7 Types of Reiki: Benefits and Side Effects

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In the fast-paced world that we live in, emotional stress and mental exhaustion are common issues many people deal with. Unlike medical conditions, these issues don’t necessarily need treatments through pharmaceutical drugs.

Instead, there are other forms of treatment that can help with these conditions without the involvement of medical drugs. Reiki is one such form of treatment. Consequently, this unique form of healing has become a common household term.

7 Types of Reiki Benefits and Side Effects

The first time you come across the word Reiki, your mind is most likely to picture a type of message. Moreover, many people also believe that it is an ancient treatment technique. Nevertheless, these are misconceptions.

With its popularity increasing day by day, Reiki is under strict scrutiny as people try to judge its benefits, risks, and effects. Not to mention, many people even label Reiki practices as pseudo-science that aims to be accurate. On the other hand, those in favor of these treatment practices perceive it as a primary form of healing.

Nonetheless, before jumping to a conclusion, you should pause and begin by understanding the fundamentals of what Reiki is, its various types, and its benefits.

What Is Reiki?

Reiki is a word of Japanese origin meaning ‘mysterious atmosphere or miraculous sign.’ In Japanese, ‘rei’ means universal, while ‘ki’ means life energy.

The concept of Reiki is about energy healing. As per the practitioners, energy gets trapped at the site of physical injury or emotional pain. If this continues for a long time, the trapped energy can lead to illness.

Correspondingly, the purpose of Reiki is to aid in the flow of energy throughout the body and eliminate obstacles. Furthermore, the practitioners firmly believe that improving the flow of energy in the body enables the individual to relax, speed up the healing process, relieve pain, and reduce the symptoms of illness.

Mikao Usui founded Reiki in 1922, and until now, people throughout the world have used Reiki, even in hospitals, to complement different treatments.

What Is a Reiki Session?

Most practitioners perform Reiki treatment in a peaceful and private environment. However, this is unnecessary as the Reiki treatment can be performed anywhere. The client must relax in a comfortable chair or lie on a table during the session.

The practitioner begins by placing their hands gently over the specific regions of the client’s head, torso, and limbs. Typically, the practitioner keeps their hands in position for three to ten minutes. In case of a burn, the practitioner puts their hands above the wound.

Reiki supporters state that when the practitioner holds their hands above the body, an energy transfer occurs. During this energy transfer, practitioners claim that their hands are tingling or feeling warm. 

The practitioner holds their hand in position until the time they feel the energy has stopped flowing. Additionally, the practitioner removes their hands and places them on a different site once they feel the warmth has faded from their hands.

Types of Reiki

There may be thousands of Reiki types. However, the following are the five core types:

1. Usui Reiki (Western Reiki)

The Usui System of Natural Healing is a form of Japanese healing art. Mikao Usui, the founder, was on a personal search to understand healing, leading him to find Reiki about 100 years ago. 

Usui Reiki was unique to its Japanese origins until 1937 when Ms. Hwayo Takata introduced this technique in Hawaii. Additionally, the technique gets passed on from a Master to students; who impart the knowledge and form of its practice.

Additionally, Usui Reiki is based on four aspects and nine elements. The combination of different aspects and elements creates a system that guides people on a journey of healing, spiritual awakening, and growth.

The four aspects of Usui Reiki are:

  • Healing practice
  • Personal Development
  • Spiritual Discipline
  • Mystic Order

The nine elements of Usui Reiki are:

  • Oral Tradition
  • Spiritual Lineage
  • History
  • Initiation
  • Symbols
  • Treatment
  • Form of Teaching
  • Monetary Exchange
  • Precepts

Benefits of Usui Reiki:

Each type of Reiki has its unique merits. Fundamentally, Usui Reiki could help with the following:

  • Self-acceptance
  • Pain relief during labor and delivery
  • Awareness of thoughts and feelings
  • Manifesting hidden emotions with the purpose of healing
  • Pain relief
  • Reduced stress
  • Mental wellness
  • Relaxation
  • Quality of sleep
  • Fear and anxiety relief

2. Jikiden Reiki (Eastern Reiki)

Jikiden Reiki requires the practitioner to stay faithful to the original methods Mikao Usui and Chujiro Hayashi taught. This type of Reiki is pure and simple and uses the most effective way of enhancing the healing systems.

