Buddhist tradition. As we know it today, Reiki is the work of a Shintoist-Buddhist physician and teacher named Mikao Usui. Usui is said to have discovered a Tantra, or Esoteric teaching, originally given by Shakyamuni Buddha on the practice of the Medicine Buddha. Due to visions he had of the various Buddhas, and the guidance of his own spiritual teacher, he fasted and meditated on the practice and received empowerment directly from the Buddhas. He then adapted the teaching so that it could be practiced by anyone who wished, including non-Buddhists. Some believe that Usui transmitted several forms of Reiki-one for non-Buddhists, one for Buddhists, and one for Tantric (Vajrayana) Buddhists.
The most recent development in the Reiki story came due to the blessings of Lama Drügpa Yeshe Trinley Odzer, the Ninth Drügmar Rinpoché, a Tibetan Buddhist Lama in the Nyingma and Kagyu traditions. While in Japan, Rinpoché’s father embraced the Shingon sect of Tantric Buddhism, and purchased a number of texts and teachings.
Among these was a Medicine Buddha / Healing Teaching called the Tantra of the Lightning Flash Which Illumines the Mind and Heals the Body, as well as copies of the notebooks of Dr. Usui (the founder of Reiki) and Mr. Watanabe (his pupil). With these, Rinpoché worked recreated the Reiki tradition in keeping with both Lord Buddha’s and Dr. Usui’s teaching.
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