Karen Garofalo
Reiki Master

Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki System of Natural Healing
Research, Practice, Teaching




Reiki Resources       Qigong (Chi Kung, Ki Work) Resources       Self-Massage Resources

Quotations       Reiki Lineage       Touching


Ki, Qi, Chi, Prana
The Vital Energy that Sustains Living Beings, the Life Force
Universal Life Energy, Breath-Energy, Living Energy
Ki (Japan), Chi or Qi (China), Prana (India)






Karen Garofalo

Reiki Practitioner, Master Level (Third Degree) Certified
Valley Spirit Center
9102 NE 100th Street
Vancouver, Washington  98662
Phone:  530-200-0750
E-mail:  kareng888@gmail.com
Reiki Practitioner Services by Appointment Only



Karen Garofalo completed the Third Degree, Master Level Reiki training on September 12, 2014. 
Her Master teachers were Jessie Woods and Sherri Paisley from the Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki tradition. 

Karen continues her studies, research, and practice with the Red Bluff Reiki Practice and Study Group at the Gratitude Center in Red Bluff, California.     

In April of 2015, Karen assisted Jessie Woods and Sherri Paisley with teaching and certifying a group of Reiki First Degree and Reiki Second Degree students. 

Karen Garofalo was certified for completing the Second Degree in the Usui Shiki Ryoho System of Natural Healing on June 23, 2007. 
The Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master who taught her was Jessie Woods. 

She was certified for completing the First Degree in the Usui Shiki Ryoho System of Natural Healing on April 2, 2006. 
The Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master who taught her was Susanna Luebcke, M.D.

Karen Garofalo also practices Yoga and Qigong with her husband, Mike. 
She was an active gardener in the North Sacramento Valley of California and now in the Columbia River Valley in Vancouver, Washington. 
She retired in 2014 after working 16 years as an Special Education Instructional Aide for the Tehama County Department of Education.  
She prepared a brief biography for interested persons. 



  Just for today, here and now, I will strive to:
Give thanks for my many blessings.
Seek and speak the truth.
Let go of my worries.  
Stop being angry.
Do my work honestly.
Be kind to my neighbors and every living thing.
Honor my parents, teachers and elders.




Bibliography, Links and Resources


Persons with a serious medical condition should always consult a qualified physician for a diagnosis and recommended mode of treatment. 


Self-help methods, complementary and alternative "medicine," and creative body-mind improvement and healing methods (e.g., qigong, reiki, yoga, massage, meditation, taijiquan, etc.) can be valuable tools in helping many persons to maintain good health, boost vitality, increase energy levels, improve their immune system, shed worries and fears, maintain calmness and relaxation, develop spiritually, and prevent or ameliorate more serious medical problems.  True "healing" involves many dimensions of mind, body, and spirit.  And, an ounce of inexpensive or free prevention is worth a pound of expensive conventional medical cures. 

Books and documents in the personal library of Karen Garofalo at the Valley Spirit Center are listed below and marked "BKEG."



Abundance Through Reiki  By Paula Horan.  Shangri-La Books, Lotus Press, 1995.  160 pages.  ISBN: 978-0914955252. 

Alternative Healing Arts
.   Webpage of Dr. Susanna Luebcke.  Includes webpages on: Emotional Body Healing, Nadis Energy Treatment, Energy Essences, and Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki.  Dr. Luebcke was raised in Berlin, Germany.  She trained and practiced medicine as a General Practitioner and Allergy specialist for 20 years. In 1993, she moved to Eastern Oregon to focus on alternative healing arts.  Susanna Luebcke: P. O. Box 83,Sprague River, Oregon 97639.  541-892-2992.  Email: harvsusi@earthlink.net.   

Bodymind Practices, Somatics, Somaesthetics 

Chico Harmony Center.  Chico, California. 

Chi Kung, Qigong: Chinese Healing and Rejuvenation Arts

Cloud Hands Blog    Bodymind practices, Gardening, Esoterica, Spirituality.   By Mike Garofalo.  Online since 2005. 

Empowerment Through Reiki.  The Path to Personal and Global Transformation.  By Paula Horan.   Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, Lotus Press, 2002.  157 pages.  ISBN: 0941524841.  BKEG. 

Energy Psychology: Self-Healing Practices for Bodymind Health.   By Michael Mayer, Ph.D..  Berkeley, North Atlantic Books, 2009.  Index, notes, 423 pages.  ISBN: 9781556437243.  Somaesthetic practices.  BKEG.

