By Reverend Mark Hunnemann
Before I plunge in, it is vital that we see that there have been two major shifts in our lifetime, which have made the rise of Reiki, spiritism, and a long litany of other bizarre beliefs and techniques possible. It is at the presuppositional/worldview level that we must start or we will miss the forest for the trees. There has been a fundamental shift in epistemology (how we gain knowledge), and specifically in the nature of truth. Truth comes to us either via REVELATION OR SPECULATION. The latter is the new normal and is characterized by relativism and subjectivism. Look inside for truth is the mantra of our culture. Second, the most essential component of any worldview is the question: what is ultimate reality? For our entire nation’s history, until fairly recently, there was a monolithic consensus that ultimate reality was an infinite/personal God who is distinct from His creation. During our lifetime, ultimate reality has largely changed to one where the Creator/creature distinction has been obliterated…specifically, ultimate reality is an universal energy or life force that pervades all the cosmos. THAT is the forest; let us now look at the tree known as Reiki. What is it, and should Christians engage in it, as many do?
Contrary to popular belief, Reiki is as old as the hills, but was re-cycled into its current form in the recent past. It is one of a large number of “energy therapies” that has grown out of the New Age movement. According to The International Center for Reiki Training, “…it is the God-consciousness called Rei that guides the life force Ki (chi/China, prahna/India) in the practice we call Reiki.” (added) There are three things about Reiki that make it incompatible with biblical Christianity.
NATURE OF GOD--The language is misleading when it comes to God because, like all Eastern derivatives, god is “god-in-everything-ism” or pantheism. There is no infinite-- personal God that we pray to for healing. The prayer is NOT to God the Father in Jesus’ name. Instead, an impersonal force is manipulated with the intent of bringing about healing. Using the linguistic symbol “God” is a dishonest attempt to make the belief in an impersonal, all-pervading force more palatable to western tastes. Rei is simply the cosmic energy force that gives humans their life force…ki. Reiki healers attempt to remove obstructions to ki so that it may flow or vibrate in synchronicity with Rei. So, at the all-important point of WHO God is, the Reiki notion is antithetical to the bible.
SPIRIT GUIDES—perhaps someone will say that they simply adapt Reiki healing principles without adopting their notion of God. However, to assert that betrays a woeful ignorance of worldview thinking. Like ghosts, Reiki healing/beliefs will not fit in a biblical worldview; they are antithetical. (soon I intend on doing a series on how to think with a biblical worldview). Many people who have been the recipients of Reiki say that they feel MANY hands upon them as the “energy transfer” is taking place. If you look at their material, they unabashedly claim that spirit guides are an integral part of the healing process; they either assist or channel through the healer—depending upon their level of expertise.
Within a biblical worldview, the spirit realm s populated only by varying ranks of angels and demons….nothing else. Since these spirit beings are not Christo-centric, then they must be demonic—it is as plain and simple as that. We know from the angel of Light principle (2 Cor. 11:14), that Satan and his crew can mimic and morph into any shape they want to…which explains the vast variety of supernatural phenomena. They are capable of performing signs and wonders, which includes “healing.” Not everything that glitters is gold in the spirit realm, and (this is key) we must be discerning of supernatural evil (1 John 4:1)
Nature of healing—again, someone may object, “All healing is from God.” Really, what is your biblical text to support such a belief? There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to support that Reiki sometimes does extraordinary healing. Folks see this and automatically assume that God must be behind it. Just because an event is extraordinary or supernatural does not mean it is true! Consider this…is it possible that a demon may heal someone physically, but harm them spiritually? The obvious answer is yes, and I am distressed at the large number of folks being severely spiritually damaged by this form of “energy transfer.” Once one grasps the energy-centric worldview change that has occurred, then they are much better equipped to spot individual expressions of it…like Reiki.