Releasing Impatience and Resistance: Exploring the Reiki Principles
Releasing Patience and Resistance: Exploring the Reiki Principles by Lisa Guyman
Though in the wisdom of Mikao Usui, the founder of Reiki, he incorporated three additional principles (in addition to the Reiki principles on worry and gratitude) and the one we’ll explore this month is “Just for today, I will not anger.”
Impatience, righteousness and irritability all fall in this category. This principle is not about denying when we are angry (or impatient or frustrated) or about dampening our emotional antennae, but recognizing that most anger is the result of the dialogue in our minds, a resistance to the moment, an unmet need that leads to an accumulation of stress.
Reiki and meditation are about being in the now instead of pushing against what has happened in the past (even yesterday is the past), or hurrying toward the future (even the next errand is the future). To be in a hurry or to be impatient is to be negating the now (this gift of life) for some future moment.
When we feel “off” we can choose to see this as a call to reflection and action and we can:
Look at Self Care – A buildup of stress from over-stimulation or under-stimulation can result in irritability or impatience. And this indicates an opportunity for changing our priorities, re-balancing some aspect of our lives, establishing better habits or adopting a new perspective. When we truly take care of ourselves we tend to enjoy life a lot more, take ourselves a lot less seriously and ironically get more accomplished.
Create a Bridge – Being hurt, offended or angry often comes about when a need we have isn’t being met. It is too easy to just create a story in our minds (good ole assumptions) about how someone should have done something or said something different. (They should have read our minds). Instead of solidifying our one-sided story we can re-evaluate the situation and have an actual conversation with the other person (instead of just in our own heads). Personally I’ve nearly always found within myself the qualities I am upset about in the other person. When we recognize that this other person is a reflection of us… we create a bridge instead of a wall.
Embrace What Is – Our thoughts create most of the stress, anger and frustration in our lives. When I’ve done “The Work” with Bryan Clark it’s almost laughable how it’s not life itself (or something that happened or didn’t happen) that is causing me my greatest distress but my thoughts about life. Ask yourself if you released whatever story you are reciting internally…how you would feel in this moment?
Recognizing that it’s not life “out there” that creates our inner experience can be daunting and freeing at the same time. A traffic jam isn’t an inherently bad thing. Objectively it’s just cars stopped or very slowly moving — that’s all. We can be frustrated with traffic or we can be at peace or happily singing a song or listening to a program.
During the World Series in San Francisco when roads were being repaired (because of the earthquake) commutes were taking 2-3 hours instead of an hour. A reporter was interviewing commuters about their frustration. One commuter rolled down his car window and said “I love this! I finally have time to listen to books on tape.” It’s all OUR perspective. We upset ourselves. And we make ourselves happy.
And granted, it is important to acknowledge feelings of anger (or other emotions for that matter) when they arise and it’s equally important to look beneath the surface to see what is going on. Check in to determine if there is a message about a change needed, if the emotion is a covering something we need explore, if we can let go of “a story”, or if we need to find a way to release stress and re-balance our lives.
The Reiki principles (complete list or Reiki Principles linked to here) were designed to be a part of the fabric of our daily lives. So I invite you today to invoke one of the Reiki principles: just for today I choose to be free of anger/impatience; just for today I choose to live in gratitude; just for today I choose to be free of worry. Notice how different your day feels when you incorporate one or all of these.
“DON’T WAIT wait until you have no more suffering before allowing yourself to be happy. – Thich Nhat Hanh”
In my upcoming blog posts/newsletter releases I’ll be exploring the remaining two principles of Reiki which are essentially:
Today, I choose to honor and be kind.
Today, I choose to work hard (meaning applying oneself to spiritual growth).