The Gokai – The five reiki meditation

Usui Reiki meditation natural healing is first and foremost a method of self-improvement and healing. It is only when a practitioner has reached a state of wholeness and tranquility within herself that she can truly be of service to others. The Reiki precepts are not associated with a particular religion, rather they are a way of perceiving which will lead to improved overall health. This philosophy is based on the holistic principle that a healthy mind, body and spirit support one another – all three must be healthy and in balance for a person to be whole.

reiki meditation

The five Gokai reiki meditation:

Just for today I let go of anger
Just for today I let go of worry
Just for today I work hard on myself
Just for today I am humble and filled with gratitude
Just for today I am kind to myself and all living things

Origins of the Gokai reiki meditation

Although in the Western world Reiki meditation is taught as primarily a way to heal others and oneself, Reiki is much more than a natural healing system. As taught and practiced in Japan, Reiki is a way of life, a way of thinking and perceiving designed to help the individual along their path of spiritual development.

Whatever the individual’s personal spiritual beliefs and/or religion, Reiki meditation is designed to be a positive and inspirational supplement to other spiritual practices. The five precepts were created by Mikao Usui, the founder of the Reiki system. He likely derived the form of five precepts from the five gokai of Japanese Buddhism: instructions not to kill, steal, commit adultery, tell lies, or drink intoxicants. However, it is likely that the Reiki precepts are the layperson’s version of the eight-fold path from Buddhism: right views, right thinking, right speech, right action, right way of life, right endeavor, right mindfulness, and right meditation. Usui wrote the Reiki precepts as a non-religious counterpart to the religious ideas he had been taught. In this way anyone could benefit from the Reiki precepts, no matter their background or belief system. These precepts provide a foundational philosophy of fundamental beliefs to guide Reiki practitioners on their spiritual journey. (Stiene)

Using the Reiki Precepts as Affirmations

The Reiki meditation precepts were originally written in Japanese, and therefore can be translated in a few different ways. The above translations have been used to make them more appropriate for positive affirmations in English. To be most effective, an affirmation should be a positive statement in present time. It needs to be stated as if it is a fact, not a possibility.

Usui suggested that practitioners sit in gassho in the evening and the morning and repeat these principles and meditate upon them. The gassho position has the hands in “prayer,” or Namaste, position with the thumbs against the heart chakra (which is located at the breastbone near the heart). Traditionally a practitioner would sit in seiza, which is the traditional Japanese posture of sitting where one starts in a kneeling position and then sits back on her heels. If this is not comfortable, one may also sit cross-legged on a cushion or on the edge of a chair. The meditation can also be done standing. The important thing is that the spine is straight. Having one’s hands in prayer in front of the heart connects the energy pathways (meridians) that the Reiki energy flows through. It is also important to touch one’s tongue to the roof of the mouth, just behind the teeth. This connects the governing and conception vessels, the two main meridians of the body running up the spine and down the midline of the front of the body. This posture should be used in all meditations as it promotes the healthy circulation of chi throughout the body.

Reiki meditation practitioners come from all walks of life and a have a wide variety of spiritual and religious beliefs. The Reiki precepts provide a core philosophy to the system that can be adopted by anyone to enhance physical, mental and spiritual health. Like the Reiki system itself, these precepts serve to supplement one’s own personal belief system. No matter what their background, the enhanced health of themselves and their clients is a goal of all Reiki practitioners.

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