Essential Reiki: A Complete Guide to an Ancient Healing Art
By Diane Stein.  Freedom, California, Crossing Press Inc., 1996.  Bibliography, 155 pages.  ISBN: 0895947366.   BKEG. 

Essential Reiki Teaching Manual: A Companion Guide for Reiki Healers  By Diane Stein.  Crossing Press, 2007.  160 pages.  ISBN: 978-1580911818. 

The Ethics of Touch: The Hands-on Practitioner's Guide to Creating a Professional, Safe and Enduring Practice.  By Cherie M. Shonen-Moe and Ben E. Benjamin, Ph.D.  Sohnen-Moe Assosciations, 2003.  310 pages.  ISBN: 9781882908400. 

15 Minute Reiki: Health and Healing at Your Fingertips.  By Chris and Penny Parkes.  Hammersmith, London, Thorsons, 2004.  Index, 208 pages.  ISBN: 0007158912.  BKEG.

Gratitude Center in Red Bluff located at the Gold Exchange   Spiritual Traditions and Transitions Explored at the Gratitude Center have included: Reiki, Drumming, Crystals, Rituals, Demonstrations, Crone Circle Discussions, Sacred Sites' Visits, Meditation, Prayer, Lectures, Blessings, Group Discussions, Playing Musical Instruments, Chakra Balancing, Fun and Laughter. 

Human Connections Start with a Friendly Touch

Karen Garofalo    Reiki: Usui Shiki Ryoho   Valley Spirit Center, Red Bluff, California.   Karen participates in activities at the Gratitude Center in Red Bluff, and manages the email mailing list for this group. 

Halls of Reiki   By Ed Bacon.  

Hands, Touch, Haptics, Feeling, Fingers   Bibliography, Links, Resources, and an Extensive Selection of Quotations.  Research by Mike Garofalo. 

Hands of Light: A Guide to Healing Through the Human Energy Field  by Barbara Brennan.  Illustrated by Joseph A. Smith.  New York, Bantam Books, 1988.  320 pages.  ISBN: 978-0553345391.  BKEG. 

Hands on Research: The Science of Touch

The Hayashi Reiki Manual: Traditional Japanese Healing Techniques from the Founder of the Western Reiki System.  By Frank Arjava Petter, Tadao Yamaguchi, and Chujiro Hayashi.   Lotus Press, 2003.  128 pages.  ISBN: 978-0914955757. 

Healing Touch by Andrew Weil, M.D. 

How an Extra Touch Can Improve Your Health

Inner Reiki: A Practical Guide for Healing and Meditation.  By Tanmaya Honervogt.  Holt Paperbacks, 2001.  144 pages.  ISBN: 978-0805066906. 

Introduction to Reiki Ryoho.  The Southwestern Reiki Ryoho Association.  

Magick of Reiki: Focused Energy for Healing, Ritual, & Spiritual Development  By Christopher Penczak.   St. Paul, Minnesota, Llewellyn Publications, 2005.  Appendices, bibliography, 276 pages. ISBN: 073870573X.  BKEG.    

Mohan Makkar's Reiki Magic: The Usui System.  By Mohan Makkar.   

One Degree Beyond: A Reiki Journey into Energy Medicine.  By Jane Anne Narrin.  2nd Edition.  Seattle, Washington, Little White Buffalo Publishing Cottage, 1998.  Appendices, index, 314 pages.  ISBN: 096585454X.  BKEG. 

The Original Reiki Handbook of Dr. Mikao Usui   By Dr. Mikao Usui and Frank Arjava Petter.   The traditional Usui Reiki Ryoho treatment positions and numerous Reiki techniques for health and well being.  Foreword by William Lee Rand.  Twin Lakes, WI, Lotus Press, Fourth Edition, 2003.  80 pages.  ISBN: 978-0914955573.  BKEG. 

The Power of Reiki: An Ancient Hands-On Healing Technique.  By Tanmaya Honervogt.  

The Power of Touch by Psychology Today  

Quantum Touch

Quantum-Touch: The Power to Heal  By Richard Gordon.  Illustrated by Eleanor Barrow.  Foreword by C. Norman Shealy, M.D..  North Atlantic Books, Third Edition, 2006.  ISBN: 978-1556435942. 






Qigong, Chi Kung: Chinese Healing and Rejuvenation Arts

Reiki.  Sandi Leir Shuffrey.  England, Hodder & Stoughton, 2000.  Index, 183 pages.  ISBN: 0658008994.   BKEG.   

