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Threshold Anecdote - Exploring Variations of Reiki Energy
(example - Ohta-san Reiki)

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Last Updated: January 14, 2013
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- Threshold Reiki Anecdote -
This page is one of a series where I share a personal experience or anecdote related to my Reiki work.  The pages are also intended to give you some "food for thought" and add to your overall Reiki knowledge base.  While the experience has been my own, I feel that you should decide for yourself how much (if any) of the content has any usefulness to your own Reiki work. 

When I first began to learn Reiki, I was told that all Reiki energy was the same.  However, as I began to study other energy methods like Awakening Light Body and Conscious Channeling, my own sensitivity to energy grew.  I began to feel differences between different sources of Reiki. Since my master level training in 1994 I've experienced a variety of differences - both from Western and Japanese sources -  I wrote a bit about this at my Western Styles of Reiki page.  This article is about the most interesting one I encountered.

In 2000, a year after I met Japanese Shihan Hiroshi Doi in person, I was very surprised to experience from him a form of Reiki energy I call "Ohta Reiki."  While not the strongest Reiki I have experienced (is stronger always better?) it certainly had the most amazing effect on me when I received it.

Let me give you some background on this.  My first experience of energy from Doi-sensei was when I exchanged distant attunements with him and his friend Tanaka-san (an energy healer) in September 1998.  At his request I sent the 3 levels of Tera-Mai Reiki to each of them one evening. They both reported that their reception of these was impressive.  In return, the following day Doi-sensei sent me Gendai Reiju and an attunement to the 4th symbol energy; Tanaka-san sent an energy he uses to work with cancer patients. While Doi-sensei's energy felt good, I really took notice of Tanaka-san's (he later said he knew I would be able to notice this particular energy.)

The following year Doi-sensei came to Vancouver to take part in what became the first of 5 annual URRI conferences.  As the main conference organizer, I asked him to give Gendai Reiju to each participant. When Doi-sensei uses this procedure or even his normal class attunement procedure, he always focuses on running the Reiki energy he received over and over from Koyama-sensei, the former head of the URR Gakkai.

Almost all of the 65 conference attendees found this energy to be a very strong and interesting Reiki, especially compared to those they had experienced in the West.  I had sensed this strength the Friday evening of the gathering while he was using a certain Qigong method to build his energy - something he would do when giving Reiju to a large number of people. However, I felt at the time that the Reiki energy I was using was my own preference.

During that conference he also gave me a very nice gift.  If you have been to my Usui Reiju Gift page, you have seen a different version of the standard Usui portrait.  Doi-sensei gave me this version, saying it was given to him by a student of Mrs. Ayako Sasaki. She was a student of Admiral Kanichi Taketomi, the successor to Admiral Ushida as the president of the URR Gakkai (note that Koyama-sensei was also a student of Admiral Taketomi.) 

Sasaki-sensei was the head of the Hiroshima branch of the URR Gakkai, but after the war it seems she lost touch with the Tokyo branch (quite understandable considering the destruction of Hiroshima and Tokyo). She continued to teach but didn't feel it was proper to continue on as a Gakkai branch, not knowing if the organisation still existed. Afterwards, her Reiki teaching seemed to simplify and one of her students was a man named Hiroshi Ohta.  In the early days of Reiki, the healing was just known as "Teāte" or palm healing. This is also what Tatsumi-san told Melissa Riggall in 1996 that it was originally called (he studied with Dr. Hayashi from 1927-31). 

In the early days of Reiki, the healing was just known 
as "Teāte" or palm healing.

Doi-sensei was a manager for 3 hotels of a hotel chain in 1982. One of these was in Hiroshima and he would go there for 3 days a week from 1982 to 1984. During that time  Ohta-san supplied equipment and personnel to the hotel trade in Hiroshima, including the one Doi-sensei worked at. He would often try to discuss healing with Doi-sensei, who said he wasn't interested. Then one day Doi-sensei banged his knee against a desk. Mr. Ohta was there and he offered to do healing on the knee. Doi-sensei was impressed that the pain went away quickly. 

After that, Doi-sensei was willing to listen to what Ohta-san had to say about his "Teāte" method. Ohta-san invited Doi-sensei to dinner and during his visit performed some kind of ceremony on Doi-sensei, mainly involving the hands. Doi-sensei thought that this was just some kind of family ceremony so he went along with it. However, it was a reiju that Ohta-san used to help him to connect to what we now think of as Reiki energy.

