Reike Man and Beast

Fresno, CA, USA An ancient touch therapy that originated in Tibet has become a widely used part of modern medicine worldwide. And as we found working on this story it is accepted on several levels here in the Central Valley. It can, in fact, be of help to man and beast alike with a variety of ailments and conditions.

On doctor's orders Wendy Gonzales of Fresno is waiting out her high risk pregnancy in Fresno's Saint Agnes Hospital and finding comfort in Cynthia Steele' Reiki (ray-key) therapy. She had no idea what the therapy was and weeks in a hospital bed had left her sore and very uncomfortable. And then Cynthia Steele stopped by to ask if she would like a Reiki treatment. Wendy told us how it went, "She put her hands on me and I was like 'what's she gonna do?' And them all of sudden I closed my eyes and drifted to sleep."

Steele describes the practice of Reike as a light touch therapy that focuses our own life force to reduce anxiety and pain to support healing, "Just opening that channel to allow the universal energy to come through you." Medical studies have shown that Reike treatments can increase positive endorphins, the body's natural painkillers. Wendy Gonzales describes it this way, "It feels like it goes deep."

People aren't the only ones to respond to the healing art of Reike. We found another Reiki therapist, Cindy Sambueso: "They want to be healed, they want to be loved."

After 20 years of treating people now concentrates on animals mostly those with illnesses. She came to this ranch to treat a troubled and injured horse named Remington. We found him enjoying his Reiki treatment, Sambueso explained his response: "He looks like he's gonna fall asleep." Carly Acosta's spirited horse, Remington had been a very unhappy and destructive horse earlier this year. His troubling behavior included purposely injuring himself and bullying his stable mates. Sambueso described the feedback she got from him this way, "When I put my hands on Remington the information was flooding through so fast, I was overwhelmed." According to her interpretation he was acting out because he felt left out. That first treatment brought one surprise after another. Moments later the horse turned his backside to her. Ten minutes later he lay down and fell asleep. His owner, Carly, explained that Remington suffers from arthritis in his hips. Sambueso told us he simply let her know where he needed therapy, "I am not a true horse person. I had no idea that horses don't lay down for humans especially for a stranger."

After several Reike treatments Remington's self inflicted wounds have healed, "He's getting better, yeah, he's getting better." And he's getting along with the other horses who themselves are now enjoy the healing touch from Sambueso and their owner.

Cindy Sambueso believes there is a spiritual element to Reike, one that is compatible with all faiths and beliefs and Cynthia Steele agrees, "There is an element to touch that is connected to our life force with each other."

That connection they say extends out from us in all directions. Cindy describes it this way, "If our intentions are all the same about healing and love for our planet, for our animals, for ourselves - that's what it's all about."


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