by Jeffrey Hotchkiss
I look forward to the day when there are more photos on this page. For now, in January 2023, I am the “staff” of one, the founder, owner and general manager of Reiki Community Health & Wellbeing LLC.
I will give you a brief summary of how I found myself here. But first – I am in the stage of my life where I’m expected to slow down and take it easy. So, I’m looking forward to that rest…in about five years or so, when I envision turning this business over to people who want to manage it as a cooperative. I really want for it to grow as a strong and safe container for community Reiki practice, that is economically viable for the medium and long term. There are a lot of people out there working in similar and complementary directions. This is a very good thing. Gentle, peaceful touch, with no agenda, can help with the many challenges that humans and their fellow beings on Earth are facing right now.
I learned Reiki in 2001, toward the end of a 25-year career in IT. My last job title was “systems analyst.” I had succeeded in the world by living in my head. Although heartfelt empathy helped me do my job, I was completely out of touch with the rest of my body. Reiki changed all that, swiftly and dramatically. I began to feel, even see within my body, began to listen to what it needed to become healthy. I learned to self-soothe painful conditions. My lifelong chronic depression began to lift. Traumatic memories arose and began to be healed.
To share this gift, I started teaching others. I also serendipitously joined a group of Reiki practitioners who were giving free treatments in the parks of New York City on 9-11 anniversaries. We would give Reiki to hundreds of people on September 9th and 10th, mostly
in Washington Square Park. I learned so much about how to maintain such intensity of practice, timeliness and self-care. It was an ecstatic healing response to the violence of 9-11 and afterwards.
Realizing that projects of community benefit could be centered around Reiki practice (despite so few people knowing what it was at the time), I founded a program called EldersBloom, to bring it into all kinds of elder communities, from independent living to long term care.
Next, in 2013, EldersBloom was replaced by the beginnings of a Reiki clinic at a local doctor’s office. On the strength of our success with the clinic, our group met many times to form our purpose and create our name. Two of our members reached out to the Portland Recovery Community Center, to start offering Reiki there. Others volunteered with rescue animals, and I began offering paid sessions at a local senior living facility. You can read our history here. [link]
Through all of this, until the pandemic, I have maintained a private practice including teaching of Reiki, and grew relationships and connections in the Reiki community from Bangor to Boston.
Today, in reviving this project, I am using my Reiki skills from the past 20 years, and my project management and communications skills from my IT career. Together, our renewed group works to bring a day when Hawayo Takata, the great teacher who brought Reiki to the
West, envisioned that Reiki would be “as common as aspirin.”
I hope you will join us.