“What does it mean to heal?”
This question is so important for Animal Reiki Practitioners to ask themselves. And your answer will make all the difference in your ability to connect gently, respectfully and effectively with all animals, no matter their species, history or healing challenge.
I’m proud to say that one of the most unique things about the Let Animals Lead® method is its co-creative quality. Human Reiki methodology is a very practitioner-led way of practice. Even if it’s understood the space is shared between client and practitioner, the practitioner is responsible for all the movement, hand positions chosen or not chosen, etc. during all sessions. In the Let Animals Lead® method, because our primary concern is not practitioner protocol, but rather honoring animals’ choice, preference and freedom to express themselves, we take a step back and allow the animals to lead each session. When we do so, we give them the space to show us a new way forward in healing.
Who are the animals who teach you the most about Reiki?
My very first Reiki teacher was my sweet dog, Dakota – an Aussie-mix and the smartest dog I’ve ever known. In those days, I only knew how to share Reiki from a “human-centric” approach. In other words, I tried to use hand positions and focus on problem areas the way I did with myself and with my human friends.
One of my favorite things to see in Maui, besides the beach of course, is animals. This trip my highlight was adorable feral kitties! I was also heartened to see some beautiful people feeding this colony living along the beach path near the hotel where I stayed. I could see by the cats’ tipped ears that many had been TNR (trapped, neutered, released), so the problem of population increase is being worked on, which is wonderful. The kitties were adorable, of so many colors!
One of the Reiki precepts is “be kind to others.” For Animal Reiki practitioners, this kindness is actively practiced when we share Reiki with other species on a daily basis. Of course the animals we live with have touched our hearts and changed our lives for the better, but for many other unusual species, it is the context of an Animal Reiki session that helps us realize our connectedness and to awaken to the spiritual gifts these animals teach.
Mikao Usui was Buddhist, and although he did not have specific teachings about connecting with the animals in our lives, I have no doubt that his teachings on compassion were not meant to extend only to human beings.
Following are three quotes from well-known Buddhist teachers that, for me, shed light on the way of compassion that Animal Reiki meditation inspires with us.