Reiki Alliance - Membership

The Reiki Association  

Reiki Best Practices: Wonderful Tools of Healing.  By Walter Luebeck and Frank Arjava Petter.    

Reiki: Beyond the Usui System.  By Karyn K. Mitchell.   

Reiki Bookshop   

Reiki Centre   

Reiki Energy Medicine: Bringing Healing Touch into Home, Hospital, and Hospice.  By Libby Barnett, Maggie Chambers, and Susan Davidson.    

Reiki for First Aid.  By Walter Lubeck.  Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, Lotus Light Publications, 1995.  154 pages.  ISBN: 0914955268.  BKEG. 

Reiki for Life: The Complete Guide to Reiki Practice for Levels 1, 2 & 3   By Penelope Quest.  Tarcher, 2010.  320 pages.  ISBN: 978-1585427901. 

Reiki Handbook: A Manual for Students and Therapists of the Usui Shiki Ryhoho System of Healing.  By Larry Arnold and Sandy Nevius.  PSI Press, 4th Edition, 1992.  160 pages.  ISBN: 0962550019.  BKEG. 

Reiki is Nonsense by Stephen Barrett, M.D..  He quotes from the Catholic Council of Bishops to support his argument against Reiki as having no value in healing or helping people.  Surely, however, touch, empathy, gentleness, relaxation, concern, love, and belief all have a role in bringing a better state of mind and spirit to troubled persons.  Some medical doctors say prayer or relics or sacred sites have no value in healing, but I am sure the Catholic Bishops would disagree.  "Healing" has a broader meaning than "curing" or "eliminating" a specified disease by using scientific medical methods.  On the other side of the coin, very expensive modern medical procedures sometimes fail to cure or heal, but we do not dismiss such "scientific" approaches overall as "useless."  Conventional medicine treatment is very expensive in America, so many people seek inexpensive or free natural self-help and "feel-good" alternatives. 

Reiki Light: Reiki, Buddhism and the Medicine Buddha  By Karl Hernesson.  Stafford, Engliand, Megalithica Books, 2011.  Bibliography, appendices, 416 pages.  ISBN: 9781905713339.  BKEG. 

The Reiki Manual: A Training Guide for Reiki Students, Practitioners, and Masters.  By Penelope Quest and Kathy Roberts.  Tarcher, 2011.  352 pages.  ISBN: 978-1585429042. 

Reiki Plus Natural Healing.  By David G. Jarrell.  Celina, Tennessee, Hibernia West, 1983, 1991.  Index, 79 pages.  ISBN: 0963469002.   BKEG.  David Jarrell, Reiki Master, founder of the Reiki Plus System of Natural Healing and the Reiki Plus Institute.  

Reiki Plus Professional Practitioner's Manual for Second Degree.  By David G. Jarrell.  Celina, Tennessee, Hibernia West, 1992, 1994.  96 pages.  ISBN: 0963469010.  BKEG.  

Reiki Ryoho   The Southwestern Reiki Ryoho Assocation.   Various informative webpages by Adonea.  

Reiki Ryoho at the Valley Spirit Center.   Red Bluff, California.  Karen Garofalo.  

Reiki: The Healing Touch.   By William Lee Rand.  

Reiki - The Legacy of Dr. Usui.  By Frank Arjava Petter.   

The Reiki Sourcebook, Revised and Expanded.  By Bronwen Stiene.  Ayni Books, Revised Edition, 2008.  434 pages.  ISBN: 978-1846941818. 

The Reiki Touch: Complete Home Learning System  By William Lee Rand.  Colorado, Sounds True, 2005.  Includes DVD video, audio CD meditations, music CD, 100 page workbook, and 30 illustrated cards.  ISBN: 159179370X.  BKEG.

The Reiki Threshold    Vancouver, Canada

Reiki: The Usui System of Natural Healing.  By Hawayo Takata and Paul David Mitchell.   

Soma, Bodymind, Somaesthetics   

The Soothing Power of Reiki by Karen A. Jamrog

Theraputic Touch: History and Philosophy

Theraputic Touch - Wikipedia   A highly critical and negative article about the role of touching and "curing" serious diseases (e.g. cancer, hepatitis, diabetes) and wound injuries.  Discussion of the research by Emily Rosa and others.   Of course, no mention is made of the fact that many extremely expensive conventional cancer treatments also have a high failure rate. 

