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An Interview with Reiki Master Mallika Shankarnarayan: A Lesson on Trust

Q. Tell us a little about yourself and your Reiki journey – how did you come to Reiki, and when did you become a Reiki Master?

The first time I heard about Reiki was when I was 19 and doing my Masters in Medical & Psychiatric Social Work in India. One of the course requirements was a journey across the length and breadth of India to get an exposure to and an increased awareness of holistic, complementary and alternative practices to promote well-being. This journey gave me a sliver of a glimpse into the world of ayurveda, yoga, meditation techniques, Pranic healing and Reiki. I was drawn to Reiki and the attraction remained with me. I often thought of embarking on the Reiki journey and it took 12 years for the thought to manifest itself in the form of me taking a Reiki Level 1 class, here, in Singapore in 2008. This was a journey that then became unstoppable.  And thankfully, joyfully so. A year after I did Reiki 1, my husband did Reiki 1 too. And about a year later, we both did Reiki 2 together. I started my Reiki Masters Training in  2012 and the training “supposedly” culminated in Feb 2013 (I don’t think it’s ever going to be “completed” so to speak) and I remain amazed to find Reiki entering my life in ways that I couldn’t have consciously orchestrated.

Q. You have this amazing story about how Reiki helped your father-in-law with his medical condition that caused him chronic pain. Please share it with us!

After unleashing Reiki attunements on poor unsuspecting trees, attuning animals all around, attuning every space I found myself in – essentially attuning anything and everything I could lay my hands on physically and metaphorically – I found my first ‘human’ guinea pigs – my adorable in-laws. They live in Chennai, in India. I was there on a holiday in December 2012 and decided to ‘Reiki 1’ her 🙂 My mother-in-law is very spiritual, open, free spirited, committed and magnanimous. Giving her Reiki 1 was a moving experience for both of us. When we got back to Singapore, we had multiple missed calls on our phone and I admit I was a tad worried about what I had done…Had I wrongly Reiki-ed her? Had something bad happened? My father-in-law had been suffering from a neurological condition for the past couple of years – a condition that caused terrible pains in his facial nerves and jaws. He was taking medication to ease the pain. Apparently the night we left Chennai for Singapore, my father-in-law got an attack of the neurological condition. He was in excruciating pain and nothing seemed to help. My mother-in-law, who didn’t consciously know what to do,  suddenly found herself putting her hands on my father-in-law’s face and heart chakra. Within an hour, he was sleeping like a baby! The pain had stopped and he was feeling at ease. This was a Reiki miracle for them – and certainly one for me. My mother-in-law continued giving her husband Reiki. She would Reiki herself, send Reiki through her affirmations to her grandchildren. My father-in-law couldn’t wait to get Reiki 1. And in Feb 2013, when I was down in Chennai, I attuned him to Reiki 1. They now both use Reiki every day. His neurological condition has shown tremendous improvement. He could even go off his pain killers. They are both now waiting for me to go to Chennai and teach them Reiki 2.

Q. You were probably at your most ‘inspired’ stage of your Reiki journey then, when a series of events happened that made you feel like you hit a wall with your Reiki practice. Can you tell us about your experience, and how it all unfolded to a lesson on trust?

With all that I had experienced, in my head and heart, Reiki was wonderful, dramatic, and miraculous – does all, solves all.  If you have Reiki – you will be untouched. I was a Reiki fanatic of sorts. And then in March this year, during a regular medical check-up for my home insurance, the docs found an anomaly in my urine. There was protein & blood leakage in my urine. You couldn’t see any of it with your naked eye and I felt just fine so the docs thought that it might be a glitch. I was asked to repeat the test. The results were the same. We repeated it once again. The results kept showing anomalies. I was referred to a kidney specialist. And then started the series of test. All kinds of screenings, CT scans, tests to rule out “stuff” and get to the root cause of the issue. I was diagnosed with glomerular nepthropathy – an inflammation in the kidneys that causes kidneys to leak proteins. If unchecked and untreated would result in kidney failure in the long run but something that could definitely be treated and controlled with long term medication. I was relieved that it was something that could be managed but was also very worried. Very stressed. Very upset. What is going on?? I have Reiki !! I just completed my Reiki Masters. This isn’t supposed to happen. I had to go for tests every two weeks, and every two weeks I was panicking. I was afraid. I did an SOS call & meeting with my Reiki Master and asked to meet her. I had questions and loads of doubts. I didn’t feel like a Reiki person at all. I felt that Reiki had let me down. The chat with my Master helped calm me; I think I started a different journey that day  –  a journey which said that yes, I may have protein leakage in my urine, and that I need to start taking medications AND I am fine. The two conditions can co-exist. That was a paradigm shift for me. A big shift. I continued giving myself Reiki – but not with the kind of faith I had earlier. It was a reluctant Reiki of disappointment and fear. I was doing Reiki and doing my Buddhist chants as I have been since the past 7 years (Nam Myoho Renge Kyo) . And then two weeks later came the doc’s visit. She was happy with the fact that the medications seemed to be working. I was thrilled because it’s the first piece of good news about my health that I received in months. And just as I was leaving her room, she looks at me and says – “Have you heard of this thing called Reiki”. “Yeah” (that was all I could say) ”My brother is a Reiki person,” she continued. “Years ago our family dog was diagnosed with acute renal failure. The vet gave the dog a couple of months at best to live and we were asked to prepare the kids to say good bye to the dog. My brother used to put his hands on his do every day and give the dog Reiki. Its 5 years since, the dog is still alive and fine. Maybe you should try Reiki.” !!! What just happened?! Was this what you Reiki experts and Masters call “receiving a message”?  Had I just received a message?? I think I had. I called my Master and told her – “I think I know what you guys mean when you say God / Universe spoke to me. I was just spoken to” It’s been four months since. I take my medication every day. I Reiki and I chant – almost every day. I still worry especially before my tests. But I also feel that I am ok. I am OK.

Q. What are the 5 most important things you learnt from this that you would like to share with our Reiki community?

  1. It works. Reiki of Implicit Trust or The Reluctant Reiki of Disappointment. It still works.

  2. I am a Reiki person – whether or not I do Reiki professionally.  I used to feel that if I am not doing Reiki the way my Master does – I am not an authentic Reiki person. I am superficial and not doing the “real stuff”. I don’t feel that anymore. I am a Reiki person and we come in different forms and sizes 🙂

  3. I can ask for help from my fellow Reiki Masters. I feel supported and connected deeply with them. And feel very grateful for their presence in my life.

  4. Reiki will help with the balancing (and re-balancing!), and through it, I will be better enabled to do the work I need to do – but it’s not going to be the bubble that keeps all stress away. It is mystical, magical, but most certainly does not give you a reason to be lazy!

  5. That there are no accidents. Everything is a message that the universe is giving us – as uniquely and kindly as it can.


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