Thursday, September 6, 2018

Reiki Newsletter- September 2018 Bringing a Reiki Community together- Part 2: 2010-2018


Bringing a Reiki Community together- Part 2: 2010-2018

I’ve previously shared how I was tempted to bring the local Reiki community together in Cincinnati in 2008 and I’ve have shared my learnings and some advice for those who are tempted to do the same in their communities.
Here are how things have evolved since 2010….

Coincidentally (wink, wink nothing is a coincidence), shortly after I had the vision to bring the local Reiki community together, I attended a Reiki Master level class with Frans Stiene in 2008 in NYC. The way Frans has approached Reiki blew me away and changed the way I practiced Reiki forever (I wrote about this many times before so I won’t repeat it here).

As our bi-annual Reiki Days continued in Cincinnati, the ties in the community got stronger. As we started to learn from each other, volunteer together, share more and more; we felt an interest in the local community for Frans’ teachings. Finally, Sundar and I have invited Frans to Cincinnati in summer of 2011.
The first time was blood, sweat and tears (literally, I have a page of my journal from that year that had all 3!). We were right, the teachings found the right sounding board and resonated with everyone.

As we started to share more of this view of Reiki and shared practices at Reiki Days with practitioners, most of the teachings resonated but also there were others who walked away from the Reiki Day (for example, someone was extremely annoyed by chanting). When setting the agenda for Reiki Day, we tried to stay mainstream but I must confess that started to become more difficult as most of us practiced Reiki as a spiritual path by then.  There is no right or wrong and I guess this was the natural evolution, but Reiki days have started to be attendee mostly by a core group. Now I’m thinking back and may be that was the purpose after all.

Also, it was amazing to see how some of our local Reiki Master’s work picked up….I won’t give names because I’m scared to leave someone out. All I can say, everyone had somewhat found their unique way for growing and deepening their path with Reiki.

Everyone but everyone in our group, without exception, took these teachings to heart and reflected on their daily work at home and at their jobs; from working on discovering the roots of Reiki, continuing training with various traditional Reiki Masters, travelling to Japan, continuing the professional Reiki practice, teaching and helping many clients; or simply sharing their light in their unique way.

When I lately updated the class roaster, I realized a total of 60 people have been trained in Shinpiden classes with Frans in Cincinnati, last class alone had 32 people (mostly re-sitters).

Sundar has started to teach a year-long Reiki class in 2012-13. Later started a bi-weekly “Deepen your practice with Reiki” gathering for his students and those who attended  Shinpiden with Frans. These gatherings have become the continuous deepening ground for all of us.
  
For me, a couple years ago, just like the idea to bring the community came to me, I realized that it was time to pass the torch. I am deeply grateful that Maria Kammerer stepped in and took the organizer role for the Reiki Days. She has been doing an amazing job in last couple years as she continues to invite different speakers, a nice mixture of teachings and practice as well as time to mingle with a delicious pot luck lunch which its prosperity reflects the heart of the people of the community.

In short, when getting the community together, I had no idea that it would lead to a close- knit community to practice Reiki as a spiritual path whose members will prosper spiritually and develop close heart to heart kinship to inspire and uplift each other to be the greatest version of themselves.

I am grateful to be part of this vibrant community which is my spiritual family.
  
By the way, our next Reiki Day is on Sunday September 30th at Hoffner lodge in Northside. We are honored to have 2 distinct guest teachers, Andrew Anders and Frans Stiene joining us. Whooo hoooo!!



Saturday, August 4, 2018

Reiki Newsletter-August 2018- How it all started...Bringing a Reiki Community together



I wrote this article 8 years ago in 2010 but never published it. When a Reiki Master friend recently asked me to advise on how to start a Reiki community, I dug this article out. I’ll write a sequel on what happened in last 8 years and how our community evolved but here is how it all started….
 ==============================================
It all started on a fall afternoon in 2008 when I was meditating. I got an “instant message” that “It’s time”. I instantly knew what this was all about. Questions of my logical mind followed. Now?, Me? ,How? Where? Mute, no answer, deep silence, nothing, no response. It was a passion for me to bring the local Reiki community together when I first started Reiki, but why now? How should I do this? Who am I in the world to bring the local Reiki community together? The next few days I tried to answer all these questions. I realized I’ll figure it all out along the way. The idea thrilled me but I was equally scared at the same time. It was a huge task but the more I thought about this, the urge become so strong, stronger than any doubt or fear. 
Reiki Day 2009 Sundar and I and Tony behind at Grailville

