There are books which pretend to be a reference point, and there are those which not only are, but also exceed readers' expectations. « The Reiki Sourcebook » is certainly one of the second category.
The book starts with a study of the origin of the word Reiki. Right at the beginning we then discover that no stone was left unturned. The history of Reiki is introduced with many details, including among others, a detailed diagram (p42-43) showing the links between the different lineages from the founder (Mikao Usui) up to now. A chronology is also there.
A chapter is dedicated to the original teaching of Mikao Usui. The basic precepts are introduced as well as their origin. Others subjects, like the relationship between the Reiki and the Waka poetry, or the hands positions, are also described. A section is devoted to the mantras - with an amazing chart of symbols.
There is a review of Reiki as it is practiced in Japan since the death of Mikao Usui. The contact and the transfer of his teaching to the west is also tackled. We even find some explanations on Japanese customs! Thus the reader will more easily understand in which cultural context the traditional Reiki evolves. A review of Reiki as it is practiced in the west has of course been done.
The characteristics of the different branches, Japanese and western are explored in details. A summary of each with their link to the founder, the number of levels taught and the approach taken are completed with contact details. This will most certainly be of interest for those who want to explore the Reiki at its Japanese source. Many other references are available, such as associations, newsletters and internet websites. Also, the complete translation of the memorial stone of Mikao Usui can be found.
But even more amazing, we can find a compendium of scientific studies undertaken on Reiki. Beware skepticals ! The references of the medical studies extracted from medical journals are provided.
A glossary as well as an index will delight the researchers. Similarly to an academic book, the footnotes abound across all chapters. This will ease any further study by the reader. And for the most perspicacious, the bibliography is rich of over a hundred references...
Whether you are serious about learning on Reiki, or you are just curious, this book will satisfy you. To the first ones it will provide the detailed knowledge they are seeking, and to the other ones it will provide the most appropriate ground to enter into the Reiki world - beyond the ongoing myths and prejudices which usually surround the Reiki in too many books. This one surpasses them easily, by the scale of its content as well as by the rigour in which such content is delivered. It was about time that such book be written!
I highly recommend this exceptional book which for sure will make its mark.