Traditionally, healers are required to ask themselves at least two basic questions before they begin to practice on others:
Who am I? and Why am I here?
The philosophy behind this is to ensure that all healers know themselves before they set out to heal others, so they don’t project their own concerns or problems onto those they touch. I believe these questions are just as pertinent today and strongly encourage every Reiki student to accept this challenge. There are no ‘right’ answers, only the answers that are right for you. My answer to Who am I? and Why am I here? is that I am energy and I am here to appreciate, to understand, to use and to share the knowledge of energy – but I reserve the right to change my answer as I learn more.
One way to answer the difficult question of Who am I? for Reiki people is to use one of the Western traditions in Reiki, which is to give your lineage. It’s like the begats in the Bible or giving your pedigree. Some Reiki Masters believe that the closer you are in lineage to Mikao Usui, the better or stronger or purer your Reiki is. Some Masters also believe that you should serve a set time with your Master like an apprentice system before you can be allowed to travel further in your Reiki journey. You may choose to believe either, or both, or none of the above. Whichever way, Reiki is.
For some of us, the Reiki journey is longer than it is for others. My Reiki journey began in 1991, when Faye Matthews attuned me to 1st Degree. Seven years later, in 1998, Stephen Rose attuned me to 2nd Degree. And three years after that, in 2001, I was attuned to Master Level in both Reiki and Seichim systems of natural healing with Dawn McLaughlin. Both Faye and Stephen were Masters of the Reiki Alliance when I trained, and Dawn is an Independent Reiki and Seichim Master. So my Reiki Journey up to now has taken 20 years, 3 official teachers with different belief systems, and a significant aggregate of reading, writing, talking and hands-on Reiki. My Reiki lineage (as Dawn attuned me to Master Level) is:
- Mikao Usui
- Chujiro Hayashi
- Hawayo Takata
- Phyllis Furumoto
- Claudia Hoffman
- Mary Shaw
(introduced Seichem to lineage)
- Christine Henderson
- Bruce Way
- Dawn McLaughlin
- Sue Bagust
Never forget that Reiki is always a personal journey. Although many have gone before you, it is your journey that is the most important experience for you - and although it is interesting to know about Mikao Usui’s satori on Mount Kurama that gave the world the gift of Reiki, it is your moment of being that is most useful to you. Like everything else in your life, it always comes down to what you are willing to practice and experience. The layers are there for you to explore when you make yourself available to learn. This is your journey.
Welcome to the world of Reiki.