Jikiden Reiki is the most authentic form of Reiki and is still similar to what was taught in Japan. It has proven its effectiveness and has a history of over 65 years.

The original teachings of Jikiden Reiki from Mikao Usui were further imparted from Chujiro Hayashi to Chiyoko Yamaguchi in 1938. Moreover, Chiyoko, who learned Reiki when she was only 17 years old, practiced it daily for 65 years to help others. Although during the 1990s, it was believed that no original Jikiden Reiki practitioner was alive and that the teachings were lost forever, to everyone’s surprise, in 1998, Chiyoko Yamaguchi was discovered.

The renowned Reiki teachers could not believe that she learned Jikiden Reiki from Chujiro Hayashi. At last, the famous Reiki teachers promoted Chiyoko and her sons to teach others the original form of Jikiden Reiki through seminars.

Benefits of Jikiden Reiki:

Jikiden Reiki comes with its own benefits. A few of these may include:

  • Enhanced healing after injury
  • Reduced ailments in children
  • Improved stress levels
  • Treats insomnia
  • Improved natural immunity
  • Mental wellness
  • Spiritual enlightenment

3. Karuna Reiki

The word ‘Karuna’ itself is of Sanskrit origin. Hence, Karuna Reiki means an action taken to alleviate the suffering of others. Consequently, Karuna Reiki can also be called the Reiki of Compassion. 

When performing the Karuna Reiki, it encourages the individual’s universal compassion to arise and imparts wisdom into their soul. Moreover, Karuna Reiki includes the need for chanting and toning to make the healing process more effective. 

Additionally, the vibration of voice is the energy practitioners use to enhance healing, which penetrates deeper inside the cells and tissues. Karuna is a quality of the blessed beings who have dedicated their service to end all suffering. 

When an individual develops the state of Karuna, they do not heal themself but share this technique to heal and help others in need. Furthermore, Karuna Reiki does not serve a selfish purpose. Instead, it enhances the healing process and provides help for individuals that are in need.

Benefits of Karuna Reiki:

The Karuna Reiki practices are the most selfless healing technique. They could have various benefits like:

  • Allows you to work in association with enlightened individuals and give you a chance to impart their wisdom
  • Introduces a state of complete empowerment
  • Unlocks the chakras and will enable you to perform better in life
  • Quickly lifts the negative energy
  • Increases the process of healing
  • Spiritual empowerment
  • Gets rid of blocks that prevent us from using our naturally-provided gifts
  • Emotional and physical healing
  • Encourages the idea of oneness of all creation

4. Lightarian Reiki

The Lightarian Reiki is an extension of the teachings and techniques passed by Usui and Karuna Reiki Masters. This technique aims to provide services to introduce more levels of healing. 

The Lightarian Reiki was founded by Ascended Master Budhha, who used different vibrational bands to develop a far better connection. In total, there are eight different types of vibrational bands in Reiki. 

While Usui Reiki occupies the first band, Karuna Reiki occupies the second. Correspondingly, the rest of the bands combine to form the different levels of Lightarian Reiki. Although levels I and II of Lightarian Reiki are offered together, levels III and IV are attuned individually, and the remaining levels V and VI are attuned together.

The bands mentioned above are responsible for adding a unique vibrational band that has an increased vibration and further accelerates the healing process. Nevertheless, a practitioner must wait for at least 30 days before attuning a new band. This may seem like a long time. However, the delay is necessary to allow the energy to settle.

