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Finding Comfort in Hard Times: Reiki for Grief Support

Losing a loved one brings profound pain. Whether from death, a breakup, or changing life circumstances, grief expresses the depth of our bonds as human beings. When faced with devastating loss, we can feel alone and disoriented, emotionally exhausted, even anguished. Know that these reactions are normal. Healing happens gradually, at its own pace. Still, many find comfort and restoration through supportive practices as they navigate grief. One such practice - Reiki - continues gaining popularity for its soothing, renewing effects.


Cupped hands with small arm tattoos facing upward with flowers and green in the background.

Photography of Marshall's hands captured by Vanessa Owen & Gavin Stewart 💜

What is Reiki?

Reiki originated in Japan as spiritual healing practice. The name comes from two Japanese words: “rei,” meaning universal life, and “ki,” meaning energy. Reiki with a capital "R" refers to the practice and technique. Reiki with a lowercase "r" refers to the energy itself that is synonymous with qi, prana, and known as universal life energy.


Essentially, Reiki practitioners channel universal energy to promote healing and well-being. With light, non-invasive hands-on touch, trained practitioners facilitate relaxing, rejuvenating Reiki sessions. In remote treatments, practitioners connect with recipients in a meditative space and channel the energy. Reiki is just as powerful over distance as in person though some prefer the gentle touch or hovering hands and others prefer to be in their own space where they feel most relaxed and comfortable.


Why Try Reiki for Grief Support?

Reiki sessions can provide:

  • Emotional soothing. Reiki calms the nervous system, releases pent-up emotions, instills peaceful sensations. This counteracts grief’s emotional turbulence.

  • Comforting touch. Reiki’s gentle hands-on touch contrasts the isolation grief can confer. Sessions remind grievers that support exists, which further eases painful feelings. (Reiki is also offered over distance.)

  • Restore balance and harmony. Grief disrupts regular body, mind, and spirit cycles. The movement of Reiki energy through touch reharmonizes these systems, grounding awareness and presence.

  • Holistic healing. Unlike talk therapy alone, Reiki addresses embodied grief responses - physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. This facilitates comprehensive healing.

  • Self-insight. Relaxation and calming sensations allow inward focus. Sessions grant grieving participants new perspectives on their experience and how to navigate it.


Reiki complements other modalities like talk or family therapy, meditation, journaling for people navigating grief and loss. It gently facilitates release, relaxation, and inner resource regeneration to equip grievers to better cope.


Research evidence substantiates anecdotal reports of Reiki’s stress-reduction benefits. Reiki has been researched and found to decreases anxiety, depression, and pain in folks experiencing emotionally difficult situations, even those beyond bereavement like trauma, chronic illness, stressful lifestyles, and more.


If you or someone you love suffers loss that has significantly decreased quality of life, consider researching Reiki as a supplemental solace practice. Sessions provide caring support - through compassionate human touch and energy balancing – which aids in reconciling grief’s inevitability as part of human experience.


Take things at your own pace, be gentle with yourself, and know that light exists on the other side. You don’t have to walk this road alone.

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