By Vicky Eckenrode

<br /> Gloria Spackman of Everything Peaceful performs reiki treatment on Wilmington resident Ryan Shepard, who has been to several different medical practitioners for his chronic fatigue. Reiki is a healing technique of transmitting life energy by placing the hands gently in specific positions either on or above the body.

Gloria Spackman places her hands on a client’s temples and sits quietly without moving for several minutes. It doesn’t look like much is going on, but as Spackman moves her hands around, a hum of energy is working, she said. After years of experience as a reiki practitioner, Spackman said she can feel when she finds a blocked area of negative energy, the kind of patches she said can cause stress, pain and sickness.

“I start at the head. There are hand placements that you use,” said Spackman, who began learning the techniques five or six years ago. “All I do is place my hands on them, and let the reiki energy flow out of my hands and into their body.”

The practice, rooted in Japan, is based on the philosophy that a universal life energy flows through people and has a powerful affect on how they feel.

“What I do and what all reiki healers do is let that life force energy channel through my hands,” said Spackman, who lives and practices in Wilmington.

She became interested in it after family members were dealing with health issues. That got Spackman looking into nontraditional and alternative treatments. Spackman, a high school guidance counselor by day, learned the techniques through The International Center for Reiki Training, reaching the Masters level three years ago.

“Last summer, I took their highest level – the Karuna level,” she said, adding that it means compassionate being.

Now, she leads workshops around town or meets individually with clients who are stressed out or having health issues. Spackman said she often sees clients with headache complaints.

“When I put my hands on their head, I move with the headache pain, and the pain actually moves,” she said. “They can feel it move. They can feel it diminish.”

Back and hip pains are other common complaints, but Spackman said she also sees people with chronic problems like asthma.

“The key is that deep relaxation. That allows the body, the immune system to kick in and help whatever’s going on,” she said.

Spackman points out, however, that she sees the treatment as complementary to traditional medical care, especially for serious health problems.

“I’m not a doctor, and that’s something that they’ll need to understand,” she said.

Ryan Shepard started seeing Spackman several months ago and has treatments once a week.

“I have health issues, and I haven’t really gotten any answers from standard medicine, so I’ve pretty much been going the holistic route,” said Shepard, who lives in Wilmington. “I think it kind of makes you at least do a lot of self reflection and so I think it’s good for that. Hopefully it’ll make me better, but we’re still working on that.”

source: Star News Online Vicky Eckenrode: 343-2339 On @vickyeckenrode