Read on to learn what Reiki is and how WBG member, Valerie Gaines, became drawn to it's practice and healing benefits.
What is Reiki (pronounced Ray-Key)?   Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction that also promotes healing through a gentle laying-on of hands.  It is based on the idea that an unseen “life force energy” flows through us and enlivens us.  If our “life force energy” is low, we are more likely to get sick or feel stress.  If it is high, we are more capable of being happy and healthy.  Reiki is usually administered with the receiving individual lying on a Reiki or Massage table (or, in some cases, hospital bed), but it can also be done while the individual is seated in a chair.  

I discovered Reiki when I retired from a career as a Human Resources professional in both academic and corporate business settings.  While working at Wellesley College from 1990 to 2000 I had the opportunity to complete my undergraduate education, having achieved an Associate’s Degree in Business from a community college while raising my family.   I graduated from Wellesley College in 2000 with a BA in Religion.  The courses I took as part of my degree requirements exposed me to a variety of religions and cultures.  I am active in my church community where I focus on pastoral care work.   A member of the church who is an Oncology RN at Mass. General Hospital urged a group of us to take Reiki certification training, saying that many of her nursing colleagues were already Reiki certified.  Because of its correlation to Christian healing, I saw it as a way to enhance our pastoral care program.   Reiki is not a religion; it is a healing technique that provides a common language which transcends religion and culture.

Reiki is suitable for all ages.  When I offer Reiki to Wellesley College students during final exams, they tell me that they relax and sleep better.   Recently, when my thirteen year old grandson had throat surgery, the swelling rapidly dissipated when I laid my hands on him.  In the Assisted Living facilities where I offer Reiki to residents they enjoy the warmth and healing touch.  Often they say that the pain goes away when I lay my hands on them or they can breathe more deeply.   After my own recent foot surgery I had a series of three Reiki sessions from another practitioner, and I saw dramatic improvement in my foot after each session.  

For the past three years I have been a Reiki Volunteer at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, providing care and comfort to patients and their families as well as hospital staff.   Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s Reiki Program is one of the largest hospital Reiki programs in the world.  Reiki is increasingly used in a variety of medical settings including hospice care, rehabilitation centers and nursing homes and for a variety of medical conditions, in combination with traditional medicine.

In my Reiki practice at Bamboo Wisdom Acupuncture in Wellesley Square I am able to give individualized thirty to sixty minute sessions to clients.   We also offer combined Reiki and Acupuncture sessions which begin and end with Reiki to relax the patient.   Please come see us at our Open House on Saturday, March 24th from 1 – 3 p.m.  There will be hands-on demonstrations, giveaways and snacks.