Now that it’s been 2 years, I can look back and capture some of my learnings, hoping that this might help other Reiki practitioners who have the same passion to bring their local Reiki communities together.
If you’re reading this and you are energized to do the same in your communities, You can DO it! Just Trust Yourself
How to start: Is there really a need out there?
First of all, every successful idea should serve to a “human need”. Is there a real “need” out there in your local Reiki community to get together in the first place? Everyone may seem happy in attending their own Reiki circles, shares. Every Reiki Master may have his/her own Reiki support group going on. Ask the question “What could we possibly ALL do together”? Don’t think that someone else should have addressed this. That “someone else” might be YOU!. The best way to be sure is to ASK the community.
Ask your Reiki Community: “Hey Reiki Community: What do you want”?
So, I started to ponder how to best know what the local practitioners want. Is there really a “need” out there or am I making this up? The answer came during another meditation: “Use Victory of Light”. VOL is a local psychic festival that attracts spiritual community in Cincinnati twice a year. There are 100’s of booths of energy practitioners, crystal shops, vendors and day long workshops. I’m sure everyone has one of these festivals in their cities. I knew there was one coming up in 2 months. So, I had to hurry! I could use this festival to bring the Reiki community together and ask what the Reiki community really wants.
How to find other Reiki practitioners?: Social Networking tools
I had to get the news out and reach out to Reiki practitioners. The first idea that came to mind was to start a “Meet-up” group. Meet-up is a web based social networking tool to bring people of similar interest together. I remembered there was a Reiki Meet-up group in Cincinnati at one time. It was not active for quite some time. I decided to start the Cincinnati Reiki Meet-up again. There were over 70 people there at that time, waiting someone to take the ownership. Here it is, that was my first audience. Next step was secure a spot at VOL to get a session during the festival. That would be the first Meet-up group meeting. I wrote a letter to the VOL organizer, introducing myself and explaining my dream. I told the organizer that this is first of a kind gathering and might attract all Reiki practitioners to the festival. I was granted a spot in no time.  Now, I had to use that spot wisely.
I wrote to the Meet-up group and anyone else I know from my own Reiki circles to invite them to the VOL festival. I made a list of all my Reiki friends. I told them that the purpose is to understand Reiki practitioner's needs and to improve their practice and figure out how we can bring community together to serve these needs.
Thanks to my friend Sundar for the idea; I also put together a questionnaire with 5 simple questions with multiple choice answers (and space to elaborate) to hand out during the festival session to get the pulse of the practitioners. The questions were: What’s your Reiki level? How long have you been practicing Reiki? What does your Reiki Practice look like? What do you need in order to improve your Reiki practice? How would you like to be connected to Reiki community?
Reiki Day 2009 as they work on me, yummy...

Oct 2011 with Jeff



The First Meeting:
Finally, the day has come. It was time for VOL. I was pretty nervous at first. Over 50 people attended the first session at VOL on November 2008. I had a brief introduction of the purpose of the meeting. One goal was to get to know each other better, but I only had 1 hour. So, I divided audience into groups and allowed time for everyone to meet someone they don’t know and have a 15 minute group session to discuss what they think would contribute to their Reiki practice. Then we shared each group’s top 3 ideas. The results were astounding: 93% of participants asked for continuous education and more communication. They wanted to meet with other practitioners/teachers and learn different perspectives. This was the proof.  There was a real “need” in the community.
Start with Core & Engage all:
Next was to start engaging other Reiki Masters and practitioners. I started with my own Reiki Master friends. I also did a google search on Reiki Masters and practitioners in Cincinnati, I reviewed all local healthy living magazines and health food stores that allow business card displays to gather as many local Reiki Master names as possible.
I asked my own Reiki friends to spread the word. I sent a message to all Reiki Masters inviting them for a meeting.   I explained the purpose of the meeting as: “What can we, Reiki Masters, do together to support each other and the Reiki community in Cincinnati?” I addressed the community needs that came up in the survey: Connection and Communication
As a first step, I had this idea of creating a one-stop-shop, to connect all Reiki practitioners. This would be a place where someone new to the town or someone interested in learning or deepening Reiki can go in and get all the information he/she needs for all Reiki activities going on in the town. This would be where local Reiki Masters can advertise their classes, support groups and Reiki related workshops; and Practitioners meet with other Practitioners, learn about city-wide support groups and volunteering opportunities, etc. I searched social networking tools, talked to technologically savvy friends (that’s Sundar!) and selected a tool that could provide it all: Ning.

