I get asked a lot what the benefits of energy healing are – indeed many wonder if there’s any point to it at all. Believe me I wouldn’t have put nearly fifteen years of my life into healing if I hadn’t seen its positive effects both for the people I have treated over the years and for myself.
In fact, for me, the difference between times of actively applying energy healing techinques and not using them at all have been all too easily identified. It has kept me sane, helped me to heal and shaped the way I think and feel in a positive way. It has helped pull me from the depths of grief and supported me while battling lifes challenges and the symptoms of complex PTSD. It’s not been everything that I have needed, for that I have had to spend time with doctors and mental health professionals but it has held me on that road safely and steadily all the way to today.
So how does energy healing achieve this? It has some delightful effects including:
- Encouraging deep relaxtion
- Bringing balance to both your mind and your emotions
- Promoting feelings of calm, wellbeing and peace
- Encourgaing and supporting positive personal life choices
- Promoting a calmer response to life’s inevitable challenges
- Working effectively alongside orthodox and traditional healthcare
- Reiki especially is easily adapted for most conditions and is suitable for all ages, in any situation (apart from in a medical emergency, nothing should replace reliable urgent care when needed)
When I get off the couch after a healing, I can feel a subtle difference in myself from lying down at the beginning. Its a little like the subtle difference between glass when its cleaned, somehow I can see things a little clearer, my body feels better aligned and solid in its connection with the ground I stand on. I feel calm and able to cope for a good while after as well as being able to sleep a little easier. I find coping with my rather crazy family is less stressful and tiring and my focus is sharper.
The opposite is true when I don’t find time for it. I become fuzzy headed, emotional, stressed and I can get physically and mentally unwell if I ignore it for long enough. The same is true when I forget any of the other things I do to help myself stay whole and healthy.
I wouldn’t be without energy healing in my life now. I’ve known it with and without its influence and for me at least, its an essential part of my self-care.
Healing tools are mostly thought of as things like crystals, pendulums, herbs, oils and the like – and that is very much true. I have explored several of them over the last decade and a half of being a healer and they truly amaze me each and every day when used with the right person, using the right technique and all at the right time for them to help them move forward.
There is a wider truth though and that is that a healing tool can be anything that provides help in someway or comfort and support when you need it. These items aren’t things we can’t do without, they’re things we call on when the time requires for them to help us through, soothe our hurts a little and provide a source of comfort that we can rely on. This means that not only can we use the commonly thought of items, we can also use therapeutic techniques, medicines, exercise, food and a myriad of other things to help support us while we deal with something that’s happening for us whether physical, mental, emotional or spiritual.
Some of the best healing tools I have ever known include things like childhood teddies and toys that stay with their now grown up owners, pictures of loved ones and favourite books and stories. All had the power to connect the person with them to another person in their life who they knew would hold and support them as well as giving them what they needed to get up and carry on again. Yet to anyone who did not know that person or item, it would just be another thing with no significance.
I’ll be exploring all the possible healing tools I can find over the coming weeks and months on my blog and in the articles I write, keep checking back for new things!
We all share one thing in common – we have a physical body that is made up of interconnected systems, each with its own specialised function role in keeping us moving through life. Each cell has the primary job of helping us function in one way or another and it can only do that through an exchange of energy with other living beings. We can see this mirrored in our outside world too. Our communities are made up of people (cells) that have their own specialised jobs (each system’s function) that work together (the interconnected system) to ensure the whole community survives and moves forward with the job of moving life forward.
Under the surface of all life is a haze of different energies we are unable to perceive ourselves. We have our physical energy system, which works automatically every second of every day to keep us alive and as well as we physically can be, and we have our subtle energy systems that play a part in that network of interconnected systems. These energetic structures have been perceived all over the world, by many different people who come from some very different cultures. They all describe relatively similar systems though obviously using the language and culture unique to their place on earth.