Touching Makes You Healthier  

Touching, Hands, Touch, Haptics, Feeling, Fingers   Bibliography, Links, Resources, and an Extensive Selection of Quotations.  Research by Mike Garofalo. 





Ushi Reiki   Reiki Touch.  

Usui Reiki Lineage

Usui Reiki: Level One Manual.  By Francine Milford.   

Usui Shiki Ryoho - An Interview with Paul Mitchell  

Usui System of Reiki: Usui Shiki Ryoho

Valley Spirit Center: Reiki, Qigong, Taijiquan   

What is the History of Reiki

Working Winds   A retreat Center near Klamath Falls, Oregon.  Robert and Sharon Chinook.  Chinook Aerie Retreat Center.  

Yoga and Prana: Principles and Practices 

Your Hands Can Heal You: Pranic Healing Energy Remedies to Boost Vitality and Speed Recovery from Common Health Problems.  By Stephen Co and Eric B. Robins, M.D..  Free Press, 2003.  320 pages.  ISBN: 9780743243056. 



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Usui Reiki Lineage

Dr. Mikao Usui, 1865-1926
    Christian and Buddhist Scholar, Teacher, School Administrator
    Founder of the Usui System of Reiki
    1st Generation


Mr. Chujiro Hayashi, 1878-1940, Retired Naval Officer, 
    Reiki Grand Master (1925) and Teacher
    2nd Generation


Mrs. Hawayo Takata, 1900-1980  (Reiki Grandmaster, 1938) 
     3rd Generation
     Certified 22 Usui Reiki Masters


Mrs. Phyllis Lei Furumoto, Grand-daughter of Mrs. Takata   (Reiki Grandmaster, 1975)  
      4th Generation


Lore Massar (Reiki Master, 1988) and Solveig Imlau  (Reiki Master)
       5th Generation    


Dr. Susanna Luebcke   (Reiki Master)
       5th Generation   



Jessie Woods  (Reiki Master)
       5th Generation
       Jessie Woods was certified as a Reiki Master in 2006 by Dr. Susanna Luebcke. 


Donna Robertson, Jessie Woods, and Karen Garofalo in April 2015


Donna, Jessie, Karen, and Diane in April 2015



Karen Garofalo (Reiki Master, Third Degree, 2014)

5th Generation
Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki System of Natural Healing









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Qigong (Chi Kung, Kiko)
Bibliography, Links, Resources

"Qigong" refers to the many Chinese methods or disciplines for "discovering, gathering, circulating, purifying, directing, conserving, storing, transforming, dissolving, or transmitting" (Roger Jahnke) the vital life forces, or the energy, of the body.  The words Ki (Japanese) and Qi or Chi (Chinese) use the same ideographic character.  



Chi Kung, Qigong, Energy Work, Yang Sheng Gong, Dao Yin 

Cloud Hands Blog

Cloud Hands: Qigong and T'ai Chi Chuan  Bibliographies, links, resources, guides, lessons.  

The Complete Book of Chinese Health and Healing
.  By Daniel Reid.  Random House, 1994. 484 pages. ISBN: 0877739293. 

Eight Section Brocade Qigong
   By Michael Garofalo. 

The Essential Qigong Training Course
.  100 Days to increase Energy, Physical Health, and Spiritual Well-Being. By Kenneth Cohen. Boulder, Colorado, Sounds True, 2005. Includes a 59 page weekly workbook, a Qigong DVD, 5 audio CDs, and one Qi Healing DVD. ISBN: 1591790905.   BKEG 

Five Animal Frolics   

The Healing Promise of Qi: Creating Extraordinary Wellness Through Qigong and Tai Chi.  By Roger Jahnke, O.M.D.. Chicago, Contemporary Books, 2002. Index, notes, extensive recommended reading list, 316 pages.  ISBN: 0809295288. 

Healing Ways: The Teachings of Kenneth Cohen   

Northern California T'ai Chi Ch'uan and Qigong Directory

Qigong: Bibliography, Links, Resources, Quotes and Notes

Relaxtion (Sung): Loose, Open, Free, Yielding, Responsive   

Sacred Circles 

Secrets to Living Younger Longer: The Self-Healing Path of Qigong Standing Meditation and Tai Chi.  By Michael Mayer, Ph.D..  Orinda, California, Body Mind Healing Publications, 2004.  Index, bibliography, 281 pages.  ISBN: 0970431066.  This book has a companion instructional video/DVD called "Body Mind Healing Qigong." Website:  Body Mind Healing.  BKEG.     

