One of my opening questions to students who are taking a Reiki class is; “Do you have any expectations for this class?” I usually follow this by explaining that I feel it is a good idea to meet expectations at this stage of the day, but then emphasise a very strong invitation to “leave any expectation outside the door”. I go on to explain that one of the many valuable things I have learnt from working with/teaching Reiki over the years is to try not to place an expectation on the outcome of either a session, class or experience, as generally Reiki seems to deliver the direct opposite. Why? Well my feeling is that this enables us to challenge our relationship with control and our unevolved ego, and simultaneously become aware of any potential onset of complacency. It allows us to cultivate the practice of what is referred to in Mindfulness as ‘new mind’: the opportunity to look at our Reiki practice/teaching, indeed our life, as if with fresh new eyes, thus truly being open to new learning.
It has been my experience that the students who come with a strong opinion of their understanding as to what Reiki will bring them, are the ones who often meet the strongest ‘healing crisis’. Our challenges, or often truths, seem to hit us hardest when we are confident that they are not a problem for us. It’s as if the Universe is saying; “Ah, you think you have it sussed do you...well what do you think of this?”
Obviously it is not always the case, but I find that generally the students who approach their Reiki journey with an uncluttered mind are the ones who can navigate their ‘awakening’ with ease. By uncluttered mind, I simply mean a trust in things unfolding as they need to, rather than perhaps the need to try to ‘work it out’ by reading multiple books and research on how their Reiki journey ‘should’ unfold. My own journey continues to offer me the reminder that it’s not about feeling we have it ‘sussed’, but more a deeper sense of noticing each time we are reminded that we haven’t.
An analogy I like to use about our journey, in whatever ‘spiritual’ practice we may be learning, is that it can be a lot like surfing. When we get going, there is no better feeling than feeling the ‘flow’ of life, as if we are riding our wave with ease and grace. However, waves inevitably crash and therefore inevitably we will fall from our board. Yet, it is not how many times we fall off our board that determines our journey; it is how many times we choose to get back on. Sometimes, it’s not immediate and that’s OK, we may need to wait for a wave that looks safe for us to ‘get back on our board’ but each time we do, we ride with a little more confidence and a little more trust in ourselves.
We learn that each fall is unique, and each ride is unique, and both will offer equal learning for us in the end.