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Book Review: The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui

– Dr Mikao Usui and Frank Arjava Petter.

Based on a manuscript received by Arjava from Tsutomu Oishi and conversations between Shizuko Akimoto and Fumio Ogawa, The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui focuses primarily on sets of hand positions for body parts and specific ailments. While we do more Reiji-ho (what we sometimes term as ‘scanning’ or intuitive placing of hands) as we grow in our practice rather than specific hand positions; this book and manual serves as an interesting reference that we can incorporate into our healing practice.

Despite being more of a manual than a book, Arjava did not neglect to touch on the history and foundations of Reiki in the first four chapters of the 79-page publication. However this publication is more of a ‘handbook’ than a detailed exploration of Reiki, and should be used in that way.

The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui provides a very clear and detailed illustration of all the hand positions using coloured photographs.  Both the basic treatment of specific parts of the body (from the eyes and the nose to the uterus and kidneys) and the treatment of ailments (from epilepsy, asthma and hemorrhoids, to obesity and hair loss!) come with comprehensive sets of hand positions that are easily followed with the photo appendix in the book. The hand positions describing the treatments are accompanied with a copy of a page off the original Reiki Ryoho handbook, which is written in kanji and katakana.

The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr Mikao Usui is an interesting addition to our Reiki practice.  In general, Western Reiki practice has dispensed with complicated hand positions and treatments in favor of the more generic ‘one treatment to treat all’ approach with the 12 body positions we learn in class.  This book opens us to the aspect of specific hand positions for different ailments and is useful for those of us who are healing or wanting to experiment with a more specific technique.


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