1. Top Myths About Reiki

    July 10, 2013


    by Joyce M. Jackson

    Despite the prevalence of many people who can attest to the effectiveness of Reiki, it still has its share of skeptics. Unfortunately a portion of the disbelief or the apprehension is due to the growing spread of myths. Here are some of the more, ahem, “popular” ones:

    Consistent Healing

    One of the biggest misconceptions in Reiki is that it should generate healing. Otherwise, it’s a scam. There are a lot of issues with this thinking. First, a lot of those who opt for Reiki are people who are already in the final stages of their life. In other words, they run to Reiki because conventional medicine cannot do anything for them anymore. Second, like any type of healing process, Reiki doesn’t guarantee complete treatment. However, it provides more than just physical healing; it gives peace of mind, comfort, and spirituality, which only improve the quality of life. Patients can also use Reiki as a conjunctive therapy to drugs and other traditional treatments.

    Reiki Is A Religion

    A lot of people also mistakenly believe that Reiki is just another type of religion. The founder of the practice is a Buddhist, and the majority of those who decide to become a practitioner also follow Buddhism. But one has to remember that Buddhism is not a religion at all since Buddha is not a deity but rather a prince who had achieved enlightenment. In other words, Buddhism is a philosophy. And Reiki, on the other hand, isn’t based on any kind of religion or belief, and it doesn’t discriminate any patient or practitioner.

    Guaranteed To Open Your Spirit

    As Reiki has spread across every corner of the world over the years, different types of the practice have been found, including Tibetan, crystal, and angelic Reiki. Yet none of them ever profess nor guarantee you will be more open to the spirit world and you can already start communicating with the dead and various heavenly beings. Sometimes by opening blockages the spirit becomes more cleansed and the mind becomes more receptive. It is possible for some individuals to experience these effects, but again it does not nor cannot guarantee this. Besides, Reiki is just one of the many things you can do to improve your spiritual journey.


    Can anyone practice Reiki? The answer is yes since every person is made up of energy, which he or she can also give to someone who is sick. Nevertheless, the transfer of such life force doesn’t make the practitioner or the giver weak. Like the sun, life energy is renewable and infinite as long as the person is alive.

    Image Credit: Tomas Sobek at http://www.flickr.com/photos/45273580@N04/4335495077

  2. Does Positive Attitude Assist Healing Process?

    March 1, 2013

    Positive attitude

    Image credit: The Doctr @ Flickr.com

    It’s a debate that has gone on for years, and continues to be discussed by physicians and psychologists. The issue of whether positive thinking affects the medical treatment of patients is one that is hard to resolve. Many patients have seen positive, traceable results when they focused on staying optimistic, but psychologist Richard Sloan, a professor of behavioral psychology at Columbia University Medical Center, says that for every patient who has seen results from positive thinking there may be others who thought the same thing and are no longer alive. That said, public figures such as Lance Armstrong, Gabrielle Giffords, and others attribute a large part of their recoveries from serious illnesses and injuries to their strong spirits.

    Although it’s hard to prove, there have been many cases where a positive outlook showed traceable medical improvement in a patient. This confirms the theory of the placebo effect. The placebo effect is defined as “the measurable, observable, or felt improvement in health not attributable to an actual treatment.” In other words, it is when patients are given sugar pills in place of regular medication, or are told that a medical procedure was done, when in reality it was not done, and a measurable improvement occurs. There have been numerous cases where the placebo effect showed marked improvement in patients’ medical conditions, even though no real medical intervention was being administered.

    In 2007 researchers from the University of British Columbia tested the placebo effect on patients with Parkinson’s disease. They gave one group of patients apomorphine, a drug which mimics dopamine, a chemical in the brain that is deficient in patients with Parkinson’s. They gave the second group a placebo, and they, too, released dopamine, in response to the expectation of receiving medication. This study clearly proved the validity of the placebo effect, and as such, that the mind has a large role in medical treatment of the body.

    While physicians and psychologists will continue to debate the issue, there can be no harm in focusing on a good outcome, and it may actually lead to improved results. Dr. Deepak Chopra is a big believer in the power of the mind when it comes to healing. He explains that one who is at peace with himself can reap the benefits of positive thinking, which can include a decline in high blood pressure, weight, stress levels, and other negative symptoms. In Dr. Chopra’s words in an article for the Huffington Post, “The everyday choices we make affect not only our physical health, but all dimensions of our collective health and well being. This is not to say that pharmaceutical and surgical interventions are not warranted… But looking at them to solve all of our illnesses has made us as a society overlook the powerful self-healing mechanisms within us.”

    The objective of practicing positive thinking is to make use of the healing systems that lie within our bodies to help assist in recovery from various illnesses.

    External factors can help patients maintain a positive attitude. Studies have shown that even the scrubs worn by nurses can help improve patients’ state of mind, which can then help them recover. In a study done on hospitalized children in Florence, a large percentage of the children were more confident in their nurses, and were uplifted when their nurses wore printed or colored Carhartt scrubs. While the donning of Carhartt uniforms is only a small factor in the grand scheme of treatment, everything that contributes to a positive state of mind can help facilitate patient recovery.

    A crucial aspect in keeping patients upbeat is adequate family support. Family and friends who visit often and show the patient that they care can have a marked improvement on treatment, as they will cause an uplift in spirits, which can only lead to good things. Doctors, also, will usually make the effort to visit patients and address their fears before a procedure so that the patient will be calm, and the procedure will go smoothly. A good bedside manner is very important in a doctor, and some patients will choose one doctor over another based on this, because the doctor’s bedside manner will also affect the patient’s attitude.

    The Mayo Clinic strongly recommends that patients should practice positive thinking techniques throughout the day, in order to train themselves to think optimistically. They provide tutorials and exercises for patients to become positive thinkers, in order to facilitate the medical treatment being administered.

    Patients have an array of options to choose from when looking to practice various exercises and techniques that will help them remain upbeat. These may include meditation, hypnosis, spirituality, progressive muscle relaxation, and other methods. The factor that all of these practices share is a focus on a calm, peaceful state of mind, which can go a long way toward helping patients’ medical conditions.

    Whether or not a positive state of mind has a serious affect on patient outcome will continue to be debated, but all the experts agree that when it comes to medicine, only good things can come from positive thinking.


    Josh Weiss is a freelance writer and a believer in the power of positive thinking.