Standing Meditation (Zhan Shuang)

Temple Qigong   

Valley Spirit Qigong (Chi Kung, Yang Sheng Gong, Dao Yin)

Valley Spirit Center      Red Bluff, California   

The Way of Qigong: The Art and Science of Chinese Energy Healing. By Kenneth S. Cohen.  Foreword by Larry Dossey. New York Ballantine Books, 1997. Index, notes, appendices, 427 pages. ISBN: 0345421094.  One of our favorite books: comprehensive, informative, practical, and scientific.  BKEG Collection.  

Wild Goose Qigong


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Reiki  Quotations
Quotes, Sayings, Information, Ideas, Concepts

"The Usui System of Reiki can be a personal tool for healing and growth, a way to give energy to family and friends, or a gentle complementary therapy in holistic medicine.  A Reiki treatment supports the whole person — physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.  It is simple to learn and can be applied in a clinical setting, given as self-treatments, or used as a "home remedy" to enhance health and emotional well-being.  When a Reiki practitioner places his/her hands on an area of their own or a client's clothed body, Reiki flows through the practitioner into the client.  This transfer may be felt as any type of sensation— heat, cold, vibration, tingling, unusual heaviness, or somen documented to relax muscles, still the mind, and ease pain. Hands-on treatment has been scientifically proven to accelerate healing.  Many health professionals are effectively incorporating the use of Reiki into their individual practices."
The Reiki Alliance   


"Emerging research suggests that touch therapy works: In one landmark study, 16 happily married women were subjected to the threat of a mild electric shock; touching their husbands’ hands brought immediate relief from the resulting anxiety.  Even a stranger’s touch was somewhat calming.  “We know that anxiety decreases immune function and makes you get sick more often,” says study author Jim Coan, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at the University of Virginia.  “If touch can help you be less anxious, you’re more likely to stay well.” "
-  Adrea Cooper, The Healing Power of Touch, WebMD,


"For optimal health, we need body and spirit, exercise and meditation, awareness of the inner world and the outer.  In other words, health requires balance and moderation. The goal of qigong may be summarized as xing ming shuang xiu, "spirit and body equally refined and cultivated."  Cultivate your whole being, as you would cultivate a garden - with attention, care, and even love."
-   Kenneth Cohen, Essential Qigong, 2005, p. 2


"Did you know that you have healing power, literally at your fingertips?  The simple act of touching is so powerful that it can slow your heart rate, decrease your blood pressure, and strengthen your immune system!  Our culture is not very affectionate, and we are losing out on the benefits of regular physical interaction with others.  The healing power of touch is so necessary for life that babies not touched regularly don’t grow and develop normally, and children who are not lovingly touched enough are more likely to be violent as adults."
The Healing Power of Touch, Bodyecology


"Usui Shiki Ryoho (the Usui System of Natural Healing), known as Reiki, is a form of healing and spiritual awakening, received and developed 100 years ago by a Japanese man, Mikao Usui, and brought to the West via Hawaii in 1937.  It is passed on from one person to another through specific initiation rites, teachings and defined forms of practice.  The Japanese word reiki can be translated as 'universal or spiritually guided life force' and the Usui System is a way of working with reiki for healing of self and others.  The word healing is used in the sense of regaining harmony and wholeness and Usui Shiki Ryoho addresses the whole person, physical, emotional, mental and spiritual."
-   The Usui System of Reiki   The Reiki Association


"Healing Touch is a modern version of this time-honored practice. Many traditional cultures have recognized that a gentle touch is soothing to those who are ill.  More recently, studies conducted at the University of Miami’s Touch Research Institute have proven that touch is an essential part of human health.  Skin is the human body’s largest organ, containing millions of receptors that send messages through nerve fibers to the brain.  A simple touch has been shown to reduce a person’s heart rate, lower blood pressure, and reduce stress levels."
Healing Touch, BeliefNet


Touching, Hands, Touch, Haptics, Feeling, Fingers   Bibliography, Links, Resources, and an Extensive Selection of Quotations.  Research by Mike Garofalo. 


