Whether you want to train to become a Reiki practitioner, or you simply want to learn more about the therapy, it can help to understand the associated terminology. In Reiki there are typically three (sometimes four) levels that can be attained when training. These levels are often referred to as attunements.
This attunement is what makes Reiki different to other energy healing therapies. A Reiki Master performs the ceremony, and its aim is to open up the main energy channels in the student’s body – allowing universal energy (known as Qi or Chi) to flow more freely.
This process allows Reiki to do what it’s meant to – open and clear blockages of energy. This opening allows the student to experience significant energy changes and many will experience a period of self-growth. Take a look at what you can expect as a Reiki student:
Reiki level 1 – the first degree
The first level is your initiation to the practice and anyone can attend. The goal here is to open up the energy channels on a physical level. This allows you to connect to the universal life force energy.
Self-Reiki is emphasised in this level. This means teachers will encourage you to practise Reiki on yourself to overcome any of your own obstacles. Many students report physical symptoms after their first attunement, typically heat, coolness or tingling in the hands. The history of Reiki, hand placements and self and group practice are also covered here.
Reiki level 2 – second degree
During this level you will begin to practise on other people and continue expanding your own energy channels. You will also receive the Reiki ‘symbols’. These allow you to connect more deeply to the universal energy and help you draw on the qualities the symbols represent.
You will also cover distance healing – where you can use Reiki on people wherever they are. Due to the intensity of these attunements, many teachers prefer you to have a couple of months in between level 1 and level 2 attunements. Having said this, some choose to combine the two into one weekend. How you choose to do your attunements will depend on your own personal preferences.
Reiki level 3 – third degree and Reiki Master
Many Reiki courses give the third degree and Reiki Master attunements the same designation, but some separate them. The Reiki Master attunement is traditionally considered the teacher’s level, meaning you will then be able to teach others. Becoming a Reiki Master also cements your commitment to the practice of Reiki.
Reiki courses are taught in many different ways, so it is important to ‘shop around’ as it were, to see which method would work best for you.