I sent the invite to all Reiki Masters. I could invite them to my home but I really wanted the meeting location to be neutral, so that no one would be intimidated. I rented a local Panera’s private room. 12 Reiki Masters came to the 1st meeting in February 2009, some I knew, some I met for the first time. Regardless, we had a great representation of diverse Reiki traditions!   Now there was only and only one goal: To spread Reiki in Cincinnati and grow together with Reiki.
There were 3 major topics discussed at that first meeting of Cincinnati Reiki Masters:
1) How can we spread Reiki in Cincinnati? We discussed having city-wide  “Introduction to Reiki” sessions. Masters were already having these sessions successfully. It was about sharing our knowledge and wisdom on what works and what doesn’t, where to give these sessions, how to advertise new sessions, etc.  We decided to use our social networking tool for that.
2) How can we provide continuous education to Reiki community?
A great idea came from one of the Reiki Masters that, before having a “Reiki day” for the community, we should have a “Reiki Day” for Reiki Master/Teachers first. The purpose would be to get to know each other, work together, learn about different Reiki techniques, and any other subjects of interest before we provide day-long activities, workshops, seminars, panels, healing sessions, meditations for the continuous education of the practitioners.
Oct 2011
3) How can we help others who need Reiki?
We also discussed volunteering opportunities and how we can match local Reiki practitioners with those who need Reiki.
1-2-3 Here we go!
We’ve had the first Reiki Day in April of 2009. 28 Reiki Master/Teachers attended the first Reiki Day in Grailville, Loveland and over 40 Reiki Masters attended the second one in September 2009. Along the way, I realized that there are over 90 Reiki Masters in our city!
In 2010, we started opening Reiki Days to all level of practitioners, morning sessions for Reiki Masters only and afternoon session for all levels.
Here are some tips on how to organize Reiki Community Events:
-    Be engaging, share the responsibility, ask for help (no one person can do this alone and I was very lucky to be surrounded with great Reiki friends who each gave a hand). 
-    Recognize that at the end the work falls on one person’s shoulders. It’s a lot of work but it’s well worth it. 
-    Keep a list of necessities (massage tables, candles, water,etc.), keep a list of attendees, keep summary/decisions in each meeting. 
-    Location: Keep it neutral, try to find a spiritually charged location, centrally located, convenient for most people. 
-    Time: Check with some other conflicting events going in the city, crystal festival etc. avoid conflicts. Ask feedback from presenters and major contributors. We set the date at least 4 months in advance. 
-    Send detailed agenda with directions. This reduces the need to answer questions later. Agenda includes: time, location, address and web site of location, cost (in our case, the event was free but we split up the cost of room and lunch, we charged $20 for all day and $10 for half a day). 
-    Nothing is written in stone, be flexible for change.
-    Have a balance of discussions and hands-on practice 
-    Advertise event: Use all social networking tools, e-mail, ask everyone to invite a Reiki friend, ask Reiki masters to send invite to their students, advertise in local magazines, health food stores. 
-    Update community after the event:  Send a meeting summary of what’s discussed and any actions pertaining the community. 
-    Have FUN!
Watch outs:
At first I was little bit concerned for clashes between different Reiki lineages. There is no better similarity than the Reiki energy itself. We decided to respect each other despite differences. We set the agenda of the meetings accordingly. We also decided not to have key note speakers. Instead we had roundtable discussions, where everyone can join equally. Also, be aware that you can’t please everyone. There were some Reiki Masters who thought what we were doing was way too main stream. Also, some people left after first few sessions. That’s OK too. It’s important for these gatherings not to be dominated by few individuals. Even the leadership should rotate. This came up when I had an urgent business trip that contradicted with the Reiki day. I had to make a decision to reschedule or delegate it to another Reiki Master. I thought this was the great opportunity to give someone else to chance to lead. And it worked out perfectly. 
In the first 2 years, we’ve not only built the local reiki community but we’ve achieved some milestone events:
Here were some of the outcomes;
Introduction to Reiki Sessions: We’ve started to organize 1-2 hour free  “Introduction to Reiki” sessions across the town. A Reiki Master has volunteered for an Introduction to Reiki session every month. This gave the diversity of different locations and times. The whole purpose was to spread Reiki in our community. We’ve had sessions at hospitals, non-profit organizations, and at homes. We advertised these sessions in our social networking tool and continued these session to spread Reiki.
Volunteering for Reiki: We’ve generated a list of all organizations that Reiki practitioners can volunteer. We’ve made connections with these organizations, hospices, Wellness centers, animal shelters, AIDS organizations, hospitals, health fairs, retirement homes. We made presentations at these organizations to introduce Reiki.
“Pearls of wisdom” We’ve gathered “pearls of wisdom” for new Reiki Masters. This is a collective list of advice from Reiki Masters to new Masters.
How we define and explain Reiki”. We’ve compiled Reiki definitions of various Reiki Masters from our community to help practitioners to explain what Reiki is to their families, friends, colleagues.
Directory of Reiki practitioners and teachers for the Cincinnati area. We’ve built a practitioners list for those who practice or teach Reiki professionally, with name, location, e-mail address and web-site. We’ve published this list on our social networking tool.
Reiki Day for practitioners: Reiki Masters organized a Reiki Day for all level of practitioners, with continuous Reiki trainings, forums. These events become perfect for Networking!
Facebook /Twitter for local events: We started to advertise local events via our Facebook page and twitter.
If there is one advice I could give, it would be to make this a selfless service (karma yoga) and not to seek any personal advantage. I was determined to emphasize the community need first and utmost; and not to bring my name in front line. I wanted to be an instrument for all that will happen. I also realized that the better I can practice this, the better the end result was. It was not an option after all. It was not about how I practice Reiki, it was about what the community needed.  Later I defined my role as “space holder”. I was the Keeper of the Heart for this wonderful community.
Are you ready now?  I know you can do it. You have the most important ally on your side: Reiki.  Don’t forget to ask help from Reiki. For as long as your purpose is to  serve, Reiki will be there to support you any possible way.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Reiki Newsletter-February 2018

