by BECKY EZEKIEL
In recent years energy therapy has undergone a major rebrand. No longer are words like energy and vibrations reserved for the more mystical amongst us. Even Kim Kardashian is swapping her diamonds for crystals. So, what exactly is energy therapy and does it really work?
“Everything is energy and everything holds energy” explained Deryn Higgins, an 11th generation Reiki master and owner of holistic healing centre My Sereni-Tea. “So that means everything we think about and everything we feel holds energy”.
Energy Therapy 101
The principles of energy therapy support the idea that every thought and feeling we have holds onto an accompanying frequency, which can positively or negatively impact our individual energy field. When that energy field is holding onto unresolved or repressed feelings, it can create blockages of energy within the body, which can eventually lead to adverse symptoms and illnesses.
“What we’re trying to do with energy work is to reinforce the body so that it can heal itself” explained Dr Karen Simons, energy medicine specialist who sees clients of her own through a private space at My Sereni-Tea. “We are simply vessels for that”.
During some energy therapy treatments such as Reiki or Jin Shin Jyutsu, the practitioner serves as a conduit of positive universal energy passing through them to help the energy within the client.
Some of these methods involve light touch, but others can be done without touch, with the practitioner’s hands placed just above the skin’s surface. Recently, with the pandemic disrupting our usual routines, treatments have even been held remotely because, as Ms Higgins reiterated, “everything is energy, it moves. There is no time or space”.
Alternative vs Conventional Medicine
Advocates of energy therapy feel a host of benefits from treatment, such as decreased stress, lowered anxiety and depression as well as a reduction in the physical pain that comes as a result of these afflictions. But as Ms Higgins explained, “energy medicine is not a one-shot deal” and most people will need multiple sessions to really benefit.
For those skeptical about the benefits, Dr Simons makes it clear that there doesn’t have to be a choice between conventional or alternative medicine. “We like to be viewed as complementary. Although some people do make choices to use this way exclusively, we would never tell anyone to come off their medication. That’s between them and their doctor.”
That seems to be a popular opinion these days. Across the US and Canada, hospitals at the leading edge of scientific research such as Johns Hopkins, as well as Yale, Duke and Colombia University Medical Centres, are all now promoting alternative therapies as a supplement to conventional treatment. This is a huge triumph for alternative medicine, which has previously faced objections due to the lack of scientific backing.
It seems this embrace of alternative medicine has been developing for years and what was once thought of as a bit ‘woo-woo’, has now hit the mainstream.
Ms Higgins admited, “I can remember 25 years ago I’d learnt yoga and I didn’t tell anybody. [It was] the same when I learnt Reiki. I didn’t tell anybody because they thought it was hocus-pocus stuff. Now yoga is being taught in schools. Same with mindfulness and meditation too”.
What has brought about this shift in attitude?
“People’s consciousness is evolving and shifting, and becoming more aware,” she said.
You can’t argue with that. Whilst she reflected on customers avoiding crystals in her shop on Reid Street 12 years ago, we joke that we’re now able to pick them up along with a snack in a convenience store.
As the stigma around energy therapies is dissipating, it appears more people are open to experimenting with these treatments, often simply because “nothing else has worked”.
As Dr Simons summarised, “we do a whole range of [treatments] and they’ve got these names, but for the most part, people couldn’t care less what it’s called. They just want to know, ‘how’s it going to help me?’”
And really, isn’t that the point of any healing treatment?
Kickstart Your Own Wellness Journey
If you’re not sure where to start with energy therapy, don’t let that put you off.
“It’s not a cookie cutter thing. We have consultations,” explained Ms Higgins. “That way we’re better equipped to know what’s going on with [our client’s] body and their energy field”.
Should you decide to try energy therapy, forget the stigmas of days gone by and keep an open mind. Attitudes have shifted and alternative therapies are more popular than ever. So, when you tell a friend you’re going to see a holistic healer to cleanse your energy field, you might just find they already have the same healer on speed dial.
My Sereni-Tea, located on Queen Street, has the largest selection of energy therapy treatments on the island, as well as a host of workshops and classes that teach Reiki, meditation, personal development, and more.
Further information on the treatments offered by Ms Higgins and Dr Simons can be found on their personal websites: www.derynhiggins.com and www.drkaren4u.com. For more information on the full range of treatments offered at My Sereni-tea, visit www.myserenitea.com.