"As an energy transformation practitioner I am dedicated to helping others bring their heart into harmony with their divine nature by guiding them through their release of painful memories and emotional trauma, as well as  finding and changing limiting patterns and false beliefs in order for them to move closer to their highest potential, and the life they deserve."
Chico Harmony Center


"Just trust life:
Life will bring you high,
I only you are careful in selecting
In the maze of events,
Those influences or those paths
Which can being you each time
A Little more upward.
Life has to be discovered
And build step by step
A great charm ..."
-   Father Pierre Teilhard de Chardin


"Interestingly, one definition of the word 'Reiki' is 'a system that has come into being through a moment of enlightenment'.  Originally, Usui referred to his system as 'Te-ate' (pronounced 'tee-ah-tay'), which means 'hand healing' or 'hand application'.  According to the Japanese author Michio Kushi, Te-ate is a traditional Japanese form of healing that has been practised for centuries.  He mentions that George Ohsawa, the founder of modern macrobiotics, taught this palm healing throughout Japan, the US and Europe.  Kushi referred to Reiki as one of the modern forms of this art to emerge in Japan, and also mentions Johrei (Purification of Spirit) and Mahikari (True Light) as more recent developments.

Reiki is a technique or method that is based firmly on the esoteric principles that were represented in Japan in the early part of last century.  Usui brought together, in a unique way, the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine, energy transfer techniques like Chi Kung (in its Japanese form of kiko), Tendai Buddhism in terms of energy exercises, empowerments and spiritual teachings, and Shintoism in terms of techniques used to control the energies. The symbols that came to be used later in Reiki's history also have their roots in Tendai Buddhism and Shintoism.  This was done in a way that allows anyone to be connected permanently to a source of healing energy, and being able to channel it without having to undergo many years of practice, and they can learn to pass this ability on to other people very simply."
Mikao Usui, ReikiJoy.net


"The Usui System of Reiki Healing is first a healing practice focusing on self-treatment.  Daily practice is ideal.  The practice balances and strengthens the functions and health of the physical body, enhances relaxation and self-awareness, and quiets and nourishes the spirit. Out of the practice of self-treatment, it becomes natural to treat family and friends with the same benefits.  Applying Reiki is practical and useful.  It accelerates and strengthens any healing process from bruising to chronic illness to mental/emotional imbalance.  Reiki can be used at any time and in any situation when we can lay our hands on ourselves or another."
The Reiki Touch   


"The power of love to change bodies is legendary, built into folklore, common sense, and everyday experience.  Love moves the flesh, it pushes matter around ...  Throughout history, "tender loving care" has uniformly been recognized as a valuable element in healing."
-  Larry Dossey


“Gentle touch has been shown to facilitate physical and psychological functioning, particularly in terms of reducing stress, relieving pain, increasing the ability to cope, and general health ratings.  Participants in a study examining the effectiveness of therapeutic touch as a treatment for managing pain due to fibromyalgia experienced a significant decrease in pain and reported a significant improvement in quality of life.”
The Health Benefits of Physical Touch

"The hand is the cutting edge of the mind."
-  Jacob Bronowski


What Reiki Ryoho Is:


"The mind has exactly the same power as the hands: not merely to grasp the world, but to change it."
-  Colin Wilson 

"The upper limb is the lightning rod to the soul."
-  Robert Markison

“We leave traces of ourselves wherever we go, on whatever we touch.”

Lewis Thomas

"Emotional release and muscular release are interdependent - one does not occur without the other."
-  Elaine Mayland 


"The more you lose yourself in something bigger than yourself, the more energy you will have."
-   Norman Vincent Peale  


“There are normally three levels of interaction and interpretation found in a typical Reiki session.  First, level 1, are the expectations, intentions, sensations, feelings, reactions, and experiences of the person being touched.  Second, level 2, are the intentions, actions, sensations, feelings, and experiences of the person doing the touching. And, third, level 3, are the environment, backdrops, sounds, context, actions of the participants, and setting where the touching event is taking place.  A third person observer would likely observe level 3, unless, after the session is over, the touched and the toucher spoke about their experiences in levels 1 and 2.  Both the touched and the toucher might verbally report their Reiki session experiences of being relaxed, emotionally or physically pleasured, relieved, having less pain or discomfort, energized, or in some way improved in either body, mind, emotions, or at spiritual levels.  Or, the session experience might have a neutral or uneventful characterization by the touched or toucher.  Rarely, negative experiences such as fear, discomfort, or unusual psychic or physical sensations might be reported by the touched or toucher.”
-  Mike Garofalo


"Those who say it cannot be done should not interfere with those of us who are doing it."
-  S. Hickman


