Tuesday, 10 July 2018

"Gathering a bouquet at full gallop"

After a holiday by the seaside I am feeling refreshed and enjoyed having time and space to simply be, instead of rushing to make the next deadline.  My life is full of many things:  Reiki treatments and teaching, singing groups, family and keeping the house and garden in order.  There is always something to be done!  I often find I am busy just about every day of the week.  The holiday reminded me how important it is to stop once in a while and have time to re-connect with myself and nature.  There’s a Chinese proverb that describes this perfectly: “It’s like trying to gather a bouquet at full gallop”.

To gather a beautiful bouquet, it is necessary to take time, to look carefully and consider what flowers to include.   This can’t be done when moving at speed.  It’s necessary therefore to slow down, take time and be more present.  This is something that can be quite a challenge in modern life, with all its distractions from computers, phones and other people!

While I usually start my day with a peaceful time giving myself Reiki, I often don’t pause for the rest of the day.  With an ever-increasing list of ‘things to do’ it is tempting to just keep going.  What Reiki has taught me, however, is that for my health and well-being I need to make space and have pauses.

I heard recently about how in the midst of the busiest Japanese cities there are temples and shrines that people visit regularly.  I encountered this myself when I visited Kyoto last year.  On my last day there I was exploring a busy shopping street and saw an entrance to a Shinto shrine.  I went in and found a delightful small space where people were able to find an oasis of peace, a few feet from the hustle and bustle of the street outside.  Here there was a place to re-connect with nature, to refresh the soul, to find sanctuary.

I had also visited many Buddhist temples where the gardens are peaceful places to re-connect with nature and refresh the soul, inviting me into the present moment with their simple beauty.  The tea ceremony we participated in had a similar effect and I realised that this seems to be an important aspect of Japanese culture: the ability to find time and space to re-connect with nature and spirituality.

I see that Reiki, like those shrines and temples, offers space to re-connect with natural energy and find sanctuary for the soul.  It invites me to be present, slows my mind and helps my body to relax (unlike going at full gallop).  It is even more accessible than the Japanese temples and shrines, because it’s available in my own hands, anywhere and at any time.  All I need to do is remember to stop for a few minutes and place my hands on myself.  I have discovered that pausing and slowing down my mind is actually really good for my work because a relaxed mind is more creative, enabling me to find creative solutions to problems.

So I hope you have some time to pause your usual routine during the summer.  To assist this, I invite you to enter the sanctuary of Reiki – whether by placing your hands on yourself if you have learned Reiki or by receiving treatment from someone else if you haven’t.  May the bouquet you gather be fragrant, abundant and gathered slowly!

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