I’ve recently been requested my credentials and bio by HR, as one of the meditation teachers who moderate lunch time meditations at work. I’ve not had a bio for my Holistic practices before so this made me think about all the certifications, trainings, workshops I’ve attended over the years. After giving a summary of the relevant credentials, I continued the list to add key trainings and trips that impacted who I am.  
When I completed the list (which doesn’t even include a fragment of all the continuous education yoga trainings, day-workshops, shares, satsangs, etc.), I was full of gratitude; I was able to attend so many teachings by so many great teachers. What a privilege! When I completed the list, I felt bad for a second that I spent so much time away from my family. However, I think having these workshops helped me become a happier person (and a better mom, I hope). I think everyone should invest in their happiness in one way or another.
Having said that It certainly helps to dream about what you want to do and where you want to go, Most of these workshops were in my Dream list once so I’d encourage you to create yours.
How do you want to contribute to your happiness? Think about what do you want to do for yourself?
Hint, hint!!! Frans is coming back for Reiki Master Teacher Shinpiden class in April and I’m going to an awesome Meditation retreat in Indiana in May. Let me know if you’d like to join me.


Here is my list:
Trip to Teotihuacan, Mexico City 2002
Reiki Level 1 and 2 with William Lee Rand, Detroit, MI Nov 2002
Meditation workshop with Julie Lusk March 2003- CYS Cincinnati,OH
Reiki ART Level 3 with Gulcan Arpacioglu March 2004 Istanbul, Turkey
Kalachakra Teachings by Dalai Lama in May 2004, Toronto, CN
EFT Workshop with Gulcan Arpacioglu July 2004 Istanbul, Turkey
Reiki Master Teacher with William Lee Rand, Detroit, MI Nov 2004
Trip to Rishikesh, Gangotri, Haridwar and Mandukya Upanishad teachings by N.V.Raghuram- July 2005
Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training (200 hrs), Dec 2005-Apr 2006 Cincinnati, OH
Anusara Yoga -Inner Body Bright by John Friend May 2006 Cincinnati, OH
Kriya Initiation Oct 2006 Cincinnati, OH
Trip to Lake Titicaca, Peru and Bolivia, March 2007
Ananda Kriya Yoga Meditation Retreat May 2007 Nazareth, KY
Atisha’s Lamp for Path to Enlightenment- Teachings by Dalai Lama Oct 207 Bloomington, IN
Reiki Shinpiden Class by Frans Stiene Oct 2008 NYC, NY
Ananda Kriya Yoga Initiation and Ananda meditation retreat Dayton, OH October 2009
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar April 2010 Cincinnati, OH
Heart Sutra teachings by Dalai Lama, May 2010 in Bloomington, IN
Volunteer in Ethics in a Modern World Public talk by Dalai Lama Oct 2010 Miami University, OH
Reiki Shinpiden Class By Frans Stiene July 2011 Cincinnati
Kalachakra teachings Dalai Lama in July 2011 Washington D.C
Trip to Chichen Itza, April 2012 Cancun, Mexico
Ananda Kriya Yoga meditation retreat Sep 2011 Oldenburg, IN
Reiki Shinpiden Class By Frans Stiene June 2012 Cincinnati
Komyo Reiki Traning with Hyakuten Innomoto Sensei in August 2012 DaiBosatzu Monastery Catskills NY
Ananda Kriya Yoga Meditation Retreat Nov 2012 Bergamo Center Dayton, OH 
Reiki Shinpiden Class by Frans Stiene April 2013 Cincinnati
Atishas’ Lamp - Teachings by Dalai Lama May 2013 Louisville, KY
Ananda Kriya Yoga meditation retreat Nov 2013 Bergamo Center Dayton, OH 
Reiki Retreat by Frans Stiene April 2014 Cincinnati
Reiki Shinpiden Class By Frans Stiene June 2014
PremsadhaSivananda July 2014 Grailville, OH
Breathwork with Leslie Kaminoff August 2014 Columbus, OH
