Shinpiden Training – Studying the Traditional Japanese Perspective

Shinpiden means mystery teachings in the Japanese system of Reiki. This was the highest level of study for a student who had already achieved first Shoden (First Degree) and then Okuden (Second Degree.) Mikao Usui, the founder of Reiki, supposedly only brought sixteen qualified students to this level during his lifetime.

This level eventually was westernized by Hawayo Takata and it is believed she coined the term “Reiki Master” or “Reiki Master Teacher.” She trained twenty-two “Masters” during her lifetime.

Recently I had the pleasure of delving deeper into the classical Japanese background of Reiki by experiencing an intensive 3-day Shinpiden class with Frans Stiene of the International House of Reiki. It was a thought-provoking and extremely enlightening seminar as we learned theory, concepts and the “purity” of the origin of Reiki. For originally, Reiki was a path to spiritual exploration and enlightenment, not a healing modality. However, it was soon discovered that the lovely by-product of this spiritual practice was healing!

Today we know Reiki as a healing system and most study and train in it for that particular purpose. But to be a more effective healer, it can be helpful to really take a look at the spiritual practice side. Frans teaches what I consider “minimalist” or “bare-bones” Reiki. This embraces the basic concept of connecting the enlightened, peaceful aspect inside oneself to that within the Reiki client or recipient. It means perhaps just “being Reiki” and sharing the healing energy. It means first discovering that enlightened, compassionate part of yourself — and that’s where one’s spiritual evolution comes in.

Reiki is most effective when we just step back and trust that healing will flow in as it’s meant to, and that the recipient will receive exactly what she/he needs at this particular moment in time.

Though all these deep topics, Frans kept us engaged with his presentation which was also infused with his very joyful sense of humor. And when he taught us the Japanese method of “attunement” or “spiritual blessing” (which is used to awaken the student’s ability to connect with Reiki) it was like watching a sacred, graceful and profound choreography.

The entire three-day immersion into this lovely healing energy was quite an amazing experience, and I am still processing all that I learned. In the times to come, I will be integrating it into my own teaching curriculum.

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