I enjoyed Christopher Penczac's description of the history of Reiki as being more myth than fact - as many of the "facts" presented in the traditional history of Reiki as taught by Takata have been disproven, and so many people have added, subtracted and changed the story to fit their individual tradition.
I think it's nice to know the story when you're starting out, to give you some sort of background, but I agree with the article author that it isn't wise to put a great deal of emphasis on the story itself.
The history of reiki is slowly unraveling. In time we are finding that it can vary a lot from our initial teachings that were passed down from one reiki master to their student. Therefore we do not place a huge amount of emphasis on the history of reiki other than to say it was rediscoved by DR Mikao Usui.
For those who are interested in the history of reiki, as taught to us by our reiki master teachers, we encourage you to please read on. The information, though often found to be inacurate at times, is what many reiki students have been taught and know as the history of Usui Reiki.
The Ancient healing method of Reiki was rediscovered by Dr. Mikao Usui in mid 1880. Dr. Mikao Usui was born around 1860. He was Principal of Doshisha Christian University in Kyoto Japan. It is told that one day, one of his students asked him if he was able to explain how Jesus Christ healed his followers, and questioned Dr Usui about his beliefs and understanding of how Jesus healed people simply by the laying on of his hands. It is said that this question haunted Dr. Usui and he resigned from his position and started his quest to discover how Christ was able to heal others. Usui decided to study Christianity and went to USA, he found the clue that Buddha also performed similar miracles. He came back to Japan and visited many Buddhist monasteries and saw old Sanskrit text. He spent many years in Tibet learning the Sanskrit Language. He came to know some Buddhist symbols. One Monk advised him to go to the holy mountain “Kurayama” which was some 17 miles away from Kyoto. usui did this and once their he meditated for 21 days. it was on the lst day that a very bright light shone down and struck his forehead and with this he was given the symbols now used in reiki healing. It is also said that he also heard a divine voice. Usui felt a runbling of vibrations at the points of the 7 Chakras became aware of n immese increase of energy in the rest of his body, his realisation was that of the “Universal Life Force Energy” that he received
It is said then that Dr. Usui ran down the mountain side and on his way down he had an accident and hurt his toe, as started to bleed he put his hand over the injury and after sometime the bleeding and pain subsided. This was Usui’s first encounter with a miracle and the healing power of reiki. After his 21 days on Mt Kurayama where he had been deep in meditation, Usui was suddenly feeling very hungry so he headed for the nearest eating place and ate beyond his capacity. Since Dr. Usui was empowered with the Reiki energy, no side effects were observed. Usui went to the local monastery the following day and discovered a monk suffering from acute arthritic pain he simply placed his hands on the area of pain and the monk was relieved and the pain was gone. On rediscovering the healing Power of “Universal Life Force Energy” some say that Dr. Usui, cured poor people at beggars ally and the beggars home for approximately 7 years free of charge, he found that the beggars had no respect for his efforts or work. Because of this attitude he realised there should be some form of exchange of energy there by releasing the other person from any debt. However many Reiki professionals believe that the concept of receiving an exchange of energy was introduced by Takata after Usui’s Death.
Dr. Usui returned to Kyoto where he lit a large flame and stood in the streets telling the passers-by that he was looking for people in search of the true light, people who were ill and who wanted to be healed, this was the beginning of his reiki healing.
Dr Usui shared the Reiki healing energy and trained 18 masters before he died in 1930. Dr. Usui is now buried in Kyoto temple with the story of his life written on his gravestone.
Dr. Chijiro Hayashi was one of the masters that Dr Usui’s trained. He became the 2nd grandmaster in the Line of Usui Reiki Healing tradition. He opened his own Reiki clinic in Tokyo and established a procedure to give Reiki training and attunement in 3 stages. Dr. Hayashi died on 10th May, 1941.
Mrs. Hawayo Takata is credited with bringing the Reiki Healing tradition to the western world. She was born in the year 1900, in Hawaii and when attuned to reiki she was a widow with 2 daughters. It is said that Takata was able to persuade Dr. Hayashi to teach her about the healing energy that Usui had discovered. She also treated many peoples in U.S.A and it was after Dr. Hayashi’s death that Madam Takata became his successor. She trained 20 Masters and died on 11th December 1980.
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