8 years have passed since I rescued my beloved dog, named Deeds, from the Tulsa Animal Shelter. Inspired by him, and the benefits of offering Reiki to shelter animals, this time I returned to teach my very first SARA Level I Reiki & Animal Reiki class.
It was the end of the second day of our class. Here I stood outside with my 7 students circled around me. This group of open and compassionate people included the Shelter Director, Veterinarian, a Vet Tech, the Adoption Coordinator, a Shelter Volunteer and 2 of my dear friends who have supported through my own Reiki journey.
The sun was setting; my student’s eyes were closed in meditation, as I was performing my 4th initiation with them. One by one, I peered into their faces. Something had changed, shifted. There was a visible peace and calm about them, about me, in the midst of the sounds of barking dogs playing outside beyond the chain link. Along with the muffled sounds of dogs barking in the shelter building, I was reminded of where I was and of so many homeless animals in need. I depended on all the Reiki breathing techniques, symbols and mantras I had learned and practiced to keep me focused and grounded. Calm and balanced, we all had created a space to allow healing to occur in this moment and we were holding it for one another. I experienced a beautiful connection with my students, despite the distractions.
Our faithful class dog, named Nolan, was resting on his bed in the center of the circle. A recent pit bull stray, brought in with a broken leg, his ribs were visible and his face was scratched. Yet, in this Reiki healing circle, I only felt his balanced state of being as he rested there among us. His blue cast was decorated by a green heart, which had lovingly been taped on by the staff. His grateful presence and loving spirit humbled me. He had soaked up all the Reiki love and healing created by our group during both days of our class. In return he was opening up our hearts for healing and supporting me as a “newbie” teacher!
Nolan was truly my co-teacher this weekend, showing the students on day 1 the peaceful effects that Reiki had on him. He took in Reiki like a sponge and showed them what a “Reiki nap” truly looks like. My teacher, Kathleen Prasad has continued to tell me, “ The animals will come to you, Karren. “ Nolan was another validation for this truth…
Now that the Reiki seeds of hope have been planted, I trust that these seeds will bloom and grow in me, the staff, volunteers at the Tulsa Animal Shelter and people of our community. As one of my students wrote to me after our class, “It only takes a spark to get a fire going!” Reiki to the Rescue!
Shelter Animal Reiki Association Teacher