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What is Healing

When I was first doing Reiki, I spoke about it as natural healing or holistic healing. Healing, healing, this word kept coming up! What did it mean? I went to the dictionary and found that the root is from the Greek word meaning whole. Here I had a simple understanding: Reiki heals by making things whole again. This concept I found helpful. It gave me a direction to try to understand my experience of Reiki and some of the teachings of Mrs. Takata like: “Reiki will go to the root of the problem.”

The physical healing part was easy enough to picture. I had an image of what becoming whole again meant to my physical body. Even when the problem was internal, I had a composite image and sense of physical health and so becoming whole (healing) was simply returning to that state of physical well-being.

As I practiced and wrestled with this concept of becoming whole as a person it got more complex. Was my practice of Reiki making me more whole as a human being? I was having experiences that made me think so, both in treating myself and others. I experienced that Reiki did go to the root of the problem, and sometimes that root seemed physical, at other times mental, emotional, or spiritual. I began to see my healing as both an immediate and a life-long phenomena. Becoming whole for me is a lifelong endeavor and Reiki is always at hand to support me.

My journey of learning something about healing has always come from treating myself, being treated, and treating others. This learning has been magical and beautiful and sometimes painful.

In my second year of practice, I met and began treating a woman I will call Marie. Marie had severe arthritis which had been diagnosed seventeen years prior. It took Marie two to three hours each morning to get enough mobility so that she could walk. She refused to use a wheelchair or to let others know that she was handicapped and in such pain.

I treated her every day. After about a week of treatment, she began to have “experiences” during the treatments. She had memories of situations in her childhood when she had felt hurt, unseen and unloved in her family. When she had these memories, she would weep.

The role that Marie took on in her family was “the strong one”, the one everyone could always rely on.

Marie had two teenage daughters living with her at this time. They had noticed that there mother was doing better. In their “sensitive” teenage way, they told her that she was ”looking less lame.” Marie was aware that she was feeling much better.

After about three weeks of treatment, she told me that she did not want any more treatment. I was heartbroken. I had come to care about Marie very much. Treating her had been a lovely experience for me, more than lovely, sometimes mystical. Here she was getting better, and she stopped treatment.

I was devastated. I was in pain. I believed that Reiki was “going to the root of the problem”. I believed that the root of Marie’s illness was all the emotional pain that she carried from her childhood. I also believed that having discovered this, Marie chose to live and bear the physical pain instead of the emotional pain. My lesson was to accept that this was her right and that I needed to be able to respect with humility and compassion the choices of those I treated.

This was a hard lesson for me. Hard to accept how my love and care for this person was tied up with what I wanted for her and what I thought she should want. Hard not to make my beliefs and perceptions more important than her choices, her path in life. Can I do this without judgment….hum…I’m working on it. I see it as part of my path to healing, to becoming whole.