A hospital volunteer provided an historical perspective of Reiki healing.

A resident of North Haven, Marie Marchesseault is a former Speech/Language Pathologist who became a  Reiki Master nearly ten years ago prior to retirement from public education. Having been trained in multiple types of spiritual healing methods, her focus is on Rainbow Reiki, which she learned over several years through an international instructor from Germany named Walter Luebeck. Area residents had the opportunity to take classes with him in May when she hosted the author and teacher.

Addressing the North Haven Rotary Club in July, this hospital volunteer provided an historical perspective of Reiki healing which began in Japan in the early 1900s when many spiritual groups flourished. She described a pivotal occurrence in the 1930s in Japan in which a woman was in need of a serious operation. A medical doctor, who was a student of the founder of modern day Reiki, gave her Reiki as an alternative to the surgery. Thirty days later, her condition improved to the point that the planned operation was unnecessary. The patient then studied Reiki and went back to her home in Hawaii to practice and teach. She started a major Reiki movement in the West that is still growing today.

The speaker then explained that there are three world renowned masters of the Reiki art of healing in the world today, who teach three major schools of Reiki: William Lee Rand who has centers in Michigan and Hawaii, Frank Arjava Petter, a German who lives in Greece, and Walter Luebeck, whose healing center is in Germany. All three masters have written books about the subject and travel worldwide teaching others. Marie said that she has studied with each of these experts and has learned something from each one of them. “Heal the mind and you will heal the body” she said. She continued, “Many illnesses are stress related, but the body can heal itself. Reiki floods you with life-giving energy that can heal”. She explained that stress collects in various parts of the body such as the shoulders, inner organs, lymph nodes, head, and major joints. “You can feel the disharmonic energy in a person’s body by placing your hands on or over the various parts”.  Reiki works to release the blocks in these areas and promotes healing. 

Scientists in Bulgaria have been studying the effects of different schools of Reiki on the human body by measuring the electromagnetic energy changes in people receiving Reiki. These scientists have concluded that the practice of Reiki results in significant positive change. As with Yale - New Haven, many hospitals now have volunteer Reiki departments, and some employ Reiki practitioners. Numerous patients who have undergone chemo therapy and have been given Reiki have reported that it reduces the side effects of the chemo drugs. Additionally, other patients who are given Reiki before surgery notice fewer side effects and a quicker recovery.

Marie also mentioned that Dr. Oz of television fame is a big proponent of Reiki, adding, “Energy medicine is the next frontier. The mind-body connection is real. Reiki complements traditional medicine.” She recently met a psychiatrist at Yale – New Haven who told her that he has been using Reiki with his colleagues. The Reiki instructor and practitioner closed with these final thoughts, “Things do not happen overnight. Sometimes many treatments are needed because the longer you have a problem, the more treatments it will take for the healing process to bear fruit”.