Back to (Reiki) Basics

Reiki basicsHere in the northern hemisphere it’s back to school time, and the school year starts with reviewing the basics. Let’s take a moment as students of our practice to review Reiki basics.

Fortunately, Reiki basics are a lot more straightforward than the material being reviewed in schools.

Reiki basics are…Simple. Practical. Common sensible. They keep us grounded in our practice no matter our practice style.

These basics reflect timeless values that support practitioners from all practice styles and lineages.

Reiki basics

Here are my proposed Reiki basics. Please give them a read, and share your perspective in a comment below.

Reiki basic #1

As Mrs. Takata famously said, once you are trained, practicing Reiki is really this simple: Hands-on, you’re practicing; hands-off, you’re not.

Reiki basic #2

Daily hands-on self practice is the primary way to develop your practice (and yourself!). No matter what classes you’ve taken or you plan to take, you’re not going to mature as a practitioner through classes the way you will with consistent self-practice over time.

Reiki basic #3

First degree Reiki training is the only training you need. You might want more — I sure did, and I offer more — but you don’t need more. No need to take Second degree training unless you feel a heart yearning. No need to become a Reiki master unless you want to teach. No need to collect classes and certificates because they won’t bring the confidence that you’ll gain organically from actual practice on yourself and with others.

Reiki basic #4

Reiki is a practice; we place hands as an offering, without attachment to the outcomes. Our inner posture is passive. The person receiving the session — yourself or someone else — responds to the practice on his own. While we wish the best for everyone, we are not in control of the other person’s experience or benefits.

Reiki basic #5

When you practice consistently and mindfully, your Reiki practice continues to deepen and to teach you. As a spiritual practice, Reiki can take you deeper and deeper into mystery and the experience of Oneness, if you dedicate yourself to being a good student, practicing regularly and contemplating your experience, rather than jumping to conclusions.

Reiki basic #6

Professional Reiki practice takes more than 1, 2, 3. First, Second and Reiki master trainings are practice trainings, meaning you learn the specific practice that is unique to that level: hands-on, distant, and initiating/teaching.

Professionals in other fields are mentored by experienced professionals in internships that usher them from learning their practice skills to learning the skills of professional practice. That’s best for them, and best for the public who deserve to be served by experienced Reiki professionals.

Reiki basic #7

The Reiki Precepts are basic to Reiki practice. Today only, do not worry, do not anger. With thankfulness, work diligently. Be kind to others. [Thank you to Libellule for leaving a comment reminding me of this oversight!]

Deregreso a los fundamentos básicos del Reiki is a Spanish translation of this article you can print and share as is, without copying or changing the content or presentation in any way.

What do you think?

What do you think of those proposed Reiki basics? Any you would change? Any you would add? Let’s have a respectful community discussion so we can pool our collective wisdom and experience. All thoughtful comments are welcome.



27 thoughts on “Back to (Reiki) Basics”

  1. Thank you for this clear and concise list of basics. I never realized that I could practice Level 1, (meaning without symbols) after having received Level 2 initiation. It’s not that I was taught that, but I came to that conclusion without asking. I appreciate your invitation to constantly re-examine our own (sometimes hard to see) biases. Thanks to our good friend Mae S. For posting this article on Facebook this morning. I came across it just after completing my own self-practice today.

  2. Thank you very much Pamela. It is so simple.
    I was taken off with all the protocols of the second degree… don’t know if contemplating on the “symbols and drawing” was really obliged to do. It was not my thing.
    Since I subscribed for the course I am practicing every day in a very simple way ( in my yin yoga poses)
    I am really happy that you came on my path

    1. So happy you have come back to your practice, Regina!

      I’m very excited to partner with The Shift Network and be able to support more Reiki practitioners in self care.

      Here is the link to our free recording 3 Keys to Deepen Your Reiki Practice and there is a free Q&A Wednesday evening, which will be recorded.

  3. I have not practiced since long. I had 1st degree and 2nd degree usui reiki long back in 2001. As suggested by u regarding fast track will it work for me or afresh training needed

    1. No worries, you still have the ability to practice, and if you don’t remember how, here is an article on Reiki self practice. That said, you might appreciate having a session from another practitioner, or taking another class, but that would be for your motivation, not otherwise necessary.

  4. As others have said, Pamela. Yes, it works, and works well. I also love them, and will take them to heart as I continue to practice every day.



  5. Thank you so much for this list.

    My issue is that I need to get better at grounding myself so I don’t take in and hold on to the receiver’s energy.

    1. Yes, it is important to stay grounded, confident in our practice, and detached from the outcomes. You can develop that habit by consistently coming back to your body, flexing the large muscle groups, glutes, quads and hamstrings. It only takes moments and makes a huge difference. And keep in mind that you aren’t the only person in need of grounding. That’s why I created Blessed Boundaries. The next program starts in January.

  6. Thank you, Pamela. Your generous sharing of Reiki is always a special
    time for me. I try to use my Reiki ever day.

    I also think the Reiki Precepts are a very important part of our selves and Reiki.

  7. #4 is the one that have struggled with. I am grateful for the language that you used to describe the attitude of the practitioner in offering Reiki healing to another. I want so badly for the other person to feel better, to recover, to heal… But I need to detach from the outcome.

    1. Libba, would it make a difference if you thought in terms of “practicing Reiki” rather than “offering Reiki healing to another?”

      1. Yes, it definitely would. I think I have been pressuring myself over this to “do something” for the other person. This has led to disappointment and sadness when all that I thought I was doing did not seem to help.

    1. That’s a great question, Jessica. One possibility is to join my online WRITE REIKI mentoring program. It runs once a year and will start soon. I also offer phone/Skype mentoring sessions in which we can discuss your questions. I offer a monthly clinic in which any Reiki practitioners can participate and be mentored as they like. You might look for a local teacher who has similar on-going events. This article will help you make a choice that fits your standards.

    1. Thank you so much! That was an oversight on my part. Yes, the Reiki Precepts belong in any list of Reiki Basics and I will add them now.

  8. I love the Reiki basics and believe that they are right on. Thanks for the reminder. Practice, practice and more daily practice.

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