Last night I met again with Reiki practitioners I’ve trained for our monthly dojo gathering. The theme for the evening was: Simplifying Oneness and how it helps in daily living. Oneness is a foundational truth deeply etched in the Reiki teachings, and across all wisdom traditions. In Reiki the practitioner is one with herself, her environment, others (especially when giving Reiki to another), the cosmos at large, Reiki itself and the Divine. The most accessible felt sense of Oneness through the Reiki teachings is compassion in most cases.

Just to give some context, Oneness has been elucidated cross-culturally by many spiritual traditions, and even by thinkers like Einstein. Here are only some examples:

When you make the two one and
When you make the inner as the outer and the above
As below, and when
You make the male and the female into a single one
Then you shall enter the kingdom.

The Gospel of Thomas

For those who are awake the cosmos is one.


How can the divine Oneness be seen? In beautiful forms, breathtaking wonders, awe-inspiring miracles?The Tao is not obliged to present itself in this way.

If you are willing to be lived by it, you will see it everywhere, even in the most ordinary things.

Lao Tzu

A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness.

Albert Einstein

How wonderful that a single Essence should
Refract itself like light, a single source
Into a million essences and hues.

Shâh Ne’matollâh

We are one, after all,
you and I.
Together we suffer,
together exist, and forever will recreate each other.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

When we look at the world, at the person in front of us, at the tree outside our window, it’s not immediately apparent that we’re “one” at all. The person in front of you is clearly separate to your eyes, encased in her own skin, with a distinct look and personality. It’s the same with the tree; it’s another life form, doesn’t have human features and is unable to speak to you using language.

This sense of separation is accentuated when we’re dealing with people or places far removed from our family, neighborhood and close concerns. We express this distance with the word “foreign.” This word is derived from Latin, Old French and Middle English to have the meanings of “on the outside” and “outside.”

Gives pause, doesn’t it? Is it “outside” that the person in front of you or removed by continents experiences hunger and thirst, pain and pleasure, seeks happiness and prosperity, loves their family and is generally in relationship to life in the same ways and manner you are?!

And what of the tree? It definitely needs food and water. It contributes to life like you do; you admire it for it’s beauty and enjoy its shade or fruit. And it’s a member of a family, a species.

The Buddha said: “All beings tremble before violence. All fear death. All love life.” It’s really that simple. This extends to all of life. Just today, the Dalai Lama’s official Facebook page posted this:

Ultimately, humanity is one, and this small planet is our only home. If we are to protect this home of ours, each of us needs to feel a vivid sense of universal altruism. It is only this feeling that can remove the self-centered motives that cause people to deceive and misuse one another. If you have a sincere and open heart, you naturally feel self-worth and confidence, and there is no need to be fearful of others.

Last night, we gathered our own practical wisdom about Oneness, especially how it helps in daily living. Here are the major points that were shared by everyone:

  • When we’re truly one with ourselves and nicely integrated, it’s a state of wellbeing and happiness.
  • Oneness makes daily life meaningful and richer.
  • Oneness prevents us from taking Nature for granted and helps us notice the miracle of a roadside weed.
  • Engaging our spiritual practices with a sense of Oneness adds the dimension that we’re practicing for the whole world and not only ourselves.
  • Bringing that cultivated sense of Oneness to the workplace means better communication, less expectation and confrontation, an attractive harmony around us, and overall positivity.
  • Being in Oneness is a flow state where natural order takes place, where we don’t have to be in control, and “magic” happens.
  • This “magic” means that there are resolutions and results beyond what the logical mind could conceive, and arrived at with much less striving.

Oneness isn’t a topic that can fit in a single post, and will continue here in greater depth.


Oneness as a Path to Health, Happiness, and Freedom

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Oneness in Spirit and in the World