by Frans Stiene
Within the system of Reiki we have different styles of meditation practices; some utilize mantras and others the breath. And yet all of them work with the mind, as the mind is the most important element of all.
Let’s look at the meditation practice of Joshin Kokyu ho:
淨 jō means clear, pure, without taint or defilement, lucid.
心 shin means heart, mind, essence, the mind as the principle of the universe, the enlightened mind.
呼吸 kokyū means to exhale and inhale, breathing
法 hō means method, dharma, principle.
We therefore can translate jōshin kokyū hō in this way: The method to rediscover our pure mind through breathing.
However there is a deeper layer to Joshin Kokyu ho.
““Present” or “right now” can also be expressed by such terms as nyoze (suchness, or as-it-is-ness), ku (emptiness), mu (nothingness), “do” (the Way), or “Zen.” Or if we look for an even broader meaning, it could be called “ho” (the Dharma, the truth, or the Law.)” – The Essence of Zen – The Teachings of Sekkei Harada, translated and edited by Daigaku Rumme.
As Zen master Sekkei Harada points out; ho can also be expressed as emptiness.
Thus through practicing Joshin Kokyu ho, we realize that right now our mind is already pure emptiness.
Often we practice and we think we might attain something in the future. But if we always project it into the future we will never attain it.
Again Sekkei Harada points this out very clearly in his teachings:
“If some means or method is used to order or unify the mind, it implies that there is a clear distinction between something that is in order and something that is not in order. If, for example, zazen is used as a means to order or unify the mind, there are necessarily two things: the part that is in order and the part that is not. No matter how long you continue, there will never come a time when you can say, “Yes, it’s finished. The mind is unified and in order.” When I speak of ordering or unifying the mind, this is not something done gradually as a process by quietly practicing zazen. The fact is that all things are already in order, and beyond that there is no need to do anything. The aim of seishin, then, is to realize that this condition where everything is already unified and in order – is our condition right now.”
Mikao Usui did exactly the same, for example in the precepts he points to today, not tomorrow or next week or in some distant future. No, he points to right now, right here. And he points out that right here we are already Reiki, we are already the great bright light.
Imagine a lamp with lampshades; we often focus on the lampshades. But to realize we are the light, we have to pull away our lampshades, our issues, attachments, sickness etc. But when have we pulled away enough? Next year, in 10 years time? Tomorrow never comes….
But we also can see that underneath all these lampshades the light is there already, shining brightly without the need to add more light. It is already bright right now!
We can see the same within the popular Reiki meditation practice Hatsurei ho:
Hatsu 発 means: to arise, to give birth, to reveal what is hidden or to emit.
Rei 霊 means: spirit and inconceivable spiritual ability.
Hô 法 means: dharma, ultimate truth or method.
When we practice this meditation practice we realize that right now we are revealing what is already here: our inconceivable spiritual ability which is emptiness. It is not in the future but right now: our essence is already like this.
The whole problem is that we just do not believe it.
Sekkei Harada tells us that this kind of belief is the first step, a very important one:
“First, you must believe that you are already within the way. You must believe that you are free of delusion, illusory thoughts, confused ideas, increase and decrease, and mistaken understanding. Believing in this manner, clarify the Way and practice accordingly. This is the essence of studying the Way…. The above passage asks us to believe this as a first step and then enter the Way.”
Again Mikao Usui points this out too, we are already the precepts, our essence is already right now, today: no anger and worry, being grateful, true to our way and our being and compassionate to ourselves and others. Not in the future, but right now.
Sekkei Harada goes on to say this:
“The next part is important. If you have made the resolution to believe, then it isn’t good for the belief to remain. To believe means that there is someone (“you”) who is believing. In other words, if something is truly believed in, then the belief must disappear. I would like you to understand clearly that you must let go of that which is believed in. The condition of pure belief is absolute. It is a condition where doubts and belief in a dualistic sense have disappeared. Belief and doubt or belief and disbelief are, in the end, the ideas of people. The condition where belief and doubt have disappeared is what we call “the Dharma,” or “the Way,” or “now.””
The above part is kind of the next step; as soon as we believe this 100%, we have become one with this belief. And therefore the belief disappears and what is left is utter emptiness, wide open spaciousness in which things can come and go without us holding onto anything at all.
This in essence is Mikao Usui’s teachings: right now, today, our essence is already Reiki, pure mind, a great bright light of love and compassion.
Based in Holland, Frans Stiene teaches in North America, Europe, UK, Australia and Asia.
Frans is also the author of Reiki Insights, it is the continuation of his previous book The Inner Heart of Reiki, taking your personal practice and understanding of the system of Reiki yet another step deeper.