Andrew Bowling's REIKI HISTORY Archives

(formerly located at
From 1998 through 2006 Andy Bowling presented a web site detailed with Reiki History and facts.  When he discovered original teachings of Mikao Usui shared by Chris Marsh, he began to focus more in that direction.  In 2007 Andy decided to stop his Reiki History pages but gave me permission to host this archive at my web site. I hope you enjoy this original contribution to the Reiki world.

If you have comments or suggestions, Contact Me.
Rick Rivard  (
December 2007

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The Handbook of Reiki Treatment includes 125 Waka poetry of The Emperor Meiji selected by Usui sensei.

Usui recommended his students to read aloud Waka poetry for the first step  (Shoden)of the way of spiritual work.


Excerpts from Waka poetry of The Emperor Meiji published by Meiji Jingu Office (Meiji Shinto Shrine inTokyo)

Waka, also called tanka, being very short fixed forms containing 31 syllable, are said to be exceedingly expressive of the feelings of the Japanese people.

The writing of waka poetry has been traditionally called "Shikishima no Michi" , or the "Way of Shikishima" (A poetic name for Japan).

Waka poetry, then, has a history that extends back to over a thousand years.

The writing of waka was nourished and elevated through history by the Imperial Court, and many of the ancient poems that have been left to us were written by Emperors themselves. the Emperor Meiji was no exception as he was celebrated by the people as "Sage of Poetry", and he has left us superb waka poems which reached the astonishing number of 100,000 composed during his lifetime.

The Emperor Meiji, however, wrote occasional waka in the midst of daily life, not as works to be read by others in appreciation.

Yet, it is for this very reason that the Emperor's heartfelt sincerity touches our hearts. His literary style is one which only an Emperor could achieve.

"Gyosei" literally means "created (by the emperor)". But the actual meaning is "the waka created by the emperor".


USA president F. Roosevelt said, "Japanese people must be happy to have such a great Emperor. Japan will progress and develop with the Emperor Meiji. " Emperor Meiji did not talk a lot but wrote a lot of WAKA poetry to express himself. This collection of poetry is recognized as great poetry in Japanese literature.

Usui-Sensei respected the Emperor Meiji, selected 125 WAKA poetry as GYOSEI to use in Reiki lesson.

Meiji Emperor

For the times to come 

And of meeting what must be met 

All of our people 

Must be taught to walk along 

The path of sincerity 

A Waka poem written by Emperor Meiji

Every morning 

We gaze into our mirrors 

Which are unblemished; 

Oh, that we could attain 

Such a purity of soul. 

A Waka poem written by Empress Shoken

Waka by Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken

Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken made the utmost efforts to cultivate themselves in the Japanese and Chinese classics as well as in Western studies. They especially excelled in writing Waka (traditional Japanese poetry) and composed numerous Waka throughout their lives. The Emperor wrote about 100,000 Waka and the Empress about 30,000 Waka. These Waka are not only excellent as literary works but also constitute significant teachings to enhance national moral character. Meiji Jingu has chosen fifteen Waka each from their works in order to provide visitors and worshippers at Meiji Jingu with the divine grace of the Imperial couple in the form of Omikuji (oracles).

The following are from the Usui Hikkei.


It is our hope

That all the world's oceans

Be joined in peace,

So why do the winds and waves

Now rise up in angry rage? 


The spacious sky

Spans serene and clear

So blue above,

Oh, that our soul could grow

And become so open! 


Thinking that all peoples all over the world are joined in peace and brotherhood, we wonder why the winds and waves of international trouble are now rising up in anger.


Like the blue sky that stretches over us, we ourselves should like to have a heart so large and open.


The morning sun

Rises so splendidly

Into the sky;

Oh, that we could attain

Such a clear reviving soul! 


High in the sky

There can be seen towering

A tall mountain,

Were one but wish to climb it

A path of ascent exists. 


We should like to have a heart or soul that is as pure, bright and refreshing as the morning sun rising high into the sky.


Even that high mountain seen towering in the sky can be climbed if we desire to do so. No matter how difficult a task may seem, there is always a way of doing it if we make the effort.


In a world of storms

Let there be no wavering

Of our human hearts;

Remain as the pine tree

With root sunk deep in stone.

You have a right pure soul 

If you have nothing ashamed of 

In front of God 

Whom you cannot see.


Although storms bring awful destruction to the world, the pine tree clings firmly to it's roots. Like that pine tree, we, in our faith and conviction, need not be shaken by the world around us.


Ware mo mata sarani migakamu kumorinaki hitono kokorowo kagami ni ha site

I wish my mind clear like great people unknown but have great mind and soul. Though I am the Emperor, I am not a great as a human.


Ten wo urami hito wo togamuru kotomo araji waga ayamachi wo omoikaesaba

I have consecutive unhappiness and pain that I cannot control. Easy to think that there is no God, I tend to think that the other person is to blame for it. Is this really blamed on other person? Am I always right without any fault? No, I can remember that I also have many faults. This is blamed on me, I know that this is the result I bring, and now I am free from ill feeling.


Asamidori sumiwatari taru oozora no hiroki wo ono ga kokoro tomogana

I stand at the spring green field, looking up at the clear blue sky, and I wish I could get the broad sky in my mind.


Isasaka no kizu naki tama mo tomosureba chiri ni hikari wo usinainikeri

If you get a beautiful, bright and scratch-less jewel, without constant polishing and cleaning, it will lose its brightness by a little dust. So human heart also, beautiful and pure heart cannot be kept without constant polishing.


Ikanaramu kotoaru toki mo utsusemi no hito no kokoro yo yutaka naranamu

Human, that is manifestation of a God, should always have hope, bright and broad-minded heart as God has, whatever may happen.


Utsuwa niha shitagai nagara iwagane mo tosu ha mizu no chikara narikere

Water does not oppose any vessels and it is stayed as the vessel form. Water seems to be obedient, flexible, and not self-assertive. However, water can break rocks with its consecutive concentrated drops. So people should also have flexibility for any situation such as thought and human relationship, and have consecutive concentration to do something important.


Yuki ni tae arashi ni taeshi nochi ni koso matsu no kurai mo takaku miekere

People have been liked pine tree because it is said that pine tree bring good luck. And people evaluate the shape and balance of pine tree, but the real worth is different. When the coldest winter came after the lapse of many years, pine trees could survive deep snow and storm though other trees died all. Pine trees showed their toughness and people evaluated the great pine trees.


Kurenubeku narite iyoiyo oshimu kana nasukoto nakute sugishi hitohiwo

Today I had nothing to do and I find that now is evening. I felt sorry for that at first, but I changed my mind that this is not so bad, is it? Yes, it is BAD because any moment is very precious for people and I waste my precious time today. Well, however, I should not regret my passed day for so long. Now I try to live my new day without regret.


Obituary to the Emperor Hirohito of Japan.

This interesting paragraph was sent to me, you will find the full article at the link below.

"Hirohito's reticence made it difficult to determine whether he was guilty of complicity in, or mere compliance with, the expansionism that characterized Japan during his first two decades as Emperor. Ultimately 2.3 million Japanese soldiers and 800,000 civilians died in World War II. But most of the evidence suggests that Hirohito was at heart a peace-loving man. At a Cabinet meeting in 1941, when his ministers agitated for the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the Emperor surprised them all by suddenly reciting a poem composed by his grandfather, the Emperor Meiji: "In a world/ Where all the seas/ Are brethren/ Why then do wind and wave/ So stridently clash?" With that, he fell silent."