Setting a Reiki Standard

I  recently received an email from a Reiki master who just moved to Seattle asking about why my vocational school, The Reiki Training Program offered state registration for Reiki practitioners and masters.

No official certification is required in WA, or in any other state (other than the LMP being required in FL and UT to practice Reiki), but my own background training includes a master’s in counseling and education and I worked within vocational and community education centers for years. I have seen the importance in setting a standard for education in training, hence my efforts to get the Reiki Training Program licensed.

Each student that attends either program that we offer, Registered Reiki Practitioner and/or Certified Reiki Master gets registered with the state of WA for completing a certain amount of training hours.

The requirements aren’t difficult to attain, several workshops, individual and group Reiki practice and advisory sessions to keep track of progress. The practiitoner program takes about 4-6 months, the master program about 9-12 months. And thats minimum. Some of my students take a lot longer between workshops, building up lots of additional experience before they go out into the world and market themselves.

Since starting the Reiki path over 13 years ago, I’ve seen a lot of changes in the field. The material being taught, for the most part, still remains the same, but the ways in which it is taught have been the reasons for me to establish a credited institution.

Students can download all 3 levels of Reiki from their computer and become a Reiki master in a weekend.

What I have found with those methods is that many of those students end up in my classes, taking them over because they have no idea what they have been attuned to or learned in such a short period of time.

As it is, I teach each level in a full day, but each student must wait months between levels, and usually a greater amount of time between the advanced levels.

The Reiki Training Program standard isn’t perfect, but its a start. Its a model I hope other Reiki masters will follow and help take Reiki into the next century.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. James Bulls
    Jun 18, 2011 @ 11:43:58

    My only concerns about the standardization of Reiki is that I fear it could set a precedent for an essentially spiritual (and for me, religious) practice to come under government regulation. I agree with you completely that there are a whole lot of people out there teaching a whole lot of Reiki courses and creating students and instructors of questionable quality and integrity, but I’m not convinced that government regulation will improve the practice. Like most things, I think it’s going to ultimately be a matter not just of the student picking the right instructor for him- or her-self but also of the teacher to decide how much of a professional program they want to provide. Certainly Reiki has a therapeutic quality to it, but it’s a long way from massage, professional counseling, and other state-licensed occupations.

  2. Jon A
    Jun 18, 2011 @ 14:13:08

    I hear you, James, but I think what Eileen is saying is a long way from standardization or regulation of Reiki. Usui Reiki is a very simple, clear, and straightforward practice. The means of teaching and learning it are, as Eileen points out, highly individualized within what already is a standard curriculum of Reiki I, II, and III. While the material is very straightforward, individual reactions to the experience can be anything but. For some people, their first adventure inward can be extremely unsettling, and I would not want to see that person have to rely on a chat room for support.

    A major component of Eileen’s program is the matter of ethics and boundaries including confidentiality and personal conduct. Another is preparation for the kinds of thoughts, feelings, and experiences that can come up for the client. Like counseling, any hands-on body work forms a relationship of what I’ll call “professional intimacy.” Far from regulation, this certification lets you know the ethical and behavioral training received by the practitioner and, while not a guarantee, lets the client know that the treatment is all about them, and they are in a safe place with a professional who is coming from a desire to be of service. I believe the vast majority of Reiki practitioners and masters are coming from that ethical place. But this kind of assurance can help Reiki grow beyond the community of “true believers” to make a larger difference in the world.

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