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by Colleen Benelli
First Published – Reiki News Magazine, Fall 2006.
I have the greatest respect for the one God, and spiritual teachers, prophets, and enlightened masters of all traditions, including Buddha, Yogananda, Krishna, Mohammad, and the various Goddesses and Bodhisattvas. I honor their teachings and have received spiritual guidance and healing assistance from many of them. However, the one I feel the deepest personal connection with is Jesus.
He is always present for me and I talk to Him and listen to His guidance continuously. This has become even stronger since my Reiki attunements. Jesus is an integral part of all of my Reiki work. Several years ago, I was excited to have a conversation about Jesus with an acquaintance of mine who had just received his Masters of Divinity degree. I thought we could share stories and enjoy talking about the meaningful experiences each of us had had with Him. I was looking forward to what my friend had learned and could teach me. However, the conversation took a different path. Instead of talking about the joy Jesus teaches us, my friend quizzed me about whether I believed in Jesus the “right way,” and several days later, I received a note in the mail from him saying that I would begin my true work when I followed that “right way.”
I admit I was hurt and offended for quite a while. In my mind, I debated the issue with the other person over and over. I mentally criticized him and his views and defended myself. I made myself right and him wrong. I am embarrassed to admit, I was a little ugly about it all in my mind. However, the more I allowed myself to criticize this person for his view and judgment of me, the more uncomfortable I became. Eventually I got very tired of my own internal dialogue. Finally, I surrendered and realized that I needed to turn to Jesus for resolution. (Duh!) I prayed and invoked Reiki and asked Jesus what this conflict of belief was really about. I asked how I could heal the situation instead of participating in it with judgment.
Through an interesting process of listening and discovery, it took two years to receive an answer I could believe in. One day I was driving and having the same defensive conversation in my head when at last, I clearly heard the following words from Jesus:
“The judgment you receive is equal to the judgment you have.”
Oh…. of course, I thought. Jesus had already said it many times. “Judge not lest ye be judged.” It applies to me too, not just the people who judge me! Now I understood. Now I was empowered to heal my relationship with this other person, the situation, and myself. The judgment I receive is really determined by my own behavior and my own judgments.
My Reiki Guides have told me that our criticism of each other and ourselves is the greatest harm we are currently doing to this planet. They said that the criticism we have within our hearts has reached a critical mass, and they ask us to use Reiki to heal this imbalance and this negative view of life and of ourselves.
On a metaphysical level our words and thoughts of criticism collect in bands or zones over our heads. This in turn creates a density of mental and emotional fog that keeps us trapped within them. It is difficult to rise above that density without very focused attention. Often, when we try to rise up we hit a band of criticism and end up stuck on a negative thought form, or we may choose to ride or surf that negative band and contribute power to it with our own actions and words.
These bands of critical thought forms interconnect between people and have become so powerful they have developed their own purpose. They exist in the psychic realm in a certain area or frequency range and are the repositories of all the critical energy generated by all the people on the planet. Our collective minds and thoughts have literally created zones in which everyone is arguing, debating, and judging. The zones are composed of critical energy that uses each person to keep them going. They are fed by us, and have become so strong that they manifest their intended purpose, which is to pull as many people into them as possible, causing us to become critical and add our energy to them.
Jumping on or getting sucked into the bands of criticism becomes self-fulfilling, making it appear that our criticism is right and justified – and thus encouraging us to create more and to pull others into it too. My experience with my friend is a perfect example. Sometime after my encounter with him, I saw a bumper sticker, “Jesus save me from your followers.” I decided that this was truth to me. I jumped into that negative zone and fed it by talking to others about the injustice done to others and me in Jesus’ name. My friends told me how right I was and how wronged I had been, and how tired they were of the “religious right” misusing Jesus and His teaching. We and those we saw as our opponents all fed the negative zone of judgment. It is all the same, judgment is judgment.
Think of how often and of all of the ways we surf these zones. The media broadcasts negativity at an incredible volume. Politics, disaster, war, potential diseases, and environmental abuse are all subjects that arouse strong passions. We listen to the news, talk about it, and add our views with no intent at solution or action; we just feed the broadcast zone with our negative opinions and increase its volume and density.
