Within the system of Reiki we have primary practices and secondary practices. It is important to know what these practices are as this will help us to get a clearer understanding of what we are practicing and how to progress.
Symbols are present in every culture across every age and can have multiple connotations or meanings. As Carl Jung (1964) describes, one reason symbols exist is to help us conceptualize something otherwise too difficult to put in to words. The symbols used in the system of Reiki have a similar aim.
Surrendering ourselves to spiritual energy (Reiki) is not that easy as we are so programmed by our upbringings or, as is often in the system of Reiki, by our teacher/s. When we surrender we move in an organic way - no dogmatic steps, movements or hand positions - but completely free.
Following on from Frans Stiene’s talk on the Japanese Art of Reiki he answered questions from the audience. In Part I he talks about self-practice, non-duality and the Reiki symbols and mantras, and Reiki as an offering.
Within the Japanese system of Reiki we talk alot about Earth and Heaven Ki and what lies between. These polar energies are represented in the Japanese practice of Onmyodo as what we commonly call yin and yang.
In Okuden level II and Shinpiden level III of the system of Reiki specific symbols are taught. Symbols play a large part in many spiritual traditions. Today we will be looking at some Chinese Taoist symbols on an old woodblock print. These look very similar to the first symbol taught in Okuden. What is interesting to note is that Taoist teachings were imported into Japan from as early as the 6th century. Some of the Chinese Taoist teachings were integrated into Japanese Shintoism and Buddhism, but also developed into a Japanese practice called Onmyodo, the Way of Yin and Yang.
Lately, there has been some discussion in the Reiki community questioning whether the founder of the system, Mikao Usui, actually taught the DKM mantra/symbol in the system of Reiki. DKM is encountered in the system’s final teachings of Shinpiden Reiki Level III. Most Reiki practitioners know of DKM through the teachings of Mrs Takata who, in the late 1930s, brought the system from Japan to the West. Mrs Takata taught the DKM mantra/symbol as the last of the system’s four mantras and symbols. Those questioning the DKM’s origins stem from the lineage of Mrs Yamaguchi.
Reiki is a great teacher and its simplicity means to me that I can just get on with the practice and let it sink deeper and deeper within, rather than getting lost in lots of books trying to figure it out with my mind/ego. Then, I had the chance to re-sit my Shinpiden with Frans. As with most things it happened at just the right time. I was now a peach ripe enough to hear what Frans had to say (the analogy belongs to Frans).