What is Reiki?
Reiki is a healing and relaxation technique that originates from Japan.
To help understand it, the word Reiki is made up of two parts.
Rei in Reiki means Higher Power, whether that be The Universe, God, Source, Creator...something greater than our selves, even if we cannot completely describe it. Love is a good word for it too, pure and unconditional Love.
Ki (or Chi of China) in Reiki is life force energy, that which keeps us alive, that which is present in all living things. We get life force energy from food, sunshine and sleep. When I have a dead bunch of flowers on the table that I need to remove...well, there is limited or even no ki there!
If we are feeling low, we also may have low ki so healthy food, time in the sunshine and deep, restful sleep can help us, as can meditation and deep breathing.
Reiki therefore is life force energy guided by a higher power with me as the middle (wo)man...it is a relaxing, stress-reducing experience.
Another thing to remember about Reiki is that it isn't me who is 'special' to be able to provide it...anyone can learn or be attuned to the Reiki energy and practice on themselves and others. I am just the distributor and I ask the Universe to provide what the person needs.
I send the Reiki energy to others by placing my hands on their body (or close but not touching if a person is not comfortable) and set my intention for them to receive what they need to receive in the session.
Some people enjoy the touch of my hands gently placed on their body, listening to the relaxing music I play and switching off for a while. This is so needed for many people...to just stop and be and also to be taken care of.
Some people feel warmth or a tingly sensation from my hands as the ki moves through to where it is needed to soothe or heal.
Others slip very easily into a meditative state and feel calm and connected.
Others see colours or visions or receive answers to their questions.
There is no right or wrong and it can be different for everyone.
Some people fall asleep and that is perfect too; a deep restful Reiki sleep may only last 15-50 minutes but feel like several hours of rejuvenation when one wakes.
Some people feel it as a kind of body scan, helping them tune in to their body and where it might need assistance, medical help or extra nourishment.
As for me, I can and do experience these things and I also tend to have an emotional release because that is who I am...I am a walking emotion at the best of times! I am highly sensitive and feel things deeply; good and bad. I find this world quite challenging at times....or lovely and beautiful and amazing...and some times something in between too ;-)
So for me, in everyday life, I tend to hold a lot of what I genuinely feel inside, because of its depth, and therefore Reiki helps me to express my truth and how I feel in a safe place. There are usually tears, some smiling or laughter and deep peace.
I was trained or 'attuned' in Reiki several years ago by Jenny Glover of Soul Radiance in Moonta and I have practiced Reiki regularly in my own life ever since; for myself, family and friends.
Since August last year, I have operated a small complimentary therapy business offering Reiki to people in the community, specifically for members at The Station Community Mental Health & Wellness Centre in Wallaroo.
I love Reiki.
I love how it makes me feel when I receive it so that it why I also choose to give it, to pass it on to others so they too can receive the benefits.
I often pull over on a country road to capture the sky or a magnificent sunset.
My kids (now 9 and 6) are used to it and I love the way they sometimes point out a beautiful scene to me while we are driving along.
Here is dawn last month on the way to Adelaide, looking east towards the Hummocks.
Good morning world.
We caught a cracker of a sunset as we headed through Port Broughton in the school holidays. I pulled over first to enjoy it then take a few shots.
I then drove further along into a little dirt carpark to reach the beach.
I had one child who wouldn't get out of the car and another who ran off excitedly to look for crabs and I was in between....feeling content and reminded again of the beauty in this world when I slow down to see it.
Oh...and he did find some weenie little crabs!
First the challenge....
I am stuck on my Moonta Bay painting.
Well and truly stuck.
I feel very critical of it and it is not looking how I want it to.
I am tempted to start all over again but I will try one more time to save it with a good layer or two. If it works out, I will show you the in between stages as well as the final work...we will see.
And now....a success!
Here is my finished elephant!
I am very pleased with how she turned out.
It was fun experimenting with the shadows even though I felt a little nervous... I worked fast with a foam brush and a baby wipe to soften where needed.
I used paint on a bamboo skewer for her eyes and her head-dress.
The only time I used a paintbrush was when I drew the rough black outline...the rest of the time I used my fingers...which I have happily discovered is by far my preference.
Yay...I am very proud of this one.
Here is where I left my elephant from my last painting session.
Today I added some high definition contrast in the form of black shadows, mostly using a foam brush. This is a pic on my phone to show that 'in between' stage.
I also relocated her eyes...she is still quite abstract in form..but the eyes needed to be relocated to add a little more realism.
This is how she currently looks below. I am nearly done.
I was so excited with my progress this afternoon.
I need to work on her eyes just a little more and I want to add some white details, especially to her forehead.
I'll share my finished piece very soon!
Last week when I was sitting quietly under my trees, listening to my breathe and the resident birds, I heard a rustling noise.
It sounded like a small creature was running circles in the leaves.
I opened my eyes, curious as to whether a bird was having a 'dirt' bath in the leaf litter nearby, like my chickens used to do, but I couldn't see any bird on the ground and the noise had stopped abruptly.
I got up to investigate, thinking perhaps it would be a lizard.
And look who I found!
A beautiful bearded dragon.
I enjoyed looking at him as he lay completely still under my watchful eye, even his eyes did not flicker as a random ant or two crawled over him.
Eventually I called out to The Man in the House to come and look and we swapped places; I went inside to get my camera and he took watch!
The lizard was so beautiful, prehistoric even, camouflaged in his natural environment of dirt and leaves.