Doi-sensei and Ohta-san would go for lunch or dinner each day that Doi-sensei was in town, and as soon as they would sit down Ohta-san would take Doi-sensei's hands and perform a simple reiju on each - it lasted about 5 minutes. Over the time Doi-sensei was in Hiroshima, Ohta-san taught him the complete system, however no symbols were involved (which of course matches the URR Gakkai system even today). Before Doi-sensei left Hiroshima in 1984, Ohta-san took him to meet his teacher, Sasaki-sensei. 

Ohta-san would take Doi-sensei's hands and perform 
a simple reiju on each

In 1993 Doi-sensei discovered what we now call Reiki, and in 1998 he published his first book, "Iyashino Gendai Reiki Ho". This led him to meet a Reiki person from Hiroshima who had been a student of Mrs. Sasaki. When they compared notes, Doi-sensei was surprised to discover Mrs. Sasaki had been a URR Gakkai Shihan. The URR Gakkai president, Mrs. Koyama, (and Doi-sensei's teacher) was able to confirm this and also that what Doi-sensei had received from Ohta-san was indeed Gakkai Reiki. That same student of Sasaki-sensei gave Doi-sensei a copy of the picture at my Usui Reiju Gift page. Doi-sensei treasures it as it is originally from Mrs. Sasaki.

Now, getting to the point of this article: Doi-sensei had revealed some of the information about Ohta-san to my friends and I in early 2000.  When I was in Kyoto, Japan the following November, a group of us (Tom Rigler, Andy Bowling, Yukio Miura, Yuko Okamoto and Akihiko Uechi) were meeting with Doi-sensei to discuss the coming URRI seminar and our role in it.  I took the opportunity to ask Doi-sensei to demonstrate the Ohta reiju.  Andy volunteered to receive as Tom and I watched.  Now Andy always said at this time he didn't notice energy too much, and afterwards Tom said he didn't sense much observing the reiju;  but a strange thing happened to me as I watched.  I was actually trying to listen to Akihiko at the same time as he was planning to do some interpretation for me during my seminar presentation.  But I think most of my focus was on the reiju, and due to my curiosity, my Spirit Guides hooked me up to the energy without my asking  (I had given them permission years before to do such things due to so many requests I made of them.) 

What happened was that as Doi-sensei performed the reiju, I didn't realise I was so intent I was also getting the energy.  I began to lose my balance,  falling straight forward to the point where my hands automatically shot out in front of me to grab the table.  I didn't even know I had been falling.  But I suddenly realised where I was, holding onto the table and I had tears streaming down my face.  After the reiju Andy got up, apparently unaffected, but I went around the table and asked Doi to perform the reiju right on me this time. I seemed to go somewhere far away as I could barely sense him even though I was trying to follow the ceremony (to notice if he changed it).  Then afterwards I could feel him trying to ground me physically.  It was an amazing experience for me each time.  The energy wasn't the most powerful I had ever received, but it certainly had the most unusual effect on me while receiving it.

 I didn't even know I had been falling. 
But I suddenly realised where I was, holding onto the 
table and I had tears streaming down my face.

It was 2 years later in 2002 when Doi-sensei used the same energy on me again, this time explaining something due to a question I asked about Ohta-san and the symbols.  I was sitting on a park bench as he performed the Ohta reiju on my hands, but I soon discovered he never realised he was using a different Reiki energy when he did this. I started to fall over sideways on the bench, but again I caught myself.  Afterwards, through Hyakuten Inamoto (who witnessed this) I asked why the Reiki would feel so different from his Gendai Reiki.  I think Hyakuten misunderstood as Doi-sensei replied that it was the recipient who felt the energy differently.  So I repeated myself but added that the Koyama Reiki energy he always used via Gendai reiju and Gendai attunements felt like "night", while the Ohta (Sasaki) energy via the Ohta reiju felt like "day" when compared.  He was quite surprised at this revelation.  I added that Koyama felt heart centered, but like a strong oak tree.  He said "Yes, this is Koyama."  Then I said that Ohta felt heart centered but like a big comfy blanket.  He was very surprised that he was unconsciously emitting 2 different flavours of Reiki, depending on the ceremony he used.

