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The Life And Legacy Of Mikao Usui


History of Mikao Usui - Mikao Usui was an important personality a Japanese master known for creating "Reiki" one of the most popular alternative healing techniques nowadays, he was also one of the most important spiritual guides during the XIX century and the first steps of the XX century and one of the first international japenese citizens that changed the way that west saw Japan during that period and for some experts the most important eastern spiritual master in contemporary history.

In this article we are going to see the character, his life and his begginings as a teacher and his path to become a master in this review of Mikao Usui history with comments about his legacy and how Reiki changed the way we see Japan and eastern countries.

A Life That Changed The World: Mikao Usui

Mikao Usui was born on August 15, 1865, in the Yamagata county of the Gifu Prefecture, Japan, in the hamlet of Taniai (now named Miyama chu).

In 1865, Japan was only emerging from a self-imposed exile that had left it culturally affluent but technologically and militarily well behind the Western world. Kyoto was the capital of Japan until 1868, when the Meiji Restoration shifted the capital to Tokyo.

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Usui Mikao's name is inscribed on a big torii gate at the Amataka shrine near where his home formerly stood in Miyamo cho today. The stone torii was gifted by the three Usui brothers in April 1923. Sanya and Kuniji, Usui Mikao's brothers, went on to become doctors and cops, respectively. Tsuru, his older sister, was his other sibling.

Mikao Usui was born into a society divided into classes. There was the favored class, to which he belonged, and then there was the rest of the population. Until 1870, common people were not even allowed to have surnames. Usui Mikao's ancestors were a hatamoto samurai, the highest rank of samurai (the Shogun personal guard)

Reiki Healing Hand Position
Reiki Healing Hand Position

When Mikao Usui Started Teaching?

It is hard to say when Usui Mikao's lessons began. At the turn of the century, he was 35 years old and, according to Suzuki san's pupils (who claim to have seen his Menkyo Kaiden certificate), had been adept in martial arts since his mid-20s.

Suzuki san had known Usui Mikao, her entire life because she was the cousin of his wife. Her official instruction with him is claimed to have begun when she was 20 years old in 1915, and her association with him lasted until his death in 1926.

Suzuki san and the other 11 live pupils are said to have kept a collection of documents, which include commandments, waka, meditations, and teachings.

A pupil of Chujiro Hayashi claims in a 1928 essay that the system was created "decades ago." For these reasons, it's thought that Usui Mikao's teachings predate 1922, when the Usui Reiki Ryoho Gakkai claims to have been founded.

Usui Do And Usui Teate: The Two Pillars Of Usui Teaching

What Usui Mikao taught was known as 'Usui do,' or 'the method of Usui,' and what he practiced on individuals was known as 'Usui teate,' or 'hands-on.'

In respect to Usui Mikao's whole teachings, early trainees had never heard of the phrase Reiki. It was also frequently associated with Usui Mikao's teachings, although not as the name of the teachings themselves, but rather in its literal sense of'spiritual energy.' The word 'Reiki' became a name for a system only after it reached the West.

The goal of these teachings is thought to have been to create a means for pupils to acquire enlightenment. However, unlike religion, there was no associated belief system. Though the goal was enlightenment, the healing that occurred for the students was a wonderful'side effect.

The use of reiju, or attunement, to remind pupils of their spiritual connection distinguishes Usui Mikao's teachings from other hands-on healing modalities. All of Usui Mikao's students, it appears, were given reiju and the five commandments, and those who were more interested in the teachings became committed students.

In the beginning, there does not appear to have been a distinction between clients and pupils, but this changed in 1917. People came to visit Usui Mikao for a variety of reasons, including healing and spiritual education. The photo on the right is from a book written by Usui's pupil Tomita Kaiji in 1933.

Hand Position And Symbolism In Usui Teaching

The teachings became more institutionalized once the Usui Reiki Ryoho Gakkai was founded. Those who struggled with working instinctively were taught hand postures. Symbols were also used in the mantra recitations as a means of evoking specific energy. The use of symbols was beneficial for people who had minimal prior experience with spiritual practice or who had trouble detecting the energy.

Waterfall with a rainbow as relaxing method
Waterfall with a rainbow as relaxing method

Sensei reasoned that it would be far better to make it publicly available to the general public and share its benefits than to use it alone to benefit his own family. He relocated in Harajuku, Aoyama, Tokyo in April of the 11th year of Taisho and established the Gakkai to teach Reiki Ryoho and provide treatments.

A big earthquake struck in September of the 12th year (1923 A.D.), causing a fire. The injured were groaning in anguish all over the place. Sensei, moved by their plight, went out every morning to walk throughout the town, curing and saving countless individuals. This is only a summary of his relief efforts in the event of a disaster.

Sensei had a kind and humble demeanor and never acted ostentatiously. His body was huge and strong. He constantly had a happy smile on his face. Many individuals from the surrounding districts wanted to invite him because of his well-respected and widespread reputation.

Accepting the invites, Sensei traveled to Kure, then to Hiroshima and Saga before arriving at Fukuyama. He took ill unexpectedly and died there. It was March 9th, Taisho's 15th year (1926 A.D.), and I was 62 years old.

Mikao Usui Legacy

Mikao Usui history was not just a the one from a healer or a pseudo Master, his legacy is the connection between religious connection with east and west, the introduction of the japanese culture and healings to western criteria that lead many research over the work of Usui and its teate or "Reiki".

He will be remenber not just like the creator of Reiki, he will be in history as one of the most important representatives of Japan in Europe and America, an advocated person that changed the world he lives and help many people during one of the most difficult times Japan had; And thats the legacy that all Usui pupils are still spreading all over the world.

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