ORIGINS OF REIKI
Prior to deciding whether or not I wanted to be attuned to reiki and, consequently, a reiki healer, I did some basic research on reiki and its history. Resulting from this, I found what was called the "traditional reiki story" (aka "reiki story") as given from Hawayo Takata. The story states that reiki was passed on from Mikao Usui to Chujiro Hayashi to Hawayo Takata. In some sources, it is claimed that reiki died out in Japan during World War Two, and it is assumed that the only lineage to Usui was through Takata. After reading this story, I wondered about the others that Mikao Usui and Chujiro Hayashi taught. We now know, thanks to persons like Frank Arjava Petter who started researching the history in the early 1990s, that reiki continued on in Japan and there are more reiki lineages leading back to Usui.
The discovery and finding of Japanese reiki teachers has shed new light on the "facts" given in the reiki story regarding Mikao Usui. This has also provided new information regarding reiki in general. In addition, some information has been found regarding reiki's possible ancient origins.
I have provided a re-telling of the reiki story so that it may be compared to information on the history of Usui.
There are many reasons why I would undertake to research the origins of reiki and, consequently, the history of its "founder". I think it is important to understand the roots of what we are taught. I also think that by researching the history of reiki we may understand it better. However, minor details and facts in history do not necessarily have a huge consequence on reiki. While striving to understand reiki, learning different techniques and discovering new information on reiki is something to continue to do, it should be understood that being able to use reiki is what is important.
It should be stated at this point that I am not a historian, but I have provided "historical" information on this website as an interest for readers. The information presented is a culmination of my research and I will continue to do historical research. Readers are encouraged to undertake their own research and to draw their own conclusions. In the course of research, readers may come across what may seem as conflicting information. However, historical research by its very nature includes verification of known information, and this should always be undertaken at some point. The "historical" information in this website is presented as I currently know it.
LIST OF SOURCES
Empowerment Through Reiki by Paula Horan
The Power of Reiki: An Ancient Hands-on Healing Technique by Tanmaya Honervogt
Reiki: A Piatkus Guide by Penelope Quest
Essential Reiki: A Complete Guide to an Ancient Healing Art by Diane Stein
The Spirit of Reiki: The Complete Handbook of the Reiki System by Walter Lubeck, Frank Arjava Petter, William Lee Rand
The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr. Mikao Usui by Dr. Mikao Usui and Frank Arjava Petter
Reiki Level 1 Training Manual given to me by Nancy Peel
http://www.reiki.org/reikinews/roots/rootsreiki.html (This webpage has disappeared, if anyone can find a web archival copy and send me the new link to it, I would appreciate it!)
Copyright C.J. Chow October 2004