Listen In Audio[audio:http://www.chikara-reiki-do.com/audio/sunday-chat-22nd-may-11.mp3]
Reiki A Fraud Or Money Making Scam
Q…There are forty two of us awaiting your response to the article below…Thank you.
Reiki is a well-known type of alternative medicine which has been enthusiastically accepted by millions of people, and it is based on some quite remarkable claims.
It is claimed, for example, that there is something called Qi, a healing energy which is available to the Reiki practitioner to enable the human body to heal itself.
The practitioner, who has received training from a Reiki Master, claims to be able to transfer energy to the patient and that this enables the patient to recover from a variety of illnesses.
The claims can sometimes be quite grandiose. A brief scan of the internet will produce claims to treat: stress, depression, bereavement, back pain, spina bifida, ME, arthritis, sports injuries, broken bones, sciatica, ankylosing spondylitis, nerve damage, cancer.
They almost all say they won’t contradict the advice of a doctor which is a legal safeguard, but the claim to be able to treat cancer is quite startling.
For medicine to be effective, it is essential to be able to diagnose what is wrong.
That means being able to associate outcomes with causes in a predictable and reliable way.
Identifying causes reliably is the basis of the doctor’s diagnostic skills because without having clear indications and a means of testing efficacy, no treatment can be developed. And that is why the claims of Reiki are so extraordinary.
This isn’t being unduly suspicious or negative; it’s just recognising the extraordinary claims for what they are.
Reiki claims to be able to treat what conventional medicine cannot, and yet it claims to do so in the absence of diagnostic technique.
There is a fundamental Reiki belief that the body is able to cure itself and there is some evidence that in some circumstances this is true.
But the evidence only supports self-curative properties in certain circumstances: where major trauma has damaged vital organs, self-curing fails. Where there are damaging metabolic changes, self-curing does not take place.
There are many illnesses which do not cure themselves such as diabetes, macular degeneration, spinal injuries, Parkinson’s disease, osteoarthritis, and so on. It is clearly not true that self-healing can take place except in particular circumstances, where the injury or illness is not serious, and where vital functionality has not been lost.
So it is clear that the self-healing property claimed by Reiki is a partial phenomenon, requiring some conditions. Reiki practitioners do not seem to recognise these conditions in some of their extraordinary claims.
But Reiki claims go much further than that. It is claimed that the self-healing property of the human body is blocked in some way, and that Reiki can unblock it.
The Reiki practitioner claims to be able to transfer energy to the patient, even at a distance, and thereby enable the body to heal itself.
This is an interesting theory and has the potential to revolutionise medicine if it works. So how do we tell if it works?
Firstly, we need to be able to identify this energy, demonstrate its existence, show some tangible effect of its presence, make some kind of measurement, and demonstrate a means of controlling it. Without establishing this basic starting point, we are simply discussing an idea that there is this form of energy.
Secondly, once having demonstrated its presence, we need to be able to show the link between the presence of this energy and a specific predictable change in the human body.
For example, a measurable change in the patient after having received this energy. Thirdly, we need to know something about where the energy comes from, how it is transferred, how it is stored, and the means by which we know these things. This is simply to ensure that when someone reports something wrongly, we can tell.
Unfortunately, on all three counts, Reiki offers us nothing at all. There is absolutely no evidence of the existence of Qi, nor any evidence of its effects, nor any suggestion that it can be localised and measured.
We are working solely with the idea that it exists. Since we cannot detect it, nor show any tangible effect, we can’t link it to any consequence for the human body, and that means that we cannot make any claims about using it to treat people.
This is worrying enough when people are claiming to offer treatment for various conditions, because they are claiming abilities for which there is no evidence.
If we were selling an object using false claims, we would fall foul of the law, under consumer protection legislation. If alternative practitioners are offering treatment, they should at the very least be offering some impartial, reliable, reproducible evidence that it works.
Reiki doesn’t do this. Why then do people say it works?
(It must be those ignorant self opinionated patients again…ha ha ha!)
We already know that the brain responds to anticipation and expectation by chemical changes which mimic what is expected. If the patient expects to receive treatment, there are endorphins and other opioids which are released in the brain causing them to feel better.
It’s a very well-known phenomenon and makes anecdotal evidence hopelessly unreliable.
Even if patients are given nothing, they report that they feel better. So just the fact that they say they feel better is no indication that they are in fact getting better.
(Who says doctors treat you like a piece of meat, and then call you stupid too…ha ha ha!)
That’s why we have clinical trials in the first place.
So when someone says that following a Reiki session they feel better, that is no indication at all that Reiki has done anything other than tell them they have received some treatment even if they haven’t.
It doesn’t constitute any kind of evidence.
Many people do not understand the placebo effect, the self-persuasion that we do when we go to a doctor or alternative medicine practitioner.
Even the alt-med practitioners themselves, often don’t understand the placebo effect.
The training of alt-med practitioners is mostly unregulated and does not require specific clinical medical content beyond some very basic human biology.
Even that basic biology is contradicted by the theories of alternative medicine.
So a Reiki practitioner can cheerfully talk about Qi without having any evidence at all of its existence.
The patient, trusting that they are in the hands of a trained person, will believe what they are told.