Yoga Retreat with Eric Shifmann Sep 2014 Yellow Springs, OH
Yoga Talk with Stephen Cope Nov 2014 Cincinnati
Yoga Workshop w/Lilias Folan Dec 2014 Yellow Springs, OH
Ananda Kriya Yoga meditation retreat May 2015 Indiana 
Reiki Meditation Retreat by Frans Stiene June 2015 Cincinnati
Pilgrimage to Himalayas (Ladakh, Badrinath, Rishikesh, Bodhgaya) with Ananda Oct 2015
John of God Nov 2015 Abadiania, Brazil
Retreat Emerge-n-See by Julie Lusk Jan 2016 Cincinnati
Reiki Shinpiden Class By Frans Stiene April 2016 Cincinnati
Trip to Bhutan, Nepal September 2016
Spiritual Counseling Training at Ananda, Nevada City, CA in Oct 2016
John of God Mar 2017 Abadiania, Brazil
Reiki Meditation Retreat by Frans Stiene April 2017  Cincinnati
Ananda Kriya Yoga meditation retreat May 2017 Indiana 
PremsadhaSivananda Talk at Grace tree July 2017
World Happiness Forum Miami, FL Mar 2018 (scheduled)
Reiki Shinpiden Class by Frans Stiene April 2018 (scheduled)
Ananda Kriya Yoga meditation retreat May 2018 Indiana  (scheduled)

Monday, August 28, 2017

Reiki Newsletter- August 2017

Last Sunday we have gathered for an iron-man chanting marathon (thanks to Maria Kammerer!), to practice chanting Reiki precepts.
Just for Today
Do not Anger
Do not Worry
Be Grateful
Do your work Diligently
Be Compassionate to yourself and all living beings
The precepts seem simple but I’m amazed by the deeper layers one can discover with practice. After our marathon chanting I had two discoveries:
Bear with me on this imagination: Imagine a lantern made from a flexible soft material, almost like silk. It’s like accordion but you can pull from each side and manipulate the lantern. Imagine this lantern has 4 sides and each side has blinds. One side is  “Do not Anger”, second side is “Do not Worry”, third side is “Gratitude”, forth side is “ Diligent work”. The bottom end is “Just for Today” the top is “Compassion”.
Let’s build up the lantern from bottom up where the bottom most end is “Just for Today”. This is what grounds the lantern down to Earth (Being Here and Now). The opposite end or top of the lantern is “Compassion”. This is what hooks us up to Heavens. The lantern itself is a bridge between the Earth and Heaven.  
If you pull the side of the lantern that represents “Do not Anger”, (i.e. if you practice this precept and be aware of the anger, recognize that it’s only the ego, recognize the root causes of the anger and succeed to transform the anger), the blinds on this side of the lantern opens up to reveal the Great Bright Llight within the lantern.
If you pull the side that represents “Do not Worry”, (i.e. if you recognize that worry is only comes from unsettled mind, it’s just a thought and it’s not aligned with our true nature and if you transform worry to ease), the blinds on this side of the lantern opens up to reveal the Great Bright Light within the lantern.
If you pull the side that represents “Gratitude”, (i.e. if you pay attention to the little miracles of being alive and your heart fills with joy and gratitude), the blinds on this side of the lantern opens up to reveal the Great Bright Light within the lantern.
If you pull the side that represents “Diligent Work”, (i.e. if you utilize your full potential that you came into this world with, that your potential becomes your work and your work is your utmost potential), the blinds on this side of the lantern opens up to reveal the Great Bright Light within the lantern.
If you pull the lantern away from opposite ends, (i.e. you practice Compassion in the Now), all four sides of the lantern are collapsed and there is no lantern anymore and the Great Bright Light is totally exposed.

