National Reiki Retreat 2008: Discovering Oneness with the Cane-toads
Glorious sunshine, fresh rainforest air and magical ocean views – Mission Beach in Far North Queensland proved to be the perfect location for the National Reiki Retreat, held 14-22 June 2008.
The Retreat kicked-off on Saturday night with Welcome Cocktails (non-alcoholic of course!). We soon got to know new like-minded Reiki friends with the help of Frans and Bronwen’s relaxed nature and generosity. Their daughter, Bella, awarded special gifts to the first five people to book into the Retreat – each receiving a copy of (insert title by H. E. Davey). Three other lucky people received a gift voucher for a Reiki Treatment by Frans.
On Sunday morning I made my way to the Yoga Room to begin our Reiki practice, not knowing what to expect. Everyone was there except Bill, the only male out of 15 people to attend the Retreat. Frans used the opportunity to give us regular “Where’s Bill? Updates”, setting a humorous and light-hearted tone for the entire retreat.
First up, Frans and Bronwen took us through the difference between Reiki and the five elements within the System of Reiki. With Frans’ simple explanations and relevant examples, I easily understood how the precepts, symbols and mantras, meditations, hands-on healing and attunements all fit together.
Next Bronwen helped us see the importance of creating a daily self-practice to develop a stronger energy. Having an intent, pathway and outcome is essential. I realised how simple it is to use the System of Reiki as the pathway for pursuing our intent and reaching our outcomes. With some dedication and regular practice, meditating daily could easily become a routine, just like brushing our teeth or taking a bath every day!
Then Frans helped us to connect to the Hara or Earth Ki to demonstrate how having a strong foundation helps us to grow. Just like the trees and mountains surrounding us, the stronger our root system or base becomes then the taller we can grow.
As the days passed, I had many “ah-ha, I get it!” moments. One worth mentioning is when Frans explained our Hara is the source of our intuition, and the more connected we are to Earth Ki, the more we connect to the Heaven Ki and Heart Ki. Through connecting these energies or the three diamonds within us, we reach ‘non-duality’ or oneness. This is the ideal state, as we see no distinction between negative and positive or me and you – everything is one. Performing a hands-on treatment in this space of non-duality or oneness is ultimate as we do not see the person as someone who needs healing. We also see everyone as having the same energy. From this state of being, we see that no one can take our energy. The need to protect ourselves comes from our individual fears.
Over the days, my mind became calmer, especially from having two Reijus from Frans each day. Frans asks us to holding two intents during each Reijui to facilitate our healing. The first intent is we are willing to receive the Reiji, and the second is we are willing to receive whatever we need to receive at the time.
Some of us felt the affects of healing more than others. Frans kindly reassured us that it’s better to get it out now then in 10 years time. Though when you wake up in the middle of the night to release scrumptious chocolate fudge cake, the healing process just doesn’t seem fair!
Other people started to feel their physical bodies more, especially their bottoms and aching leg muscles. Sitting cross-legged and trekking up and down steep muddy hills was tough work. We jokingly asked Frans, “is this a Reiki Retreat or Reiki Bootcamp?”.
And then to top it off, we had all the creatures of nature to watch out for… or maybe they were watching us. I felt so grateful for a three and a half hour lunch break each day so I could relax or swim in the crystal clear ocean.
Nature aside, the Retreat helped everything fall into place for me. Frans and Bronwen make Reiki and the System of Reiki so simple whilst honoring its authenticity and depth.
By the end of the four-day Retreat I felt my layers peel away as my individual learning and self-healing occurred. Others felt the same. When confronted with a hairy spider or cane-toad, we began to practice oneness (well most of us tried, some screamed and ran for help).
After the Retreat, some students experienced oneness on a totally new and much deeper level when they stayed for the Shinpiden Level III Master/Teacher Course.
It’s been over four months since my time in Mission Beach. On reflection, I realise how the entire experience has helped me to shift my perceptions and accelerate my learning. I am committed to a daily practice, and I feel more aware and calmer as a result. With Frans’ ongoing support and guidance, my own Reiki teachings and hands-on treatments are developing further. The Retreat definitely was worth the investment, especially for anyone seeking a life-changing experience or a way to reach a new level in your personal or professional practice.