I’m going to get right to the point here and say, no, you do not have to ask permission before ‘sending’ Reiki. Let me tell you why because this is an important point.
One of the basic… I mean, really basic, primary teachings of the system of Reiki, in all traditions, throughout the system’s 100-year history, is that Reiki is drawn in by the recipient, not pushed in or given by the practitioner. There is no argument about this anywhere in any of the Reiki literature, or on the thousands of Reiki websites out there. It’s a basic teaching. You cannot ‘give’ someone Reiki. As a practitioner, you are a channel, and the client draws the energy that they need through that channel. It’s time to get the ego out of this and stop talking about ‘giving someone Reiki’ as if Reiki practitioners are bestowed with some magical ability to force healing on people. They’re not.
If I were to give someone Reiki… i.e., make them take it, then yes, sure it would probably be a good idea to seek their permission. I can’t give them Reiki. In all the years I have been practicing, I have never ‘given’ anyone Reiki. Frankly, I don’t particularly want too. That’s way too much responsibility. I am, however, quite happy to be a channel and for the client to draw the energy they need through me for their own healing needs.
We have some basic facts of the system to consider here. All well known attributes of Mikao Usui’s system:
1/ Reiki is drawn by the recipient and not pushed in by the practitioner.
2/ Reiki is love. In the words of Hawayo Takata: ‘God Power’.
3/ The ability to do distant Reiki becomes deeply integrated into the practitioner so that sometimes (often, in fact) a simple thought about someone will open the channel and Reiki will flow to that person. The basic functions of the symbols become internalised and, you can’t switch them off.
Let’s set up a hypothetical scenario:
My friend, Joe, who lives in Australia is feeling very ill. Joe is a very pragmatic person with a rational, scientific mind, and he has no time for all the spiritual mumbo-jumbo like Reiki that I’m into. Still, we’re good friends.
I hear about Joe’s illness through a mutual friend and phone Joe up and offer to do a distant Reiki treatment for him. Joe refuses horrified that I might even consider practicing my weird energy-healing technique on him, especially as I know he thinks its all junk. I do it anyway.
What happens in this scenario? Does the energy flow or not? Joe doesn’t want it. Joe is against it. So how come that, yes, there is definitely a flow of energy? I am giving him nothing. I can’t give Reiki to him. It is profoundly impossible to do this, yet there is a flow. I can feel it strongly. It’s because, despite Joe’s proclamations that he doesn’t believe in Reiki and doesn’t want it, there is a deep part of his inner core that knows the truth of this energy and does indeed want it.
There is a big difference between the conscious mind, which is out of touch with the true nature of reality and the universe, and the subconscious, which is deeply in touch with the true nature of reality and the universe. The words Joe speaks are a reflection of his conscious mind and not his deep subconscious. The truth is there, far down in the core of his being. The bit of him that knows his connection to the Absolute. The bit of him that is in tune with his essential nature as a droplet that has broken away from the ocean of oneness. That bit of him, the true part of him, wants the energy, because its an aspect or reflection of his true nature.
I could go on for pages discussing the existential nature of existence but when it comes down to it, in the system of Reiki, you are not giving someone Reiki. They are drawing what they need through you and if they did not want it, they would not draw it.
But let’s firm this up a bit more. Takata made it clear that Reiki is ‘God Power’. We could say that it’s God’s unconditional love. Love, as so many people find once they learn Reiki, is the primary quality of this energy. In fact, that is all it is. Just pure love emanating from the body and hands of the practitioner. Divine energy, yes. When was the last time you asked permission to love someone? Never, right? For that matter, when was the last time you asked permission to pray for someone? Ditto for this too.