The second understanding is similar in nature but it is math related. I think there is a math nerd within me waiting to be discovered!
In this one, “Just for Today” or if we simply call it as “Being Here and Now” has a multiplication factor  of  0 (Zero).
Whatever you multiply it with (or when you bring this factor at the presence of others), everything else disappears and the result is zero (non-duality or emptiness).
You multiply “Here and Now” with Anger, anger disappears, the end result is zero; you multiply Here and Now with Worry, worry disappears, the end result is zero. You multiply it with Gratitude, there is no need for gratitude anymore, because there is no subject that feels grateful or any objects to be grateful for, the end result is zero. You multiply it with “Diligent Work” there is no one left to work, or any work left to be done, the end result is zero. Multiply it with Compassion and there is no one left to be compassionate for, including the Self. The “Here and Now” is the Golden key to de-activate the need for all others, it’s the zero factor J   but look at what remains…   
Here and Now x Anger = 0
Here and Now x Fear = 0
Here and Now x Gratitude = 0
Here and Now x Work diligently =0
Here and Now x Compassion = 0
What remains = Great Bright Light

Love & Light,
Zeynep


Sunday, April 2, 2017

Reiki Newsletter-April 2017

Dear Friends,
I love April because it means FRANS IS COMING TO TOWN!!!!  This will be the 7th year, my teacher Frans Stiene is coming to Cincinnati to teach a Reiki event. This year we’re blessed with a 4 day Reiki Meditation Retreat.

Frans is a dedicated practitioner who deepens his own knowledge and experience and reflects it in his teachings. That’s why the same class looks different every year. This is true for the Public Talks too. If you’ve been to his Public talks before, I invite you to come experience it again. I’m sure you’ll get out something different.

https://www.facebook.com/events/1373321709425616/

The Reiki Meditation Retreat will be on April 21- April 24 in Transfiguration Spirituality Center, a secret heaven in Glendale.  The Retreat is open to any serious practitioner; you don’t have to be a Reiki practitioner.  Here is the link for registration:   http://us.ihreiki.com/events/detail/east-coast_usa_4_day_reiki_retreat1  

If you’ve been to a 1 day Retreat or as we call it the Play Day before, multiple it by 4, that’s how much fun it is J

If you can’t make the Retreat, Frans will give 2 free Public talks.
Wednesday  April 19th  2017 7-9 pm
Reiki Room of Dayton
848 E Franklin St,
Washington Township, OH 45459

Thursday April 20, 2017 7-9 pm
True Freedom Recovery Yoga
4501 Allison Street
Norwood, Ohio 45212

Besides  fun and information,  Frans’ Public talks are an energy experience where you get what you need at that point in your life. So, come back again and bring family, friends, kids, especially if there is anyone who is curious about Reiki and you don’t know how to explain it!

While here Frans will give private healing sessions too. There are only few sessions left. Contact me quickly if you want a private session with him. Sessions will be on Thursday April 20th and Tuesday April 25th.

Our next big Reiki event is in May. As you know, we meet twice a year for a fun day to practice together as Reiki practitioners. Next Reiki Day is May 21st, 9:30 AM - 5 PM in Northside.  Here's a link to more information.  http://www.wherevent.com/detail/Attune-The-Art-CIncinnati-Reiki-Day

Last but not least, there will be a Reiki presentation next weekend at Victory of Light Festival on April 8th at 5 pm in Sharonville Convention Center. Come join to give Reiki if you’re a practitioner, or invite your loved ones to listen about Reiki and get a short hands-on Reiki experience. Patricia and Sundar will be leading this experience and everyone is invited to take part!
 Hope to see in one of these events (or may be all!),
Love & LIght,
Zeynep

