The Reiki Threshold is a Worldwide Reiki Resource offering in-person and internet based Reiki Training, Free Articles for Study and Personal Development for Readers and Teachers alike, and is based in the Vancouver Canada area. The site is also a Resource for Conscious Channeling study and classes, and for Light Body development and research.
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Hosted by Richard R. Rivard
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February 25, 2015
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This page is one of a series where I give my ideas on aspects of Reiki and/or energy work.  The pages are intended to give some "food for thought" and some are only my viewpoint.  While a number of facts may be included, you should decide for yourself how much (if any) of the content feels right to you.
Activating Symbols
icebergMost Reiki teachers believe that the attunement ceremony they use will transfer all of their ability with a symbol to each student.  However, I have found that the resonance of this energy experienced throughout the class, or via constant interaction on-line with the teacher, tends to re-affirm the new energy within the student.  It’s much like the repetitive listening to a teacher as he or she shares an experience, and you can feel the waves of emotions flowing from that teacher.  Each person’s ability to hold and use the new energy will differ each time.  Think of it as trying to discover the complete mass of an iceberg, just a bit at a time, starting with what you normally see first - the tip projecting above the water line.

During a class, most Reiki students learning a symbol are then taught to activate what the symbol’s representative energy does for them.  They are shown a specific way, as if no other method will work properly.  Yet I have discovered that while for most people this may work fine, others with different level of sensitivities may require a different approach.

To address this challenge, in my Reiki 2 classes I began to teach a method that takes advantage of the usual approach to activating a symbols energy, but also gives some practice in other ways more suitable to those with special needs.  The idea is that the student will either find a method that best suits him or her, or will be motivated to discover their own technique.

As an analogy, the Threshold Reiki 2 attunement ceremony I use can be thought of as intending to highlight certain instruments (representing the symbol energies) within the music (representing the overall Reiki energy.)  It's as if the music is being played in a jazz style where there is a drum solo within, a flute or clarinet solo, a piano solo, etc. - something like that.  The energies, and much more, were all in the Reiki 1 attunement, but were simply not highlighted.  This is actually much more in line with what Usui Sensei taught, and with original URR Gakkai thinking.  I’ll explain that at the end of this article, but first let’s look at the technique I use.

First Step:

First, I have the student simply “call on,” or think of the first symbol’s energy, trusting that it will activate as they do this.  I suggest they notice where in, or around their body that it seems to reside.  To help with this, I also activate the energy, or I send it to the student’s room (in a distant class.)   If you have trouble with this idea, think of re-activating the taste of salt or some hot spice on your tongue, or remembering the smell of some scent you have experienced before.  You do this often without thinking about how you do it. 

Second Step:

Once the student has a feel for this energy location (even if the student is just guessing) then I ask them to intend that the energy flow into the center of one of their palms, usually the palm opposite the hand they use for drawing and writing, and notice what they sense when they do this. 

As soon as they recognize some kind of sensation, I tell them to remember this, then to I ask them to turn off the energy of the symbol.  This can be as easy as shaking that hand, willing it to stop, or perhaps just running the hand under water with the intention of stopping the energy flow.

Third Step:No. 1

Next, if I am teaching one of the 4 traditional Reiki symbols I show the student how it was drawn in the old Taoist material that ended up in Zen Buddhist texts Usui Sensei studied.  Usui no michi shichidan Dave King shared these with in 1996. (Note that the energy is not in the symbol - the symbol simply becomes a reference.  For my young children, whom I taught in 1994, I at first had them draw a number instead as the actual symbol isn't so important – my Japanese teacher, Hiroshi Doi, agreed.) 

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