The 5 Principles of Reiki: Releasing Anger

A few weeks ago, I briefly introduced you to the Five Principles of Reiki, and this week we are back with an in-depth discussion of the first principle. In general, Reiki’s Five Principles are fairly self-explanatory and do not require a huge amount of dissection. However, the beautiful thing about this is that each person is going to interpret these guidelines according to their own experience, personality, and insight. So, even though you’re likely to feel like you’ve got a pretty good handle on these concepts simply by reading through them, I’m offering my own personal thoughts in the hope that perhaps they will encourage you to do your own reflective thinking and come to your own fresh interpretation.

To start things off, we’ll take a look at the first of the Five Principles of Reiki:

“Just for today, I release angry thoughts and feelings.”

I’d been thinking quite a bit about how I wanted to approach this subject because, although letting go of anger sounds simple in theory, it always tends to be more complicated than that (as I’m sure we can all attest to). I’d been pondering the concept of righteous anger, and I’d been asking myself, “Is anger sometimes the right thing? Is it at times beneficial to be angry and should we ever act on that?” The bad news is that I still don’t have a 100% solid answer for you, but the good news is that I do have some thoughts that came about as a result of a conversation with a close friend last night.

I was talking to this friend about my somewhat recent break-up, and I was telling him all the angry things I wanted to say to my ex-boyfriend. So, my friend responds to me, “Then say them! You’re too nice.” At first, I agreed with him. There are a lot of times in my life where I don’t stand up for myself like I should and end up being walked all over; developing the ability to be more assertive is something I’m really working on. However, I don’t think this particular incident is one of those times. If I were to call up my ex-boyfriend and unleash a stream of insults and four-letter words at him, what would I be accomplishing? I’d have expressed my anger, sure, but I’d also be lowering my own vibration and moral standing. I’d probably feel worse after saying those things than I did before! Now, that’s not to say that there aren’t some things Mr. Past-Love couldn’t do with hearing, but those things would fall on deaf ears if I delivered them in an angry frame of mind. And, to be quite honest, most of the things I want to say to him when I’m angry aren’t even true!

So, although my friend meant well and is always supportive of me, his suggestion isn’t one that I’m going to take. The way I see it, although anger and indignation are many times totally understandable or justified, it’s the hanging on to those feelings that we need to be careful of. This is why the Reiki Principles call for us to let go of anger, even if it’s just for today. The 5 Principles don’t ask us to never feel angry. They don’t ask us to lie to ourselves and say, “Anger? What anger? I’m not mad, I’m fantastic!” Instead, they encourage us to acknowledge the anger we feel and then release it. Once we’ve taken a deep look into the cause of our angry feelings and let go of that fiery, burning emotion, we are free to channel ourselves into changing the particular situation for the better.

I hope my perspective on this first principle has also given you some thoughts of your own to ponder. Each of us is coming from a different place and bringing different experiences to the table, so your take on releasing angry thoughts and feelings may be completely different than mine! If you have thoughts you’d like to share with me or other followers of the blog, we’d love to hear your ideas in the comments. Namaste!

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