We can learn to nourish the subtle systems we have just as much as we can the physical and energy healing is one way to help heal, maintain and nourish your subtle energy system. These systems are most commonly known as meridians, chakras and energy field or aura. Very simply described they are the meridians – the channels through which subtle energies flow, the chakras – energy centres which work as gates for directing energy around the body as well and the energy field or aura – emits from your whole body, surrounding you like an egg shell working to protect you from the energies you don’t need to be taking on yourself.
How we can do this is different for each person but there are a wide array of tools you can work with, each coming with its own subtle energy that can cause effect to our energy systems. It should be said here that there is as much that can cause harm to our systems as there is that can have a positive effect so tread slowly and with care.
On the subject of healing paths, I gather that most people would expect me to talk about the different disciplines of healing that are readily available out in the world right now – for example, most will have heard of Reiki, crystal healing, colour healing along with a good few others that I won’t list here now for the sake of length and not creating confusion. These are all valid modes of healing but are not what I’m discussing here. What I am talking about is the path that any individual needs to follow for their own healing and that can encompass a whole lot of different techniques and tools.
The healing path an individual needs to take is both complex and unique to them and depends on a few factors. The first thing to consider is the illness or injury itself that is causing them to seek help. This will provide an understanding of what the problem is, it’s symptoms as well as clues to the root cause (if there is one) and possible treatments. This is followed by who they are as a person and what speaks to them and their core beliefs. This will give further information on possible root causes, if there are any, and their possible treatments. Lastly thorough consideration of the possible techniques and tools that could be applied in light of all that information so that the proper medicine, treatment, therapy or other tool can be found and used. They could need daily medication from their doctor at the same time as receiving a monthly healing therapy such as hands on healing or they might need daily physiotherapy while also receiving occasional advice from a priest or access to a counsellor, just as two examples.
It’s also important to understand that while following that path, a person might find that they need to change paths from the one they’re on to another that suits them better or to one that’s parallel but leads to a slightly different destination. This happens as changes come to light both in their issue and within themselves during the journey, so we must be flexible and willing to change approaches as necessary.
Whatever it is a person needs to heal, it has an affect on all aspects of who we are from our physical bodies, through our thoughts and how we feel about things to our spiritual nature. For example, someone could lose a limb through an accident and need surgery, physiotherapy and medication as well as prosthesis, but this can have far reaching affects beyond the body. It can also affect how they see themselves and the world around them, how they feel about those things and their spiritual viewpoint meaning that they need other help besides the conventional medications and treatments. As another, someone could go through a traumatic incident that, while not physically harmful at the time, still leaves them feeling not only mental and emotional effects but also physical effects such as fatigue, aching bones and joints, headaches etc. This means they might need not only mental and emotional support and treatments but also help for the physical effects from medicines and medical treatments.
In short, I feel its important that we recognise the fact that rarely does one thing on its own lead us to healing. It’s more likely to be complex web of solutions that work together to take us on a journey that will make us feel whole again.
When most people talk about healing, they mean it in relation to a physical, mental or emotional issue. They use the word healing interchangeably with curing but they’re not quite the same thing. Curing is ridding someone of an illness or fixing an injury completely. Healing goes deeper than that and it doesn’t usually mean the absolute curing that is inferred. Rather while it can and does apply to all of those parts of us as humans, it can also apply to that intangible part of us. Immeasurable as yet to our scientists and the tools they have available, the human soul or spirit is a subtle, yet powerful, part of ourselves that can also need healing from time to time.
I am an energy healer, I work with the subtle energies that are the soul or spirit that exist within the dark spaces between our cells, muscles, blood and bone. These spaces house the rest of us, the part that makes us who we are but remains hidden from our limited vision. We feel it though and it is a powerful part of each of us.
The goal of this kind of healing is to heal the soul rather than the body or mind – those things are for medical and mental health professionals to specialise in. It means taking a journey that’s tough to travel no matter what damage has been accrued along the way so far. It can be lonely, life-changing and seemingly never-ending but it is worth it when you’re ready and the good news is that help is out there.
