In the early part of the 20th century, after several days of fasting and meditation on Mount Kurama in Japan, the Buddhist monk and doctor Mikao Usui gained insight into a system of spiritual transformation. This system came to be known as Reiki, a word derived from Rei (universal spirit) and Ki (life energy). Originally, it was intended to assist those seeking spiritual enlightenment using practices such as meditations and guided teachings in order to attune practitioners to their own Spiritual Energy. Over the next century, as the teachings were handed down from one disciple to the next, it eventually developed into a simple and yet profound method of aligning an individual with his or her Reiki to promote relaxation, healing, holistic well-being, and spiritual growth.
The practice of Reiki, while relatively new, is founded upon the ancient notion of Life Energy, which has been called Ki, Chi, Prana, Aura, Soul, and many others. Through the alignment of energy centers-called hara or chakras-the physical and energetic body attains balance and unity. Reiki is often used with the intention of healing physical, psychological, and spiritual issues. It does so through the technique of "laying on of hands" in order to help Reiki flow more freely, allowing one's limitless Spiritual Energy to bring the person closer to a state of wholeness. Within this state, the body is able to more effectively cope with injuries, toxins, and mental negativity. Even when one is already in good health, the practice of Reiki can enhance one's natural strengths and defenses while also helping the individual achieve a greater sense of harmony and meaning as one becomes more connected with his or her deeper spiritual nature.