Meaning: Gassho means to bring two hands together
Pronunciation: Gassho pronounced gash-sho
Buddhism: Mudra of Heart Work
Sanskrit: Anjali Mudra
Gassho meditation helps prepare us for reiki and sets the foundation to our self-healing. Gassho, pronounced gash-sho, means to bring the hands together in prayer as a symbol of union of the divine Father and Mother or God and Goddess.
Mikao Usui, the buddhist monk, honorary doctor and founder of reiki as it used today, shared gassho meditation with his students during reiki training as the first pillar of reiki. There are a total of three pillars in the Usui Reiki healing system. He taught students to use gassho meditation at the beginning and end of a reiki session. Gassho meditation is also practiced as part of a reiki practitioner’s lifestyle and done for 15-30 minutes daily preferably in the morning or evening.
In this mudra, the left hand represents human beings in the physical world and the right hand represent the Buddha an enlightened being. The gesture of bringing the hands together tells us that we too can become enlightened beings as the Buddha. The path to enlightenment is through inner stillness, which gassho brings us closer to with practice. Gassho meditation is a simple and effective in calming the mind and expanding our energy.
If you have never practiced meditation before or are a beginner, give yourself time to experience it. A restless mind can make us feel anxious and irritable during meditation. If this is happening to you, start off with a few minutes of meditation and build on to it as you get better. In time, you will see how peaceful you will feel and the restlessness of the mind will subside.
How To Practice Gassho Meditation
- Sit in a quiet place where you will not be disturbed or distracted. You may wish to sit in a chair, on a meditation cushion or on the floor in easy sitting pose.
- Bring the spine straight, close the eyes and bring the hands together in prayer position. Hands should be in front of the heart.
- During this meditation, it is good practice to have a focal point to keep the mind calm. You can choose to focus on your breathing, on the sensation of your hands touching each other or the point where the two middle fingers meet.
- You may choose to set a timer for your meditation or allow yourself to be guided intuitively.
- To end this meditation, bring your attention to your body, to your hands and feet. Take a few deep breathes and flutter your eyes open.
Some practitioners find it helpful to play relaxing music as they meditate while others prefer silence. Do what feels right to you. Setting an intention before you begin, chanting a mantra or reciting the five principles of reiki can also be done as part of your gassho meditation. This shouldn’t feel like an additional chore for you to do. It is a gift you are giving yourself that will bring more peace, joy and love into your life.
Gassho meditation is a fundamental practice in reiki and in a healer’s lifestyle. There is no goal in this meditation. You are to simply experience the stillness within you and become present in your body. If thoughts float in, allow them to float away without attachment or judgement. Gassho meditation increases our awareness and provides us with the stillness needed to connect to our higher selves, the intuitive side of us that will guide our hands in a reiki healing session and in life.