Reiki for the Heart and Soul: The Reiki Principles as Spiritual Pathwork by Amy Rowland.
Review by Rovena Windsor
I approached this book with no prior knowledge of the subject but with a curiosity about the topic.
One of the first things I do when I get a new book is check out the footnotes or
bibliography and the suggested reading list. This tells me quite a bit about the scholarship. I prefer books that act as a guidepost pointing me in the direction of further study and Ms. Rowland does this.
What is her goal for this book? The title says it all: Reiki principles as a spiritual pathwork or, in other words, to show the reader how to use the Reiki principles for personal development and spiritual growth - - not a bad goal. She makes her case that this aspect of the training is not being adequately addressed in most Western Reiki training.
What are the Ms. Rowland’s qualifications to write such a book? She is a certified Usui Reiki Master for over 20 years and a Reiki teacher since 1994. She is also a certified hypnotherapist as well as a clinical therapist.
I am first struck by the description of the first Reiki technique and how similar it sounds to grounding techniques that we have all be taught. This similarity between the things I have been taught and what she is advocating runs throughout the book.
She presents the goals of Reiki as a spiritual path, an expansion of our awareness of our personal potential and healing of the mind, body, and spiritual both of the client and the practitioner. Ms. Rowland says to start where you are -- very practical advice for anything. She does not show any physical representation of the three Reiki symbols so as not to violate her oaths. The purpose of the first symbol is power and protection; the second is mental-emotion healing and intuitive insight; and the third is distant healing and connection to spirit.
The Reiki principles are more of a creed that has many similar versions of it as with anything that was originally an oral tradition: Don’t be angry today. Don’t worry today. Be grateful today. Work hard today. Be kind to others today. The five principles are universal principles. The majority of the book is spent discussing how to develop a working relationship with each of the five principles. There is a chapter on each principle. There are exercises at the end of each chapter.
I would recommend this book for a variety of reasons. It is written in a clear, easy to understand style. Anyone with a curiosity regarding Reiki should come away from this book with a basic understanding and should know if Reiki is something they wish to pursue further or not. The suggested reading list is divided up according to the chapters in the book. This should help the reader target the books they need more easily. Even a reader that is not interested in learning Reiki could learn a great deal about how to incorporate these principles into his own spiritual practice.
Reiki for the Heart and Soul: The Reiki Principles as Spiritual Pathwork (Paperback); 256 pages; Healing Arts Press; ISBN: 1594772525; ISBN-13: 978-1594772528 - Recommended.