Love is the strongest of emotions, the most powerful force we can experience. We have allknown or heard stories about people who were called back from death’s door with the loving words of someone dear to them, as well as stories of those who suffered such grief at the loss of their spouse that they shortly followed them to the grave. Heartache, closed hearted, broken hearted, hard hearted, a heart attack waiting to happen; these are words we often hear in descriptions of others. Less often heard are open-hearted, heartfelt, unconditionally loving and my favorite word, loving-kindness. Why is it that the life negating descriptions flow so easily from the tongue and the life affirming ones are so difficult to express?

In my many years of practicing and teaching Reiki, a Japanese technique for reducing stress and promoting healing, I have experienced over and over the healing power of unconditional love. Unconditional love is the doorway through which all things are possible.  Think back to one of those moments of pure unconditional love and within seconds you will feel a softness growing and glowing around your heart. Why is that emotion so elusive and difficult to hold on to? Do we not believe that we deserve it, or is it because the memories of times when love was lost or we were betrayed have too strong a hold on us? Maybe it is because we are often loving, but rarely unconditionally loving. Our nature is to project onto others what we believe they “should” do, feel or look like and then try to improve them. We are seldom inclined to simply accept people as they are.

Unconditional love supplies the healing, and without it, treatments such as Reiki are not nearly as effective. Reiki energy flows from Spirit and the Universe into our hearts and then out from ourhearts to our clients. It isn’t necessary for us as practitioners to know what is troubling ourclients in order to facilitate their healing, although allowing them to speak may help them toconnect the dots. In actuality, all that is required of us is to open our hearts without judgement or attachment to the outcome, to become clear and open channels for the loving energy, and to trust that surrounded by, and filled with that love, our clients are receiving exactly what their bodies, minds and spirits require at that moment.

I once was given an exercise to do that consisted of spending the day telling everyone I knew orsaw “I love you and I forgive you.” But if I truly love another, then there is nothing to forgive. It is the conditions we place on our love that, when unfulfilled, generate circumstances that need forgiving. Instead, I would recommend a different exercise.

Find that memory of love within you, allow your heart to soften and fill and hold onto the feeling as long as you can, even if it is only a few seconds. Do this again when you first awake in the morning, repeat as often as you can during the day and one last time before you fall asleep at night. If you will do this every day, you will soon find yourself staying in that place of love longer and longer and you will begin to heal (from) your heart.

Author's Bio: 

Rev. Margaret Self is a Reiki Master/Teacher and a graduate of Clayton College of NaturalHealth with a Doctorate in Natural Health. Founder of Carolina Reiki Institute, Inc., she is basedin St. Andrews area of Columbia, SC and has trained individuals and practitioners from manyparts of the world. In addition to teaching classes and providing Reiki treatments, she is an oftenrequested speaker and has been very instrumental in educating the general population in SouthCarolina about energy medicine and other natural healing methods.Carolina Reiki Institute, Inc. is located at 112 Wexwood Ct., Columbia, SC 29210. Businesshours are by appointment. Call (803) 551-1191 or visit .