Reiki Levels Explained
Most Reiki Masters now offer the complete
Reiki training program in 3 or 4 steps.
The first step is
called First Degree Reiki, Rei ki Level I or just Rei ki I. The student is attuned
or aligned to the Reiki energy and taught various hand positions for
administering Reiki. The student may receive from 1 to 4 attunements, depending
on the style of Rei ki being taught. In Japan, this level is called Shoden.
The second step is
called Second Degree Reiki, Rei ki Level II or just Rei ki II. The first 3 Rei ki symbols and their use are taught and the student receives another attunement, or
up to 3 attunements (one for each symbol), depending on the style of Rei ki being
taught. After this, the symbols can be used to increase the strength of the
Rei ki energy, deal with mental and emotional issues, and to send Rei ki at a distance. Some instructors teach additional symbols as part of the curriculum.
In Japan, this level is called Okuden, and has two parts to it. In the original
Japanese system you would not be offered this level of training unless you could
exhibit certain energy sensing skills.
The final step may be
taught as one process (as was originally introduced into the West) or may be
split into 2 parts (the original Dr. Hayashi approach and the way Japanese
masters continue to teach). The first part is called Rei ki III, Rei ki 3(a), Advanced Rei ki Training, or the Practitioner Level (as in Japan). It includes
the Usui Master symbol and its use, and another attunement. Again, some
instructors teach additional symbols as part of the style of Rei ki. In Japan this level is called Shinpiden and is divided into practitioner and teacher
level. In the original society it is not offered to many students.
The second part is
called Rei ki Master, Rei ki Teacher, Rei ki III / Master or just Rei ki III. Here
the student is taught how to give Rei ki attunements and how to teach Rei ki. Some
instructors require an apprenticeship period to allow time to practice and
integrate the teaching process. Others offer detailed documentation, ongoing
support, and co-teaching of initial classes to guide and encourage the new Reiki
teacher. In the original society, essentially at this level you were
allowed to have your own students within the Reiki society.
In the West, all of
the above may include additional Rei ki techniques and instruction in
complementary healing practices, depending on the master/teacher. Some teachers
offer ongoing Rei ki exchanges or Reiki circles where Reiki can be shared amongst
practitioners and introduced to newcomers. Please verify what you will be taught
at each level, and the support you can expect, especially if you are moving
between Reiki Masters.
Note: In much of the
teachings that have come from the far east, "Master" has been a term
that many have used to refer to someone who is an enlightened teacher.
However, in the title
"Rei ki Master", the term "Master" comes from the Japanese
word "sensei" which can be translated into English as "teacher",
"master" (as in school master) or "doctor" (as in PH. D.).
"Sensei" literally can translate to "one who comes before"
and is typically used by the student in deference to the teacher. "Reiki
Master" was the term first used for the teacher when Reiki was brought out
of Japan in the late 1930's, and it seemed to stick (for whatever reason).
Therefore Reiki Master means a "teacher or instructor of Reiki".
A Reiki Master simply
has the knowledge and capability to transfer the ability to use Rei ki to a student. As in any other disciplines, teaching ability, spiritual growth and
knowledge differ from teacher to teacher, and are usually determined by their
own life and occupational experiences. Also, some teachers focus more on
teaching while others focus more on healing.