Friday, February 3, 2017

Reiki Newsletter-February 2017

It's been exactly 15 years since I’ve first heard about Reiki. I still remember those first few months that led me to learn Reiki and all the magical things that happened during those months (and many more in following years).
It was the last week of January in 2002. One weekend, my mother-in-law and I were talking on the phone like we do every week. She casually mentioned that she has learned Reiki in a weekend workshop.  I probably wouldn’t believe what I’ve heard if it would have been someone else but I trust my mother-in-law, she is very down to earth and sharp woman. I still couldn’t wrap my mind around how could you touch and heal.  I always believed that some people are born with the ability to heal but those were natural healers, I believed. It’s just that I didn’t think anyone could do it.
Of course I went to internet, googled Reiki and there were lots and lots of information, anywhere from free distant attunements to classes charging $10,000. I lay it to rest for a while.
Couple weeks later, in mid-February, I went to Florida for business. I had 1 hour free time until a business dinner. I was driving back to the hotel when I saw a book store in a strip mall. The rest, I’ll never forget….
 I made a sharp left turn, parked the car in front of the book store. I walked in to the store. I walked right into an aisle on the left. I walked to the end of the book shelf and reach out and grabbed a book, yes…  a Reiki book.
 Even today, when I know where the Health/Alternative healing, etc. books are located in a bookstore I can’t find Reiki books at first try. It was simply a miracle to walk right to a store and pick a book, a Reiki book, without searching or even thinking about it. It was like the book jumped to me.
It was Sandy Leir Shuffrey’s Teach Yourself Reiki and the first sentence of the book was that You cannot teach yourself Reiki! It’s because this book is published by ”Teach Yourself” series, it’s called Teach Yourself Reiki. Anyway, I immediately started to read the book, memorized the hand positions and started doing Reiki to myself. It was amazing that even though I didn’t have the attunements, I was feeling the energy.  I can’t forget the deep restful sleeps I got those first few weeks.
When I returned home I immediately started looking for classes in Cincinnati.
That journey was quite amazing too.  I found couple Reiki Masters and Mira Shukla amongst them who teaches at Tri Health Pavillion. I realized I missed her class by one week and I was going to be out of the country in her next class; and the following class coincided with my sister’s wedding. It was like a curse. Months have passed and I was still chasing a class.
It was September, the schools started and my son’s school had an Open House. There were after school activities accepting registrations during the Open House. My son and his best friend wanted to go to Kumon, an after school reading and math program.  I talked to the Director of Kumon during Open House, and registered my son. I grabbed the Director’s business card and it was Mira Shukla. I walked with the card in my hand and read the name few times. I couldn’t believe it, it was the Reiki Master I was chasing for month. I went back to the desk and asked her if she is the Reiki Master Mira Shukla. We both laughed and I told her that I was chasing her classes for months. She promised to let me know for the next class in October.   That class got cancelled and I was at the end of my patience. I couldn’t wait any longer. I was reading William Rand’s web site and I was even corresponding with one of his Turkish students. I realized there is a class coming up next weekend in Detroit. I called immediately and the associate said the class was full for weeks and someone just called and cancelled. One spot was available and it was mine. I signed up immediately.
The next day I saw Mira at school. She asked me if I got her phone message. No, I didn’t. She said she left me a message that she was going to teach me a private class because I was waiting for so long. I told her that I signed up to William Rand’s class and I am going to Detroit next weekend.
I went home and there was a red light blinking in the answering machine, which neither me or my husband noticed in last 2 days. I played the message. I couldn’t believe it. I rewind it again. It was an empty message with no recording.

I knew I was supposed to go to William to Detroit. 

