THE REIKI SYMBOLS
Copyright © 2005 James Deacon
REI & NAO HI
As we have
seen the jumon for
Symbol 1 - Chokurei - when
written in one particular set of kanji :
refers to an Imperial Edict, Proclamation
or Order ("by
command of the Emperor").
in a different set of kanji:
it can be translated as 'direct spirit(s)', or more conceptually
as something like: 'In the presence of the spirit(s)' [ie: kami
there have been rumours among some sections of the Reiki Community
about - as I have heard it called - a 'secret, Shinto form' of
the jumon choku rei.
'secret' form, it transpires, is the phrase: nao hi.
while the phrases choku rei and nao hi do indeed
have the same meaning:
is somewhat of an exaggeration to portray nao hi as a secret,
is important to be aware that, as kanji are of Chinese origin,
each character has two forms of pronunciation or 'reading': the
on yomi or Chinese-derived reading, and the kun yomi
or native Japanese reading.
For example:the kanji for 'mountain', in its on yomi reading
is: san, but the native kun yomi reading is: yama. (Both
are in common usage in Japan)
exactly the same way, rather than being a 'secret' form of the
word choku, the word nao is simply a different 'reading'
or way of pronouncing the kanji character: ....................................
is an on yomi (Chinese derived) reading, and nao
is simply a kun yomi (native Japanese) reading.
Hi, it transpires, is a somewhat obscure, Classical Japanese, reading of the character we now read as rei - the
second kanji in the phrase choku rei: ...
while nao hi may not be a secret Shinto jumon, it is the
term used to describe an important concept in the philosophy of
the Japanese religious group or 'new religion' known as Omoto.
[Tentative Link Alert! It is claimed
by some that Usui Sensei had connections with the Omoto group
(led by Nao Deguchi and her son-in-law Onisaboro Deguchi) and
that he may have been influenced by Omoto philosophy]
Meaning of Nao Hi
just what is nao hi - this 'direct spirit' of Omoto belief
(or, as it is sometimes also rendered: 'pure spirit')?
an interview about Omoto belief in 1997, Yasuaki Deguchi (d. June
18, 2002) - a grandson of Onisaboro Deguchi had this to say about
spirituality is comprised of one spirit and four souls. The one
spirit is that which we refer to as naohi (lit. direct
spirit). Naohi may be understood as the simplest, purest,
innermost aspect of the human spirit, embodying supreme good and
For further insight into the nature of nao hi, I have selected
several quotes from a four-part work by Onisaboro Deguchi, entitled
endows human beings with naohi and thereby He gives the
human soul limitless power. Thus does the body and soul of those
in whom naohi functions fully shine with a beautiful light."
"The power which stirs and activates the soul failing through
tiredness and distress is naohi."
"That which is able to save your body and soul is naohi
given by God."
"True wisdom is that which one does not acquire from learning,
but that which God gives, that is, the light of naohi."
"May all of you value naohi most highly; do not wander
in darkness, but turn yourselves to light and follow the path."
"When in your body there dwells naohi, though you
may be weak, you need not shrink with fear even before the strongest
"If you are favoured with naohi, even if you have
lost the way in the dark you can find the light and true path."
"If you are favoured with naohi, your prayer to God
becomes certain and true; happiness can be yours, because your
heart conforms to God's heart."