9 Elements


The 9 Elements contain the actual form of practice for this system. Each of the elements is of equal importance. This is like a formula that allows the student of the system to grow as the elements move together, stimulating the student to ask questions and to meet challenges. Each element has a relationship with the other elements. Any change to an element is a change in the practice.

Stewardship of the practice is held through the teaching practice of masters. Each student has the right to his or her own personal practice and relationship to the energy of Reiki and the system of practice.

These nine elements are Form of Teaching, History, Initiation, Money, Oral Tradition, Precepts, Spiritual Lineage, Symbols, and Treatment.  In First and Second Degree the nine elements are not a part of the actual teaching of the practice but serve as the framework for the teaching of the master. In the preparation of a master, the elements add another dimension of understanding for the aspiring master as a steward of this system.

This articulation of the system, Usui Shiki Ryoho, allows all students to use this practice as a still point. This means that the system stays stable and the student is challenged by the system form. This creates the opportunity to use the system for growth and development, for deepening the human experience, and for connecting to the Absolute as well as the Relative Universe.

Form of Teaching
The class form for teaching this system is simple, direct, and comprehensive for ease of learning and the integration of the practice into daily life. A master teaches a beginning class at each level supporting the student in being able to experience their individual path in the practice. There are two levels, First and Second Degree. First Degree is taught in 4 three hour sessions on 4 consecutive days. Second Degree is taught in three sessions of varying length, usually over three days. 

History is the story of the origin and development of this practice through time as held, carried, and cared for by the spitiual lineage of Mikao Usui, Chujiro Hayashi, Hawayo Takata, and Phyllis Lei Furumoto. The story traces the development of the practice through lifetime of each lineage bearer.  

It is not possible to describe the initiation here as the ritual is known only by masters to initiate a student for the first time for each step in the system. The initiation can be described as a sacred time when the student and master experience communion with the energy of Reiki. The other eight elements of the system allow the experience of the initiations to be used in daily life, expanding the awareness of the student. 

Balance of giving and receiving is a concept that is reflected in the element of money in this system.  The practice of Reiki calls for an exchange for learning Reiki at each level and for treatment.

Oral Tradition
This practice is taught and passed on in the form of oral tradition, that is, the student and master are together for the class experience. There is a unique quality to this meeting that only can happen in person-to-person contact where ritual or sacred space is created. Through the medium of story, demonstration, initiation, sharing, and responding to questions, the essence of the practice is communicated.

The five Reiki principles are guides to daily living. They challenge the student to look more deeply into the nature of personality. Each question that is provoked by the precepts is an opportunity for personal development, a way to change perceptions of others, and a possibility for personal peace.

Spiritual Lineage
The lineage of Usui Shiki Ryoho is Mikao Usui, Chujiro Hayashi, Hawayo Takata, and Phyllis Lei Furumoto. The system of practice as we know it today has been carried through these four lineage bearers and their time/space in the world as we know it. Historical events, changes in communication and travel methods, research into the human conditions, and many other factors have had a bearing on the practice through the lineage bearers. This is a developing system that has at its root the inspiration and teachings of Mikao Usui and his cultural values. 

There are three symbols in this practice that are keys or doorways to another level of relationship with the energy of Reiki.  A student is asked for further commitment of time and attention to the practice. The three symbols have specific functions and form of use in the student’s daily practice.

The form of treatment is simple while comprehensive.  The hand positions offered in the First Degree class create a pattern on the body that allows for the person receiving as well as the person giving the treatment awareness of the energy movement in the body.  The basis of the practice is self-treatment and treatment of others within the realm of family and friends. The student learns the technique for self-treatment, treatment of others, and for first aid applications. Beginning students have the capacity to give a good treatment.  Reiki treatments are not used for diagostic purposes nor should there be expectations about the outcome of the treatment.  Reiki always works, sometimes on unseen levels of the being.  




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images © Michael Hartley

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