How the symbols are used in Reiki, what they mean and what is the truths. Answering the techy questions of energy work, Rachael, one of the UK’s top spiritual teachers, shares with you the ins and out of energy work.
The question of seals and symbols in Reiki have come up a few times. I would like to put to bed some of the questions about the Reiki symbols; there is much information about it out there.
It is very traditional for teachers to pass on as true what they have been given without questioning it. Sometimes this can be because their own predecessor has misinterpreted something, or put their own slant on something, without having studied energy or the systems from which Reiki actually was derived. The system is the Ancient Vedic Sutras, so you will find a wealth of information about the Chakras, or Energy Wheels of the body & Yogic practice which is relevant. Much Ancient Japanese culture has also been mixed into Reiki; as Japan, China and the Orient as a whole have a rich history of energy healing. And also expect Tibetan & Buddhism; after all, Usui was a Tibetan monk!
What are the Reiki symbols?
The symbols are used to direct the energy in a certain way; it’s something I spend a lot of time on with my students in Reiki 2 and the Master course. They are used to direct the energy in a certain way. Symbols & sygils are a common way to do this sort of thing across many cultures. The magic with a symbol is that, unlike a normal written language, they are not easily understood or read. There is a certain amount of natural magic which comes from the secretive nature, and indeed the symbols in Reiki are considered sacred and for that reason traditionally not written down. Master Usui and his lineage traditionally teaching you over many months and years. So I am not about to write them out again here; I don’t wish to add to it. But you will certainly find the images online easily enough and I do put them in my workbooks for teaching. Be mindful that different script often means that symbols are the same even though they look different (I have seen friends workbooks from other Master with two ‘different’ symbols in, which upon inspection are the same one).
Any any Master Teachers out there; do not pass out or teach on symbols to which you are not attuned or haven’t been ‘given’. You and your students will not be able to use them properly and it just comes back and bites you in the bum! You will find something more beautiful and authentic to fill your workbook with and make your work stand out; I promise!
Cho Ku Rei
This is the power symbol or the ‘activator’. It is also referred to as the key.
Cho means to cut, in the sense of cutting away all that doesn’t serve and allowing you to see the whole. Ku means to penetrate. Rei means the universal conscious energy (the Holy Spirit, Chi, Prana, the Breathe etc etc).
Use this to unlock; to gain access to your patient quickly and to gain access to the Second degree energy. The Japanese meaning also has a sense of immediacy about it.
I would use this symbol to open blocked chakras and to cut away and remove any negative energy held in other areas of the body, whether this energy is physical, emotional or spiritual. Use the practice you have had at either instinctively knowing where this is or where you feel or sense an energy imbalance to decide where to use this. It is important that you are a Reiki healer with this – you must fill the void that is left with positive energy. To aid healing and ensure that the space that is left does not refill with negative energy, much in the same way an infected spot can easily re-infect if not cared for properly.
Additionally if you are doing a spot on treatment, rather than a full treatment, this will allow you to gain access to the energy, and open the area, quickly.
Sei Hei Ki
For Emotional Healing and Protection
Sei means birth, start, a coming into being. HeiKi means balance and equilibrium.
This helps to balance up both sides of the brain. As such I try to use it when at the ears position to balance every individual I treat.
It also aligns the upper chakras, bringing divinity to these areas in order to heal the emotions.
Our emotional issues can affect, and create our physical ones. How many people who either give too much emotionally, or hold back their strong emotions (either through conditioning or past hurts) also have heart problems? How many people with irritable bowel, also worry too much? So in healing the emotional aspect of a physical illness, we are also helping to heal the illness physically.
It also helps with external conditions we force on ourselves, due to emotions. Addiction to alcohol, drugs and nicotine, problems with food – over and under eating.
Obviously it can have a great impact on anxiety, depression, grief and relationship issues. If people have issues with fear, even phobias, it can also help here. If someone would like help in this area, I just bear it in mind when I invoke Sei Hei Ki on the head when tuning in and at back of head, to try to re-programme the brains response to these issues.
This is also a symbol of protection and can be used in your home, work place, car or individuals to provide Reiki protection. Or if you are going into a situation where you feel you will need protection, invoke Sei Hei Ki.
Hon Sha Ze Sho Nen
This is the distance or absent healing symbol. But it is so much more than that.
It is a Tantric Buddhist phrase which means ‘No Past, No Present, No Future’.
It is very complex, the most complex of all the symbols at this level, but is very powerful.
It effectively gets rid of the constraints of time and space. Those that tell you to use your guides to transfer energy to someone using this symbol or to send energy up for later, really have no understanding of this symbol.
It literally transports you to any time and place which needs healing. Send forward for labour, exams and other situations where you will not have the time or focus to call in Reiki. Send back to heal you or a client’s past.
Literally step into the place, lay your hands on your absent friend, and heal them.