Often we look in the mirror and at our lives and wish we were better, slimmer, richer, or more successful. We look at all that is wrong with us and at everything we have not accomplished. We criticize others randomly, or give our opinions about other people. We talk constantly about how horrible our political leaders are, how harmful our creations are, and we criticize people in our relationships. Criticism has become a normal habit in the lives of so many.
The greatest issue of being critical is that we end up spending so much of our time focusing on critical thoughts and feelings and in so doing actually attract the very issues we criticize. We feed energy into the zone of “how harmful and wrong humankind is.” We then create our world from that belief and our creations hold that criticism within them. The negative zone feeds our creations. Inherent in the creation is the same harm and wrongness as our thoughts. By criticizing, we don’t prevent what we criticize, but actually contribute to its creation. Our world is a reflection of our perception of it.
Reiki is committed to helping us heal criticism of ourselves and others by teaching us to remember our human selves as remarkable, divine spirits, creations of light and love. We are also to remember that we are of this Earth, natural beings and spirit beings at the same time. We must recognize that our spiritual selves are united with our natural human selves, in every moment. There is no time that we are separate. When we have this vision of others and ourselves, we can create our lives and our world from this perception. Our creations can then be a beautiful part of our natural world. Spirit in manifest form.
Reiki is asking us to remember that we were born magnificent beings of creation, that we are beautiful, wonderful creative natural spirits, being human. Reiki wants us to love ourselves and see our radiance within. Then, when we create our world, we will create with a belief of beauty and love, and our creations will reflect this belief. Inherent in them will be joy and natural divine light.
Our Reiki Guides are committed to helping us create and broadcast new zones to cover the Earth. Zones filled with the belief in the light and love of humanity and life. We each begin with ourselves, and add love and joy to create positive bands of light with our thoughts, speech, and actions. As more of us add to the positive zone, we empower the collective consciousness, creating a zone of light available to all. Then we can create our collective reality from that perspective.
Neale Donald Walsh supports this view in the following message from God, in Conversations with God, Book 1:
“Thoughts rooted in fear will produce one kind of manifestation on the physical plane; thoughts rooted in love will produce another. The masters are those who have chosen only love. In every instant. In every moment. In every circumstance.”
Reiki asks us to turn our thoughts away from our constant criticism, to believe in each other and ourselves. It offers the gift of helping us to master our thoughts and turn them to love.
“What does your heart practice?
What are you becoming?
Always, there are choices.
What you choose to practice
You are choosing to become.
It is that simple.”
– The Healing Drum, Blackwolf and Gina Jones
We human beings have the choice to remember being spirit, or not. Criticism is one of the ways we forget that we are amazing spirits of light and love. Remembering our brilliance is actually a decision and a discipline. Retraining ourselves to believe in our magnificence is a choice that requires commitment. Life as a human being continually challenges our ability to hold our belief in our divine selves. When we choose to discipline our minds to be in a positive and awakened state of remembering who we truly are, being a divine human being becomes easier.
I made the choice to live believing in the truth others hold dear as well as in my own truth. I decided to choose to love and to heal my beliefs that contain judgment. I would do my part to heal the world in this way. In Conversations with God, God says, “You are the deepest wisdom and the highest truth; the greatest peace and the grandest love. You are these things. And in moments of your life, you have known yourself as these things. Choose now to know yourself as these things always.” What a beautiful way to live.
Healing criticism is as simple as returning to who you truly are, and just as difficult. After you have made the decision, it is necessary to create your own personal approach to heal your day-to-day habit of criticism and create new habits and ways to recall your light into your body, mind, and day. The healing happens when you can focus your attention on perceiving the divine light in all you do each day and then create your day from that perception. At times, the divine perception is very difficult to see and retain, and for that reason, we need tools and techniques that make it easier to embrace the vision of loving life, even when life brings extreme challenge.
Reiki has been a powerful tool in my own healing. We can achieve amazing results when we invite Reiki to be involved in our personal growth. Reiki increases our ability to choose the necessary disciplines and makes it easier to fulfill our commitment to be our divine light and spirit daily. As Jim Lorentzen from my Reiki circle describes it:
“We find ourselves on the hamster wheel going around and around with negative thoughts and patterns. If we can develop the skill to catch ourselves before we jump on the wheel, it is much easier to heal the thoughts and patterns. After we have jumped on the wheel, our emotions and distractions make it much more difficult to heal.”
