What is Reiki?

Reiki is a gentle, safe and holistic system of healing working to harmonise and balance the body, mind, emotions and spirit. In the west today Reiki is presented by many, simply to describe a natural system to help bring about an improved sense of wellbeing and a positive feeling of spiritual renewal. Many traditional Japanese teachers call the system ‘Reiki Ryoho’ which means ‘spiritual energy healing method’.

What Does The Word Reiki Mean?

The word Reiki is Japanese in origin and is made up of two words: rei, meaning ‘spiritual’ and ki, meaning ‘energy’ and refers to the life force within us and around us – the life force of the entire universe. Most cultures have a name for this ‘life energy’, known as Chi in Chinese acupuncture and Tai Chi and Prana in Sandskrit and Yoga.

The word Reiki is pronounced Rey-kee in the west and Lay-kee in Japan. Reiki is also a system of healing and spiritual development as taught by Dr Usui, the founder of Reiki.

How Did Reiki Originate?

Dr Usui was the dean of a Christian university in Kyoto, Japan, in the latter half of the 19th Century. He was also a Buddhist who taught his students within the framework of Buddhism and devoted his life to unravelling the mystery of healing.

This does not mean that Reiki is a Buddhist practice, but it does mean that Dr Usui taught his students about the laws of karma and the importance of using Reiki with good motivation. Reiki is a culmination of everything Dr Usui learned and is about re-establishing the connection to our true spiritual nature and enabling us to follow a more spiritual path.

How Does Reiki Work?

Energy or ‘ki’ flows through us and keeps us alive and healthy, ki runs through pathways in our body called meridians. When the flow of ki is disrupted or blocked usually by negative emotions such as fear, worry, resentment and anger this energy will stagnate and physical or mental illness, pain or disease can occur.

Reiki goes to the heart of the problem and works on clearing any blockages and restoring the healthy flow of ki.

What To Expect In A Reiki Treatment

You will be invited to lie comfortably on a therapy bed fully clothed. Little or no pressure is applied and no oils are used; there is no massage or manipulation. Reiki can be used on the person as a whole, or on specific parts of the body. It is also possible to receive Reiki at a distance. A Reiki session usually lasts for one hour and the technique is so adaptable that you can receive it in almost any setting, in a chair or hospital bed.

During treatments Reiki practitioners use specific hand positions that correspond to the physical body, its organs and the seven chakras. The chakras are centres of concentrated energy that vibrate over specific areas of the body. Reiki energy gently balances the chakras and the energy field that surrounds the body, as well as soothing physical and emotional complaints.

Reiki works on restoring the healthy flow of Ki. In this way our healthy balance (or homeostasis) is restored.

Choosing a Practitioner

Reiki is taught by Reiki Master/Teachers, who have trained in the tradition passed on, in person, from Master to student. Students go through a process of initiation/attunement to the Reiki energy. They are then able to treat themselves and others, not only from a personal and emotional perspective, but also as an aid to individual development and spiritual growth.

It is important to choose a qualified practitioner who has undertaken all the necessary training to understand the theory and the practice of Reiki.  You can check whether a Reiki practitioner is registered with the UK Reiki Federation by searching the register at, also if they are a member of the Complementary & Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC) at or Federation of Holistic Therapists at

The Benefits Of A Reiki Treatment

Due to the very gentle nature of this treatment, it is often used to support those receiving conventional medical care in Hospitals, Hospices or at home. Reiki is used by people for a variety of reasons. Some use it to help them manage or cope with specific physical, mental or emotional problems, while others use it as means of relaxation, or to help maintain good health and a sense of general well-being.

Reiki treatments from a qualified and experienced practitioner can be an incredibly positive experience resulting in:

  • Deep relaxation
  • A marked improvement in one’s overall well-being
  • Reducing pain and stress
  • Relieving anxiety and depression
  • Promoting healing physical, mental or spiritually

Contact Marie to discuss how Reiki may help you.

Marie is a Reiki Master Practitioner in Richmond, North Yorkshire & Darlington, County Durham. Reiki therapy includes Chakra work to harmonise and balance mind, body and spirit.