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In this article I would like to talk about the Reiki Precepts, and where they come from, and I want to suggest a way of using Reiki to directly experience the effects of the first two precepts. I believe that this is a new approach to working with Usui Sensei's principles.
Everyone who has learned Reiki will have seen the precepts, and they are available in a variety of different forms. There is actually some difference between the precepts that Mikao Usui was teaching and the precepts that are quoted commonly in the West.
In particular, the precept that you should "Honour your parents, teachers and elders" is not present in what Mikao Usui was teaching, and seems to have been added on later, once Reiki was being taught in the West.
There has been some speculation about where Mikao Usui's precepts come from. It has been claimed that they originate in a book that was published in Usui's time, and it has been claimed that they are based on the edicts of Mutsuhito, the Meiji Emperor. Certainly it seems that many Tendai and Zen Buddhist teachers were passing on similar principles in Usui Sensei's time.
Perhaps we should start by reading the text of Usui Sensei's version:
The secret of inviting happiness through many blessings The spiritual medicine for all illness
For today only: Do not anger; Do not worry Be humble
Be honest in your work
Be compassionate to yourself and others
Do gassho every morning and evening. Keep in your mind and recite.
The founder, Usui Mikao
Now we now know that Usui's precepts were his wording of an earlier set of precepts that have been traced back to the early 9th Century, precepts which were used in a Tendai sect of Shugendo with which Usui Sensei was in contact. The precepts were the baseline, the foundation of Usui Sensei's teachings, and it was thought that individual could achieve as much spiritual development by following the precepts as could be achieved by carrying out all the energy exercises.
My main purpose in writing this article is to introduce you to a way of working with the precepts in conjunction with the Reiki energy. This is something that I have been experimenting with: a way of directly experiencing the effects of a precept in terms of energy flow.
I would like to suggest that you do the following, for a couple of minutes at a time, twice a day, for a month: Sit with your eyes closed and your hands resting in your lap, palms up. You are going to be releasing energy through your hands.
Say to yourself "I now release all anger". Allow energy to be released through your palms, and be still until the flow of energy subsides. This may take a little while.
Now say to yourself "I now release all worry". Again allow a flurry of energy to leave your hands and be still until it subsides. Again this may take a little while. See how you feel afterwards, during the day, and over time as you make this a quick and regular part of your Reiki routine and let me know what happens.
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