Fellowship Distant Practice


What does the group practice of Reiki look like in this new world?  I’m calling it Reiki Fellowship Distant Practice.

Our ‘old ways’ of coming together and doing touch therapy with each other is off the table until such time that either everyone has immunity from the virus.  So that’s going to take awhile.

In the meantime, meeting virtually and sending energy at a distance has been our main method of group process.  Doing self-Reiki at home has been our daily maintenance.

I am extremely grateful to have a morning meditation group that has been meeting over the last several weeks and has served as a connection to community, laughter, a place to process grief and a source of healing and support.

I keep having the vision each time we meet virtually of getting together physically in a large space, like a field in the park and being 6 feet or more apart in a circle and sending Reiki to each other that way.  I think as the weather keeps getting warmer, this is going to be the way we can still connect and be safe for this healing work.

If you live in Seattle and there are certain fields in parks in your area and you think they would be good for this kind of experience, let me know.

I’m gathering resources now for when the parks are open and we can come together.

Teaching Reiki classes in this new world has become virtual, so the experiential component is quite different than coming to a designated Reiki studio for such practice.

But the students I have been working with have been very gracious and accommodating learning out of their living and spare rooms.  I’ve found teaching workshops in several smaller intervals (2-3 hours max) with a week or weeks in-between allows for greater integration and understanding of the course material.  So for now, that’s what the format looks like for my classes and working with smaller (1-3) groups of students is the most feasible.

I have been doing more guided meditation and remote Reiki with all my clients.  Because of the increased stress we’ve all been under, it’s been helpful for each session to have 10 minutes at the beginning and/or end to settle the breath, calm the nerves and mind.

I had tried prior to the COVID-19 crisis to include these meditation moments into my counseling sessions, but often, my clients would just want to use the time to talk.  Now there is space to do both and for that, I am grateful.

I’ve found the helpful way through anything, crisis or otherwise, is to give space for reflection and insight.  Daily walks are my mainstay backed by the practices listed above.

Some folks have asked me if I’ve delved back into doing my pottery/clay work and that’s the next step.

It’s been a challenge to feel my artistic self want to create.  But perhaps as we keep moving forward that part, just like the spring blossoms all around will begin to emerge.  I look forward to the evolution….

Copyright Eileen Dey Wurst

The happiness of practice

download44 days of continuous blog posting about happiness. It’s become a practice.  The same way Reiki is, I give myself Reiki every day, and have, since I first learned about it almost twenty years ago.

I’d love to say that’s how it will be with my writing…I did have several years where I kicked out blog after blog that eventually became part of my book, Touching the World Through Reiki.

But I’m not doing this practice of blogging for any kind of ‘product’.  I took on the project because committing to 100 days of happiness seems like it makes me and the world a better place.

Having this intention each day has made my world seem lighter, even if it’s still the same world.  I seek out things that are happier rather than heavier.

That’s not to say I haven’t had moments, brief or elongated of trial, tribulation with darker shades.  Each time I hold space for my clients, as they unfold their stories which have lead them to a point of suffering, we dwell in the space of uncertainty together.

However, with happiness bubbling in my subconscious, I have noticed that within each session, I wait to see if a client can discover their own solution, their own lighter path, I almost anticipate there will be some degree of resolution, even at the end of the session.

Holding that intention often manifests itself.  It’s very powerful mojo.

So I am happy for this practice, and perhaps, this practice is happy for me.

Eileen Dey 2015

I learned Reiki, now what?

After teaching a full weekend of Reiki classes I often wonder if students are pondering this question.  I advise to continue daily self-Practice and attend local Reiki circles to keep ‘in the flow’ of the energy, but I often feel they want something more.

That’s my challenge as an instructor, because the ‘more’ is really in the practice.  And practice seems so mundane and regular…and yet, yes, it is, but that’s really what allows students to progress further on the path.

Additional events, like Reiki Soundscape, where musicians play to a Reiki circle are fun excursions, and further opportunities to meet community.

Offering mini sessions to co-workers, family members and friends also can assist in re-creating the experiences that occurred in the training workshop.

Ideally, I’d like to see the tradition of ‘Reiki Dojo’ or practice hall set up, just as there are yoga studios to go to.  But until that happens (such endeavors are small business risks, of course), students can start where they are.

Tuning in to the weekly Distant Reiki Group is one alternative.  Or, they can create a space in their room or home where they devote daily attention to exploring what healing energy can do.

Then, beyond the home, out in the world, nature provides further connection in the offering of Reiki to trees, lakes, rivers, wildlife, etc.

If that’s not available, find your local dog park, zoo, animal shelter, botanical garden.  Any and every living thing will respond to the healing power of Reiki intention.

You don’t have to always do hands-on Reiki, you can offer from afar with the projection of your own mind/third eye or hands held up in offering.

Taking related courses in chakras, meridians and meditation also can assist grasping the power of this technique.

And above all, be patient.  Learning Reiki is a process.  You don’t ‘get’ the whole system in one day or one week.  It takes time, integration, and yes, that wonderful word, practice.

Photo credit

How to effectively express Reiki to others part 2

Preparing to get your feet wet

Speaking in front of a group is a top fear among people, but it can be mastered.  Organizations like Toastmasters offer a structure to perfect the art of public speaking.

