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Inspirations from Chiyoko Yamaguchi - part 2


Students often ask about using Reiki on nature – on trees for example –

and during the time Chiyoko Yamaguchi was doing seminars, Westerners

would ask about this. Chiyoko Yamaguchi found this a very strange idea,

not because she didn’t care about nature but because she understood that

nature already has Reiki flowing well through it, that the interference in

the flow of life is not nature, it is us. In fact it seems arrogant to be trying

to give Reiki to nature when we are in such a state ourselves. Usui knew

that when we find the depth in the simplicity of what he taught, when we

find our connection with nature again and begin to live in harmony with it

rather than trying to control it, then, collective healing will occur. So the focus

is on giving Reiki to us and healing the humans rather than nature. In this way,

at a time it is needed more than ever, we will stop destroying the very thing

our lives depend on.


Chiyoko Yamaguchi urged people to practise, and then practise some

more, to use Reiki as much as possible. She calmly and patiently reassured

those who could not initially feel Byosen to relax and let it come. It can be

incredibly frustrating not to feel much at first when you learn Reiki, and

(especially with our Western mindset) we tend to want to reach outside to

find ways to make our Reiki flow improve and to feel more. Many people

find themselves taking endless courses and workshops for various things,

bumping from one technique to the other if they don’t immediately feel

they’ve ‘got’ what they’re looking for. This is the time to stop reaching

outside and instead to be still and go within. The Gokai (five principles)

can help us with this. Those who practised Reiki in Japan in the early days

placed great emphasis on the Gokai, it is an integral part of Reiki and the

fact that it is on Usui’s memorial stone indicates how highly regarded it

was. It is easy to miss the remarkable depth of the Gokai because of its

simplicity but anyone who spent time around Chiyoko Yamaguchi came

to understand just how important it was. To look at oneself and do inner

work is our responsibility and is a part of Reiki. “Look after the first four

principles,” she would say, “and the fifth will look after itself.” Once we are

not locked in anger, free from worry, living in gratitude and calmly doing

whatever needs to be done in our lives, kindness is our natural state, it

flows out of us effortlessly.

Going within

Today many people look to find something or someone to make them

more ‘powerful’. They look for the quick fix, the magic symbol, the new

way to improve. Chiyoko Yamaguchi, in the early days of teaching Jikiden

Reiki to non-Japanese, found some people who had already learned other

kinds of Reiki in their home countries felt there weren’t enough symbols,

they wanted to learn the magic and become more powerful. It’s a simple

misunderstanding of what Reiki is, and who we are. The magic and the

power is all already there in Reiki, but not as an ego-based exercise.

We don’t have to find new and complicated ways to make Reiki happen or

work out how to improve it, we simply need to have the patience and

make the time to allow what is already there to emerge. Chiyoko

Yamaguchi never aspired to make herself magic or powerful, yet she was

both in the sense of what happened when she gave Reiki. All the time we

are reaching outwards to find ways to improve, we are moving further

away from finding the depth within and connecting with what we are

truly looking for.

Those who already practise Reiki may think, ‘I get this’, but take a

moment to think about a time you did a treatment and nothing appeared

to happen for the person. Inside, things are happening of course, but

nothing that can be seen or noticed on the surface and the receiver therefore

feels the treatment didn’t work. Have you ever felt worried when this

happened? Have you wanted in that moment to make your Reiki stronger

somehow? To find a magic way to guarantee people always feel the Reiki

and the benefits? To ensure there are immediate palpable results? In these

moments it is tempting to look for something outside us to make these

things happen, yet these feelings are the call to look within, to notice our

frustration and the desire to control outcomes. Doing Reiki can help us

identify the parts of us that we need to see, to love, to allow and release.

The more we let go of these worries and connect to the stillness already

inside us, the more we can truly experience everything. In this way we

connect more deeply to the flow of life. And that is what Reiki is.


Chiyoko Yamaguchi didn’t glamorise or dramatise her beloved Reiki. She

was just using the natural connection we all have to source energy to help

those around her. It is possible to see that many of today’s attitudes to

Reiki contrast strongly with her approach. As a whole, we have moved

from the simple gratitude for Reiki in our everyday lives to some kind of

competition about the best, the strongest Reiki and the most powerful

techniques. This takes us further away from the spirit of Reiki.

We can honour her and all those women who were involved in beginning

and preserving the practice of Reiki by living with the Gokai, going

within, helping each other, finding the depth in the simplicity and being

willing to ‘just put our hands on’ for 60 odd years.

You can purchase Women in Reiki by Amanda Jayne and Silke Kleemann from online stores now.

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