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Last updated on November 29th, 2023.

Reiki is a holistic healing practice that originated in Japan and has gained worldwide recognition for its effects on physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Rooted in channeling universal life energy, reiki practitioners use their hands to transfer healing energy to others, promoting balance and vitality. To understand it fully, we must know the reiki symbols and their meanings.

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What are the reiki symbols?

Central to reiki practice are its sacred symbols, each carrying unique meanings and purposes. These reiki symbols and their meanings serve as keys to unlock the full potential of reiki energy. We will uncover their historical origins and practical applications. From the cho ku rei symbol, associated with power and amplification, to the dai ko myo symbol, representing spiritual enlightenment, we will explore how these symbols enrich reiki practice and contribute to holistic healing.

Cho ku rei

The cho ku rei symbol, often known as the “power symbol,” has been an essential part of reiki for ages. It comes from Japanese culture and ancient Buddhist scripts. Cho ku rei has been used in various forms of healing for centuries and found its way into reiki through Dr. Mikao Usui, the founder of reiki. It’s like a key that unlocks the healing energy in reiki.

Cho ku rei looks like a simple, powerful sign. It’s made of several elements

      • A Spiral. Starting at the top, there’s a spiral, which signifies the universal energy that flows through everything.
      • A Straight Line Down. This straight line represents a channel for that energy to flow.
      • A Cross at the Bottom. The cross is like an anchor, grounding the energy.

Meaning and significance of cho ku rei

Now, what does this symbol mean? Cho ku rei is all about focus and amplification. Imagine it as a magnifying glass for healing energy. When a reiki practitioner draws or visualizes this symbol, it’s like turning up the power of reiki. It makes the energy stronger and more concentrated, like a spotlight on a dark stage.

Practical applications in reiki healing

So, how do we use cho ku rei in reiki healing? It’s pretty straightforward. When a reiki practitioner wants to increase the energy flowing to a particular spot, they draw cho ku rei over it. It’s like saying, “Hey, let’s boost the healing right here!” This is especially handy when dealing with pain, discomfort, or areas that need extra attention.

Cho ku rei is like a power switch in reiki. It has a simple but profound design that focuses and amplifies healing energy, making it an essential tool for reiki practitioners during their healing sessions.

Sei hei ki

Sei hei ki, an essential reiki symbol, has a rich history. It originates from ancient Tibetan Buddhist traditions and found its way into reiki through Dr. Mikao Usui, the founder of reiki. This symbol has been cherished for generations for its special ability to heal emotional and mental imbalances.

Sei hei ki is a simple symbol with a distinctive structure

      • Three vertical lines. These lines represent harmony and balance.
      • A horizontal line in the middle: This line signifies the heart and the balance of emotions.

Healing with sei hei ki

This symbol is like a gentle, soothing friend for emotional and mental healing. It’s all about clearing away negative energies and bringing calmness to the mind and heart. Imagine it as a reset button for your emotions.

Practical application in reiki sessions

When someone is going through emotional turmoil, anxiety, or mental stress, a reiki practitioner draws sei hei ki over or near them. This is like sending a warm, comforting hug to the person’s emotions and thoughts.

During a reiki session, sei hei ki is often used after cho ku rei (the power symbol). It helps cleanse and balance the emotional and mental aspects of a person. By doing this, Sei Hei Ki aids in releasing emotional baggage and calming a racing mind.

Sei hei ki is a friendly symbol that focuses on emotional and mental healing in Reiki. Its uncomplicated design and powerful effects make it a valuable tool for reiki practitioners seeking to bring peace and balance to the emotional and mental aspects of their clients’ lives.

Hon sha ze sho nen

The hon sha ze sho nen symbol has a remarkable history. It comes from ancient Japanese and Tibetan traditions, and it’s a vital part of reiki. The symbol’s name roughly means “no past, no present, no future.” This symbol acts as a bridge connecting healers and those in need of healing, no matter where they are.

What does the hon sha ze sho nen look like?

      • Three horizontal lines. These lines represent different time periods—past, present, and future.
      • Three vertical lines. These lines connect with the time periods and signify the flow of energy between them.
      • A dot at the center. This dot is like a meeting point, where past, present, and future all come together.

Significance of hon sha ze sho nen

So, what does hon sha ze sho nen do? It’s like a telephone line for healing energy. When a reiki practitioner uses this symbol, it’s like saying, “I want to send healing energy to you, no matter where you are or when you need it.” It helps healers connect with people in distant places, even across different time zones.