I noticed when we went to Toronto shortly after that for the URRI conference there, he was sometimes trying out the simpler Ohta reiju on conference participants, usually in a restaurant (just like Ohta-san) or maybe off to the side in the hotel.  He was conducting his own experiment.  When we came back to Vancouver I held a Reiki share with Doi-sensei and Hyakuten as the guest speakers.  They each gave their own reiju to everyone.  One of my friends, Walter Quan, who was there and who had also attended URRI 1999, came to dinner with us afterwards.  I asked Doi-sensei after dinner to perform the Ohta reiju on Walter.  Walter didn't know what to expect (I‘m sure he thought it as just  a simple demonstration) but as he sat there receiving, he began to slide under the table. He was quite buzzed from it.

I've been able to duplicate the Ohta energy with students, and some feel it as strongly as I did, while others don't.  But those who notice it, really notice it.  Note: I have not shared the actual Ohta attunement method with anyone, but Doi-sensei showed us 2 versions; the shorter one was used often by Ohta-san and he told me the longer one he received from Ohta-san in a dream.

I've been able to duplicate the Ohta energy with students, and some feel it as strongly as I did

Recently I was reviewing some old emails for another project and came across one I had received in July 2000 from Doi-sensei's translator at the time, Miyuki Iwasaki.  Miyuki passed on the following information from Doi-sensei"

"Ayako Sasaki was a formally certificated Gakkai master.  Just after W.W.II, the Gakkai was broken for a while and Gakkai masters were separated.  Ayako Sasaki taught Hiroshi Ohta at that time, without formal certification from the Gakkai.  That is, Ohta-sensei was allowed to teach Reiki by Sasaki-sensei, but not a Gakkai member and not certificated by the Gakkai.  And Ohta-sensei, who is not a formal Gakkai master, taught Reiki to Doi-sensei.  Therefore, Doi-sensei is allowed to teach Reiki by Ohta-sensei but does not want to say that he got "Shinpi-den" to avoid confusion.  Because, if Doi-sensei uses the word "Shinpi-den", some will get misunderstanding that Doi-sensei has Shinpi-den of the Gakkai.  The word "Shinpi-den" is very confusing, especially in Japan."
I have discovered that other forms of Reiki, especially Japanese Reiki, can have different sensations about them.  Among them are the Komyo Reiki of Hyakuten Inamoto,  the TJR energy of Dave King, and the natural energy of Mrs. Yamaguchi (perhaps this one is just her own Highest Ki). Dave also radiated a different but strong energy during his 2002 Usui-Do transformation ceremonies, but a much lighter yet more welcome energy during his 2004 Usui Teāte transformation ceremonies, notably after he had received a distant energy transformation from Usui student Tenon-in.

In 1999, before the first URRI conference, my friend Yukio Miura told me of his meeting with Mrs. Chiyoko Yamaguchi, the Hayashi student, through Hyakuten Inamoto-sensei. Yukio-san  said she had lost all her Hayashi material in a fire while living in Manchuria during the war.  When he arrived in Vancouver, I offered him a copy of the Japanese version of the Hayashi Healing Guide that Takata-sensei used to share with her master students.  He passed this document on to Yamaguchi-sensei when he returned to Japan and said she was extremely grateful. 

When she attended part of the URRI 2000 conference in Kyoto, Yukio wanted to introduce me to her so she could thank me.  As I approached her sitting outside the conference room, from about 8 feet away I began to feel I had moved into a very powerful field of energy, unlike any I had felt before.  I am not sure if this was her intention and since then I have been able to retain this energy and pass it on to others.  I remember that my thought at the time was that this was what it must feel like to have worked with Reiki for over 60 years. 

I had a brief pleasant talk with Yamaguchi-sensei through Yukio and told her how honoured I was to meet a person who had spent almost all her life with Reiki.  Later in the seminar, she and her son explained her experiences with Hayashi-sensei and had some photos to share.  Later, when I returned to Vancouver I found I could reproduce the same vibrations that Yamaguchi-sensei had been radiating.  But I also found it strange that no one else who had met her, then or afterwards, ever commented on sensing her energy the way I had - not even her students or those who wrote books about her. 

This made me think more about how some versions of Reiki energy seem to affect each of us more differently and more powerfully than others.  You might notice this when you visit some of my pages like the Usui Reiju Gift, the Weekly Reiju page, the Try Out Reiki page, or the Intensive Reiki Experience page. 

I feel however that it is more important to discover and work at developing your own Highest Ki. (see my Reiki and Highest Ki page).

If you have comments or suggestions, Contact Me.     I will try to answer them all.

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