A Guide to Living in the Moment
...Ever tried to meditate & experienced constant chatter in your mind? Instead of following the everyday thoughts & dramas down a rabbit hole, I’ve found one of the best ways to overcome getting stuck in this never-ending hamster wheel.
This technique provides a way to achieve focused meditation with the added benefit of retraining your thought patterns, releasing long-held beliefs which were never yours to begin with & making space to let in the real you. Sound too good to be true? It’s easy to learn &, with diligent practice, can yield truly amazing results.
Reiki healing system founder, Mikao Usui, encouraged his new students to meditate on the Reiki principles twice-daily. These principles – central to the Reiki healing system – are really accessible & can be practiced by each of us, even if we haven’t been attuned to Reiki.
The principles, or precepts as they are also known, are guiding teachings to help focus our attention on living in the presence of the moment – from a space of compassion, appreciation, with dedication, without tension, & free from anxiety & fear.
If you choose to try this meditation, after a few weeks of dedicated practice you’ll be surprised how effectively you recognise a situation/thought/action as it arises & nip it in the bud before it sets off your buttons. This awareness in the moment combined with our state of presence, can help us let go of getting caught up in situations or dramas where we’re giving away our energy.
Below I share the five Reiki principles in English & Japanese (phonetics are in brackets) & then offer an explanation of their meaning for deeper understanding. Listen to the Reiki principles meditation in Japanese with bonus breathing exercise (.mp4 41.8MB)
Reiki principles meditation
You may like to begin practicing this meditation with five-minutes twice-daily, increasing the duration over subsequent weeks & months to a length which works into your schedule.
To prepare for your mediation, sit comfortably in a relaxing space free from distraction. Playing instrumental music in the background or lighting some incense or a candle may contribute to finding relaxation & focus. This is your time for you.
Bring your palms lightly pressing together in front of your heart in Gasshô (prayer position) with the fingers on each hand pointing up to the sky & the thumbs closest to the body. In this simple action of Gasshô you are bringing the left & right sides together in unity; balancing yin & yang; the mind & body. During your meditation, maintain an unfocused gaze on the middle fingertips to maintain awareness. If you prefer to close your eyes while you meditate feel free to do so.
There are many versions of the Reiki precept wording, although the meaning is the same. This is the version I was introduced to & on which I meditate twice-daily.
Just for today…
Do not be angry;
Do not worry;
Be kind to others.
I prefer to repeat “Just for today” at the beginning of each precept as I find it focuses my attention on the present moment for each.
Just for today, do not be angry;
Just for today, do not worry;
Just for today, be grateful;
Just for today, work diligently;
Just for today, be kind to others.
When reciting the Reiki principles in Japanese, the usual training is to breathe in deeply & recite the full precept wording during a single exhale. Listen to the Reiki principles meditation in Japanese (.mp4 28.7MB)
Kyo dake wa (key-yo duck-ee wah)
Ikaru na (ee-car-roo nah)
Shinpai suna (shin-pie soo-nah)
Kansha shite (kun-shar Shh-tay)
Gyo o hageme (ghee-yo o hug-ee-may)
Hito ni shinsetsu ni (heetoe knee shin-set-soo knee)
Select whichever version feels most comfortable for your own meditation practice. When your meditation comes to a close, sit quietly in awareness of the space you have created for yourself before thanking yourself & the Universe for this time together.
Each of the Reiki principles offers a guiding teaching
Within a week of practicing this meditation, contradicting thoughts/actions/situations arising in me brought the relevant Reiki principle to mind. I continue to find my increased awareness allows me to defuse the habitual thoughts & actions which previously plagued me more quickly. I’m able to let the habitual patterns glide by like a cloud more easily. A far more balanced approach & one which dissolves previously experienced stress & anxiety. It’s a far more centring space to live from!
Just for today…
Bringing our awareness into today. When we are fully present in this moment we are not concerned about tomorrow or weeks/months/years into the future or the past. We are grounded in the “Now”. Every day we can begin again. If it doesn’t work out how we hope today, there is always another chance tomorrow.
…do not be angry
Every emotion is a form of energy &, whether positive or negative, removes us from living in the present. Anger perpetuates; it is an emotion which continues billowing until we consciously choose to diminish its presence. Anger can be held based on an experience from the past or, perhaps, around judging ourselves & others e.g. someone else doing something differently to how we would do it. When we become aware of anger – within ourselves or directed towards someone else – we have an opportunity to observe what caused this emotion to surface. View this through eyes of compassion & our anger will dissipate.
…do not worry
Worry stems from fear of the unknown. Worry doesn’t improve a situation as it’s usually connected to something which is imagined or hasn’t happened. When we worry, we are not experiencing the present which has meaning today. Better to release worry, learn to accept everything is as it is, & everyone is where they need to be in this moment in time. If this new way of experiencing is difficult to embrace think of any element in nature which lives each moment with carefree abandon as I like to do by imagining a dog running freely in the park!
Being appreciative…for waking to a new day; for breathing; feeling the rays of the sun or the rain cleansing the earth nurturing the plants which nourish us. Notice the remarkable in repetitive, everyday tasks. See opportunities to grow when seemingly unhelpful or wonderful situations present themselves. Take no moment for granted, & give thanks every day for our many blessings.
Over time – as we practice living the Reiki principles every day – the layers of our social conditioning & upbringing will slowly drift away & we will reconnect with the bright light of who we really are – our authentic Self. Finding our own path & giving our best in everything we do.
…be kind to others
Offering true compassion towards others begins with being kind to ourselves. Supplanting the inner critic with encouraging, loving thoughts & actions. Letting go of judgement. Being open-minded to others’ perspectives in order to broaden our own. Holding space for ourselves & others. Recognising at our essence we & others are the same.
May you enjoy the spaciousness in mind, body & spirit dedicated Reiki meditation practice brings. I invite you to share how your own expanded awareness is unfolding in the comments below.