Mayni is a master who belongs to The Reiki Alliance and thus teaches Usui Shiki Ryoho. What does that imply for students/prospective students?
Let us do a little history review of Reiki.
Reiki came to the world through the research and personal process of Dr. Usui in the 1800s. Until roughly 1980 there was only one “type” of Reiki in the Western world, and to become a master you had to be initiated by the Grand Master. The first Grand Master was Dr. Usui himself, the second one was Dr. Hayashi and the third was Mrs. Takata.
Mrs. Takata emigrated to the United States during the Second World War, while students of Dr. Usui and Dr. Hayashi kept the Reiki lineage alive in Japan.
During her lifetime, Mrs. Takata initiated 22 Reiki masters, and upon her death the “torch” of being Grand Master for the Western world was to pass on to her granddaughter, Phyllis Lei Furumoto. However, at that point one of the masters –Barbara Weber Ray- decided to do something different, so she left the group and started AIRA – (originally the American International Radiance Association, thus, not calling it Reiki). She did modify the System (see “The 9 Elements of the Form” that define the Usui Shiki Ryoho System) and was thus aware that when changing the Form she was also changing the System, so she also changed the name. Her followers, though, went back to using the name of Reiki for something that was technically not the same thing anymore. That was the first schism in the Western countries.
The remaining 21 masters created The Reiki Alliance, an organization that sought to keep the system in its initial purity, and that all masters would be equals in the energy of Reiki. This organization has now roughly 1000 masters in the whole world. You can check the online directory of The Reiki Alliance (although some members have chosen not to be present in the online one for privacy issues) or write to them to ask if somebody is a The Reiki Alliance master. You will also see that they all use the same certificates, all around the world.
In order to be a member of The Reiki Alliance, you need to be able to trace your lineage back to Mrs. Takata, that is, show proof that the master who initiated you was in turn initiated by a master who was teaching this same system. You also need to commit to teach the system as described in the 9 Elements, which define what Reiki is.
Nowadays, unfortunately, there is a myriad of “types” of Reiki that are simply not the same thing. Later in the 1980s, 1990s and later, there were many people who decided not to respect the 9 Elements, choosing for instance to teach it quicker or altered (Why train several years to become a master if you can get a certificate in a weekend? Or why waiting a minimum of 3 months to learn 2nd degree if you can do it the following day? Or why having only 2 degrees if you can get more money out of people by teaching half a dozen levels? Or why not spicing it up with added rituals and paraphernalia?), adding or removing parts from the System. But the System works so well precisely because it is done in a very concrete way. Reiki is extremely simple, but needs to be done right.
What happens when you are dealing with energies you cannot see? Most Second Degree practitioners (trained within The Reiki Alliance), after some time of practice start seeing/feeling/perceiving the energies and thus can tell what is going on, energy-wise. And getting to these levels of perception and use of the energy does take time – time of practice, time of processing, time of your own personal development.
What is lineage then? When it comes to creating the channel of Reiki, that is, the channel that will pass on additional Ki (aside from your own life energy), to be able to do that, you need to have gone through the process by someone who has also gone through this process him/herself. It is like passing a torch, or like an electricity cable – if somewhere along the chain, a link is missing or broken, there is no energy on the other side.
What happens then when you learn Reiki from someone who does not belong to The Reiki Alliance, nor has been trained by Usui Shiki Ryoho masters in previous generations? Simply put, in most cases they are doing something else than actual Reiki. It would have been preferrable that they had given it another name, in order not to confuse people. You frequently find that they are using up their own energy to heal somebody else: thus, if they were to give 8 hours of Reiki treatments in a row, they´d be exhausted (this does not happen if you are correctly initiated). Other times, they may feel the symptoms of the disease they are trying to heal: they may produce healing effects to some degree, but very often at the cost of the practitioner´s own health.
We should also mention that there are a number of properly trained masters with the correct lineage, who have chosen not to be Reiki Alliance members, or not to renew their membership, for various reasons. Learning from them will indeed give you Reiki in your hands. Unfortunately, in that case you do not belong to an international network so if you have to move to a different country, you cannot just look up a master from The Reiki Alliance and join them seamlessly.
It is very sad, because very often the “break in the chain” happened generations ago, and the people who went on down the line have no idea about this. They were never taught about lineage at all. They are usually very nice people who mean the very best and teach what they know with all their heart. Their students feel uplifted after such a course or treatment, they often feel relaxed and find it real nice. What I find tragic is that after some time they often leave Reiki aside, stating “it doesn´t work” and move on to other things. However, if they ever have the chance of receiving proper Reiki later on, even from a 1st degree student but who did learn within The Reiki Alliance, they will often feel shocked at the strength of the energy perceived, and may then realize that, after all, what they had been introduced to in the past, simply was not the same thing.
Mayni likes to keep the first part of her First Degree course open and free of charge so people can come and listen (here you can find the upcoming courses). You can then listen to the History of Reiki and the Principles, and get to know Mayni to see if you would like to have her as your master. Because the relationship you have with your master may get very close to your heart.
And then you are always welcome to repeat the courses with Mayni as many times as you want, and to attend the courses of other Reiki Alliance masters around the world, free of charge (except maybe for a small fee if the teacher has to rent a hotel meeting room and pay for it – otherwise we usually work in homes or perhaps a yoga school or something similar). Mayni has had visiting practitioners and masters from New Zealand, England, Colombia, and Argentina attending a course or Reiki exchange at home, and likewise, students of Mayni have been warmly welcome to attend a Reiki course or group in Australia and New York, among other places.
Please do your due diligence and research when choosing your Reiki master. It is an important decision! You may have to travel to find a proper master – Mayni was living in Spain and went to Germany to learn. But it was so worth it. Nowadays it is much easier than that!
Use your head, and follow your heart.
Welcome to the global Reiki family!
PS. In the website of The Reiki Alliance you can read a deeper explanation of the Nine Elements of the Form of Usui Shiki Ryoho.