complementary and alternative medicine. Practitioners believe that they are transferring healing energy in the form of ki through the palms. Localised reiki treatment involves the practitioner's hands being held on or near a specific part of the body for a varying length of time.
My friend get's to my place and we turn the lights down low and put on some relaxing music. If I recall it was a rain-forest version of Pachelbel's Canon so at least, if it doesn't work, I can have a relax. I lay down on my back on the floor and she kneels next to me. She started by placing her hands over my forehead. Then on the back of my head and to the sides. She says that I have a strong chakra which I thank her for without really knowing what she means or whether that's a good thing to have or not. Her hands move down either side of my right arm. Her hands always hovering above my body and never touching it (except the back of my head which she had to hold up).
By this point I was starting to realise that this so called treatment wasn't really up to much. I don't know what I was expecting to feel as I was in my late 20's and fairly fit and healthy at the time. There was no tingling. No spiritual uplifting. No veil being lifted. I didn't even consider my headaches an issue at the time and never mentioned them to her. It was purely for her to practice on me.
Then her hands hovered over my stomach and it rumbled viciously. "They always do that," she says. "Something to do with the energy transfer." But I wasn't convinced as my stomach had a history of grumbling. Her hands continued their floating journey past each limb and joint. Then she got to my right knee. She stopped to focus on this joint and I felt it warm up. I glanced down and she was definitely not touching my knee. One hand was over my knee and the other was palm down on the floor. This is to ground the energy if it starts to build up to much. By now my knee joint was burning and I had a strong sensation to bend my leg as if the tendons were being tightened. Her hands moved on and so did the feeling.
Working her way around my body the same thing, albeit slightly less sensational, happened to my left knee. After the treatment I got up and only then realised how good my knees felt. I had (and still do but to a lesser extent thanks to this treatment) a habit of sitting with my knees bent with my legs folded underneath my body. This put a huge strain on the joints and they always ached when I got up.
So what is my conclusion about whether reiki works? Did it help my headaches? I'm not sure. I have tried it a few times recently with the emphasis purely on my migraines and it hasn't done anything for them. But, after the treatment my knees felt great for a good 3 or 4 months. A real and definite improvement. This was a double blind test as neither I nor my friend knew that there was anything wrong with me. She managed to trace and fix a problem which could have got a lot worse (he says uncrossing his legs). It's simple... Reike really does work. And the world is a little bit more magical for it.