USUI REIKI SYMBOLS - PART ONE
Reiki symbols are an important and very interesting part of Reiki practice. They allow one to focus the energy of Reiki for specific purposes. There are a total of five symbols in the Usui system of Reiki. Three are given in Reiki II and two in Reiki III. There are other symbols that people are using, but they are not a part of the Usui system.
In the Shamballa Multi-Dimensional Healing system there is a total of 352 symbols.
Usui Reiki symbols are not as mysterious as they might seem. They are actually Japanese kanji, which means they are simply words from the Japanese language. Their names can be found in a Japanese/English dictionary. The first two symbols vary from this somewhat. While the names of the Power and Mental/Emotional symbols are Japanese, the symbols themselves may be Shamanic or a combination of Sanskrit and Japanese kanji. It is a practice of Japanese Buddhists to sometimes combine ancient Sanskrit with Japanese kanji in their sacred writings and symbols, so the way these first two symbols are drawn may have been influenced by this practice. The Distant and Master symbols are completely Japanese kanji; both in their names and in the way they are drawn.
It is interesting to note that the name of the Usui Master symbol can be found in "The Encyclopedia of Eastern Philosophy and Religion," and is translated to mean "treasure house of the great beaming light." It is said to be "a Zen expression for ones' own true nature or Buddha-nature of which one becomes cognizant in the experience of enlightenment or satori." This is quite a profound definition. Perhaps it is called the Master symbol because it gives us direct connection to the Master within, which is the real source of Reiki. Also, since the Usui Master symbol is a powerful symbol from Zen Buddhism, one wonders how much help Dr Usui received from the Zen Buddhists he was staying with when he re-discovered Reiki.
The above information indicates that the Usui Reiki symbols are not exclusive to Usui Reiki. They existed prior to Dr Usui's use of them. Also, because they are Japanese, it is not likely that he discovered them in a Sanskrit sutra as some have thought. It is much more likely that Dr Usui received the symbols in his mystical experience on Mt. Koriyama, or that he had prior knowledge of them from the Zen Buddhists he was staying with. Since the symbols are Japanese and we know that the Master symbol is from Zen Buddhism, perhaps the sutra in which he discovered the formula for healing was Zen Buddhist rather than a Sanskrit sutra, (even though there is a Sanskrit sutra that contains a formula for healing). In addition, the Usui Master symbol also appears as part of the symbol on the Goshintai, which is the sacred scroll of the Johrei Fellowship. These are all interesting ideas to contemplate.
The Reiki symbols are transcendental in their functioning. Whereas most symbols have an effect of the subconscious mind of the user, causing a change in one's internal state, the Reiki symbols access the source of Reiki directly and signal a change in how the Reiki energy functions, independent of one's internal state. There are many ways to activate the Reiki symbols. They can be activated by drawing them with the hand, or visualizing them, or by saying the name either out loud or to oneself. The symbol may also be traced on the roof of one's mouth with the tongue. Intention is the main ingredient in activation and it is possible with awareness to activate them by intention alone.
The power and effectiveness of the symbols comes from the Reiki attunement that is given during a Reiki class. Before the attunement, the student is shown these symbols and given time to memorize them. During the attunement, the energies of each symbol come down and enter the student's mind/body, linking themselves to the appropriate symbol in the student's mind. Afterwards, whenever the student uses the symbol, the same energies that they were linked to during the attunement are activated and begin flowing. This linking or activation of the Reiki symbols during the attunement process makes use of the stimulus/response mechanism, which is a dynamic part of the human mind. The Reiki symbol becomes the stimulus and the particular energy the symbol represents is the response. However, because the attunement is guided by the Higher Power, and functions at a higher level of awareness, the stimulus/response mechanism doesn't require the repetition normally necessary to establish a relationship between stimulus and response. It happens immediately.
Many have noticed differences in the way that the symbols are drawn when compared to the symbols from other Reiki Masters. These differences are there for a number of reasons. First, it is known that Mrs. Takata did not always draw the symbols exactly the same for every student she taught. After her transition, there was a meeting of the Reiki Masters she initiated. At the meeting they compared their symbols. The Power symbols of all the Masters present were basically the same. The Mental/Emotional symbols of the Masters had some slight differences. However, the Distance symbols were quite different - especially with the strokes at the bottom. They did not compare their Master symbols. So, even at this early date, there were differences, which apparently came from Mrs. Takata. Perhaps she deliberately drew them differently to give a little distinction for each student, or perhaps at other times because of age or from having taught for over 30 years, she accidentally drew them with some differences. Also, there are different ways to draw the Japanese kanji figures and in fact, Mrs. Takata did have two ways she drew the Master symbol. One way was more of a flowing style, called "running hand" with the main difference at the bottom part of the symbol. The other way she drew the Master symbol was a printed or block style called "normal." Both ways of drawing the Master symbol have exactly the same meaning.