Healers are companions, facilitators and space creators. They’ve been on the journey too, indeed are still on it because it never truly leaves you. They understand how to make space for a soul to be heard, seen and honoured. They have explored the dark places and found their way out slaying both their demons and their own fears along the way using tools they picked up on the journey.
Healing is magical because it’s empowering and at the same time, soothing and supportive. It reconnects you to that bit of you that feels missing or lost somehow.. Working from the inside outwards, healing for your soul is just as essential in my eyes as seeking medical attention for an illness or a broken bone, or therapy for a poorly brain. It helps you to find your way in the world, feel happier and connected to life again. I use a lot of tools that many witches would recognise from their work too, such as crystals, aroma, sound, candles and colour – in fact anything from the world that might be useful to creating a space suitable for healing to happen.
I hope this clears up what is meant when we talk about healing in an alternative context to conventional therapy and treatments and I hope that if you need healing, you find it in whatever form makes sense to you.
As I’ve been back to teaching Reiki these last few months, I have been spending a lot of time reflecting on my journey and how practising Reiki has helped me, shaped me and guided me in my life. I eventually got to the question above – what does it mean to me?
It began helping me back in 2005 when after a personal crisis and loss, I realised I wasn’t happy in my life at all. I was stagnating and the crisis had helped me to see it. I was drawn to Reiki like a moth to a flame as I strode around MBS and healing fairs looking for a cure to the pain I was feeling from watching my life being ripped asunder before my eyes. I was totally incapable of escaping its mystery as I floundered trying to pick up the pieces of my life and move forward somehow. I walked into my first day of Reiki training not even knowing what it was, what it was like or how it would become a huge part of my life. Yes, I know, most people would say that’s at the least slightly crazy but I just knew it was the right thing to do so I sat down and had my brain blown away as I learned that with this incredibly simple healing system I could potentially heal my hurting soul. What I didn’t know that day was that I was starting out on a journey, one that would never stop and that would support me to change my life so much for the better.
It’s been there to help me through C-PTSD, as well as my business and marriage crumbling beneath me just as much as it’s been there to guide my physical health and spiritual practices. I’ve used other treatments alongside it from medicines to counselling and still it works to help me heal and guide me through whatever it was I was facing.
It has been there for my family too, helping my over-tired children to settle and sleep, as well as soothing their tummy aches and the tears from small accidents. It helped my oldest son recover from lengthy spinal surgery and it helped my husband see the light around his own mental health.
For a while, it helped me to help others but as my own mental and emotional health declined, in 2012 I lost my love for Reiki as well as other things that I loved, and began to step back from it. I had stepped back into a deep, dark hole that was to keep me for four years before letting me see light again. I crept back out of that hole and began working with Reiki again on myself at first, then taking on clients and finally this year, beginning to teach again.
For me, Reiki has been there ever since that day back in 2005. It’s what I cycle back to when crisis hits and I feel lost, it’s what eases the pain when something hurts, and it’s become a part of my way of life. I’ve lost count of the amount of times “magic hands” have helped my kids feel better after a tumble or during an illness. I know when I don’t practice it, I don’t feel like myself and I fall off my path.
It’s been there when nothing else seemed to be, in those darkest of hours when everything feels hopeless and lost, and like everyone has deserted you so to say it’s been important may be an understatement. I wouldn’t hesitate to say that alongside my pagan faith, it’s been the strongest force in my life for almost fourteen years and I wouldn’t want to be without it.
So, to answer the question – what does Reiki mean to me? Sanity, peace, whole health and a spiritual connection is one answer. Another is that it’s one of the rocks that holds me steady and guides my actions each and every day. Reiki is a lot more to me than a healing system for healing myself and others, it is literally a part of me, and its value is priceless.