But the placebo effect also has an influence on the practitioner. They too want positive feedback, and get it in the form of their patients expressing that they feel better.
This convinces the practitioner that they are doing something useful, that they are offering real treatment.
(Okay, so now if your doc asks if you are feeling better tell him ‘no’ just to tease him… ha ha ha!)
The more they believe the patients’ anecdotal accounts, the more they will make grandiose, but unsubstantiated claims.
Some questions to ask Reiki practitioners…
What tangible evidence can they offer for the existence of Qi, the very basis of their practice?
How do they detect and show the levels of the energy that they are claiming as the basis of diagnosis? This has to be other than simply feeling it, they need some way of demonstrating it.
What consequences of Qi can be explained only by its presence? In other words, what phenomena cannot be explained by normal means, but can be explained by Qi?
How does a Reiki practitioner tell when their energy is not working?
How can they tell the difference between a genuine Reiki practitioner and one who does the same thing, uses the same words, and acts in the same way? How can you detect a Reiki fraud?
Why is Reiki a closed pyramid scheme, in which you have to be trained by a Master before you can practice?
Why can it not be self-taught, or taught by informed practitioners who were not taught by a Master?
(Someone actually sent this to us… ha ha ha!)
Surely this is a closed franchise system in which the costs are transferred to others who join?
The bottom line Reiki is a non-treatment using unevidenced claims about an undetectable energy.
It makes extraordinary claims which are not backed up by any observable evidential basis. Clinical trials have demonstrated absolutely no effect.
As a business, Reiki is a pyramid scheme in which the practitioner buys their franchise as a qualification and once they have bought the Master qualification, they are enabled to recover their outlay by enlisting other practitioners into their training scheme.
The only tangible effects in patients are due to the placebo effect, which also serves to convince the practitioners that they are doing something useful.
It appeals to those who entertain mystical ideas and are susceptible to eastern ideas that have no bearing on the real physical world.
The only reason that such businesses escape consumer legislation is that they base it on belief. As long as the customers believe, and the practitioners believe, there is no fraud.
Ignorance of how the human body works and the real constraints of the physical world, preserve the belief in the mystical practice. Reiki is a fraud even if the practices so far have been able to avoid the legal definition.
It is selling non-treatment to gullible people who may actually be in need of real medical attention. On that basis, it is also immoral.
And my answer…
A…Well, what can one say to such a one sided article as this?
For me it merely confirms what I have always known – if all you’ve got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
It pours scorn not only on Reiki, but on the whole of Traditional Chinese Medicine too – for it denies the existence of Qi, which the Chinese call Chi…
Which is at the heart of an extremely effective system of medicine dating back well over 5000 years!
I’m afraid it just makes me laugh. 🙂
They bandy about terms such as fraud, mystical ideas, consumer legislation, gullible people and pooh-pooh belief as if it’s anathema to health…
Saying we’re selling non-treatment to gullible people who may be in need of real medical attention.
Conveniently overlooking the fact that quantum mechanics makes a total mockery of everything they state. (Click link below)…
Let alone the outright damage and death perpetrated on these same gullible people who are unfortunate enough to receive ‘real’ medical attention.
Just look at these appalling figures:
In the United States, figures suggest estimated deaths per year of:
- 12,000 due to unnecessary surgery
- 7,000 due to medication errors in hospitals
- 20,000 due to other errors in hospitals
- 80,000 due to nosocomial infections in hospitals
- 106,000 due to non-error, negative effects of drugs
Based on these figures, iatrogenesis may cause 225,000 deaths per year in the United States alone.
And they have the temerity to bang on about Reiki and Qi energy being unproven.
No, all this article shows is just how worried ‘Big Pharma’ is actually getting about the increasing number of intelligent ‘thinking’ individuals turning away from allopathic medicine altogether…
(Not so stupid patients after all…ha ha ha!)
And then, sin of sins – spending their money on non-drug therapies.
You see, please don’t ever forget, the illness business with its drug therapy, is a multi-billion dollar industry and they’ll do anything they can to besmirch the name of anything alternative…
To ensure they keep their greedy little faces in that extremely lucrative trough.
But let me add this also…
Which came first? The scientist or the mystic?
Throughout history, scientists have always been trying to catch up with the mystics.
Men trying to prove what women have always known. 🙂
The yin and yang of it 🙂
I do not have to prove Reiki works… I know it does.
One day the scientists will come to prove this too and then they will tell us “Okay, now it is ‘real’…” ha ha ha!
Sailors knew the moon gave tides long before the scientist concurred.
Farmers knew the seasons turned and the suns influence, long before the scientists concurred.
Witches burned for the knowledge they possessed – only to now have Big Pharma copy them!
No, I am happy and content in my ‘knowing’ and trusting in my intuition.
My connection to the One Energy through Reiki, works for me…
And the only opinion that counts to me, is mine 🙂
In this instance, we must agree to disagree and I couldn’t be happier, healthier or freer 🙂
And on that note I shall get back to my healthy roast beef, basted in lard and seasoned with home grown herbs – and I’m going to use salt too… ha ha ha!
Now where’s my broomstick and Tarot cards…ha ha ha!