The Reiki Principles - An In-Depth Look

Updated: 2 days ago


As Dr Mikao Usui intended, the Principles are the very foundation of the system of Reiki, despite the Western focus on healing.

The following is translated from Usui’s memorial:

* Do not get angry today


* Do not be grievous


* Express your thanks


* Be diligent in your business


* Be kind to others.


The westernised Reiki principles:


* Just for today, I will not worry.


* Just for today, I will not anger.

* Just for today, I will do my work honestly.

* Just for today, I will give thanks for my many blessings.


* Just for today, I will be kind to every living creature.


1. Just for today - Just for today means to live in the present, which is at the heart of the practice of mindfulness. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is not yet here. All we ever have is now, so it is best to live in the moment. Being mindful is a Buddhist precept. It helps us to fully experience whatever we are doing in that moment, without letting our minds wander to other times and places. It helps us to be more appreciative and connected to those around us.

2. I will not worry - I will not worry means that you must trust everything is working out as it should and everything is working out in the right way, even though it might not look like it or it might not make sense at this time. Trust that the universe has got your back. Worry is about the future and how we fear it may play out. We all know that worrying doesn’t serve us and can actually help to bring about the very thing that we were worried about – energy flows where focus goes. According to the Law of Attraction, which says, very simply, that like attracts like, you get more of what you focus on. So make sure that focus is positive. If you nurture a fundamental trust in the Universe, then you know that despite what may happen, however hard it may seem at the time, it will ultimately work out for the best.

3. I will not anger - I will not anger means that we will not let the destructive energy of anger overtake us. That is not to say that anger is not justified at times and can actually be a force for positive change when used constructively. However, we should not remain in the energy of anger. It hurts both ourselves and others, mostly the people we love. Both worry and anger rob us of our peace. Reacting with anger can be a habitual response, and awareness of this is a good starting point. You can then break the cycle and choose something di!erent. Practising forgiveness is very powerful – it does not mean that the injustices we see or experience are okay, it means that we release ourselves from the hold they have over us and therefore the torment. 4. I will do my work honestly - This does not simply refer to your job – it means how you live your life and how you deal with others and everyday tasks. Many people identify themselves with what they do, but that is not who we are. We are the qualities we embody, not the things that we do. Be truthful with yourself and with others. Say what you mean and mean what you say. Live with integrity and live a life that is true to your own values and goals.

5. I will give thanks for my many blessings - I will give thanks for my many blessings refers to a daily practice of gratitude. We all have far more blessings than we can possibly count, even though we often focus on all the negative in our lives. Giving thanks each day for all the positives takes our focus away from all the negative and gives us more much positive momentum. Even when life is difficult, there is always something to be grateful for. Remember the Glad Game in Pollyanna? Look for the silver lining. What we focus on, we get more of. Doesn’t it make much more sense to focus on what it is we have to be thankful for?

6. I will be kind to every living creature - This refers to showing kindness, respect and compassion to everyone and everything. Even to those who you feel have done wrong to you. We are all equals – no single person or thing is all good or all bad. Remember, ‘what goes around comes around’. How someone treats you is on them – how you react is on you. Isn’t it better to show kindness and compassion? Therefore, treat others how you wish to be treated.

By starting your day in contemplation of these precepts, what they mean to you and how you can incorporate them into your daily life and any situations that you are currently experiencing, you are starting to live your life intentionally rather than just reacting to life. We may not be able to control what happens, but we can control how we respond. Just watch how your life changes and how people start to respond di!erently to you when you start to live mindfully.


It is recommended that you ponder or meditate on these Principles every day. In the morning is a good time, as you can start your day with the intention to live mindfully and to be present. If you have certain events coming up in the day such as a work meeting that you are not particularly looking forward to, you can plan how you will navigate the situation according to the Principles. There isn’t any situation in life where you cannot apply one or more, if not all, the Reiki Principles. Planning ahead like this leaves you far more prepared and you will likely find that the day goes far easier for you.In the evening or before you go to bed, you could re"ect on how the day went and if there was anything you could have done di!erently. Being aware of that will help you in future situations. You can journal this if you prefer, as that will help you to see your progress over time.

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