The Five Reiki Precepts
What is Reiki?
According to Indian, Tibetan, and Chinese philosophy – and recently, new modern science – we have uncovered an incredibly lively universe that is made up of energy. Reiki is one of many methods that can be used to activate, harmonize, and reconnect the Self with universal energy. It works with the Hindu energy centers, major and minor chakras, the Chinese (TCM) meridian lines, and acupuncture points within the body.
Reiki is universal energy that is made available to anyone who is open to its healing vibrations of love and peace. With initiation in Reiki Level I (which we will be offering soon here at OSYL), an individual is united with the essence of Reiki and becomes a hollow bone, or a channel, for Reiki itself. Here the practitioner gains access to the healing vibrations of Reiki through their hands; some practitioners will even go on to develop reiki techniques using their gaze and breath to direct reiki healing.
Reiki brings us back in touch with our innate, all-pervading life energy. Reiki teaches us how to love ourselves and, thus, others again. For some, Reiki is body-work or an alternative healing approach that offers the body a harmonizing effect, and for others Reiki can act as a basic meditation tool, holding you full in presence. Reiki can be experienced by all individuals – children, adults, those who are conscious or unconscious – animals, spaces, and objects.
In my practice, both spiritual healing AND energy healing are integrated in relationship with Reiki. Usui Sensei, the founding Master Teacher of Reiki, designed simple principles to help guide humanity in walking their Heart Path. These Five Reiki Precepts introduce us to what Usui believed to be the gift of Reiki’s endless spiritual journey.
Usui Sensei’s Five Reiki Precepts
The first stage of enlightenment, according to Usui Sensei, is remembering that we are purpose created. Our self-realization begins when we surrender to the flow and guidance of the Universe. Usui Sensei believed that the five precepts are the secret method to invite happiness, and even more, the medicine for all diseases of body and soul. Each precept begins with the statement “just for today,” which presents the importance of being in the present moment, for it is here in the present that we are able to learn what we need to learn and put it into practice.
✨Just for today do not get angry✨
Anger is part of our basic emotions and thus part of the human experience. And anger can also be a distractor emotion, as well as a way of self-sabotaging ourselves and our relationships. Usui directs us to move through and let go of anger because of its toxic impacts on our body and mind systems. Elyssa Matthews, a world-renowned Reiki Master Teacher, shares that emotions are the main cause of karma. Notice when you get angry, is there a pattern or an unresolved trigger? And pay attention to when you identify a grudge or a returning experience of anger, these are important aspects of ourselves to heal and find harmony with once again.
✨Just for today do not worry✨
Today we live in a world that is riddled with anxiety - our minds are often caught in the future trying to predict, control, or understand where we are in present or where we don’t want to be. This precept asks us to trust in our path and in the universe. It is essential to develop self-trust in order to successfully manifest and create what we want and what we are asking the universe for. Practice self-agency, be present with your wants and be sure that what you are asking for is indeed what you want - sometimes we may think we want something, but in fact, when we receive it, we realize it is not what we need. Once you ask for something and you put it out into the universe, do your best to maintain a peace of mind. Going with the flow of the universe and trusting in your path is the key to freedom from fear. One of my favourite affirmations here is, “I am a child of the Great Universe, and the universe is constantly supporting me in all that I need.”
✨Just for today be thankful✨
If you can commit to a daily practice, whether it’s 5 minutes of meditation or burning sage and setting a quick intention for your day, you will naturally develop gratitude. In our society, we are inspired to be big thinkers and to keep building a life that is getting bigger. However, this mindset may be what keeps so many of us in anxiety, fixated on the future, instead of grounded in the present. How can you practice being present in the moment and humbly acknowledge the things you are grateful for? The state of “right mind” is said to be challenged when we forget to be happy and grateful and are instead driven by selfish and, at times, superficial desires.
✨Just for today work with diligence✨
We are here to learn and grow, and our greatest teacher is our life. Reiki encourages us to spread Reiki in everyday life and work. Feeling tired in the morning, give yourself reiki; have an important work meeting that you’re nervous for, send reiki to the future; experiencing some doubt in a relationship, flow reiki and see what comes forward. In our society I see a lot of fatigue presenting itself physically, emotionally and spiritually. Who doesn’t use alcohol, Netflix, social media, or video games to “unwind” or “escape the world” these days? And what would happen if instead of pouring a glass of wine or losing ourselves in another tv series, we listened to our bodies and adjusted our work schedules, found more physical activity, or journaled about some of our fears, stress, dreams, and big ambitions? This principle requires commitment and integrity. “This is your life, shape it or someone else will.”
✨Just for today be kind to others✨
Reiki always brings us back to the Heart Path, to the great remembering that we are all One. At the deepest level, there is no important distinction between Self and others; we are all mirrors for one another, thus how I see others is how I see myself. And so, when I can extend compassion to myself, I am able to gift that compassion to others. Take note, what are the patterns or triggers that take you out of compassion? When do you get angry or impatient with others? Where do you fall out of your King and Queen energy - where you are able to bless those around you - and become the tyrant where mistakes are not allowed, and perfection is the standard? In these moments, it becomes clear that our life is our teacher. What is it that these situations can reveal to you (about YOU)? Usui, in this precept, encourages us to respond with the intention of peace and (grounded) justice - what does that look like to you?
The Secret Method to invite Happiness
I understand it is one thing to read these precepts, nodding your head along the way, and another to integrate them into your daily habits and routines. So here’s the million dollar question: how do we make the Heart Path shift? Usui Sensei would say that there needs to be A) a willingness to heal, and B) commitment and diligence to follow through with what is required.
✨✨✨Your Happiness Homework:
Carve out 30-60 minutes in your day and grab yourself a pen and some paper. Find a quiet place where you can comfortably turn inwards and re-read through each of the five precepts. For each precept:
Freehand write anything that comes up for you after reading each precept. What does “do not anger” surface within you? What people, situations, or thoughts come to your mind? They don’t need to make sense in the moment. Simply write down anything that comes up, without judgment, and then move on to the next precept.
After you’ve completed number one, create your own personally constructed version of each of the precepts. For example, my precept wording for “just for today, do not worry” is: “today I practice presence.” This activity will help solidify your understanding of each precept and bring it deeper within your psyche and constructs. As you put these precepts into your own words, according to your value system, you may find it easier to integrate them into your life.
Choose one precept that you would like to work with. Perhaps you choose “just for today, work with diligence.” What personal work has been coming forwards for you lately? What core emotions have been surfacing - anger, sadness, joy, shame, fear? Do you know who you want to be? Are you building a career currently? How does your career align with who you want to be? Where does your personal work (stories, shadows, or triggers) come into your personal relationships, workplace interactions, and impact the choices you make day to day? Actively participate with these questions and spend a week or a month with this precept.
No matter how simple they may be, they are timeless mirrors and reminders when we get stuck, stagnant, or indifferent in our lives.
AUTHOR: Natasha Allain is an OSYL Igniter and Mirror of Truth, Modern Medium, Healer, Yogi & Intentional Artisan. Her main purpose is to truly see You. She is here to mirror your Gold and hold space for you to reclaim your Spirit! Together, you will journey inwards and foster a stronger communication line between your body, mind, and Spirit.