It’s undeniable that Reiki has touched the lives of countless people all across the globe. It heals, nurtures, and strengthens in a way that is both powerful, inclusive, and accessible. But where did Reiki come from, exactly? Who was the originator of Reiki? Well, it was the amazing Dr. Mikao Usui.
Without Dr. Mikao Usui, we wouldn’t have the gift we call Reiki today. That’s why I wanted to honor the legacy of this man by going through his history today.
Dr. Mikao Usui was born on the 15th of August in 1865, in a village called “Taniai-mura” in the Kyoto prefecture. Back then, only the most wealthy could afford a good education, so it was very likely that Dr. Mikao Usui was from one that was also Buddhist. The hard-working Mikao Usui took up his studies in a Tendai Buddhist monastery school, picking up a variety of martial arts and swordsmanship in the process. It looked like he was interested in healing from start, as he was said to be very knowledgeable in psychology, medicine, Kiko, and theology, among others.
Later on, Dr. Mikao Usui traveled all throughout the West, as well as China, to gain more knowledge. Eventually, he would become a Tendai Buddhist monk- on top of being a politician’s secretary, private secretary, industrialist, reporter, public servant, and more, mind you! But it was one very fateful trip that would eventually give birth to the idea of Reiki in Dr. Mikao Usui’s mind.
Dr. Mikao Usui meditated for 21 days on Mount Kurama, also known as Horse Saddle Mountain. During those 21 days, Dr. Mikao Usui prayed and fasted to rediscover his training. It’s said this is where he got the idea to start his own healing system which would eventually become Reiki. And the moment that he did was quite amazing: on the twenty-first day of his trip, he envisioned ancient Sanskrit symbols. These symbols would go on to aid him in developing Usui Reiki. It’s quite possible that Dr. Mikao Usui combined a variety of healing methods he’d picked up on his travels with the traditional Japanese way of healing, including Chi Gong, acupuncture, and Kiko. This new amazing spiritual system of Dr. Usui’s worked on a wide array of ailments.
In 1922, Dr. Mikao Usui opened shop in Harajuku, Tokyo, which is now one of Japan’s fashion hotspots (who would’ve known!) as well as in Kyoto. Here, Dr. Usui frequently utilized a Reiki handbook called “The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr. Mikao Usui.” And so, it wasn’t long before people flocked to Dr. Usui’s school and clinic to pick up Reiki after hearing about its benefits and connection to spirituality. The older generations, in particular, adored the fact that Reiki was so in touch with more traditional spiritual practices, especially because Japan was starting to become more open to the West during this time.
And so, it wasn’t long before people flocked to Dr. Usui’s school and clinic to pick up Reiki after hearing about its benefits and connection to spirituality. The older generations, in particular, adored the fact that Reiki was so in touch with more traditional spiritual practices, especially because Japan was starting to become more open to the West during this time.
Dr. Mikao Usui worked hard to train numerous Reiki masters before he passed away. His legacy lives on: Reiki has touched and continues to touch so many lives, bringing peace, balance, and healing.