Reiki with Animals the Japanese Way

Frans StieneArticles, English 6 Comments

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Many teachers who offer Reiki with Animals classes have based their system on the teachings of the International House of Reiki, and have even trained with us.

For 17 years I cohabited with Bronwen’s animals; there were chickens, ducks, a pet pig, dogs, cats, horses, mini horses, and goats. And not forgetting the local Australian wildlife, thus I have witnessed first hand, on many occasions, how we can support animals in their healing.

Often people see a difference between animals and humans within the system of Reiki. But from a traditional Japanese perspective, there is no difference at all.

For example, within Shugendo, humans fall under the category of animals.

“Animals include birds, beasts, insects, and fish, with humans also belonging to this category.”- Shugendo: Essays on the Structure of Japanese Folk Religion by Hitoshi Miyake.

Mikao Usui went into the mountains to realize that he was nature; nature from a Japanese perspective is the heavenly bodies, inert substances, plants, animals, humans, etc. Or in other words, Mikao Usui went into the mountains to realize that he was the universe and the universe was him – all inclusiveness.

Of course we might say that the outer layers of trees, humans, plants, rocks, animals etc. are different, which is true. But when we practice a spiritual teaching like the system of Reiki we also need to look at the inner level in which everything is one. A unification of duality and non-duality.

Therefore the first point of call in working with animals is ourselves! This is a very important aspect, if we do not work with ourselves and start to rediscover that we are nature, then we keep seeing that there is a duality between animals and humans. This duality will create a conflict in the long term, for example, we might start to say; “animals are better than humans or humans are better than animals.” But within the true aspect of nature there is no better than; we are all in harmony with each other, in equality, But again if we can’t find this equality within ourselves, we can definitely not see it outside of ourselves and so we keep comparing.

Many people think that the system of Reiki is all about hands-on, thus we start to say that there is a difference between helping humans to heal themselves and animals healing themselves. But there is so much more about the system of Reiki than hands-on, which we start to rediscover if we go deeper into the teachings and practice. In fact the whole system of Reiki is about a deep sense of interconnectedness.

For example we can not just put our hands on people when we walk into a room. Likewise we can not just put our hands on animals when we walk into a room or paddock or in the wild. But we can feel a deep interconnectedness with the people in the room or the animals in the room or paddock. Then a person or an animal can take from this deep interconnectedness what they need; they might even come closer to you. One person in the room might talk to you and who knows? They might even ask for hands-on. And the same with an animal – the animal might come closer and even hop onto your lap. But this touch is not necessary for healing to take place. We can also touch without a deep sense of interconnectedness and thus healing might not take place at all. The real healing comes from that deep interconnectedness. This is in essence the precepts.

Think about it, as you read the precepts:

Do not anger

Do not worry

Be grateful

Be true to your way and your being

Show compassion to yourself and others

The precepts are not different and do not change whether we apply them to humans, animals, trees, rocks etc… they are one and the same.

If we keep seeing things as “different than”, then we keep comparing things. And this will create unrest within ourselves and thus unrest in the world. So go deep within yourself and rediscover the truth of your essence and see that it is all one and the same. This sameness creates a sense of peace within you which in turn will create a peaceful aspect within the world.

Comments 6

  1. Avatar of Brenda Williamson
    1. Avatar of Frans Stiene Post
  2. Avatar of Deanna

    Thank you for this article. The deep interconnectedness was the take-away when I took Usui Reiki Ryoho classes from you and Kathleen Prasad. This is the beingness when I’m interconnected during Reiki (and hopefully at all times).

    1. Avatar of Frans Stiene

      Hi Deanna,

      Yes and in that interconnectedness there is no animal reiki or human reiki, there is just Reiki, true self, no distinction.


  3. Avatar of Patricia Eriksen

    Hi Frans,
    I really enjoyed reading the article as I just started volunteering at a senior pet adoption center in my town. Thank you.

    1. Avatar of Frans Stiene

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