reiki healingREIKI is a Japanese word meaning “universal life energy”. The syllable REI reflects the cosmic dimension, the unlimited nature of this potential while the syllable KI means life energy. Reiki therefore means universal life force. This force is inexhaustible, it is an uninterrupted flow. It is the energy of the cosmos, the force that provides life and sustains everything that lives in our world: men, animals, plants. Maybe you heard of tai chi or aikido? Syllables ki or chi energy are synonymous as in the word Reiki. In other cultures using different concepts such as light
or the Holy Spirit (Christianity) we talk about bioplasma bioenergy (Russian research) or Prana (Hinduism and Buddhism). Reiki is a natural therapeutic method that was rediscovered in the mid-nineteenth century by Mikao Usui, hence the name given to medical knowledge: Usui system,a healing process based on the laws of nature. The most simple and concrete to describe

Reiki is the art of channeling the life energy of the cosmos by the laying on of hands. When Reiki is activated and applied for medical purposes, it communicates with the body, mind and spirit. It increases the body’s ability to relieve symptoms, physical manifestations of the disease and reveal the soul and spirit of the causes of a medical condition, suffering, an existential malaise, inhibitions. It is necessary that you update the underlying causes of a psychological problem or physical condition to take your life fully, and thus be able to taste the joy and happiness that comes from a healthy balanced diet. Reiki is also a way to guide you in your spiritual journey ….Reiki is a method that is both gentle and effective which will allow you to discover your spiritual vocation and the meaning of your life. Reiki creates in you a feeling of unity, a sense of merging with others, with all humanity and Mother Earth.

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chakraThe practice of Yoga has gained an immense popularity over the last few decades.  There are classes in gyms everywhere in small rural areas to cosmopolitan centers.  Among the benefits of participating consistently  in a well instructed class are good alignment, improved breathing and more spiritual connection (alignment through the Chakra system).  This last part is often forgotten or completely overlooked because yoga is often represented as simply another form of exercise.  Yoga means path or way.  The practice of the Asanas (poses in yoga) are meant as a way to connect to one’s center,  to source energy and spirit. Yoga is an ancient spiritual practice that effects your body, mind and spirit by practicing balance, strength and focus as we connect to the chakra system.  The words Yoga and Chakra were taken over by a flighty new age perspective at one point -it is important to reclaim them as they are refreshingly structured and grounded.  They are concepts that have been around for thousands of years and for good reasons.

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jurlique-logoThis posh Madison Avenue location mixes uptown elegance with earthy products.  Many of their products are made with organic herbs and flowers that are harvested from Jurlique’s own farms in Australia.

Service:  Aromatherapy Facial

Cost:  $100.00 for a facial-reasonable especially for this part of town.

Ambiance:  Very Inviting and a lovely, calm oasis from the busy neighborhood it is located in.  They strive for a natural, yet upscale ambiance here and it is successfully achieved.  The spa is small as it is attached to the store which seems to take up most of the space.

Customer service at the front desk:  Very welcoming.

Hygiene:  Excellent.

Quality of service:  Very Professional and relaxing.

Products:  Jurlique is an international company largely known for its all-natural line.  As mentioned, they harvest a lot of their ingredients from their own farms.  If you are into “all-natural” this may be the line for you.  Some of their products are quite aromatically strong so be cautious if you have any allergic sensitivities.  They are on the costly side but they tend to last a long time and are very pure which tends to raise the price.  Quality costs.

Overall impression:  Jurlique is a class act in the spa world in my opinion.  No pretension, simply good quality products and great service technicians.  As mentioned, you pay for it but it is still not as costly as other high end spas in the neighborhood which are much less holistic.  This is strictly a facial spa as the emphasis is on their quality products.  They do not offer any other spa services such as massage therapy, body treatments etc.

When someone tells you something they are going through that is difficult, and you feel empathy for them, you may furrow your brow, squint your eyes a bit, sincerely feel something in your heart and say, “I’m so sorry to hear that, let me know if there is anything I can do.” Then you my spend the next few hours or days reflecting about their circumstances. You may share their story with a close friend or family member. This will probably help you feel a bit better about it, having shared your concern. I invite you to try doing one active thing-something that may positively affect their circumstance.

When we go through something challenging we tend to be less objective and more likely to ignore the simple solutions. I know when I get a cold I often completely forget about drinking lots of fluids (which is really helpful) but if someone tells me they are sick I immediately remind them of drinking tea and lots of fluids. So, instead of saying “let me know if there is something I can do” try suggesting one or two specific things you can do. Your friend may not be objective in there situation and it really helps to hear even the simplest of suggestions out loud. Be aware not to lecture them that isn’t what I mean at all-just the basic loving things we all need to hear.

We are not clinicians and we should not diagnose, and the issue is not our issue, but we are connected. Our goal is in being effectively empathetic without becoming enmeshed or overly involved.

Effective Empathy is useful and helps to transcend our issues so we can move into more positive action. Inactive sympathy is inactive and can add to the stagnation of an issue. It also does not empower the recipient.

When my baby was born my husband needed to return to work after about two weeks. I was recovering as well as acclimating to parenthood. It was an intense time. My friend, Amy came over one day and helped me more than I could have imagined. Watching her sprightly bounce around my apartment in good health doing my dishes and my laundry gave me such hope that soon I too will have my life and energy back. She had been through an intense birth as well about a year before, and really understood what I was going through. She turned her empathy into effectiveness and I will always be grateful to her for that.

In Moroccan culture it is said that when you go to see a sick person-your presence itself helps them to heal quicker. It’s true! By being a healing presence to an ill person you are giving them the greatest gift of all-you! So next time you think you’d like to help in some way…gracefully insist on coming over to be with them. Remember many people are very stoic-myself included-when they are sick, so try to get past that. Respect their boundaries of course but don’t underestimate the power of being there for someone in need.

If they are far away, pray or send them healing energy. It seems obvious but how many times do we say, “you’re in my thoughts”…and then move onto something else. It takes time to really send your love and positivity. Pause and do it-it is active. At the end of the day you too will feel good having been effective with your empathy and there’s nothing wrong with that! Feeling effective is one of the best feelings in the world especially if it is in helping another.