Sunday, September 11, 2016

September 2016-Reiki Newsletter

Reiki and the Five Elements

You may wonder what’s the relationship of Reiki and the 5 Elements and what the practice of 5 Elements could possibly bring to our Reiki practice?
First of all, what I mean by Elements is the building blocks of our “being”. The elements; Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether first defined by ancient Greeks to explain the nature of existence. However similar concepts existed in all ancient cultures around the world. They even say there is also a 6th element, the mind. In short, what I mean is what constitutes our “human being” as body, mind and soul as well as the qualities that makes us a human being and what makes the Universe.   
In that sense, I see the knowledge and practice of 5 Elements as a great companion to my Reiki practice. For me, the purpose of Reiki practice is to “be the Reiki”, or to recognize that I’m already Reiki (the Great Bright Light). For me, what this means in practical sense,  is to live in a non-dual world with pure consciousness with unconditional happiness and peace, without any anger, fear or worry, with deep gratitude. It means to manifest my highest potential in life, and love my self and all living beings with infinite compassion.  A person who lives in this state of mind is well-balanced, in harmony and peace within and with everything around.
How could the practice of Elements help to achieve this state of mind? I think the practice of Elements does it in 2 ways; first by balancing the Elements, the building blocks; so that the person is in harmony within. A person who is in harmony can’t help but be in good health, and good state of mind and eventually in harmony with everything else (non-judging, accepting, surrendering). On the other hand, the practice of Elements also helps to let go of Elements which eventually helps to rid the Ego, the self, so that what stays behind is the True self.
I also see lots of similarities between what the Reiki symbols represent and the Elements. If we look one by one:   
Earth element represents groundedness. No wonder one feels safe, secure and free from any fear when grounded. It also reinforces our life purpose. When we ‘re balanced in Earth element, we acknowledge our right to be on this Earth, we recognize our uniqueness and uniqueness of our abilities. Earth element is also nurturing, we nurture our own qualities as well as bringing the best in others. In our body, it’s represented in our bones and muscles.
If we have too much Earth energy, we may be stuck, not flexible and unable to make the next move. Too little Earth energy makes us spacy, not able to make decisions, even angry, agitated and depressed.
Water is about the flow, the flexibility. Water takes the shape of its container, is flexible. Water represents the creativity. Life started in water and even fetus grows in amniotic fluid. Water is represented in our body in all fluids, the blood, the saliva, the recreative systems, kidney and bladder. If we’re balanced in our water element, it gives us the ability to flow with life at ease.
If we have too much water, it’s hard to concentrate and we may lose ourselves in the current of our thoughts and feelings. If we have too little water, we can’t flow to life and dry of creativity.
Fire is the passion. It’s the force behind the action and ambition. Fire is also the power that triggers all of our body systems. It’s represented in our body in digestive system, there is literally a chemical reaction going on, a little fire, in our bodies. The force of fire is transformative, just like it transforms food into energy, it can help to purify us and move to the next stage of our lives.
If we have too much fire, we may burn and deplete ourselves out and may not be tolerant to others. If we have too little fire, we don’t have the ambition to do anything.
 Air is about movement, motion and change. As wind blows, separates the clouds and brings out the sun air element can move unnecessary thoughts and bring clarity to our minds. It has the ability to move freely in a playful way and expand to infinite. Air is subtle but powerful, it hosts the prana, the life force. In our bodies, it’s represented in lungs.
If we have too much air, it may be hard to concentrate, focus or grow roots. If we have too little air, we may resist to life and resist to change.
Ether is what holds all elements together. It enables all elements to exist together. It’s open, inclusive and accommodating. It’s represented in our awareness. Our awareness can shrink or expand as space.
When we have too much space, we may be disconnected. If we have too little space, we are confined and stuck.
If we practice balancing our elements, we find ourselves deeply grounded to the earth, we feel safe, secure without any anger, fear or worry and with a correct life purpose, we flow tru life with ease, we’d have the passion for right action and transformation and a clear mind and expanded awareness.
This is the exact same space the 5 Reiki precepts point out: No anger, No worry, Deep Gratitude, Honest action, and Compassion for self and all.
What are the ways to practice Elements? There is a structure called  a stupa that represent, amongst many other symbolism, 5 Elements in Buddhism . I was very lucky to visit and circumambulate some sacred stupas (Shanti stupa in Ladakh, Boudhanath in Kathmandu as well Dochula pass with 108 stupas in Bhutan). To my experience the practice of 5 Elements gets very easy when you’re at the presence of a sacred stupa. However, we can’t find a stupa in our everyday life, let alone a sacred one. What we can do instead is a visualization of a stupa in our body or reciting the syllables that represent each Element. With this practice of mindfulness, our elements get in order and balanced which brings balance and harmony inside and out.  
Shanti Stupa in Ladakh, India

Boudhanath, Katmandu, Nepal


108 Stupas in Dochula Pass, Bhutan


We’ll practice few of these meditations during the Reiki Day next week. Hope to see you all at Hoffner House in Northside on Sunday September 25th, 2016. 
Here is the invite: 

Love & Light,

Zeynep