What is Reiki

In the martial arts it is known as chi energy. In Hatha Yoga, it is called prana. Reiki is a natural healing technique in which the practitioner directs this Universal Life energy to the client using a non-invasive, stress-reducing technique. The gentle laying of hands is practiced, either directly on a patient’s fully-clothed body or resting a few inches above the body.


Reiki sessions are soothing. They support the release of physical and mental tension, as well as boosting the efficiency of the immune system. On a more esoteric level, Reiki sessions increase the vibrational frequency of the body, lending to a feeling of lightness and well-being. However, it is not necessary to believe anything at all about Reiki to derive its benefits. Just come, enjoy the experience and learn what more and more clients are discovering: It Works!

Reiki is a different experience for each individual. Many people find relief from common aches and pains of daily life. Others enjoy a quieting of the mind and a release from mental anguish. Some of the client go home resolving the issues that they have been working with their psychotherapist for years in one session. Still, some people find their energy levels increase or stabilize. Originating in Japan many years ago, Reiki has a multitude of benefits for the modern recipient of treatments.You don’t have to have an illness to benefit from Reiki. Each session helps maintain your current state of wellness.

Please note: Reiki is not meant to diagnose or cure illnesses, although it may support the body in healing itself. Reiki is not affiliated with any particular religion or religious practice.



Mikako Usui (1865-1926)

Mikao Usui is the founder of the Reiki System of Healing. Throughout his life he had many different careers, later in his life he became a monk. In 1922 he did a 21 day meditation retreat at Mt. Kurama and acquired the ability to heal with his hands. I have read many different versions of his experience on the mountain, some say he was hit by lighting and was enlightened other say the Reiki symbols came to him through his third eye, etc. There is no one story that is proven to be the actual one. However, every story talks about when he came down from Mt. Kurama, he was able to use his hands as healing tools.

This is around the time that hand healing was very popular in Japan and was widely accepted. He started to help heal people around him. After a while more people heard about him and his healing ability and started to come to visit him from different parts of Japan. He was very interested in helping people and volunteering. For example, when they had a big earthquake in 1923, he went around and used Reiki to help people. Since it was such a useful skill, he started to develop a system and started to teach other people. He called it the Usui Reiki System.

Chujiro Hayashi (1880-1940)

Chujiro Hayashi is another important person in the history of Reiki. He was one of Mikao Usui’s students who was a Navy officer and a medical doctor. Since he was a medical doctor Mikao Usui gave him a project to create systems based on his medical knowledge. He started to develop a hand position system for different ailments. Many systems used today were developed by him.

After Mikao Usui’s death, Chujiro Hayashi branched out and started his own clinic. From what I have read, he had about 6 tables and 2-3 students giving Reiki sessions at each table. That’s where he met Hawayo Takata.

Hawayo Takaka (1900-1980)

Hawayo Takata is the person who brought Reiki to the west. She is a Japanese descendant and native of Hawaii. She was a widower with 2 children and came to visit Japan and went to a hospital for surgery in 1935. She somehow decided to find an alternative to surgery and came across Chujiro Hayashi and Reiki. She was there for a year and was healed. I have read a story about how she was very suspicious of the hot hands of Reiki practitioners so she rolled up their sleeves to see if they were hiding some sort of battery operated heater or something. She went back to Hawaii and opened up a clinic and had Chujiro Hayashi come by to teach. She became a Reiki master and teacher in 1938. She only taught Reiki 1 and Reiki 2 for a long time and started to teach Reiki Masters in 1974. She claimed that no one was teaching Reiki in Japan and she was the only Reiki teacher in the world. Many people believed her until Reiki practitioners went back to Japan and found out that there were people who were teaching Reiki there.

Japanese Reiki and Western Reiki

The Reiki that Hawayo Takata taught we refer to as Western Reiki. The system of Reiki that never left Japan, we call Japanese Reiki. What’s interesting is that even in Japan, the majority of people learn Western Reiki because there are more schools and teachers for western Reiki since Japanese Reiki was kept underground for many years and it is still somewhat hard to find a teacher or school of Japanese Reiki. Since 1974 when Hawayo Takata stared teaching Reiki Masters, it has only been a little over 40 years and now Reiki has spread all over the world.

There are many books out there and many different versions of the history since the research on Reiki is not comprehensive yet. Books I recommend for the history of Reiki are on my Recommendation page.


Michelle … is extremely easy to talk to and sincere. I felt very comfortable with her andI really appreciated the wisdom she offered… the Reiki session was relaxing and energizing… like a mini-vacation. I didn’t want it to end!

M.M. Graphic Designer