Reiki is a form of alternative therapy commonly referred to as energy healing. It emerged in Japan in the late 1800's and is said to involve the transfer of universal energy from the practitioner's palms to their patient.
Energy healing has been used for centuries in various forms. Advocates say it works with the energy fields around the body.
Some controversy surrounds Reiki, because it is hard to prove its effectiveness through scientific means. However, many people who receive Reiki say it works, and its popularity is increasing. A Google search for the term currently returns no less than 68,900,000 results.
A 2007 survey shows that, in the United States (U.S.), 1.2 million adults tried Reiki or a similar therapy at least once in the previous year. Over 60 hospitals are believed to offer Reiki services to patients.
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