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Information about Reiki

"He was feeling heat from his hands, without anybody touching me, and at times, some parts of my body experienced involuntary movements, and the muscles even moved alone. The most wonderful part was that I was relaxed and tranquil until I fell deeply asleep. The next day, I took my chemotherapy very rested, serene and above all, very positive… to receive healing".

Marilu Cadilla never thought that she would be diagnosed with cancer. And even less, that she would use a millennial therapy such as Reiki "medicine" to effectively alleviate the terrible side effects of the chemical therapies. "Once I missed my Reiki appointments before and after chemotherapy and the aches, stomach indisposition and the unpleasant symptoms of the toxic effects of my treatment were intolerable... Since then, I had never missed that energy therapy of love that does me so well, "says Marilu, daughter of Dr. Arthur reminded Cadilla Vineyards, who was a founder of the Hospital San Pablo.

Reiki, or "universal life energy", originated in Japan and arrived at our hemisphere 70 years ago as a version of spiritual healing. It is much more than that. Rei means "universal" and refers to the essence cosmic energy that surrounds and penetrates everything. Ki means "life energy individual," and that which flows around the entire body, keeping it alive. In China, energy Ki is called "chi" and in India, "prana." The goal of a Reiki treatment is to integrate harmoniously the Rei and Ki. In a healthy person, energy travels freely through the body through channels of energy called meridians, running headlong into feet, nourishing organs, tissues, cells and maintaining the vital functions of the body. In the meridian points there are locations corresponding specifically to each organs and their functions. In India they do not think in terms of meridians and but instead about "chakras": seven energy centers located from the crown of the head to the base of the spine, and other secondary ones in the extremities.

The intention of all philosophies and techniques is to achieve the harmony of our energy system, and that our physically, mentally and emotionally being become fit to heal themselves. In fact, the Chinese vision not only believes that the chi flows through the body, but that it surrounds us and transcends us. Hence the theory of feng shui, which promotes the settlement of our environment to facilitate the flow of our chi, removing obstacles in areas where it may stagnate.

Indeed, according to Eastern medicine, disease occurs when the movement of that energy is stagnant and becomes interrupted. We hypothesize that disruption of the flow of chi creates an imbalance of energy, or the loss of health in the physical, mental and emotional areas. In Japan, as in China and India, different methods are known to cultivate and maintain the flow of that energy. You may have heard of Tai Chi, Chi Kung or Qi Gong, disciplines in which they are carried out a series of beautiful moves to maintain the flow and balance of our energy. Quite similarly, yoga uses breathing techniques and postures or asanas, "to balance the energy system.

Similarly, in case of illness, therapies that profess to break any blockade such as acupuncture are common. This technique developed in China over 2000 years ago and rather practiced in Puerto Rico, restores the balance through the stimulation of these anatomical points on the meridians by penetrating the skin with thin metal needles. In those same points, the Japanese technique of Shiatsu massage uses pressure from the fingers to achieve the same effect.

In addition to exercises, acupuncture and restoring massage stimulate or restore the energy balance, traditional medicine includes herbal therapy, nutrition, meditation, cristalotherapy, aromatherapy and other alternatives.

Reiki, an alternative that was kept secret by monks from Japan, is one that is becoming very popular. The Reiki energy is not manipulative or applied in massage: the practitioner only puts their hands several inches away and the energy flows into the patient in the intensity and quality needed. The practitioner is limited to direct energy that the universe contains in unlimited form.

"It's something magical to see how I am a healing tool such that through my hands I can heal a person that is bereaved, tired, sad, and finally see strength and hope in their eyes ... feel they have retained the desire to move forward. Therein I realized that I was some divine channel, "explains Lida Torres excited, an engineer who became attuned in Reiki I and II, who is also a massage therapist for cancer patients certified by the Memorial Sloan Kettering hospital in New York. "What we are experiencing is a huge general welfare. It is not a cure, but it is part of a deeper healing that in the body. We are beings with a mind and soul can heal beyond the chemical aspect of the body. The doctors that think that way will see how the condition is repeated" adds Lida who is also certified by the Abundant Wellbeing Foundation to teach yoga to cancer and heart patients.

