Typically we think of Reiki as a healer and balancer but when we are dying how does that play out? What is healed and what is balanced when the body is succumbing to disease or the effects of old age? Do we balance energy centers? Do we only focus on areas of pain?
Beginning at the soles of the feet and working up to the crown (paying attention to where the patient has pain and where you are guided to use Reiki) I spend at least 10 minutes at the crown as that helps to release the rootedness to this earth. It assists in the letting go process that occurs throughout the journey towards releasing into the next life.
Energetic balancing can be beneficial when someone is in the early stages of hospice. We want them to slowly pull up the roots but in the meantime we want to maintain energy balance and minimizing of pain so that the quality of the death journey is one of peace.
Reiki is especially beneficial for pain and nausea. This occurs in part because the patient becomes more relaxed which helps medication to work more effectively.
In dying there is an incremental releasing of ego, will, emotions, memories, body, mind and spirit. For some stuck in anger and denial this can increase pain and the need for intense medications. One such patient was predicted to die in about 4 days but because she was in denial about her death and had resentment and anger and frustration toward her mother (as stated by her husband) it took two weeks…in fact it was not until the mother came and spoke to her unconscious daughter that she was able to let go.
Deciding to use the system of Reiki in hospice is a very personal one and each practitioner needs to consider why they are doing it and if they can observe and be compassionate without becoming emotionally entangled. Doing your own regular Reiki practice will help keep the Reiki practitioner balanced. It is an honor to help someone to die. It is a privilege to have the gift of Reiki to help them do so.