“Therapeutic Touch was developed by Dolores Krieger, PhD, RN and Dora Kunz in the 1970s. Krieger was a Professor of Nursing at New York University’s Division of Nursing. Her friend Dora had experienced unusual perceptual abilities since childhood, and had been following the use of laying-on of hands to treat the ill. They both had the opportunity to observe the work of world-renowned healer Oskar Estebani at a place called Pumpkin Hollow Farm. It was the compassionate intent focused through his hands and the “centering” of this healer that captured the attention of both Kunz and Krieger. It would become a fundamental component of the healing modality Krieger termed Therapeutic Touch. 
     The practice of TT revolves around the concept of a human energy field. In an interview Krieger is quoted as saying, “your human energies are constantly and dynamically interacting with the vital energy fields of others in a manner not thought of in Biology 101.” There are numerous studies on such bio-fields. This energy or “vital life force” can be compared to the Indian “prana” or Chinese “Chi“. Martha Rogers, a world leader in nursing theory and research, developed the “theory of the Human Energy Field” that was of great interest to Krieger and Kunz. The Rogerian model theorized that every person is greater that the sum of its parts, with a complex energy field that constantly interacts with the environment. This is an open and dynamic interaction, maintained through patterning and organization. When we are well, the flow within this system is unhindered, but stress, injury and illness affect its order and openness. In such an ordered universe, the conscious intent and compassion to heal of the TT practitioner is believed to have powerful results, enabling the patient to repattern their energy in the direction of health. Therapeutic Touch is seen as a holistic process, treating the individual as a whole.  Krieger also realized the importance a person’s belief system plays in their response to illness and their ability to heal, as in the power of “positive thinking” or the placebo effect. Though many other healers practiced within the framework of a religious belief, Krieger and Kunz believed it was not necessary for TT to be effective. However, it could be done within such a context if a patient so desired. By going beyond the framework of any system of religious belief, TT became accessible to all. 
     Therapeutic Touch is believed to be an innate ability that can be developed in anyone with dedication, commitment and a sense of compassion. It was initially taught to graduate school nursing students at New York University because they were in a position to spend time with the ill and their work already predisposed them to a compassionate approach. TT is still primarily a modality associated with nurses. And nurses are often TTs’ most vocal advocates, witnessing firsthand how it can help comfort, facilitate healing, disperse anxiety, and alleviate pain. Today, according to the North American Nursing Diagnosis Association (NANDA), “energy field disturbance” is a nursing diagnosis defined as a “disruption of the flow of energy surrounding a person’s being which results in disharmony of the body, mind or spirit.”  In addition to stimulating the body’s own healing ability, TT promotes relaxation, reduces pain and decreases anxiety. It has been shown to have a positive effect on the immune system, and accelerates the healing of wounds. Nurses often use it pre- and post-operatively as a means of identifying and reducing the anxiety, stress and pain associated with the surgical process. It has also been used with premature babies, in childbirth, as well as with the dying to calm and reduce pain. TT can be effective when used alone or as an adjunct to traditional treatments and medications. Initially Therapeutic Touch did involve actual touch but additional studies convinced Krieger that touching was not necessary to heal, and since that time, it has not usually been a part of the treatment.”
Theraputic Touch: History and Philosophy


"Love is like the sun: has its inner energy source that shines on you."
-  Helene Largerberg   


“Among men it is in virtue of fineness of touch, and not of any other sense, that we discriminate the mentally gifted from the rest.”
-  Thomas Acquinas, Commentary on Aristotle’s De Anima


Touching, Hands, Touch, Haptics, Feeling, Fingers   Bibliography, Links, Resources, and an Extensive Selection of Quotations.  Research by Mike Garofalo. 


“Until the eighteenth century at least, touch remained one of the master senses … It verified perception, giving solidity to the impressions provided by the other senses, which were not as reliable.”
-  Robert Mandrou, Introduction to Modern France


“A world of meaning can lie with the simplest gesture, a kiss, or the touch of a hand.”
-  Constance Classen, The Deepest Sense


