What is Reiki?
Reiki is a Japanese word which means ‘Universal Life Energy’. It is a healing energy which, when channelled through the hands of the Reiki Practitioner to the client, activates the client’s natural ability to heal him/herself. The energy helps to release blocked energies and encourages the body to release toxins and return it to a state of balance. Reiki is a simple, natural and safe way to enhance and maintain physical, emotional and mental well-being.
Reiki can also be described as love, kindness and compassion expressed through gentle touch through which deep healing becomes possible.
Some of the positive effects of Reiki are:
- To experience a deep relaxation and inner peace
- To boost the immune system and the body’s innate wisdom to heal itself
- To increase energy-levels
- To reduce stress and anxiety
- To improve sleep
- To help in times of intense emotional pain
- To reduce physical pain
- To better cope with times of change and transformation
“I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed my reiki session with Melanie. I felt so relaxed and today I definitely feel more energised. I also enjoyed talking to her and her words seemed to make so much sense to me. I am so glad I have booked a course of four sessions and I am looking forward to my next reiki treatment already.” Aisling, Dublin
“When Sandra first came to me, she was very worried. Four weeks earlier, she had woken up one morning unable to feel the right side of her body and unable to stand let alone walk. At the Dublin hospital her husband had brought her to straight away, they did a series of examinations, including a lumbar puncture to examine her spinal fluid, and several scans of her brain, the result of all of which are still outstanding. However, the consultants had been able to determine an inflammation of the brain. She had been put on steroids and sent home with the advice to rest. Sandra came to me that day because she didn’t just want to wait for test and scan results, but she wanted to do something holistic to help her body.
Sandra and I started working together. She would come to my premises in Monkstown and receive a combination of Reiki healing and Craniosacral Therapy for 90 minutes once a week.
She felt an improvement after the first session: she was able to feel the right side of her body a tiny bit and was able to stand up after the session to meet her husband outside who had come to collect her. With every session we did together she felt a little better.
After her fourth session, Sandra is almost back to her normal self. She is still taking it easy, but she can feel more and more of her energy and strength returning, almost all the symptoms are gone, standing and walking are no longer an issue.
She still doesn’t have the result of the lumbar puncture examination, but she says that, no matter what they show, she wants to continue coming to me to prevent a relapse.
Reiki and Craniosacral therapy work together to restore balance in the body and mind. In order for the balance to be restored, we as therapists and clients don’t always have to know what exactly caused the imbalance and how we go about restoring it. We are there as the vessel to help the body and mind heal themselves.”
Why have a Reiki healing?
The purpose of a Reiki healing is to rebalance the client’s energy-level and to give more energy into parts of the being where support and healing are needed.
During a one-hour long Reiki healing the client is lying fully clothed on a comfortable massage table. Starting at their head, the therapist places their hands gently on different parts of the client’s body and lets the energy flow in.
A Reiki healing is a very relaxing experience. It is not unusual for clients to fall asleep during a Reiki healing. Some people feel warmth or heat or tingling but it is not necessary to feel anything for the energy to work.
Reiki is an accumulative energy and builds up in your system with each session. Although a once-off Reiki healing can be hugely relaxing and beneficial, depending on the client’s personal situation it may be advisable to have a course of three or four healings relatively close together.
Reiki works on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level and it always works towards the client’s highest potential on all levels of their being.
Reiki Healing For Grief & Loss
Losing a loved one is one of the most traumatic life events we can experience. The loss reverberates through our being on so many levels. We need all the support we can get to navigate our way through the emotional terrain and reclaim our lives.
Reiki Healing is a powerful tool available to help support us on this journey.
Reiki means “Universally Guided Life Force Energy.” We are all animated by life force energy, sometimes called “prana” or “chi.”. When we experience trauma, loss, or have been taking care of a loved one for a long time, prior to their passing, the life force in us can become depleted, blocked, or dense from all the myriad emotions we may be experiencing.
Losing someone close to us can elicit a whole range of emotional states — grief, anger, depression, fear, anxiety, frustration, regret, guilt or bitterness can sit with us for many months or even years. We may feel exhausted and unable to function from the depth of grief, or sometimes from not feeling safe or supported enough to be able to express our feelings freely.