"Reiki cannot be explained. It is like describing to someone who has never eaten chocolate. It is an something that must be experienced."

Seeing is believing

There are tangible forms of energy that we can see and feel. Among them, are electromagnetic fields, and the contours surrounding computers and all electrical devices. The earth itself, with its core still burning and with unstoppable thermal activity, has constant magnetic fields produced by electrical currents flowing from its center. A small sample is the visible activity of a thunderstorm.

Throughout history, mankind has succeeded in creating instruments that are able to calibrate the energy that manifests itself through vibrations, such as sound waves, radiation or lasers and even electric power. In fact, all these can be used at controlled frequencies to treat diseases.

In contrast, scientists have not been able to measure or reproduce with conventional instruments fields the energy that makes up a life. We are, in essence, fields of bioenergy, also known as "vital energy" and "putative energy." This is the energy or "life force" that the Chinese call "chi" on the same traditional medicine and known as "ki" in Kampo, a Japanese healing philosophy, and as "doshas" in Ayurvedic medicine.

The therapists who practice healing through energy state that as living beings we receive and we are full of this impalpable energy that flows through our bodies. They argue that they can work on it to balance it, and that they can even see it.
Certainly, denying that we are that complex mass of energy would to deny universe itself. Still, if it is a matter of “seeing” it, remember the famous discovery in 1939, when the Russian Craig Kirlian discovered the human magnetic field working in a laboratory to see electrical sparks in a patient’s skin that then had the brilliant idea of putting a photographic plate on top. Since then, there is more evidence of the magnetic field around the human body, which some define as "aura" or bioelectromagnetic energy that surrounds all living beings and whose colors and patterns are the result of energy our emotions, thoughts and functioning of the body.

With the Kirlian photosensitive method they have measured dramatic results of different energy therapies, including Reiki. However, it is not yet deciphered exactly what is being photographed about the energy. And although they have proven their therapeutic benefits, it has not yet been scientifically proven how are achieved.

To address these great mysteries, different research centers in the world are simultaneously conducting studies. In the United States, the National Institutes of Health, through the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, invested millions of dollars in grants and endorsements of clinical investigations in the main hospitals in North America. Each responds to the great demand for healing therapies, especially Reiki. However, there are other disciplines also originated in Japan such as Johrei, besides other cultural manifestations of "energy medicine" such as healing prayers, and even practices of the indigenous shamans.

Forefront research

"Here in Puerto Rico we have several ongoing studies on Reiki," says Dr. Carmen Zorrilla, gynecologist in charge of the Clinic for Women in Medical Sciences Campus of the University of Puerto Rico.

Sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, through the institution Research Center for Minority, Zorrilla leads a four year pioneering study to qualitatively and quantitatively measure the effects of Reiki on women living with HIV and women with breast cancer. "The results were fascinating. Patients take therapies and also give themselves Reiki. Their health improved visibly. We teach them how to empower themselves to achieve control of their bodies and their welfare," says the Dr. who is initiated in Reiki I and II. The results of the study will shed a model for other institutions like the Centre for Maternal and Child Studies in the clinic, which will benefit more than 1500 mothers through complementary therapies such as meditation, yoga and Reiki.