"It all starts in the bottom layer of our skin. There, a series of informational conveyor belts, called Merkel cells, feed data from the skin to the body’s central nervous system. The body then responds with a surge of hormones. And, if you’re receiving the right kind of touch — as opposed to a creepy one or a punch in the nose — you'll get a dose of oxytocin, the aptly named “cuddle hormone.”  The results are palpable. Spearheaded by labs throughout the country that are dedicated to the science of touch, a slew of new studies are proving that touch — gentle, empathetic, and supportive — comes with incredible emotional and physical health benefits. “Touch is our body’s largest and the oldest sense," says Jeanne AbateMarco, MS, RN, CNS, clinical nurse coordinator of the Department of Integrative Health Programs at NYU Langone Medical Center. "It’s a channel of communication. It’s integral to the human experience.” "
You Feel Me?  The Science of Touch


"When you are touched by something, it often is a change for the better.
Being "untouchable" means isolation, aloofness, insensitivity, coldness, superiority, authority, hardness ....
-  Mike Garofalo, Pulling Onions


"Too many of us are hung up on what we don't have, can't have, or won't ever have.  We spend too much energy being down, when we could use that same energy - if not less of it - doing, or at least trying to do, some of the things we really want to do."
-   Terry McMilan   


"To touch can be to give life."
-  Michaelangelo 


"In recent years, a wave of studies has documented some incredible emotional and physical health benefits that come from touch. This research is suggesting that touch is truly fundamental to human communication, bonding, and health.  From this frontier of touch research, we know thanks to neuroscientist Edmund Rolls that touch activates the brain’s orbitofrontal cortex, which is linked to feelings of reward and compassion.  We also know that touch builds up cooperative relationships—it reinforces reciprocity between our primate relatives, who use grooming to build up cooperative alliances.  There are studies showing that touch signals safety and trust, it soothes. Basic warm touch calms cardiovascular stress. It activates the body’s vagus nerve, which is intimately involved with our compassionate response, and a simple touch can trigger release of oxytocin, aka “the love hormone.”  In a study by Jim Coan and Richard Davidson, participants laying in an fMRI brain scanner, anticipating a painful blast of white noise, showed heightened brain activity in regions associated with threat and stress. But participants whose romantic partner stroked their arm while they waited didn’t show this reaction at all. Touch had turned off the threat switch.  Touch can even have economic effects, promoting trust and generosity. When psychologist Robert Kurzban had participants play the “prisoner’s dilemma” game, in which they could choose either to cooperate or compete with a partner for a limited amount of money, an experimenter gently touched some of the participants as they were starting to play the game—just a quick pat on the back. But it made a big difference: Those who were touched were much more likely to cooperate and share with their partner."
Hands on Research: The Science of Touch


"Free energy will promulgate a forward leap in human progress akin to the discovery of fire. It will bring the dawn of an entirely new civilization -- one based on freedom and abundance."
-   Sterling D. Allan   



"Reiki (pronounced “ray-kee”) and other complementary approaches to wellness, such as art therapy, aromatherapy and meditation, might at first glance seem like strange bedfellows for modern medicine’s gadgets. But not only are integrative therapies now more accepted by doctors and patients, they have become sought-after treatments. Indeed, sometimes the morning list of patients who are waiting for Reiki grows so long, “we can’t get to everyone that day,” says Pauline MacKay, a therapeutic arts and activities assistant and facilitator of Reiki volunteers at Concord Hospital. “So many people want it.”

Reiki originated in Japan and is based on the idea that energy exists in everything and affects our body’s functioning. “Universal life energy is all around us,” MacKay says. “Everything has it. The ground, a light bulb, a stick — all have energy.” By placing their hands in positions that correlate to Reiki’s identified body energy centers or “chakras,” Reiki practitioners serve as conduits of sorts that channel universal energy to enhance and balance energy in the recipient’s body.

Reiki, which is offered free of charge at many hospitals, can be performed hands-off or hands-on; patients who do not want to be touched or whose condition precludes touching experience Reiki through a practitioner whose hands hover but never make contact with the patient’s body. Reiki recipients remain clothed — in fact, in hospitals, Reiki is often performed over the patient’s bed blanket — and even when Reiki does involve contact, the practitioner’s touch is extremely light. “Sometimes the patients don’t even feel our hands on them, but they do feel the heat from our hands,” says Sylvie St-Jean, a Reiki practitioner at Portsmouth Regional Hospital."
-  Karen A. Jamrog,
The Soothing Power of Reiki




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Red Bluff, Tehama County, North Sacramento Valley, California (1998-2017)
Vancouver, Clark County, Columbiaa River Valley, Washington (2017-)


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Reiki Touch, Touching for Health






Paths to Fitness and Well Being

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This webpage was last modified or updated on October 24, 2017. 



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