When Usui Reiki first surfaced in the West in the 1970’s it was only taught by one lady, Hawayo Takata. She in turn trained 22 Reiki Masters. There is an excellent article with their bios and information here: http://www.robertfueston.com/reiki/articles/reiki_people.html
These 22 Masters then spread Reiki and taught many more Masters and now we have Reiki as the very popular and mainstream therapy it is today, a remarkably fast explosion. Along the way many things have changed and new offspring have appeared. We now have many different styles of teaching within the Usui system itself – with new lines from Japan not connected with Takata, and a proliferation of other Reiki systems with no link to the original Usui system of Reiki.
Some Masters, like myself, have chosen to go deep and stick with one form, while others have chosen to go broad and learn many different styles. There is no right or wrong way to approach this and it is really guided by your own inner interpretation of what feels right for you.
When I first started teaching, to be honest I had no choice – there was no other form of Reiki to learn! Now I feel blessed by this limitation as it forced me to stick with what I learnt. As the years have gone by I have deepened my practice and now explain it like meditation. In meditation we can learn many different styles but ultimately knowing 20 different styles of meditation may sound impressive, but not any more useful than only knowing one style. It is not the knowledge that is important, its the application.
“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” Bruce Lee
Reiki practice is like meditation, the more you do, the more you get. All paths lead to the same thing, so tread one path deeply and to the end of the road. Why tread 10 paths at the same time and get nowhere?
However, this is just my path, and my blessing. Over the years I have deepened to the point where I know in my heart all other paths are distractions. What do I gain from learning yet another tool? Yet another philosophy? What can I achieve faster than simply sitting with myself and allowing the Reiki to work? Reiki is a pathway to enlightenment but the pathway needs to be walked. Some people feel breadth of knowledge is very important and I can’t really comment on this as I don’t feel the same way, but I am very open to the fact that their pathway may be a lot broader than mine.
My only tip is to really be clear on why you are drawn to learn more and more tools, are you looking for a quick fix? Are you looking for something that is more ‘powerful’? Are you looking for a short-cut? Be clear on why you are going for the knowledge and why you are not simply deepening what you already have.
Reiki simply means universal life force, once the door to Reiki is open to you, all you need to do is walk through and stay. Reiki is self-empowerment, self-realisation so deepen into your own inner self, that is really all that is required.