After a few photos my husband returned inside and I returned to my meditation spot under the trees. It was another 5 minutes or so until I heard the lizard run quickly into the cover of the tree.
Beautiful creature, thank you for joining us and letting our trees and yard be your home too, you are so welcome to this space.
Or should I say thank you for sharing this space with me?
I googled a message from the Bearded Dragon and this is what I found...
If a dragon-lizard presents themselves to you the time has come to detach from the ego and dive beyond the superficial.
What appears on the outside in appearance no longer holds value and you will soon become more detached from the shallow situations in your life.
Now and again it is required to be detached, to separate yourself from others, to succeed in what is necessary.
Lizard-dragons will also show you how to leave the past in the past. To move on and released your attachment to what has been. The story you tell yourself of the past no longer serves you.
Dragon lizards propose immediate change in one or more areas of your life. You may need to let go of old ideas, patterns, belief systems, habits, actions or lifestyle because they block the creation of new life and new beginnings. It is time to let go.
Lizard-Dragons prompts the need to go within and examine your present reality and then, move with confidence and utmost assuredness into a new chapter of your life.
I don't remember seeing these caterpillars around before.
They are on my orange tree now....citrus caterpillars. I googled black and yellow caterpillars and discovered that they will become Dainty Swallowtail Butterflies.
(I am borrowing someone else's photos to illustrate my story today as I didn't have my camera with me.)
Rewind to last Saturday and The Man of the House said I should go and have a look outside as there was a butterfly on the back lawn that I might want to see; just laying there.
Busy with something, I was like, are you sure it's not dead? Has the dog or cat got it? Why is it not moving?
No....just go and look.
And this is what I found...laying flat on the lawn...
Like it was waiting for me.
It looked much like this but not exactly like this.
It had damage on one of it's lower wings, it looked like the shape of a small bite mark.
"Ohhh, you're broken", I whispered.
A bit like me sometimes, I thought.
I wondered then if the butterfly would let me pick it up...the middle of the lawn wasn't a safe spot to rest.
I gently placed my hand in front of it and, unbelievably, it walked straight on to my finger.
I barely breathed as I watched it closely.
My daughter, Miss 6, came out then to join me and she asked to hold it too. I attempted to pass the butterfly on but my movement prompted it to take flight.
It would seem that the special moment was just for me.
The butterfly's flight took me by surprise actually, the wing damage and the tameness of it made me think it was unable to.
But it flew alright.
Very well as far as I could tell.
It landed on the orange tree and then out of sight.
"It might be broken but it can still fly." I said out loud.
Thanks for the reminder.
Oh Miss Elephant...I will do you justice.
You are a labour of love, that is for sure.
This is the second painting I started in October at my weekend workshop in Adelaide.
She has been through much transformation...and yet she still continues to grow and change. (Sounds like someone else I know)
I turned it into some planets for awhile :-) I enjoyed that but it wasn't forever.
Lots more paint!
At this point I flip the painting over to make out the elephant shape with chalk (Easy to rub off with a baby wipe if need)
And today...as she stands patiently waiting for me.
With a filter?
What a beautiful girl.
She is very patient with me ;-)
I have a few more sessions to go, at least one but probably two or three.
When I neglect my creativity I just don't feel right.
Out of sorts.
Down and tired.
Like life is a bit of a drag.
When it finally occurs to me that creativity and 'making stuff' might be a part of what is missing (insert face palm), I recommit to creating and expressing myself through art or music or writing....whatever calls.
I attempt to switch off the domestic stuff, the family stuff, the work commitments....just for a little while (It'll wait)....and I decide to make something.
Do you remember as a little kid just making stuff? For the fun of it?
Last weekend I decided to do another layer of a painting that I hadn't really liked up to that point.
But....what is that??!
I hated this layer too.
I had a little tanty and a few tears...
It went something like this....
"Why do I enjoy painting and playing with colour and expressing myself but my stuff always looks like shit!!?
Why can't I hold a brush?
Why won't it do what I want it to do?
Move like I want it to move?
Why can't it look like the picture I have in my head???
A bit like that :-)
Perhaps you can relate to those feels, dear friend?
I put myself to bed for a little nap after that effort.
I had a little sleep, pulled myself together and then I pushed myself to have another go over that second crappy layer, now dry and ready for me again.
Make it fun.
I like this, remember? ;-)
I am doing this for fun.
It is self expression.
Fun and creative and interesting.
There is no right or wrong.
Just playing with paint and colour and seeing what wants to emerge.
Forget the brush.
Use my fingers.
It feels lovely.
I love swirls.
Try swirls with a brush...that isn't so hard.
Use lots of white.
I love white
Make flower shapes.
I love flower shapes.
Now....that is looking quite good for another layer.
I'll stick with that and make it the final layer.
Let it dry.
Time for a cuppa.
Try a thin outline with a black texta, gently now, not too thick but it doesn't need to be perfect....
I like it...especially from a distance (haha)
Find a spot in my home.
Arrange it with a couple of items of similar colour.
Hmm, not bad.
Pretty good even!
Take a photo.
I like it!
Now...that wasn't so hard, was it??!
What about you?
Are you needing to nurture your creative side a little more too?
A lot more?
Painting? Writing? A new garden bed? A new dinner dish? Put together a great new outfit and accessories?
Make some time when you can.
Pencil it in to your diary if you have to.. and please try not to leave it as long as I did...I am a slow learner :-)