Direct Line to the Divine
Good energy healing work is a practical application of spirit. This means the skill level and integrity of the healer is crucial.
There's no other way to put it. When the heart and soul of a well-cultivated energy healer are aligned with pure intention and the energy of the universe, god, the divine or the big whatever-you-want-to-call-it moves through healer and healed in a stream of blissful life force and pure spirit.
This is usually a very elevating experience. Although sometimes at first it can be a little rocky if we've engaged in a lot of denial.
Some energy healers can see auras and colors around the bodies of their clients; some feel things instead. It doesn't really matter how the healer works, as long as they're attuned and you're receptive.
Most schools of energy healing see energy problems falling into two main categories: blocked energy and drained energy. Physical disease will block energy; so will unresolved emotional and personal issues. Moving life force through these blocks opens things up and recharges what's been exhausted. When stagnant chi moves feelings may surface; being responsibly present for what comes up in response to these actions is one of the things a good healer does.
A number of forms of energy healing are taught in massage schools, Reiki being one of the most popular. Acupuncture and homeopathy are sometimes thought of as forms of energy healing, since they work with life force and not primarily through biochemistry.
Reiki has been shown to relieve anxiety and pain by relaxing patients and improving their sense of well-being.1,2 Professional nursing associations find energy healing techniques effective and support their use by nurses in the clinical environment.3 Positive results have been documented in pain management,4 pediatrics,5 and in a wide range of settings from acute care6 to the hospice.7
Many excellent energy healers are untrained and come to their abilities naturally. Perhaps it takes many lifetimes of cultivation to achieve the clarity, stillness and humility required to be a good channel for the divine. Others find mentors to guide and train them. Some would say that for healers who are not already naturally gifted, some kind of initiation or mentor-student transmission of the tradition would be a necessary foundation for the healer's work.
It's caveat emptor out there. Buyer beware. There's no licensing for energy healers. As in many matters of the spirit one person's miracle worker is another person's fraud. Good personal chemistry usually leads to good results, but not always. Some otherwise-excellent energy healers have huge charisma and fuzzy boundaries. If you feel drained or stressed after your energy healing session or if your healer's behavior makes your feel unsafe it's best to find another healer. A good healer will make you feel completely at home; a good session will leave you feeling light, refreshed and clear.
1. Burden, B., et al. 2005. The increasing use of reiki as a complementary therapy in specialist palliative care. International Journal of Palliative Nursing. 11(5):248-253.
2. Gallob, R. 2003. Reiki: a supportive therapy in nursing practice and self-care for nurses. Journal of the New York State Nurses Association. 34(1):9-13.
3. Kelley, M. 2002. Strategies for innovative energy-based nursing practice: the Healing Touch program. SCI Nursing. 19(3):117-124.
4. Apostle-Mitchell, M., MacDonald, G. 1997. An innovative approach to pain management in critical care: therapeutic touch. Official Journal of the Canadian Association of Critical Care Nurses. 8(3):19-22.
5. Kemper, K.J., Kelly, E.A. 2004. Treating children with therapeutic and healing touch. Pediatric Annals. 33(4):248-252.
6. Umbreit, A.W. 2000. Healing touch: applications in the acute care setting. AACN Clinical Issues. 11(1):105-119.
7. Demmer, C., Sauer, J. 2002. Assessing complementary therapy services in a hospice program. American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care. 19(5):306-314.