This is where Reiki can help. In a safe, healing and relaxing environment, Reiki will gently begin the process of lightening the heavy load of our grief. Reiki has sometimes been described as ‘energetic massage’, but unlike massage we stay fully clothed during a Reiki treatment. The Reiki Practitioner works with light touch on the body or just above the body in the auric field. We feel relaxed, peaceful and cared for by this nurturing and healing energy that starts to clear away the denser energies we have been carrying. Many people describe a Reiki treatment as a sense of peace, love and safety that they have rarely experienced. If you have trouble sleeping, a Reiki session will often give you a deep, restful sleep during or after the session.
Sometimes Reiki will help us to release some of the feelings we may have had difficulty accessing because they have been too painful. In a non-judgmental, compassionate space we can maybe start to forgive ourselves; let go of resentment; allow tears to flow and get our lives back on track.
Finally, if we have lost a spouse, we may also be grieving the loss of being physically touched which is such an important and essential part of feeling balanced and happy. Being touched in a loving way releases endorphins, happiness hormones, which help us to feel comforted and safe. A Reiki treatment can provide a safe, loving and gentle alternative as the practitioner works all the way down the body from head to toe with a light, comforting touch focusing on the areas that a client may have shared are most in need – like the heart – or areas where the client is experiencing physical pain.
If you are feeling the burden of grief, a Reiki session can:
- Help you feel lighter and more able to cope
- Help you release feelings of grief in a safe, supportive space
- Ease feelings of guilt, resentment or bitterness
- Help to ease physical pain
- Support mental clarity and a positive attitude
- Create deep relaxation and rest
- Help you get back on your feet again
Since Reiki is an integral part of the grief work I offer, it is a big part of the Living With Loss program I offer for the newly bereaved and those struggling with their grief further down the line.
RKMRI Medical Reiki™
RKMRI Medical Reiki™ is a new protocol in the practice of Integrative Medicine. It is practiced according to the Gold Standards and Best Practices developed by Raven Keyes after her 20 years of bringing Reiki into the operating rooms of some of America’s top surgeons, including Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Sheldon Marc Feldman. Today Reiki is one of the top three complementary in-patient therapies offered in over 800 US hospitals including Johns Hopkins, Harvard, Yale, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and George Washington University Hospital. Clinical results have shown that stress is relieved, pain is reduced, less pain medication is needed and healing is speedy in those patients who have been able to benefit from Reiki healing while in hospital. Passionate about the idea of bringing Reiki into our hospitals, I was trained by Raven Keyes Medical Reiki International™ to a very high standard to work safely and unobtrusively with surgical teams, consultants, doctors and nurses in the operating room and in any other part of the hospital environment. I feel that every patient deserves a Certified Medical Reiki Master™ (CMRM) by their side during surgery or during any medical procedure or treatment.
Reiki for Cancer Patients
“Linda came to me when she had finished her third of eight chemotherapy infusions to treat her very aggressively growing secondary liver cancer and was experiencing extreme fatigue and, what was even worse, severe nausea as side-effects. ‘I won’t be completing my eight sessions, if this is how I am going to feel all the time,’ she told me when we first met. She was looking for something holistic to help her through this time, and she had read on my website how side-effects from chemotherapy can decrease through regular Reiki sessions.
We started working together. I would see her at my premises for 60 minutes once a week for a Reiki session. Linda loved the Reiki. Not made did the Reiki sessions make her feel really relaxed and calm and took the stress of living with this debilitating illness and the heavy medication and the uncertainty with regard to the future away, but she was also able to have a better quality of life because she experienced hardly any nausea and felt strong enough on most days to go for a walk around the block or to meet a friend for coffee at a nearby coffee shop. She was able to complete the course of chemotherapy infusions without complications.
During the break from chemotherapy that followed, she continued her daily walking, seeing friends, and she was even able to go to the west coast for a couple of days with her husband and her two teenage boys.
Unfortunately, it soon became evident that the cancer that had been controlled by the chemotherapy was growing again. Again, I supported her through the chemotherapy that followed with weekly Reiki sessions; and, again, she experienced very few side-effects of the chemotherapy treatment. However, the growing cancer and the therapy weakened her system very much. One day, two days before our next session would have taken place, her husband called me to say that she was in hospital because she had contracted pneumonia. She had asked to see me and so I went to see her. She was drifting in and out of consciousness as I was sitting by her bedside. In one awake moment, she asked me to give her some Reiki. ‘I don’t want the Reiki to make me strong again,’ she declared in a very calm voice, ‘but I want it to help me to surrender.’ So I did a 60 minute Reiki session with her in the hospital bed. This should be our final Reiki session because, during the early hours of the next morning, she died very peacefully. She had been surrounded by her husband and the two boys, as the husband told me on the phone the next day.
