Reiki is a complementary health approach in which practitioners place their hands lightly on or just above a person and channel energy with the goal of facilitating the person’s own healing response. It is based on an Eastern belief in a universal energy that supports the body’s innate or natural healing abilities.
Although the therapy is not considered evidence-based, energy medicine has been practiced throughout the world for centuries. Studies on the therapy have focused largely on pain, anxiety, fatigue, and depression,1 and according to the Center for Reiki Research, approximately 76 hospitals, medical clinic and hospice programs now offer Reiki as a standard part of care.2
Palm Springs Reiki Master Practitioner Jerri Quinn treats several clients as part of their treatment protocol for depression. “Reiki complements psychotherapy and therapeutic medications because it clears the body of negative energy and places it in a state of total relaxation, which is necessary for healing to take place.”
One of the basic teachings of Reiki is that beyond our physical bodies, we have an energy body made up of our aura (energy fields), chakras (energy centers) and meridians (energy pathways). The energy fields take energy in, the chakras break it down, and the meridians distribute it throughout the body. A disturbance in the flow of this energy can cause physical illnesses or negative emotions. Reiki practitioners aim to channel positive universal life energy to problem areas to enhance healing and overall well-being.3
In her practice, Jerri sees impressive results with depression and anxiety. “The goal of anti-depressant medications and counseling are to get a person to the state where they no longer need those therapies.” She and many others believe Reiki can help facilitate that.
Carole Waddell of Indio, who has lived with anxiety for over ten years and was recently diagnosed with PTSD caused by trauma, agrees. “It seemed that no matter what physical or mental help I received, nothing was working.” Her treatment included counseling and anti-depressants, but she credits Reiki for her new found sense of hope. “Since starting Reiki, I have been feeling better about myself in mind, body and spirit. I can clearly see that before coming to the weekly sessions with Jerri, my thought patterns were clogged with issues that I could not deal with alone.”
“Being able to channel energy to help others is the greatest gift,” says Jerri who has practiced Reiki for three years. She especially likes working with animals and babies “because you can’t deny the results” recalling friends whose dog was lost and then found a year later. Their loving pet had been mistreated and starved and, when found was scared and anxious. They asked Jerri to work with their dog, and after only two Reiki treatments, he returned to the fun-loving companion they once knew.
Reiki should not be used to replace conventional care. If you have severe or long-lasting symptoms, see your health care provider, and as with any treatment plan, it is important to inform all your health care providers about therapies you select.
References: 1) NIH Website: https://nccih.nih.gov/health/reiki/introduction.htm; 2) http://www.centerforreikiresearch.org/; 3) reiki.org