Updated: Oct 29, 2019
Many people have wanted to know what a Reiki healing session is so I would like to take this opportunity to express my own personal feelings on what this healing art form is and what it is not.
A typical Reiki session will start off with a brief conversation. This conversation is very important and allows a few different things to happen. The first one obviously is that it lets the client tell the practitioner why he or she is there, what is going on in his/her life, and what he or she is hoping to get out of the session(s). The second thing that happens during this conversation is that it gives the practitioner a chance to get a feel for the client's energies prior to starting the session and allows for even more insight into the client's current situation. The third thing that happens, and one of the most important, is that it gives the practitioner and client a chance to build a rapport. This allows the client to let go and open up more to the energies during the session. Most people these days have a lot of issues with trust, and unless the practitioner is able to bring down some of those walls prior to the session, the client will unknowingly block most, if not all, of the energies the practitioner is attempting to channel into the client, thereby defeating the entire purpose of the session. The more the client is able let go, the more benefit they will receive from the session(s).
The next step is to have the client (fully clothed) lay down on his or her back on the massage table. The practitioner then generally starts at the head and works down toward the feet, stopping at the knees or possibly the ankles. There are general hand positions that the majority of practitioners follow, at least to some degree. These hand positions attempt to cover all the seven main chakras and all the major organs. Each hand position is held for anywhere from 2 - 5 minutes or longer. During this time the practitioner simply allows the energy to channel out his or her hands and into the client. There is no physical manipulation whatsoever during a traditional Reiki session. Everything is done on a purely energetic level. After the practitioner has finished with the front of the client, they generally will have the client turn over, and will continue with similar hand positions for the back, once again starting at the head and working down toward the feet. After all the positions on the back are completed, it is now time for the practitioner to "ground" the client back down to the planet. This is done by moving to the feet and channeling the energy into the soles of the feet. This works to open the chakras on the bottoms of the feet which connect us to the planet.
Due to the nature of Reiki, it is quite difficult to say exactly what will be experienced during a session. This will depend on any number of things including, but not limited to, the practitioner, each individual client, the level to which that client is able to open up to the energies, and what areas the energy itself is addressing. Often people describe their experience by saying they felt as if they are floating during the session, or they were being enveloped by or wrapped in a warm, loving, nurturing light that flowed throughout their being. Often, if there is a physical problem, the client will feel that area of the body becoming quite hot as the energy targets that area. People usually become very "astral" or disassociated from their bodies, during a session and, for people who are able to let go, it is very common for them to sleep through the entire session. I am always quite pleased when this happens because it means that the person is opening up fully to the energy and it will be able to work on a very deep level. By finishing the treatment at the feet and opening the feet chakras, the practitioner is able to help the person come more fully back into his/her body before ending the session, so that they will not feel as light-headed or disoriented after the session. This is important, not only for the obvious safety reasons such as driving home from the session, but also so that any information the client may have received during the session can be brought back with them and "grounded" into the present so that they may have conscious access to it.
The results of a session are also quite dependent the same influences named in the beginning of the above paragraph. The most immediate broad spectrum results are a drastic reduction in stress, and an extreme sense of relaxation, similar to what people usually feel after a massage but it seems to be more profound and longer lasting, and an overall feeling of being more balanced, calm, and centered. These results are almost always attained through just one session. The more profound results that Reiki can yield (i.e., the "healing" of a specific disease, release of habitual thought patterns or old emotional scars, etc.) are rarely attained through a single session, but instead must be addressed in the same way that many of them were manifested, over time. Over the years I have also been asked is there any difference between Reiki practitioners. Absolutely! Not only are there different systems of Reiki in use by different practitioners, each individual practitioner is going to be unique. While Reiki can be learned by anyone, as with any area of life, there will be those who are especially gifted. Some practitioners are going to be a more open and pure channel for the Reiki energies. This could be due to their level of training, experience with the energy, or just a natural ability. Many practitioners are clairvoyant and are able to bring this gift into use during the sessions. Others are clairaudient or are able to hear messages during the sessions. While still others are able to feel others pain, physical or emotional. Some practitioners may be gifted with more than one of these abilities or all of them. What a session consists of also varies from practitioner to practitioner.
The above description of a session, is only to give you a general idea of what to expect. Each practitioner will have his or her own unique style and techniques that they will add to the healing sessions that are given.