Qigong is an ancient Chinese practice that uses gentle movements, meditation and controlled breathing to restore energy or “qi.”
According to the National Qigong Association:
Qigong practices can be classified as martial, medical, or spiritual. All styles have three things in common: they all involve a posture, (whether moving or stationary), breathing techniques, and mental focus. Some practices increase the Qi; others circulate it, use it to cleanse and heal the body, store it, or emit Qi to help heal others. Practices vary from the soft internal styles such as Tai Chi; to the external, vigorous styles such as Kung Fu. However, the slow gentle movements of most Qigong forms can be easily adapted, even for the physically challenged and can be practiced by all age groups.
Reiki is a form of healing founded in 1922 by Mikao Usui of Japan, and brought to the U.S. in 1937 by Mrs. Hawayo Takata.
According to Pamela Miles, author of “REIKI: A Comprehensive Guide”:
Although the initial experience may seem similar, Reiki practice is quite different than either pranic healing or Therapeutic Touch (TT). Pranic healing and TT are energy medicine modalities.
They follow the medical model of diagnosis, design and then implementation of a treatment plan, followed by assessment. That is all done by a trained practitioner to a client with the determination to affect a specific treatment goal.
Reiki, by contrast, is a spiritual practice along the lines of meditation, yoga, and Tai chi. The Reiki lineage founder, Mikao Usui (1865-1926), formulated Reiki practice primarily for self-care, and Usui’s system included many meditation practices. Unlike other spiritual practices, however, the hands-on practice can also be offered to others to gently encourage self-healing.
Healing touch is a form of energy medicine in which practitioners consciously use their hands and mind in an intentional way to promote healing by manipulating the human biofield.
According to the Healing Touch Program:
These non-invasive techniques employ the hands to clear, energize, and balance the human and environmental energy fields, thus affecting physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. It is based on a heart-centered, caring relationship in which the practitioner and client come together energetically to facilitate the client’s health and healing.
The goal of Healing Touch is to restore balance and harmonies in the energy system, placing the client in a position to self-heal.
In the early 1970s, Dolores Krieger, PhD, RN, a professor at New York University, and Dora Kunz, a natural healer, developed TT. Recognized in 2005-2006 as part of the North American Nursing Diagnosis Association’s guidelines for nursing care, TT is a form of energy healing by which the healer places his or her hands on or near a patient’s body and detects and manipulates the healee’s energy.
According to the Therapeutic Touch International Association:
Therapeutic Touch is a holistic, evidence-based therapy that incorporates the intentional and compassionate use of universal energy to promote balance and well-being. It is a consciously directed process of energy exchange during which the practitioner uses the hands as a focus to facilitate the process.
Laying on of hands
is a spiritual practice that appears in Christian and Jewish traditions and other religions throughout the world. Hands are placed on an individual in conjunction with prayer to provide healing or blessings. Beginning in the 5th
century, English and French monarchs claimed to have the “divine touch” and could bestow healing upon their subjects; this belief died out in the 1700s.
Sometimes called faith healing, many of the successes or purported miracles have not been substantiated scientifically; and therefore much of the healing may be attributed to a feeling of wellness rather than cure, or the power of belief and placebo [link to placebo section]. Because the “energy” cannot be detected using modern science, it is commonly believed to be in the realm of religious beliefs.