It was a privilege to accompany Linda and her family on this journey. Not only was she able to have an acceptable quality of life during her aggressive chemotherapy treatment with the aid of Reiki, but she also found comfort in the Reiki sessions when she was approaching the end. Her husband is still coming to me today for Reiki sessions and has enrolled in the Living with Loss program to support him in dealing with his loss.”
I work with patients no matter where they are on their cancer journey; patients at the beginning of treatment, patients who are in the middle of their treatment, patients who have finished their treatment and are in remission and are looking to sustain a quality of life, knowing they are now managing their cancer over fighting it, and patients who are nearing the end of their life.
Regardless of where they are on their journey, many of my clients are taking part in the Care For Cancer Patients Program and are finding it very beneficial on their journey.
“Despite any clear biologic mechanism, recent studies has shown that Reiki induces relaxation, decreasing anxiety, stress and a patient’s perception of pain.” said Jun Mao, MD, director of the Integrative Oncology Initiative at the Abramson Cancer Centre. “Reiki does not compete with or replace the patient’s regular treatment, but can help them better cope,” he added. He is only one of many doctors and consultants who can see the benefit of Reiki with their cancer patients.
Over the years, I have had the privilege to work with many cancer patients. Some of those patients were undergoing conventional treatment at the time and were using Reiki as a gentle support. And some of those patients were nearing the end of their lives and in receipt of palliative care.
- All cancer patients find that Reiki is very relaxing, calming and soothing.
- All cancer patients say that Reiki reduces tension and anxiety.
- All cancer patients say that Reiki reduces the side-effects of conventional treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation and the side-effects of strong medication.
- Many cancer patients say Reiki reduces physical and emotional pain.
- Many cancer patients say that Reiki increases their energy-levels.
- Some cancer patients say that Reiki improves their sleep-pattern.
- In most cases Reiki helps cancer patients to have a more positive attitude towards life in general and improves the response to their often aggressive treatments.
“The sessions added a positive and gentle component to the process. Radiation treatment is difficult and this gave me something that was helping with the physical, emotional and spiritual side of the experience.” Frank, Dublin
If you are living with a cancer diagnosis, or if you know someone who does, please get in touch or encourage them to get in touch and I will be very happy to support you on your journey.
Reiki does not cure cancer, but it will make it easier to live with it.
Reiki for Nurses
I know and appreciate that your job as a nurse is an extremely fulfilling yet stressful one. Practising regular self-care is vital in counteracting and managing the stresses of the profession and avoiding serious issues like exhaustion, depression and burnout.
Self-care is a broad concept that involves engaging in activities that reduce your stress and improve your physical and mental health. Unfortunately, it is often those of us who care for others a lot that forget to take enough time to care for ourselves. Or sometimes you may even feel like it is not so important to take good care of yourselves so long as you can continue caring for others. But the truth is that you can only care for others when you care for yourself first. The more you practise self-care the better you will be able to do your job.
Reiki is a wonderful practice of self-carebecause it rebalances your energy, makes you calm and peaceful, helps you to let go of any physical, emotional or mental stress you may have experienced during your day at work, helps you to recharge your batteries and helps you rebuild your boundaries which may have been challenged by your patients or even colleagues at work.
“I love Reiki treatments and, in the last year, they have become a very important part of my self-care programme. As much as I love my job, it can be physically, emotionally and mentally draining and I feel that Reiki helps me to do my job with love, care and focus while maintaining my own health and well-being.” Anita, Nurse, Dublin.
Many people who are working in a caring profession as well as people who are caring for a loved one with a terminal illness have enrolled in the Care For Caregivers Program as an act of self-care and in order to recharge their batteries.
Reiki in Hospitals
In the US, energy Healing is fast becoming a recommended must-have complementary therapy mainstream medical professionals. I would love to see the same development in Ireland. This is why I have been spreading the word about Reiki so that more and more people can talk about Reiki when they are with their doctors and consultants and request Reiki healing as a support while they are undergoing medical treatment or procedures. I offer training for medical professionals such as Nurses, Doctors and Caregivers to help them with their own personal struggles with the challenges of their roles but also in the hope that, after their training, they will carry their knowledge and experience into their workplace and incorporate this healing modality into their patient-care protocol