First Degree Reiki or Reiki I is the beginning level of your journey as a conduit or channel for healing. After being attuned to the first level of Reiki you will be able to bring Reiki energy into your own body, mind and spirit and to others using twelve hand placements. Intention is the key that turns on the treatment. You intend to convey or channel Reiki energy and it moves into your body and out to the patient/healer and back out to the universe. You can use this healing energy on animals and plants as well and treating your food and water. You may, if you wish, imbue pillows and blankets and clothing with Reiki energy as well to help create a healing atmosphere for yourself or others. All this begins with your attunement to Reiki.
The attunement itself is a brief process, a few minutes. Some teachers conduct this attunement over two days and others in an evening or afternoon. I opt for the later. What takes time, of course, is teaching your about Reiki, about it's history, how to place your hands during treatment, how to recognize your energy cycle, which positions treat which conditions. Some teachers will give your a pamphlet, others a book. It's up to you to use this lifetime of healing daily and to study anatomy, chakras, hand positions in relations to the various organs and to learn to pay attention to your own body so that you can, in turn, if you chose, help to channel to others.
Reiki is a wonderful tool for stress reduction and relaxation which in turn helps overall health. In fact this helps me to keep my blood pressure down. I take no medication. My book, The Little Book of Reiki, is a guide to using Reiki as a self-healing tool.
Some teachers will attune one student at a time while the others wait their turn. Others will attune as many a 10 students in a sort of assembly line set up, moving from student to student through the four attunements in the process. Both work. My preference is one at a time and, in fact, one student in a day. This way I can give the student a full treatment or chakra allignment before the lessons and attunement begins. Always, I want the student to know what the energy feels like before the process begins.
Today there are scores, probably hundreds of books on reiki which will supplement your education and help you to further develop your personal approach. Books have been my greatest teachers but, you'll need a teacher to attune you to Reiki. Word of mouth is always good. Many massage therapists are attuned to Reiki I and sometimes Reiki II and may be able to give you a recommendation to their teacher. The International Center for Reiki in Michigan maintains a list of verified Reiki Masters/Teachers which it shares on it's website. These men and women are located all around the country. You can, if money and time allows, go to this center to be attuned. I used to be on that list but I had my name removed because I was relocating to Florida where laws a different and I wasn't sure if I would be able to teach Reiki. Apparently I can, but only licensed medical professionals, massage therapists and clergy ordained and working in established churches are able to charge for treatments. Please keep this in mind if you wish to hang out a shingle as a Reiki Channel. Check your state's laws. State Board's of Massage Therapists may list Reiki as a form of massage even though no manipulation of muscle occurs and it isn't necessary to touch the client.
Next week I'll write about what happens when you're attuned to Reiki II. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.