Reiki is a primary skill that can help you to notice the hamster wheel before you jump on.
Use Reiki to assist in creating a powerful, positive intention based on the result you wish to achieve, rather than focusing on that which you wish to heal. Ask Reiki to empower your intention and spend time each day giving yourself Reiki. If you are attuned to them, invoke the Mental/Emotional and the Usui Distant healing symbols with the intention that they enable you to punch through the density of criticism, to create bridges of light between you, the divine light in all, and the extraordinary reality of life. Add the Usui Power symbol to strengthen your inner light, and the Usui and Tibetan Master symbols to help you integrate your higher self into your body and your activities.
As Wayne Dyer says in his book, The Power of Intention:
“Most authentic healers claim to have put out their intention and then stepped back and surrendered to some other kind of healing force, as though they were opening a door and allowing something greater in. The most effective healers ask for assistance from the universal Source, knowing that their job is to be uplifting and allow the Source of healing to flow. Healers know that the body is the hero and the life force itself is what does the healing.”
Notice and grow the divine light within your heart, building a Reiki Bridge to the divine light in the heart of the Earth, and the divine light in the heart of God. Notice that it is all the same light. You are always this light, even when it is difficult to perceive. The more time you spend enlightening your heart and body and connecting to the enlightened heart of all, the easier it becomes to live as the light and create your life through the illumination of your heart.
Meet your Reiki Spirit Guides (A great way to do this is with the “Meet your Reiki Guides” meditation by William Lee Rand.) and ask for their assistance. Invite them to your Reiki sessions. Then listen to their guidance. Ask for guidance so that you receive healing in a gentle and powerful way. At a Reiki circle, Deb Scrivens said that she asked to heal her criticisms and, “Instead of having me look at my criticisms to heal them, I was given the gift of having absolutely no criticism or judgments for three days! It was wonderful!”
Spend time in nature. Ask Reiki to help you see with heightened sensory perception. Ask the Usui Mental/Emotional symbol to help you awaken to the magic in nature and to your own imagination. For example, can you see the faery showing up next to the orange flower in the photo above? Listen for the voices of nature spirits; you may hear them as a gentle breeze, or the sound of the trees whispering, the birds singing, the stream gurgling, or the light dancing on a building. They sing to us to live our lives singing out our light, Their songs remind us to be so brilliant that the stars can dance to the music created by our light. Realize you are not “making it all up,” and increase your awareness of the extraordinary reality we live in. Talk to the natural world and listen for your answers. “Talk to God and listen to His casual reply, Rocky Mountain high…” John Denver.
Listen for the sounds of nature from people. Look for the divine light and see love in places you have forgotten. If you live in a city and it feels difficult to hear the nature spirit within humanity, listen deeper. It is a belief in our separateness that prevents us from seeing nature in our own creations. Hear the beautiful noise we make in the cities.
Neil Diamond sings:
“What a beautiful noise,
Comin’ up from the park,
It’s the song of these kids,
And it plays until dark.
It’s the song of the cars,
On their furious flights,
But there’s even romance,
In the way that they dance,
To the beat of the lights.
It’s a beautiful noise,
Made of joy and of strife,
Like a symphony played,
By the passing parade,
It’s the music of life.”
Create spaces in your home that remind you of the natural world. Use Reiki and the power symbol to cleanse the area and to strengthen the spiritual power of the space. Use water fountains for the sounds of water, have pictures or artwork of animals and nature. Place figures of animals on your altar and have flowers in your rooms. Play music with nature sounds. Add the colors of the seasons to your home.
Make a Reiki journal just for healing criticism in your life. I have created a journal that I imbued with Reiki and I empower it with Reiki daily. I placed the Usui Reiki and Karuna symbols in it while I was making it and wrote my intention and affirmations in it. I put my thoughts and creativity in it. I record what I am thankful for and the blessings I receive each day. I close the journal and use Reiki to strengthen my intentions.
