This insight came from a student in Joe and my recent Okuden Reiki II class during our conversation about Enkaku Chiryo Ho (Remote Healing). We were exploring what kinds of blocks and limiting mindsets might get in the way of experiencing the dissolving of distance and the state of oneness that is the original intent of this practice, and why some systems of Reiki have developed structures and perspectives that actually emphasize distance and separation rather than connection.
It comes down to fear. In a culture that experiences such profound individualism and separation, moving for disconnection to connection--first and foremost within one's self, with Spirit, and then with others--can feel deeply uncomfortable, frightening, and even painful. It can feel like going into the dark, into the unknown, into liminal space; it can feel like going into the cocoon within which every thing comes undone and is reformed.
Spiritual practice is not always beautiful, not always easeful, and does not always feel good. And its not meant to. A spiritual practice, like Reiki in its original Japanese form, is meant to bring us into the messy, dark, pressure-filled spaces of our being. Because, just like the cocoon for the caterpillar, it is within these dark and difficult liminal places that transformation and true connection becomes possible.
The beauty is that spiritual practice not only brings us into the liminal space of the in-between (no longer what you were, but not yet what you are becoming), it also builds our capacity and resilience inside of these spaces, fortifying us for the journey.
This theme came out so powerfully for our students in this weekend's Okuden training. Grateful for such powerful metaphors to help guide our way, and for students willing to risk being changed.
How does your spiritual practice support you in growing through the challenges of your inner and outer life? I'd love to hear!
[Photo shows a silk worm cocoon from my daughter's second grade class. Inside, you can see bits of wing and flesh left behind from the moth's struggle to emerge. Without the struggle, there would be no flight.]