Benefits of Lightarian Reiki:

Similar to other types, Lightarian Reiki may come with various unique benefits, including:

  • Deepening the healing process
  • Enhanced healing
  • Better healing frequencies
  • Elevated awareness

5. Sekhem or Seichim Reiki

Seichim is a unique form of Universal Energy Healing. Furthermore, it heals at an emotional, physical, spiritual, and mental level, where the heart is the center of focus. Seichim Reiki masters mostly perform this technique using their hands.

Seichem does not have links with any specific religion or faith and, therefore, can be received by anyone. Moreover, Seichim and Sekhem mean energy in different languages.

In 1980, Patrick Zeigler re-discovered this technique when he spent a night in a king’s chamber located inside a pyramid in Egypt. He spent the night carefully looking at and understanding the drawings made on the sarcophagus present inside the chamber.

The principles of Seichim are the connection between things and the love that binds everything together. Hence, the four elements, fire (sakura), water (sophiel), earth (Reiki), and air (angelic light), are used.

Seichim practitioners place their hands above or on the body at different locations. People on the receiving end report a different feeling when Seichim Reiki is performed on them.

Similarly, a few describe a warm tingling or cooling sensation. Several people have reported a calm feeling which led them to sleep afterward. Nonetheless, most people experience a relaxed feeling upon the completion of the procedure.

Benefits of Seichim Reiki:

The primary benefits of Seichim Reiki practices are:

  • Constantly feeling happy and positive
  • The desire to have a productive day
  • Arise in passion
  • Creative mindset
  • Mental wellness and awareness
  • Better relationships
  • Understand your goals

Other Types of Reiki

Apart from the five fundamental types of Reiki, there are other types that have origins in the five core techniques.

Rainbow Reiki

Rainbow Reiki is a product of the Usui system that combines knowledge, symbols, and different techniques. While its foundation is laid on the basic principles of Usui Reiki, it was built after further research on psychology, shamanism, spiritual psychotherapy, Feng Shui, communication, and meditation. Moreover, Rainbow Reiki emphasizes crystal healing, karma cleaning, and astral projection.

In addition, Rainbow Reiki involves addressing deities and spirit guides to gain spiritual wisdom. Not to mention, this Reiki heals by creating a balance by extracting energy from crystals, chakras, mantras, and symbols.

Kundalini Reiki

Kundalini itself is the energy of consciousness. It is a simpler healing technique where there is no need to use complex procedures or studies. On the contrary, the journey to discover and awaken the Kundalini energy is very safe. 

The practitioner gives the individual a series of attunements to open a channel where energy can enter to begin the healing process. Additionally, the attunement to gain Kundalini energy is the only attunement that opens the practitioner to Universal and Earth energies simultaneously, making them more powerful and effective. When performing Kundalini Reiki, practitioners remove multiple knots and blocks in the chakras that prepare the body to awaken the Kundalini energy.

Health Benefits of Reiki

Reiki practices are a unique form of healing method to effectively relieve various medical conditions. Furthermore, many physicians advise these techniques in combination with other medical treatments to ensure the mental wellness of patients. The possible health benefits of Reiki include:

  • Pain relief
  • Dampened anxiety
  • Reduced fatigue
  • Elevated mood
  • Improved quality of life

Risks & Side Effects

Reiki is a non-invasive procedure and is safe to perform. Not to mention, no one has yet reported any harmful side effects to this day. However, individuals who may find it uncomfortable to lie quietly in a room with an unfamiliar person might struggle with it. It is best to keep in mind that Reiki cannot replace doctor-approved treatment.


Reiki has the potential to bring about many positive benefits to an individual. The majority of individuals who have tried Reiki report having a pleasant and effective experience. If you suffer from some chronic medical condition, it is best for you to consult your doctor before opting for a Reiki treatment. 

Additionally, you should remember that Reiki also functions as a complementary therapy. Hence, you should use it in synchrony with conventional treatment as per your doctor’s advice. However, you may get a Reiki treatment along with receiving treatments such as massage, counseling, or acupuncture.