I’ve taken acting and voice classes over the years to also hone my own presentation style.  Getting up on stage can be quite fun and gets you familiar and more comfortable in ‘being seen’.  I’ve integrated various methods of comedy into my talks as well.  Humor is an invaluable tool in speaking.  It lets your audience know you are ‘human’ and not some kind of untouchable guru (which some people assume of Reiki if they don’t know anything about it).

I use funny quotes, jokes and stories about my own bumbling through learning Reiki, as well as mishaps with my family’s experiences.

Humor also facilitates a connection to your audience.  A great resource is http://www.reikihumor.com or for my general humorous quotes:  http://www.quotegarden.com/humorous.html.

Diving in

One of the requirements I have of my own master-level students is to prepare a 20-30 minute presentation on Reiki.  Some have combined that presentation with areas of their own interest, such as how Reiki works with hypnotherapy, with animals, in maintaining a balanced lifestyle.  Others have chosen to focus on the structure and function of each chakra and the meridian channels as Reiki flows through them.

Each time you explain Reiki to someone or a group, you get an opportunity to learn more about your own connection to this healing art.  Offer to give a talk on Reiki at your community center, church, synagogue, or school

If you do end up giving a professional presentation, preparation is key.  Not only should you have your material down pat, but you should also come with business cards, brochures, and an outline of your talk.

People learn in different ways.  Some are more visual, and appreciate an outline (whether on paper or written out on a board or done through a Powerpoint presentation).  Many are auditory learners and understand information through dialogue and question and answer.  Above all, as Reiki practitioners, we know that the doing of Reiki, the practice of it, is probably one of the best learning tools.

How to effectively express Reiki to others part 1

I started having to explain what Reiki is over 15 years ago after taking my first Reiki class.  My friends and family wanted to know what was this ‘energywork’ I had begun to take an interest in.

I would attempt to explain that “Reiki is a gentle method of stress reduction that involves light touch”.  That seemed simple enough.  But then, they wanted to know why the energy felt so strong?   Where did it come from?   How come it seemed to be healing not only their immediate headaches, but also granting a sense of peace?  Aah, now, how was I going to explain this?

And so began the process of learning to become an effective speaker and teacher of Reiki.

I’ve found it helpful to have a collection of short statements to explain Reiki, for those times when you are in an elevator or at the checkout counter or speaking to your bank teller and they ask the ubiquitous question, “What is Reiki?”

Having a 30 second answer

A very simple, straightforward answer to assist with that question I have found is:  “Reiki is like acupuncture without needles”.  Most people know what acupuncture is, and that statement seems to either give the inquirer enough to satisfy their curiosity or can be a segue into a whole discussion about the Reiki system itself.  You can use the basis of acupuncture as a starting point, because the needles inserted into various points along the meridian channels stimulate the flow of chi, which assists the body and mind to coming into balance, just as Reiki does, hence, without needles.

I like the acupuncture statement better than one aligning Reiki with massage, because although a client may lay on a massage table in receiving a Reiki treatment, there is no physical manipulation of the fascia.  And clients remain clothed.  The massage analogy can end up complicating your own conversation, so I’d recommend steering clear of that analogy.

Another short statement can be “It is a hands-on-healing technique that facilitates stress reduction through a calming of the nervous system”.    That is a pretty straight-forward and concrete answer and might be used in conjunction with the other listed above.

Longer answers:  preparation and practice

You begin to discern who your audience is and what their needs are when they ask you questions.  Being prepared with opening statements, like the ones mentioned above, begins to facilitate dialogue.

Next, I would recommend writing down several of your own personal or client stories and practice telling them to yourself or your friends.  You might even want to record yourself so you hear what you sound like.  In a way, you are doing your own “Reiki rehearsal” just as an actor would in getting comfortable with the lines of their play.

I’ve had several professional videos recorded of me explaining Reiki on YouTube.  It’s a great way of getting your message out there as well as critiquing your own presentation style.  When I look back at those videos, I realize what I needed to have done in several of them was have more of an outline of what I was going to talk about and being a bit more specific in tailoring my talk to a general audience.

I learned from that ‘rehearsal’ and began to customize several of the ways in which I discuss Reiki.  For instance, talking about Reiki to professionals of a certain field, such as doctors or nurses, it’s important to back up your talk with scientific research and specific case studies.  Talking to a group of seniors or to veterans, they might also want research and specific applications to help their own concerns like chronic pain or disease.

I would advise a review of the studies that have been done on Reiki.  A great resource is http://www.centerforreikiresearch.org.

Presenting to a group of individuals who are already familiar with Reiki, such as at holistic and new age bookstores and centers, the audience might want to know how Reiki is different than Healing Touch, or Shiatsu.

I found during my Reiki book tour which logged over 10,000 miles and 20 book stores, that each group I presented to had unique questions.  I would review my book as well as make a list of various talking points before presenting at each store.

My group, Reiki Fellowship, also participated in monthly Reiki blessings of the Duwamish River in Seattle over 6 months.  Each time we met, I would give an introduction on Reiki, the work we are doing as well as answer any questions related to environmental Reiki.

Just like the system of Reiki itself, an effective speaker becomes a master through constant practice.

Blog Stats

  • 238,589 hits
%d bloggers like this: