What does inner happiness mean?
Not relying on outer circumstances to make you feel happy.
When we feel inner happiness we start to feel alive: an aliveness which brings joy, a smile on our face, and a freedom we haven’t felt before.
But how do we create this within our practice of the system of Reiki?
The first step is taught within Shoden Level I — a meditation to help you focus on the hara/tanden. This is an important step, as without this foundation it is difficult to awaken the flow of energy that triggers this inner happiness. By practicing this meditation daily, the seat of our original energy – our hara – is stirred.
Practicing the methods taught within Okuden level II then takes this awakening a step further. The initial Okuden practice of meditating on the first symbol/mantra stimulates the earth connection through the hara even further. After establishing a good connection with the earth energy you move on to work with the next symbol and mantra which symbolises heavenly energy, associated with your head. After both the heaven and earth energy are in perfect harmony something begins to shift within your inner energy system.
Most Reiki practitioners will at some stage feel some heat in their hands, but if we start to practice the above meditations correctly and with the right guidance we begin to feel this heat in our hara. When our heaven and earth energy is in balance the heat from the hara rises all the way to the head. This in turn melts the heavenly energy in your head, which in turn drips down through your central channel and into your heart. The inner heat rising is called Ri Goma in Japan and is a fundamental practice in all Japanese spiritual teachings.
It is then time to begin to meditate with the third Okuden symbol and mantra: related to all that is associated with your heart. The energy which drips down from your head into the heart continues dripping down into the hara. There is now a continual flow of energy from the hara to your head and back down again. Some practitioners might experience this as rain falling down through them. Usui-san, the founder of the system of Reiki, pointed this out already in the kanji of Rei, from the word Reiki. Rei is traditionally translated as ‘a shaman praying for rain and the rain falls down into the three bowls on the altar’. This kanji describes the mystical process of our inner universe creating rain. The three bowls into which the rain falls are our three energy centres; the hara, heart and the head. The rain nurtures these three energy centres so that they can begin to blossom. This rain is like a blessing and is called Muso-Sanmitsu Kaji (a formless blessing from the three mysteries of the universe).
This blossoming of the three energy centers stimulates an inner blossoming of happiness. The more we work with it the more inner happiness blossoms and spread through the entire body. Initially, you might begin to feel a gentle inner heat and a tingling sensation flowing through you. This is enhanced by meditating on the Shinpiden Level III symbol and mantra bringing the blossoming to fruition.
Heat or tingling is a common sensation for many Reiki practitioners, ideally the aim of the system of Reiki is to feel this heat and tingling through the whole being, 24 hours a day. In many traditions this is called inner bliss–a sense of aliveness coming deep from within ourselves.
The flowing is a simple metaphor to help you to understand this concept of real aliveness.
Imagine a wire, stripped of its plastic coating but not connected to the power supply. Nothing happens when we touch it as there is no energy running through it. This is a dead wire.
Yet, when we insert the wire into the power point and then touch it, we feel the energy of the electricity. This is known as a live wire.
So, to be alive we need to be like the wire, feeling the energy moving through us all the time. When we feel this movement of energy creating inner happiness and joy it makes us want to announce to the world: I am alive!
This is one of the inner or hidden meanings of the system of Reiki from a spiritual perspective, but can only be experienced through personal practice.
Bronwen and Frans Stiene are the co-founders of the International House of Reiki and co-authors of The Reiki Sourcebook, The Japanese Art of Reiki, Your Reiki Treatment, The A-Z of Reiki Pocketbook and the Reiki Techniques Card Deck. Bronwen and Frans teach in the USA, Europe and Australia. Visit the Courses page to find a course near you.