About the Featured Photo. Many people will feel energy in the form of light and colors during their Reiki sessions. I wanted to illustrate this energy transfer in a colorful way. We asked our model, Imani, to make up her face with paint according to how she was feeling.
“Is this just a poor substitute for a massage?” I wondered as I tried Reiki for the first time.
I was staying at an Ayurvedic medicine center in Tamil Nadu, India, and my roommate was in the early stages of Reiki training. Naturally, I was her practice subject. I didn’t understand what Reiki was all about and frankly, she wasn’t very skilled yet. I wrote the whole thing off until years later when at a dinner party, a friend told me she routinely has orgasms during her Reiki sessions.
Sexual energy was definitely not the vibe when I walked into my session with Dr. Darrien Jamar, a Reiki practitioner, chiropractor and life coach who practices at Sense Salon. Instead, I felt relaxed. Dr. Jamar projects calmness so strongly that I felt my stress dissipate. I was surprised how willing I was to talk about my vulnerabilities openly with a stranger in our pre-Reiki life coaching session.
For the Reiki treatment, I was asked to lie down (fully clothed) on a chiropractic table. I closed my eyes. Music played in the background. Occasionally Dr. Jamar would lightly place their hands on me, but more often I could feel their hands hovering near me. The effect was soothing and helped me clear my thoughts. Responses to Reiki treatment can vary, but for me, Reiki felt like a healing practice for my mind. I’m a kinetic person who struggles with meditation, and Reiki felt like another route to achieving a calm meditative state, if only for a little while.
After our session, Dr. Jamar and I exchanged emails. They emailed information about two tarot cards they pulled for me and answered some of my questions. I’m still thinking about the intention of these cards as they relate to my life, and a couple of insights they had for me.
District Fray: How has doing Reiki changed your life?
Dr. Jamar: Reiki has ushered into my life a more balanced ebb and flow of shedding and becoming, holding and letting go, striving and non-striving, masculinity and femininity. Reiki has become my internal compass and director towards a place I never knew existed, one that was necessary for a more healed and harmonized version of me. Reiki has facilitated my progression from head to heart, a journey of surrendering for the sake of peace and freedom.
How do you use Reiki for healing and what is happening in the process?
My approach and process are inspired by spending time with my late 104-year-old, great-grandma Hattie. We’d sit in her twin rocking chairs. She’d listen, ask questions and listen some more. Inevitably, she would leave me with a story that cleared away my initial confusion. Then, she’d say, “You want some cornbread, baby?” Similarly, I sit with my clients. They share. I listen and offer guidance. The cornbread, in this case, is Reiki.
Reiki is a Japanese healing technique that works by bringing balance and restoration to the subtle energies within the body that can become blocked on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels. When your energy flow is blocked or trapped, you may experience anxiety, or lack clarity and confidence. Reiki restores your energies within, so you feel connected, clear and grounded.
Who do you think it can help most?
The ready, the humble and those curiously seeking not only answers, but are willing to be entangled in more questions. Creators and those adamant about reconnecting with their creativity. I often find myself working with people who are consciously and subconsciously looking to give language and voice to what they have been through, going through and are moving towards; developing this language and voice allows them to feel seen, loved, understood, accepted and appreciated.
When is it not helpful?
When there is the element of force. When intentions aren’t genuine. When fear and apprehension sit in the driver’s seat. When you are looking to run away from something instead of asking for the courage to face it. With all forms of healing, a skilled practitioner will be able to facilitate this perspective-taking — making more appropriate recommendations as needed.
Why do you incorporate a life coaching session?
The life coaching component gives me initial access and understanding to where a person is energetically. I find that often, people need a sacred space to feel vulnerable — yet held — while they give life to their experiences. It’s a way of pulse checking. Life coaching is used in conjunction with other techniques, such as guided mediation and tarot or oracle readings. Typically, much is revealed and released before beginning Reiki.
What are some specific wellness needs of Washingtonians?
I have witnessed this persistent distortion and fracturing around three main areas: Washingtonians’ relationship with doing and achieving, experiencing emotions as morally correct or incorrect and living in a dissociated state (for many complicated reasons). The Reiki and life coaching session is fertile ground for reframing and gesturing towards a more harmonized relationship between doing and being, recognizing, experiencing and integrating one’s emotions, and mindfulness and mindlessness.
Dr. Jamar practices Reiki and life coaching at Sense Salon for $125 per session.
Enjoy this piece? Consider becoming a member for access to our premium digital content. Support local journalism and start your membership today.