Always have permission to send to someone before you do. Or else send up to their Higher Self and Guides for them to decide; sometimes we need to live a situation exactly how it is in order to take the learning and experience our soul desires. In which case I ask for it to go to someone else I know who needs it. Without permission you can also send it to a situation; family feud, money problems, legal matters.
There are a couple of different forms of the traditional symbol and this is the one I find more effective personally and is also oldest. It means ‘great, bright, light’ and you can see it easily splits up into three symbols or kanji’s which literally translated mean this phrase. A more accurate translation into English is ‘great enlightenment’. The three parts reflects Ancient Triple Aspect Goddess and Gods of many world wide cultures. It is the divine source for Reiki and is used in Buddhism on a sacred level.
Non-Traditional DKM or Dumo
Again there are many different versions of the non-traditional Master Symbol. This is the one that I use and find very effective and is the one most widely used across all Reiki branches, especially Usui.
You may come across others or be given others while healing which you will find work effectively for you. This is for you to use your gut instinct with, as you do with your healing work now at this stage. However, I do not feel, with all the symbols that you have at hand, that you will need to.
This represents the fiery heat of the Kundalini, which is the corporal energy which originates at the root chakra at the base of the spine and stems from ancient yogic philosophy. The theory is to awaken this normally dormant energy, with the use of this symbol (this can also be accomplished through meditation and yoga) to unify the body and mind and pull negative energy and disease out of the body (or any other areas of application as discussed above). It’s use came about through further research into the traditions of healing used over the millennia and you can see it effectively reflects the aim of the traditional DKM, to heal both mind and body, removing the physical and spiritual at source, within your own energy centres and fields.
Does any of this sound like craft work to you?
That’s because all energy work is craft work of some kind. It does not use lower energies, which make it lower vibrational. It uses the energy you are capable of channeling. And if you use Reiki, the energy is from Source and intelligent and so can decide what vibration it needs to be at to work. Physical things vibrating at a lower number frequency wise than emotional things.
Do not mix up lower with lesser.
Creating your own sigils is common place in witchcraft and so in Reiki where many people are channeled symbols to use alongside their work. Indeed, it is something I did with the Galilean Healing. Sometimes these are special to you. If you are a teacher, these are intended for you pass on. The right people who they resonate with will be drawn to learn them from you.
Symbols can Get left in the Aura; Other wise you Attune Someone to Reiki
Intent is everything. So if we intend to attune someone, they will do that. If we intend them to direct the energy whilst you are healing them, it will do that. No one has the intention when healing to attune someone as it’s a totally different result.
I have only left a symbol intentionally once; it was asked for as a client needed to say something to someone and needed her voice open to do so; she had a clot of long term emotional work to do. But for now, after discussion, the empowerment she would feel from doing this would help her. I used the Cho Ku Rei on her throat chakra. The intent was set for it to be removed once she had said what she needed to, in order for her to being her own balance.
It is an odd way to think of the symbols when using them for healing, that you are placing them in the aura. You are not. You are using it yourself, directing the energy you are channeling through it. Minimally the symbol needs to be held for 30 seconds to be activated. Notice I use the word ‘held’. You cannot leave it in the aura that easily; it is only present while you focus in it and the energy you are passing through it continues to flow.
Reiki Symbols form Seals or are Implanted in your System
For an attunement, the symbols are said to ‘sit’ in your aura afterwards, which just means that you are attuned to that vibration. The nice thing about Reiki is it connects to source; many others connect via a celestial being. So Reiki tunes you into the original vibration; your Source as well as the Universe’s Source. Allowing, well infact enabling you to be more YOU! That’s one of the beautiful things about Reiki; it’s connection back into yourself means that you struggle to be anything but you!
Please don’t get this mixed up with a seal on your system; the Catholic Baptism rites act as seals, tying you and your future energetically into the Catholic church. Your energy enabling the church above yourself. And you will find other cults, maybe even religious circles, or covens which may do the same thing.
Reiki does not; anything which comes from a Tibetan Buddhist Monk and the Ancient Sutras cannot, in my eyes, contain such a controlling energy. And in my experience it does not.
Reiki symbols are used on the crown, hands, heart and third eye at various stages of Reiki attunements. Think of them as permanently changing the flow of the energy to that chakra, so that you are more attuned to emotion, or energy fluctuations, or the ‘Great, Bright, Light’. All those different symbols meanings helping you perceive through all of the clairs. Enabling you to be a better healer and raising your vibration. That raise in vibration helps your own healing journey, as well as allowing you to channel higher energy to realign the vibration of others.
Want to know more of the basics of Healing?
I have an awesome series of blogs here: Healing!
Want to learn?
I would love to teach you! Contact me here or go to my Teaching page here!
Any myths I haven’t covered? Feel free to ask in the comments section!
Love as always