was stuck with powerful light leading him to rediscover Reiki energy and its symbols as we know today. Upon successfully experiencing the healing power of Reiki on his own self and a few relatives, he started to offer it to the others, especially the 'poor and the beggars' in the slums of Tokyo, and soon became popular for his treatment and healing knowledge and capabilities. In doing so, he learned that "true healing can not be only physical but must also include the mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects as well". In the hindsight, it seems this also may have led the foundation of what is known today as holistic healing.

It is believed that he started teaching Reiki (i.e. initiating and attuning the others on the path of Reiki who wanted to learn it for themselves and then treat and heal the others using Reiki) sometime around 1920 and treated countless patients in addition to teaching Reiki to those who wanted to learn it for self-treatment. In September 1923, there was a major earthquake in the region and again Dr. Usui put his Reiki knowledge and practice to treat the victims of this disaster. Due to an immense growth and popularity of Reiki due to its successful results in treating and healing people with a variety of illnesses and conditions, he expanded to a bigger practice in in Nakano in 1925, shortly before dying on March 9, 1926 in Fukuyama as a result of his illness with cerebral apoplexy.

Among the other critical elements of learning and practicing Reiki, Dr. Usui prescribed 'five precepts' and 'three pillars' for every Reiki practitioner.

The five precepts are believed to be designed to enable a practitioner live the life of good spiritual values and virtues, in turn, center and balance himself/herself while developing internal peace, tranquility, and purity that are considered very important to improve one's ability to pass pure healing energies (Ki) and, in turn, the level and quality of one's healing.

The three pillars are believed to be designed to enable and allow a practitioner to connect and connect well to Reiki and develop strong intuitive healing abilities for the specific and positive healing intention (affirmation) set for the specific healing benefits to the recipient. This is one of the most important reason why a typical Reiki practitioner isn't expected or required to have deep knowledge of the medical science and subjects such as anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pathology, etc. while still being able to treat and heal the patients, both symptomatically and holistically.

It is estimated that during his lifetime, Dr. Usui taught Reiki to over 2,000 individuals and treated countless people for various conditions, diseases, and ailments, thus setting a foundation for Reiki to experience an incredible growth in Japan and decades later all around the world.

Contact us today if you are interested in learning more about Reiki's history, including the five precepts and three pillars, and learn Reiki to become a Reiki practitioner.