Create affirmations and say them all day, everyday. “I love my Life,” is one of the most effective affirmations I use. It is simple, easy, and the result I am asking for. Empower your affirmations with Reiki by writing them in your journal. Fill your breath and voice with Reiki and say the words out loud. Surround your body with your affirmations.
Send Reiki and healing prayers to world strife and conflict as a form of activism. Join others in adding light to the light. “Dear Students of Reiki, Your Reiki energy is needed to help bring peace to the war situation between Israel, Lebanon, and the Hezbollah. The world peace grid, located in Jerusalem provides an effective method of focusing your Reiki energy for peace in the Middle East. Please send Reiki. Thanks for your help,” William Lee Rand- http://reiki.org/GlobalHealing/JerusalemGrids/jergrid.htm.
Listen. It is probably the most important skill of all. Begin by being still. Quiet the outer world, so that the inner world might bring you clear thoughts. Ask the Mental/Emotional symbol to help you.
Be grateful. “It is in the thank you that the soul speaks.” Buddha Sakya Muni. Think about what you are thankful for many times daily. Be in touch with the vibration of your soul. Write about it in your journal.
Listen to and sing happy music. Create play lists of happy songs. Sing! Watch funny movies. Play! Have fun, laugh, be silly. Dance like nobody is watching! One song I sing is from a CD by Pam and Don McMahon, “Straight from the Heart.” I sing these words as a mantra all the time and in particular when feeling brilliant is challenging. I empower the song with Reiki and it helps me remember and strengthen my light.
“And the people live their lives,
As if it were a song,
A singing out of Light.
Provides the music for the stars
To be dancing circles in the night.”
Be easy on yourself. If you find yourself being critical, change your thoughts rather than criticizing yourself. Ask Reiki to help you clear your unwanted thoughts. This is effective, but challenging work. “When you have a thought that is not in alignment with your higher vision, change to a new thought, then and there. When you say a thing that is out of alignment with your grandest idea, make a note not to say something like that again.” ~God, CWG, Book 1.
Heal others. Heal criticism by extracting it from a person with the “Aura Clearing” technique described in the Reiki Master Manual by William Lee Rand, or use the “Reiki Drumming” technique as described by Michael Arthur Baird in the Summer 2006 Reiki News Magazine. Follow this with your regular Reiki treatment and intend that your client easily remember their brilliance and the divine light of who they truly are. Here is a comment from a person attending a Reiki circle where we worked with healing criticism: “Thank you so much for your wisdom and healing last night…. I have not felt this whole for many weeks. Your teaching about the insidiousness of self-criticism and its epidemic proportion gave me a form for the abyss I have spiraled into – and most importantly a way out.” Jerry.
Healing criticism in my life has sometimes been very challenging, but it has also been an amazing journey of growth and awareness. I feel blessed to have Reiki to help me achieve this intention. Remembering my brilliance and seeing the divine light in all is truly becoming easier, and I am able to hold the vision of humanity being amazing for longer periods time, even when I am watching the news or other stories of the destructive habits of man. I still have a lot of brilliance to remember, and some days I simply do not want to do the work, and I fall back into my old habits. However, the benefit of the results keeps me beginning new each day using my Reiki tools and techniques. I love the way I see people and manmade creations with the divine light inside. I look forward to my creations holding this very high vibration.
Tom Cowan, a Celtic shaman, teaches in his book, Yearning for the Wind:
“To live each day with gratitude that our humble lives are part of the Great Life Itself, and with the understanding that what happens in nature and the world around us, reflects the movements in our souls. When we are so balanced with nature, ourselves, and the many spokes on the Wheel of Life Itself, then we can say with the Navajo that we ‘walk in Beauty’ and with the Celtic ruler that we ‘walk in Truth.’”
I invite you to this work with Reiki of choosing now to walk in Beauty and Truth each day, awaking to the extraordinary reality in which we live, and creating your life and this world with a new understanding of who you really are.
Colleen Benelli can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 503.912.0664, on her website at www.reikilifestyle.wpengine.com, or on her Facebook page, Reiki Lifestyle-Colleen Benelli. Join Colleen’s monthly ReikiChat™ conversation, www.reikichat.com.