Robert Fueston’s decision to scale back on teaching the First Degree

Announcement: Robert Fueston will only be teaching the First Degree course on a very limited basis until otherwise noted. Consider this his “temporary or permanent retirement” from teaching the First Degree; he doesn’t know which it is. Masters Debra Coomer and Liza Binford have already taken over teaching the First Degree classes at The Reiki Preservation Society (…/).

The Training of Masters – A Starfish Story, Part 2

In other words… read Part 1 first!

“It made a difference for that one”, said the young man at the end of A Starfish Story in Part 1.

I still teach my Master students individually or in very small groups of three people or less.  Normally this training takes place over the course of a few years.  Occasionally I have taught week-long Master training intensives with continued support afterwards.  This slow way of training is how Masters have been trained and taught to practice in traditional Usui Shiki Reiki Ryoho, from Usui to Takata.[1]  It forms the bond between the Master and the student, and with the lineage.

I understand it is rare for Masters to be trained this way today.  It is not that other Masters are wrong for doing otherwise; it just doesn’t work for me within the system I learned, teach, and practice.  And, frankly, it seems unlikely that a student would be able to truly embody the teachings in Shinpiden in just a one-day or weekend class.  Shinpiden isn’t simply straightforward rote learning, such as how to do the initiations and why we do each part in the initiations.  While the initiations are important, it isn’t the vast majority of what students could be learning in Shinpiden.

The word, “Shinpiden” means “mystery” or “mysterious teachings”.  The lessons we learn in Shinpiden are mostly known through practice which leads to inner transformations.  For example: Let’s imagine that I am trying to teach you horsemanship (something big here in Kentucky).  Can you learn horsemanship without working with actual horses?  Could I simply give you classroom instruction in horsemanship and then expect you to go out into the world and ride horses or teach horsemanship to others?  There are some things you can only learn by actually doing them.  A lot of learning will come from actually riding on different horses and riding them on different terrain.  Having a teacher with you to “show you the ropes” during this process is important.

Likewise, part of Master training is how to teach the system of Reiki to others.  How can you learn to teach students without working with actual students?  This is why I have my Master students assist me in my classes throughout their training, gradually teaching more and more of the subjects in the First- and Second-degree courses.  Being a Master isn’t just giving some instructions and doing initiations – it is many things, some intangible; far too many for me to simply write in this article.  That will have to wait for some future article(s).  I recently read a statement from Constantin Dina whom I re-trained as a Master in my lineage.  He wrote, “Maestria in orice domeniu nu este un substantiv, este un verb.”  In English this translates to, “Master in any field is not a noun, it’s a verb.”

As far as the nonteaching parts of Shinpiden are concerned, I will use another example: If I were to try and teach you ballet just in the classroom, neither one of us should expect you to truly have learned ballet.  You must take what you have learned and practice in the studio with your teacher present.  Likewise, I could give you meditation instruction and you could read books on meditation.  But if you don’t sit and do the practice, you won’t truly understand anything about meditation.  Self-discovering the mysteries of Usui Shiki Reiki Ryoho comes through practice and guidance… guidance from our teacher(s), guidance from our lineage, and guidance from Reiki itself.

Traditional teachers who train new Masters the old and slow way will not teach as many Master students as people who teach Shinpiden as a “class”.  But teaching a lot of Master students isn’t our goal.  It is having the patience and dedication to pass on what we have learned to others, witnessing students come into their own relationship with the mysteries of the system, with each person discovering their own true essence as a result of the practice.  For me, training Masters is to “make a difference for that one”.




[1] It is currently believed that Usui taught about 19 Master students, Hayashi around 13, and Takata 22. After Mrs. Takata’s death in 1980, some of her Master students started holding large Master training seminars sometimes with 20 or more students.

The Training of Masters – a Starfish story

I remembered a story recently I like to pass down my Reiki lineage. It was passed on to me by the woman (Jone Eagle) who first initiated me as a Reiki Master in 1997. It very much reflects my idea of how I like to train my Master students. I’ll write a short article explaining what I mean by that statement and post it in a future blog. In the meantime, I’m providing a copy of the story below.

Once upon a time there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day he was walking along the shore. As he looked down the beach, he saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself to think of someone who would dance to the day. So he began to walk faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he saw that it was a young man and the young man wasn’t dancing, but instead he was reaching down to the shore, picking up something and very gently throwing it into the ocean.

As he got closer he called out, “Good morning! What are you doing?”

The young man paused, looked up and replied, “Throwing starfish in the ocean.”

“I guess I should have asked, why are you throwing starfish in the ocean?”

“The sun is up, and the tide is going out. And if I don’t throw them in they’ll die.”

“But, young man, don’t you realize that there are miles and miles of beach, and starfish all along it. You can’t possibly make a difference!”

The young man listened politely. Then bent down, picked another starfish and threw it into the sea, past the breaking waves and said, “It made a difference for that one.”

Always learning

Over the past 20+ years of teaching I have told a few students that I often am fully conscious while I am “asleep”. During some of these times, I have conversations with Reiki Masters – some I know only by name. It wasn’t until last year however, that I heard the term “lucid dreaming” talked about on a radio show.

I didn’t know there was a name for what I had been experiencing. For those of you unfamiliar with lucid dreaming, I offer up a personal experience as an example. One night, I went to bed and fell asleep. In my dream, I was fully aware that I was dreaming. Mrs. Takata’s Master students Virginia Samdahl and Barbara McCullough were both there. I said to them, “My body is asleep right now and it could wake up at any time – so we have a limited amount of time to talk. Before my body wakes up I would like to ask you some questions.” This question and answer session went on for some time. What was a little bothersome was that sometimes they both would both be answering at the same time. During those times it was a struggle to process what they were saying and I would have to ask for clarification or for one of them to repeat what they had said. Luckily, not all my interactions with Reiki Masters in my “dreams” happen this way! Normally during my “nighttime learning”, everyone takes turns talking…just like we do in our normal everyday conversations while we are “awake”.

As I mentioned before, I’ve only told a few students about my lucid dreaming or other personal experiences. This is because for me, they have been just that – personal and I have kept it as such for all these years. However, the inward urging from my teachers has become more like inward shoving – but in a nice-ish sort of way. The importance to open up and share more of my own experiences has been made perfectly clear to me.  And this is what I have to offer just for today…


Free online lecture today!

The day you have long been waiting for is here! My free lecture regarding Reiki practice and the steps you need for a professional practice. It is a fast paced, action packed, detailed ranting regarding many aspects of being a professional Reiki practitioner/teacher.

Check it out and let me know what you think.

Upcoming Free Reiki Virtual Event: Reiki Healing Summit Spring 2018

I will be speaking about my own professional Reiki practice – including important but often neglected business aspects of starting a professional practice (some of these topics I address in TRPS’s Certified Reiki Practitioner course/First and Second Degree Review Course). Click on the link below to sign up :