What is Reiki?

Reiki is simply life force energy. The word itself originates from the Tibetan word “Raku-Kei”. Raku being the vertical flow of energy, moving from the earth to the Universe (the unseen flow). Kei being the horizontal flow, the energy that moves in our realm of consciousness (what we experience as life).

In Japanese, “Rei” means universal, referring to the dimensions of soul or spirit. “Ki” is the vital life force that interpenetrates, animates, surrounds and connects everyone to everything. Interpretively, we are interconnecting what is known (“Kei”) with what is unknown (“Rei”).

This life force energy has been called by many names throughout history.

  • “Chi” by the Chinese
  • “Prana” by the Hindus
  • “Baraka” by the Sufis
  • “Yesod” by the Kabbalists
  • “Holy Spirit” by the Christians
  • “Ka” by the Egyptians
  • “Wakan” by the Sioux
  • “Bioplasmic Energy” by the Russians
  • “Mana” by the Kahunas
  • “Pneuma” by the Greek


The Usui system of Reiki was created in the mid-nineteenth century in Japan by Dr. Mikao Usui after a long and devoted search for the knowledge of healing. Exactly what path Dr. Usui took in his quest is often speculated, but it is generally agreed that while studying scrolls of Buddhist sutras in Sanskrit he discovered these ancient symbols that seemed to answer his questions. The reactivation of the symbols in the body of Dr. Usui was the birth of modern Reiki. All practioners in this day are descendent from him.

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