Reiki Healing - A Doorway to the Occult?

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  • Reiki Healing - A Doorway to the Occult?

    Published in the Christian Chronicle - By S. E. Ray - 04/16/06

    According to a Time/CNN poll, about 30 percent of Americans have resorted to some form of “unconventional therapy,” in the last year. Perhaps more importantly, New Age “holistic health” approaches have been steadily permeating the health care medical mainstream as scientifically beneficial. Therapies such as acupuncture, biofeedback, and “Therapeutic Touch” (the laying on of hands to channel “Universal Life Energy” as in Reiki) are increasingly accepted and utilized by physicians, hospitals, and clinics. What is not promoted is the fact that holistic health practitioners often induce pantheistic/occult philosophy as a spiritual experience that can beguile the uninformed and vulnerable patient.

    At the heart of certain holistic health theories and practices is this “energetic medicine.” Energetic medicine encompasses dozens of diverse therapies and diagnostic approaches, including meridian therapy (acupuncture, acupressure), Applied Kinesiology (electro acupuncture), homeopathy, reflexology, polarity therapy, Therapeutic Touch, Reiki and the chiropractic. All these approaches are concerned with balancing or releasing energy in the body for the advancement of health and the treatment of disease. The energy that is the basis of these therapies has been given many names, including bioenergy, vital force, the life force, universal life energy and cosmic energy.

    The one form of energy medicine that we are focused on here, which has been growing in popularity is called Reiki. According to some, rei means "universal," and ki means "life force energy." But the International Center for Reiki Training goes further, declaring that "Rei" is more accurately understood to mean "supernatural knowledge or spiritual consciousness . . . the wisdom that comes from God or the Higher Self." Thus, according to the Center, "it is the God-consciousness called Rei that guides the life force called Ki in the practice we call Reiki."

    The founder, Mikao Usui was a Tendai Buddhist Monk, born 1865 in Japan. After years of intense mystical experiences, he purportedly discovered the secret of this new healing science and called it Reiki in 1922. Reiki claims to work by removing obstructions from the flow of life force energy throughout the body. These obstructions are allegedly caused by negative thoughts, actions or feelings, which some believe is the fundamental cause of illness. The Reiki website states "Reiki clears, straightens and heals the energy pathways, thus allowing the life force to flow in a healthy and natural way." In this way, Reiki is believed to enhance physical, mental and emotional health. Some even claim it is the same method of healing used by both the Buddha and Jesus.

    [See photo of book Mikao Usui below.]

    Is there a common historical thread that can be discerned through these various phenomena of healing? The Hindus call it ‘prana,’ the Hawaiians ‘mana,’ the Chinese ‘ch’i,’ and Hippocrates called it the ‘heat oozing out of my hand.’ Mesmer ‘animal magnetism,’ Quimby ‘mind force.’ The chiropractic call it ‘Innate Intelligence’. One could believe they were all referring to the same invisible energy. Wherever it has been referenced — in ancient paganism, modern occultism, or parapsychological research — this “life force” has been accompanied by altered states of consciousness, psychic phenomena, and channeled spirits. Additionally, those who are capable of perceiving and adept at manipulating this force invariably are shamans, self-proclaimed Reiki masters or psychics, thoroughly immersed in the occult.

    It is true that energy can be invisible without being occult. Obviously, the “invisible energies” of micro, radio, and television waves can be and have been scientifically explained. Yes, there are energies, which radiate throughout the universe and permeate and surround our physical bodies, and there are respects in which these energies are significant to health and health care. The idea that the universe is energy, that this energy is alive, and that this vital energy needs to be manipulated in our bodies to promote health is the basis of energetic medicine; it is essentially a pantheistic view and cannot be aligned to biblical theology. Pantheistic vitalism makes no distinctions between spirit and physical matter; therefore it has no rational or functional applications to health care as a physical assist.

    The Reiki theory operates within the context of pantheism: all reality is God, God is impersonal but conscious energy; therefore, all reality is a manifestation of spiritual energy. And if this energy can be released man will be both healed and mystically enlightened to his true divinity. It is taught that in order to realize this power and learn to channel Reiki one must first receive four attunements from a Reiki Master during a First Degree Reiki training session. These attunements are alleged to open "subtle mental and physical energy systems" that prepare the recipient "to channel Universal Life Force Energy." Supposedly, this creates a permanent connection with Reiki, thus allowing the recipient to channel this energy for life.

    The International Center for Reiki Training describes Reiki as "spiritually guided life force energy." After receiving the necessary attunements, a Reiki practitioner can channel this energy for life. The Center describes the attunement process as "a powerful spiritual experience" that "is guided by the Rei or God-consciousness." What's more, this experience "is also attended by Reiki guides and other spiritual beings who help implement the process." Exactly who, or what, are these Reiki spirit guides? The occult initiation of Reiki induces familiar spirit or powers from the realm of the earth, which resides the fallen principalities of darkness disguised as a worker of light (2 Cor. 11:12-15). We can read of the account in which Apostle Paul casts a demonic spirit from a woman who possessed a spiritual guide (Acts 16:16). In his second letter to the Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul linked such events to the power of Satan (2 Thess. 2:9).

    What about the accounts of Reiki working? It can be effective in relieving a wide variety of psychosomatic disorders. Since such disorders have a psychological or emotional (rather than physiological) cause, they can be relieved without directly treating the patient's body. Many studies indicate that the placebo effect can account for a full third (or more) "of the improvements found with any therapy." The placebo effect is the combination of factors that give therapies beneficial effects, but which are not caused by any direct physiological action. Reiki fits into this category very well.

    Why should one be concerned about being subject to Reiki? Imagine allowing a person who claims to be spiritually assisted, to levitate their hands across your body as to attune (rearrange) your life force and release what they discern as negative energy? I have personally interviewed numerous recipients who have reported a temporary relief, however ongoing sessions seemed to unravel and even dismantle a person's self-concept and feeling of being grounded. Reiki at times seems to work, but to what end? Fractured in the thoughts and emotions, noticeably more unstable, is it worth the risk? Using energy work for the sake of manipulation, if the Reiki Master is carrying emotional baggage or is infested with any unholy alliance (possessed), the patient will be tainted, even spiritually contaminated. Intrinsically dangerous, as is often the case with occult healings, one issue may be lessened while a new issue or bondage is introduced, sometime grievously worse than the original condition. Reiki Shares are a prime example of a metaphysical event for releasing negative energies while dispersing into other people at random.

    A rational thinking person cannot honestly believe Jesus Christ would condone an unpredictable healing practice. The risk level is too high and infinite ignorance level of the mere mortal practitioner even higher. Reiki masters will argue that they induce the protection of Christ "Dear Jesus, surround us with your Pure White Light of Christ's Protection." One must realize Christ's power is not a puppet to manipulate or a genie to be ordered. Conjuring energy is a metaphysical belief that has been practiced by pantheist for centuries. You can no more will a marble to roll across a table than you can generate energy fields by imagination.

    Christians who believe in the creator God inspired authority of Scripture must also believe in the biblical doctrine of Satan and his pervasive influence in this present world system. If “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one” (1 John 5:19), how much more the kingdom of the occult, his personal domain! Thus Christians have every reason to be cautious concerning phenomena that has had a long and strong connection to the realm of occult and paganism.
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