Recent findings from other research supported by the National Institutes of Health have agreed that the levels of gamma radiation descended dramatically in the body of a patient after receiving Reiki by a trained practitioner. Currently, patients are recruited for several clinical studies that prove the effectiveness of Reiki in chronic conditions like fibromyalgia, prostate cancer, neuropathy and AIDS in advanced stages. (For information see www.ClinicalTrials.gov)

It is believed that the energetic adjustment in the body of patients has to do with an increase in the electromagnetic field in the hands of the therapist. Even more interesting, in an experiment conducted at the University of California at Berkeley, a small device-sensitive magnetometer (a “superconductive quantum" – a device that measures electromagnetism - was used to measure the area surrounding the hands of a therapist Reiki. The "quantum" recorded large biomagnetic and pulse fields emanating from the hands of the therapists. While the results are impressive, they still don’t have scientific data to explain the connection between the increase in electromagnetic field in the hands of the practitioner and the benefits those being healed reported. In another study, a magnetometer measured and quantified a biomagnetic field in people practicing meditation, as well as practicing yoga and Qi Gong. These fields were found to be 1000 times more powerful than the strongest biomagnetic field recorded in the human body. Today, many laboratories are studying how to implement an energy frequency machine very similar to this to accelerate the healing of tissues and cells under certain conditions. There are also surgeons at the Hospital of the New York University that integrate Reiki practitioners of the operating room to provide therapy before, during and after their operations.

The practice Reiki is also recognized and incorporated in the context of the practices of the therapeutic alternatives World Health Organization (WHO). (For more information, visit www.who.int).

How it works

The hands of the Reiki practitioner are placed approximately in 15 positions corresponding to the points on the meridians (or "chakras") and emit vibrations that dissolve the "knots energy." The healer or "transmitter" uses his mental energy and becomes the conduit through which the Rei healing energy circulates and the patient is the one who receives it and heals himself with the support of the energy of the universe.

Xenia took the training of the Center for Yoga del Caribe, in Guaynabo, with the instructor Preet Kaur Khalsa, starting with Reiki I and Reiki II, to help his two sons, who were born with severe allergies to antibiotics. "I always take them to the doctor for a diagnosis. However, incase of bacterial infections I simply give them Reiki, hydrate them, give them vitamin c, good food and they heal," says Xenia, who works as a medicine advertiser

Hearing about the condition of her friend, Xenia offered her assistance. "At one point in my life, I would have said, no thanks…," said Marilu, mother of an 8-year-old, a child of 10, and who struggles with cancer since September 2003. "But… since Xenia is a very light, very loving and wise, she accepted. Without Reiki I would not have tolerated my treatment. I am convinced that most doctors in Puerto Rico should know about the benefits of therapies like this.”

Marilu is sharing her conviction with her husband Jorge Rodriguez, a bank executive and former Olympic judoka who enjoys rock climbing. "I witnessed the change of Marilu. It was from heaven to earth," says Jorge, subjected to a reconstructive surgery on his right shoulder. "One day I asked Xenia to give me Reiki too. She did not know of my operation or my pain. I felt heat, vibration and she was overwhealmed by heat when her hands passed by my shoulder" read George, who continues to receive Reiki regularly. "I felt a tremendous improvement. My recovery was expected in six months and I was back in 90 days." Xenia clarifies: "I am not healing or divine power. I am an instrument of God, a universal energy channel. He does the work."

In the Yoga Center in Guaynabo, Preet and his partner Ana Rivera had begun more than 50 people. She explains that as we age internally blockages that impede the flow of Rei are produced. If the healer has not open their channels he risks using their own vital energy Ki to heal and could be harmed. There is a ritual called "alignment channels" to open the channels of energy apprentices. With this ritual they are considered "initiated". "Many cancer patients with arthritis, fibromyalgia, hypertension come to us and the results are excellent. They improve while their decrease the doses of their medicines," said Preet. "They open a new sense of healing and detoxification. With Reiki you learn to be yourself."

To Lida Torres it was very important start, but she lives convinced that anyone can give Reiki. "The most important thing is the intention to love and do good. A prepared a therapist will understand much more about what happens and they will have more tools and more open channels to protect themselves and not be harmed. But if you intend to love and help it can serve as a wonderful tool of the universe."

Note: Reproduced with permission from the El Nuevo Dia Newspaper