It’s like a warm, comforting hug, even when you can’t be there in person. This symbol has been used to help people feel better, both physically and emotionally, no matter how far apart they are.

Dai ko myo

The dai ko myo symbol, known as the “master symbol” in reiki, has a deep and fascinating history. It represents the culmination of reiki’s growth and is considered the most powerful symbol in this healing practice.

Dai ko myo is quite elegant in its simplicity

      • The top part. This part represents the crown chakra, which is the gateway to higher consciousness.
      • The middle part. It symbolizes the heart chakra, signifying love, compassion, and the interconnectedness of all life.
      • The bottom part. This section is linked to the root chakra, grounding spiritual energy and connecting it to the physical world.

Deep Spiritual Meanings

Dai Ko Myo is not just a pretty design; it’s laden with spiritual wisdom.

      • Enlightenment. It embodies the journey to spiritual awakening and self-realization.
      • Unity. The symbol reminds us that we are all connected, and everything in the universe is one.
      • Healing power. Dai ko myo holds the highest healing energy, addressing physical, emotional, and spiritual issues.
      • Transcendence. It helps us move beyond the boundaries of the material world, connecting us to something greater.

Dai ko myo as the master symbol

In reiki practice, dai ko myo holds a special place. It’s like the conductor’s baton in an orchestra, directing the healing energy in a session. When a reiki practitioner uses dai ko myo, it’s like turning on the brightest, most harmonious light for healing. It’s especially important in advanced reiki techniques and attunements, where it plays a central role in deepening the connection between the practitioner and the universal life force.


The raku symbol, also known as the “completion symbol,” is an essential part of reiki, but it doesn’t have an ancient history like some other symbols. Instead, it was developed by reiki practitioners as a way to conclude a reiki session effectively. 

Raku has a simple and distinct appearance

      • A zigzag line. This line represents lightning, which symbolizes energy and transformation.
      • A horizontal line at the bottom. This line anchors the energy and signifies grounding.

Raku concludes reiki sessions

So, why is Raku so important at the end of a Reiki session? It serves as the finishing touch to the healing process. Just like you’d wrap up a gift with a ribbon, a reiki practitioner uses raku to close the session properly. It’s like saying, “We’re done here, and the healing energy is sealed in.”

Raku helps ensure that the healing energy continues to work its magic even after the session is over. After all, healing is a process, and raku assists in integrating the healing energy into the recipient’s being. It’s the final step in making sure the benefits of the session continue to unfold in the days that follow.

Working with reiki symbols

Reiki symbols and their meanings are like special keys that unlock the power of healing energy. But how do you use them effectively during a healing session? Let’s break it down in simple terms.

Symbol placement and activation

    1. Location matters. To begin, decide where you want to place the symbol. It could be on the recipient’s body or even in the room around them.
    2. Draw or visualize. You can either draw the symbol with your hand in the air above the recipient or visualize it in your mind. Some practitioners like to do both.
    3. Activate with intention. As you draw or visualize the symbol, set your intention. It’s like telling the symbol what you want it to do. For example, if you’re using the cho ku rei symbol for power, you might say, “I intend to amplify the healing energy for the recipient’s highest good.”

Intention setting with symbols

    1. Clear Your mind. Before using a symbol, take a moment to clear your mind. It’s like getting rid of mental clutter.
    2. Focus on the symbol. Visualize the symbol clearly. Imagine it shining with radiant energy.
    3. Set your intention. State your intention clearly in your mind or out loud. This is like giving the symbol a job description.
    4. Feel the energy. As you activate the symbol, try to feel the energy flowing through you. It’s like turning on a light switch.
    5. Trust the process. Trust that the symbol is doing its work. It’s like letting a skilled craftsman do their job – you don’t need to micromanage.

Symbol selection

    1. Identify the issue. Start by identifying what needs healing. Is it physical pain, emotional stress, or something else?
    2. Choose the right symbol. Each of the reiki symbols unique. For emotional healing, sei hei ki is great. For power and amplification, go for cho ku rei. Pick the symbol that matches the issue.
    3. Combine symbols. Sometimes, you can use more than one symbol. It’s like having a toolbox with different tools for different jobs. Just make sure they work well together.


Reiki symbols hold the power to unlock and amplify the healing energy within us, leading to a more balanced and harmonious life. These reiki symbols and their meanings are not just drawings; they are keys to a world of profound healing and personal growth. As you explore and incorporate them into your reiki practice, you start a process that can bring about positive changes in your physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. In order to learn much more about reiki symbols, consider getting a reiki certification online!

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