Within the precepts we see the phrase “spiritual medicine.” But what does spiritual medicine stand for?
The Secret of Inviting Happiness through Many Blessings
The Spiritual Medicine for All Illness
For Today Only:
Do not Anger
Do not Worry
Be Honest in Your Work
Be Compassionate to Yourself and Others
The other day I was reading though a wonderful book, Immortal Sisters: Secrets of Taoist Women, translated and edited by Thomas Cleary. In it, I came across this interesting quote:
“Attentively guard the spiritual medicine, with every breath return to the beginning of the creative.” It goes on to say, “The spiritual medicine is subtle being, and subtle being means true breathing. So attentively guarding the spiritual medicine means keeping the attention on the breathing. ( p. 38)
Within this quote they say that the spiritual medicine is subtle being. For me this subtle being is our True Self, our essence. But the quote goes even further; to be able to stay in this state of mind of True Self/subtle being, we need to keep our attention on the breathing. This is why Mikao Usui not only put meditation practices like Joshin Kokyu Ho and Hatsurei Ho within his system, but also included mantras in his teachings. When we chant a mantra, we perform deep breathing. Our attention is not just on the sound, but also on the deep breathing which is essential to the mantra.
But why is placing our attention on our breathing so important to guard our spiritual medicine, our True Self? When we place our attention on our breathing we are mindful. We do not stray into the past, present, and future. To guard our spiritual medicine, our True Self, we need to be mindful not to cover it up with worry, fear, and anger. And this we do through keeping our attention on our breathing. We get angry or worried because we stray into the past, present, and future. This is really what the precepts are pointing out. For today only. For this moment.
Imagine getting worried; what is our mind doing? It is going into the future. But if we are putting our attention on our breathing, it stays in the moment and therefore we are not getting worried.
If we get angry, but then we start to focus on our breathing, what happens? We have created a pause, some patience. By placing our attention on our breathing rather than following our anger, this pause will help us to let go of our anger.
This is why all the breathing practices within the system of Reiki are so important: they all are tied in with the precepts.
To sum it all up, the real spiritual medicine is our True Self, and the precepts are pointers. And to be able to embody the precepts, we place our attention on our breathing. This is guarding our spiritual medicine, minding our True Self.
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.