Pamela Miles, Reiki Master discusses adhering to the treatment protocol learned from Reiki masters while also allowing the hands to go where they are drawn.

by Pamela Miles, Integrative Health Consultant and Reiki Master

As much as I appreciate the internet, I miss the sound of people’s voices and the immediacy and texture of their presence. So I’ve started monthly Q/A discussion group phone sessions to give us a new old way to come together.

The liveliest exchange in July’s call followed a Reiki master’s question about using the treatment protocol we learned from our Reiki masters vs. allowing our hands to go where they are drawn. He values practicing within his lineage, but he doesn’t want to shut down his developing intuition. Perhaps you can relate.

Hawayo Takata, the Reiki master who brought Reiki to the US from Japan in the late 1930s, taught her students to use a full treatment protocol with hand placements on the head and torso.

The precise hand placements varied somewhat–at least in her students’ memories–but everyone I know who studied with Takata agrees she stressed giving a full treatment whenever possible (and doing whatever Reiki one can when a full treatment is not possible). Whether to start the treatment at the head or on the abdomen wasn’t as important as cycling through all the hand placements.

Yet Takata famously said, Let your Reiki hands teach you. She encouraged her students to develop an intuitive feel for the practice.

During treatment, Reiki hands often want to linger in some places, and maybe migrate a little in others (staying within appropriate boundaries for touch, of course). We all know the difference even a slight repositioning can make in our self-treatment. After practicing in class, I’ve heard First degree students tell one another how good it felt when the hands offering treatment repositioned a little bit, sometimes then connecting with an old injury or surgical scar.

We don’t have to choose. We can follow our protocol and follow our Reiki hands. We can use the sequence we were taught and allow for some variation, if needed in any given session.

When we remain mindful during each treatment and customize only if relevant in the moment, returning always to the baseline of our taught protocol, we are honoring both our teachers and our direct relationship with Reiki vibration. (If you don’t remember the protocol you learned in First degree Reiki, try the one at the back of REIKI: A Comprehensive Guide, now in paperback.)

Please join us August 5 for Reiki conversation, at either 3:30 PM or 8 PM Eastern time. To register, click here. Click NYC classes on the landing page, and then the Teleclass tab.

Reiki blessings,


Medical Reiki Boot Camp  Toronto, Canada  Sept. 26-28

New York City  October 4-5

Click here to register (click NYC classes on the landing page, and then the appropriate tab), and here for questions.

Reiki: A Comprehensive Guide by Pamela Miles

Additional articles by this author:
 IHS speaker To see Pamela Miles, Reiki Master in person, attend Workshop: Reiki–What Every Clinician Needs to Know at the 2009 Integrative Healthcare Symposium. Integrative Practitioner members get 15% off Symposium registration when they enter discount code 7470.