The practice of Reiki has helped people relax, overcome stress and get better health since 1922 when it was introduced in Japan by a Japanese Buddhist and has, therefore, been known as an "oriental medicine" by some. However, this form of palm healing has two branches, Traditional Japanese and Western.
Traditional is derived from the original and uses extensive hand movements. Western was introduced to the West by Hawayo Hiromi Takata, a Japanese-American woman born in Hawaii who was able to bring Reiki techniques back home after a trip to Japan where she was healed of several conditions by a doctor who was also a Reiki Grand Master. She returned to Hawaii after being trained in the set hand patterns for internal treatments.
This differs from the Traditional, which uses an intuitive knowledge of where to place the hands. It is also more adapted to healing. The idea is to promote the life force energy, which is flowing through all people, and which encourages health and happiness. Therefore, if the life force energy is low, illness and stress result. The practice of Reiki, while not religious in any form, is rather spiritual. It is a laying on of hands that is a form of channeled healing, a non-invasive technique that eliminates negativity in the body. This then allows the body's organs to become healthy and function well.
Reiki has been said to aid healing in major illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, even multiple sclerosis, as well as more common ailments like colds, sunburn or sore throats. During treatment, the patient will lie on a massage table or be seated or standing, remaining fully clothed. The Reiki practitioner lays hands in a series of positions on the patient's body, depending upon the need of the patient. Each hand position is in place for three to ten minutes, with an entire treatment lasting ninety minutes at the most. Patients have reported being extremely relaxed and "glowing", with a feeling of well being. Reiki treatments usually are done in conjunction with the patient being under the care of a health care professional.
Because Reiki is such a simple technique, anyone can learn the ability to give Reiki treatments, even to themselves if they wish. Reiki teachers are not licensed by any government, but there are certain Reiki centers that license their teachers. Most health insurance companies do not recognize Reiki but there are a few that do.