So starting out there were already changes in the symbols from one student to another. Add to this the fact that students were not allowed to make original copies of the symbols, and were to keep them only in the mind. When it came time to pass them on, the teachers had to draw them from memory and since few people have perfect memories, some changes were bound to occur. This process has continued over and over, thus allowing more changes to take place. What is surprising is that for most students, the symbols still look fairly close to the original.
So, the question arises about whether there is a perfect or correct way to draw the symbols. From the above example, it can be seen that even those who learned from Mrs. Takata did not draw the symbols in exactly the same way - so there must not be a perfect way to draw them. It has also been found that everyone who has received the attunement for the symbols has symbols that work. So, the power of the symbols does not come from drawing them perfectly. It comes from the link that is made between the symbol the student receives in class and the attunement energies entering the student during the Reiki initiation. The correct way to draw the symbols is the way your Reiki Master drew them for you before you received the attunement. It is the link between the symbol and the Reiki energy that takes place during the attunement that empowers the symbols. (With this principle in mind, some Masters have chosen to deliberately make slight changes in some of the lines of the symbols to give distinction to their particular school of Reiki.) The symbols that you receive from your Master are the right symbols for you to use, even if they are different than those others are using.
The Reiki symbols are a wonderful, beautiful way to connect to the higher power. Their use does not require that we are able to meditate or have years of spiritual practice. Their power and effectiveness comes to us by grace, which allows us to humbly accept the value we receive as a gift from the Creator. We are grateful for the efforts of Dr Usui and all the others who have lovingly worked to make this system of healing available to us.
The traditional way of giving these symbols to people meant that they were not allowed to draw them on paper and take them away with them. I think that the time for that has now gone. If we don’t allow our students to have symbols on paper, they will have forgotten how to draw them in no time at all. There are many different representations of these symbols in use. It is known that Mrs. Takata drew these symbols in many different ways. They all seem to work. I am giving here various representations of the symbols. The symbols from my Reiki Master are the first ones given. Once we have worked on the meaning of these symbols, I will go into other variations of them and how to draw them. If you look at the Level One materials, you will know that there was once over three hundred symbols in the full system, with twenty-two in daily use. We are now down to five in the traditional system today. The five seem to work well, but I am in possession of many more. Some say they are not Reiki symbols, but who knows? Most of this system has been lost. Many of the symbols still exist in Tibet, because they were also used there, but it is hard to get access to them because of the Chinese. They are in remote monasteries and inaccessible to most of us today as are you not allowed to roam around Tibet as a tourist. So, after we have looked at and discussed the Reiki II symbols, I will include some of the others I have access to.
Working With Symbols
In my own experience I have found that working with the Reiki II symbols also makes it easier to “tune in” to the Reiki Guides. Each person is assigned a Guide during their first Attunement to Reiki I. Using the symbols seems to bring the Guides closer. You may find at this stage that you might even start to hear them talking to you. This of course takes your healing into a whole new dimension. Using the symbols boosts up the Reiki energy; it is just like turning up the power from fifty watts to five hundred watts. When you take your Master attunement it takes the energy from alternating current to direct current.
Cho Ku Rei
This symbol vibrates at the seventh level. This symbol is drawn counter-clockwise in some systems. I have been given guidance by the Ascended Masters that both ways work, counter and clockwise. I have also been told that drawing counter-clockwise over tumors and inflamed areas draws the energy out, so wait for guidance on which way to draw it during your sessions. Using it once clockwise and once counter-clockwise can be used for manifesting what you need in life. It should also be born in mind that an energy vortex in the Northern Hemisphere often circulates in a clockwise manner, while the same energy in the Southern Hemisphere will circulate in a counter-clockwise direction. Just think about the way in which water drains down the sink plug hole.
How to Use
This symbol relates to the spirals of DNA. DNA channels the light codes. At the present time most people have only two strands of DNA active. For us to experience full consciousness we need to have twelve stands activated. I will give another symbol later to help activate DNA. It should be used at the beginning of every treatment on the Head. Repeat it every time contact is broken with the body.
When to Use
Cho Ku Rei has general applications for: