The term Reiki is a Japanese word created from two Japanese words “Rei” and “Ki”.
The Japanese Kanji symbol for Rei can be translated as: “sacred, of spirit, soul”
The Japanese Kanji symbol for Ki is most often translated as “energy”
So we have as reasonable translations (depending on the context, of course) “sacred energy, or of spirit energy”. One of the more prevalent interpretations (although not without merit) is “Universal Life Force Energy”.
Todays’ common usage of the word “Reiki” (as the sole term to identify the system developed by Usui Sensei) is a misapplication of the term. Likewise is the use of Reiki as a verb, indicating the actual performance of treatment. (ie. Reiki-ing, etc…)
A definition I am more comfortable with is:
Reiki (noun) is a term used to refer to the energy matrix from which everything is created and to which everything returns.
The formed and the formless; limitless, immeasurable, inexhaustible.
Everything is Reiki, everything. All that we sense and all that we cannot sense, is Reiki.
The “named” system(s), methods, techniques, processes, etc. simply denote a method of interaction with Reiki.
Definition of matrix (noun) – something (such as a situation or a set of conditions) in which something else develops or forms
A quote from the movie “Lucy“, “We’ve codified our existence to bring it down to human size. To make it comprehensible we’ve created a scale so that we can forget it’s unfathomable scale.” speaks to our human brains’ inability to comprehend and/or understand the enormity of this energy ‘soup’ which is us and within which we exist.
Usui Sensei did not create Reiki, nor did he create/re-discover/develop Reiki Ryoho (Spirit Energy Healing Method). What he did create is named Usui Reiki Ryoho to address the need to differentiate between his own particular Reiki Ryoho and the healing methods practiced by other spiritual healers of the time.
Japanese words (much like any other language) gain a greater depth of meaning from the context within which they are used, so being mindful of the context, the more correct form is “Usui Reiki Ryoho” to describe the spiritual practice (“system”) and hands-on-healing method developed by Usui Sensei.
So, from here on in, I will be using the term “Reiki Ryoho” rather than “Reiki” to describe the spiritual practice and hands-on-healing method that supports healing, personal development, and influences one’s environment.
And I will be using Mosaic Reiki Ryoho or MRR when referring to the ‘style’ of Reiki Ryoho I have developed, practice and promote.