The History of Reiki

The word Reiki means “Spiritual Energy”, in the 1940’s there were about 40 Reiki schools in Japan and the USUI Reiki Ryoho Gakkei still exists today in Japan where Reiki is still practiced. A gentleman by the name of Dr Mikao Usui introduced the healing art we call Reiki to Japan in the last century, his original handbook has been found confirming this.He was not a medical doctor to his students he was known as Usui-Sensei, which means teacher.Dr Usui was a Buddhist but Reiki is not linked to anyparticular religion.

It is originally believed that he rediscovered Reiki after serious contemplation and investigations into various religious and spiritual philosophies.Recent research suggests that this is very questionable.It now appears that he may have developed this healing art himself following an enlightening experience on Mount Kurama in Japan.He developed a training which seems to have included six levels or degrees.This was later modified in the West to three degrees. The word Reiki was inexistence in Japan before Dr Mikao Usui developed his healing techniques and modules and he named his healing module Usui Reiki Ryoho.He acted as the first President of the Usui Reiki Ryoho Gakkei whichtranslates as Usui Healing Method Society.

Dr Hayashi is another well known name in Reiki Circles, he was taught by Dr Usui the Reiki techniques and methods but he was never President of the Usui Healing Method Society. It was here that Hawayo Takata learnt the Reiki method and took it with her when she returned to America.During this time the World had been at war and relations between Japan and America was not very strong, it is considered by many that Hawayo Takata would not have been able to advertise a Buddhist Japanese Healing Method to many Americans.

It is thought that Dr Hayashi did two very important things in relation to the history of Reiki.One that it was he who devised the Reiki hand positions which are used in Reiki today and are included in this manual and secondly that he taught Mrs Hawayo Takata Reiki.He completed histraining with Dr Usui in 1925 it is thought that he was one of the last Reiki Masters to be trained by Dr Usui.Originally there where only eight hand positions similar to that used in Chinese medicine however heincorporated more to take into consideration the whole of the body.

The way that Hawayo taught is very different to the way that Dr Usui, and the distinction is very clear.Hawayo Takata claimed that Reiki was an oral tradition and she taught Reiki in three levels and incorporated the term Reiki Master.IT is noted that Dr Usui and Dr Hayashi gave written material to their students and did not use the term Reiki Master.It is believed that Hawayo Takata lead many to believe that she was the only representative of Usui Reiki and that there was not a presence of this in Japan.

Mrs Takata continued to practise Reiki until she died and did not teach others how to teach Reiki until eight years before her death.She charged up to 10,000 U.S Dollars for this course.Neither Dr Usui nor Dr Hayashi charged such prices for this level.She left twenty-two Reiki teachers behind her.We have alot to thank Mrs Takata for she helped to bring Reiki to the Western society at a time when there would have been alot of suspicion and doubt about Eastern Healing Methods.Today there are thousands of Reiki Practitioners around the World, and many can learn the full potential of Reiki in their lives.

After her death in 1980, Mrs Takata’s grand daughter Phyllis Lei Furumoto, assumed the position of Grand Master of Reiki and involved herself in a group called the Reiki Alliance.Ms Barbara Ray a student of Mrs Takata’s headed a group called the Radiance Techniques.

“The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui”by Dr. Mikao Usui and Frank Arajava Petter, Lotus Press Shangri—Ka Twin Lakes, WI 1999, second Edition

“The Spirit of Reiki” by Walter Lubeck, Frank Arajava Petter, William Rand by Lotus Press Shangri—La Twin Lakes, WI 2001, first edition.