About Reiki

Reiki roughly means Universal Life Energy (with “Ki” as in “Chi”). Reiki practitioners channel Reiki. Reiki has spirit intelligence, drawing on universal energy from God or Source. Reiki facilitates healing, brings peace of mind, and increases your connection to the Cosmos. Reiki works for the highest good, but is also responsive to the intentions of channelers.

Mikao Usui, 1865-1926

For many decades Mikao Usui’s personal history remained a foggy, long-mysterious subject in the history of Reiki. Since the 1990s with increased contact between Japanese and American practitioners, much has been clarified.

Likely truths about Usui:

  • Leo Sun, Gemini Moon, Mars in Virgo, Mercury in Virgo, Venus in Cancer.
  • According to his tombstone, he discovered Reiki secrets in the text Tantra of the Lightning Flash. He believed Gautama Buddha taught mysteries of Reiki.
  • Descended from the Chiba clan, hatamoto samurai.
  • Usui was raised to be a samurai, receiving Buddhist training and learning about Ki (which is used in samurai yells).
  • Taught at least 2,000 people Reiki.

Mikao Usui

Usui met the Reiki spirit on Mount Kurama four years before his death. It is unknown why he was practicing there (stories vary widely). It is accepted as the birthplace of the Reiki practices, and is the home of Sōjōbō, King of the crow-like Tengu (“Goblins”), bird-headed magical creatures who are the world’s greatest swordmasters.

Amitabha Buddha

Usui is said to have meditated next to a sacred tree who is a spirit (kami) and a representation of the god Goho Mao-son, who conquers evil and teaches mankind.

According to texts produced by the Kurama Temple, Mao-son came to Earth from the planet Venus roughly six million years ago. In some stories, Mao-son came to Japan as a meteorite. Behind a small shrine, high on the mountain, through an iron fence, is an old cedar tree in which Mao-son is believed to reside.

Amitabha Buddha has a statue on Mount Kurama. Amitabha Buddha is the Buddha of Infinite Life and Light. He invites all beings into his Pure Land, which is a heavenly realm where all who dwell there can pursue enlightenment in bliss.

Many claim that Reiki is timeless or has analogues in other energy healing systems, but the modern traditions of Reiki are approximately a century old since Usui started practicing in the 1920s.

Throughout his life Usui traveled the world (Europe, China, the United States) learning healing arts and studying religion. He studied Zen Buddhism, Taoism, and Tantric Buddhism. He also likely learned Shugendō, Japanese mountain ascetic shamanism. The activities of Shugendō practitioners include fortune telling, divination, channelling, prayer, ritual incantations and exorcisms. Shugendō was often used by Japanese family clans to heal disease or to avoid misfortune.

Supposedly, Usui found Reiki to be a superior healing form as it uses energy freely available anywhere in the universe. This meant that Usui did not quickly expend his own Ki to heal patients, as he may have experienced during Keiko and other healing methods. Divine energy is everywhere, limitless—as much as the channeler and patient are willing to receive it.

After Usui

From 1940-1980 Reiki was spread and taught in the West by the Japanese-American woman Hawayo Takata, who Christianized its history for her American audience. Takata had learned Reiki from the naval officer Chujiro Hayashi (Usui’s student who standardized Reiki training) in Tokyo.

Following Mrs. Takata’s death and the reorganization of Western Reiki, there has been a gradual proliferation of unique Reiki lineages and traditions.

Eastern (Japanese) and Western Reiki families discovered each other again in the 1990s, comparing notes after 50 years of isolated practice. The fruitful trade of experience and knowledge keeps Reiki fresh and re-energized.


What are the benefits of Reiki?

Reiki promotes deeper connection and alignment with the Universe. We believe that Reiki works holistically. Reiki illuminates what needs to be healed, thus enabling healing of all aspects of a person’s life. Philosophically, the patient and their mind, body, and spirit heal themselves. Metaphysically, Reiki healing is generated by the Reiki spirit.

Most Reiki practitioners emphasize that Reiki supports natural healing as a complementary therapy. In fact Reiki is employed at a growing number of hospitals, including Harvard Medical School. Reiki can also stand alone as its own healing modality, as originally used by Usui.

Is Reiki a form of massage?


Does Empress Reiki offer in-person Reiki session booking?

Not currently. Our in-person sessions are referral only.

What is remote Reiki and what can I expect during a remote Reiki session?

Remote Reiki is Reiki energy healing conducted at a distance. Unlike hands-on Reiki, the practitioner does not need to be physically present with the client in order to send healing energy. Usui’s method of remote Reiki has been continued in all major Reiki lineages for over a hundred years.

The channeler’s focused intent directs healing energy towards the recipient. Visualizations, symbols, and specific hand positions are used to send this energy. The recipient receives the energy through their own energy field which has been bridged with the healer’s during the remote session.

This type of healing can be used to help with physical, emotional, and mental health issues to the extent that hands-on Reiki does.

Is remote Reiki just as effective as in-person treatments?

Yes! Remote Reiki is just as powerful as in-person treatments, since both rely on energetic vibrations and connection with the practitioner’s aura.

In fact, many people find the remote sessions more effective, convenient, and pleasant due to the ability to relax comfortably in an environment under their control at home.

What physical sensations might I experience during or after a Reiki session?

It is normal and okay to experience any of the following sensations during or after a Reiki session:

If you experience any discomfort, you are encouraged to adjust to maximum comfort and continue the session.

Drowsiness during Reiki is perfectly normal. The more relaxed you are the better the energy can flow—if you fall asleep this can be a good sign.