Sarah Gregg - The Reiki Drum Technique

Never say never

Posted February 22nd, 2014 | 0 Comments
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Gathering Ceremonial Drum Birthing February 2014 007I have this habit.  It’s just something I do from time to time.  I hear myself saying,  “I’ll never do that”, and pretty much now as soon as the words are out of my mouth, I know that some time, normally in the distant future, I will be doing that very same thing –  it’s almost a given!  The same was said about having a hide drum believe it or not several years ago.  Being a vegetarian, almost vegan kind of girl, I was quite happy with my trusty Remo fiberskyn (vegan friendly) frame drum for about a five year period.  I collected several along the way.  They are a great drum, especially in the UK where we live so frequently in such a damp environment the sound from a hide drum if it isn’t made exceptionally well, can be disappointing to say the least.  And as one of the joys of drumming is outdoor work, in nature or at a sacred site, then it is good to have a drum you can rely on to give a nice clear sound.  The Remo drums are all weather drums and never fail to give off a beautiful sound whatever the climate or temperatures.   It is for this reason and also because I am not a drum maker that I provide them with my Reiki Drum trainings.  And it is for this reason I used to often mention to class attendees that I didn’t plan on having a drum made with natural skin at any time.

DjembeAnd then one day a goat skin djembe called to me.  I tried to ignore the whisperings, after all I had my Remo festival djembe, why would I need anything else, but it was very persistent and so that was my first acquisition.  Several djembes later and a love affair with a buffalo skin frame drum which has surpassed any other object I’ve been in possession of, I have come to realise the relationship one has with a hide drum is so much more than just the playing of it.  A drum which has been birthed by either a skilled drum maker or yourself involves not only the spirit of the tree from which it’s frame is made, but also the spirit of the animal who has given its skin as a powerful tool for mankind.   When I do Reiki drum healings Buffalo always walks by my side and is a great ally to have.  It’s energy appears as a protective force and its strength and courage enables deep and powerful healings.

So having appreciated the virtue of owning and working with skin drums in the past few years I found myself this week in an insence filled Yurt in a small town in Kent taking part in my first birthing ceremony for a new addition to my drum family, a large ceremonial gathering drum.    Because of the many community events I am involved with, I have been wanting to find this type of drum for the community for quite some time.  There were many occasions in the last two years where I had felt a calling to do something about it, but had ignored it due to other commitments.  This year with some of the larger events such as the Equinox Reiki Drum Share, the Sacred Sound & Light Immersion and the ancestral work I’m doing with the Honouring The Ancestors Retreat, and a few other promptings, I set the intention in January that I would find someone who could make something very special and sacred.

Gathering Ceremonial Drum Birthing February 2014 314I was fortunate to have been guided to a lovely couple of shamanic drum makers, Phil & Lynne Cowley Jones from Shamanic Drums & Rattles UK.    Phil and Lynne have been making drums for many years and every time I made enquiries from many different sources their name came up, so I knew they were the right people to do this for the Reiki Drum community.  Check out their beautiful work at     The skin used for the drum was Red Deer.  The week before the birthing I had had many promptings from Deer Spirit in the form of both doe and stag, so it seemed very appropriate.  Deer energy is a medicine I am very familiar and comfortable with and I feel it is particularly appropriate for the Reiki community.  With both stag and hind energy deer medicine is strong and determined, but also has a sensitivity, a gentleness and an unsurpassed compassion.  Whenever I see deer in nature I know I personally am going to receive some form of  healing on my own journey.  Although I live on the outskirts of a town, I have on occasion had the smaller muntjac deer find their way into my garden and to me their energy represents “gentle” healing, such as Reiki.  Although Phil and Lynne chose the skin, I feel this was the best animal for us to connect with as the Reiki community and it will be interesting to see what other Sensitives experience when they hear this drum in community.

Lynne and Phil prepared the skins and frame a few days before I arrived for the birthing process.  They see themselves as midwives birthing the drum and the whole ceremonial experience felt deeply sacred.  Phil spoke during the ceremony and his words felt channelled from some sacred place.  He talked about the gentle voice of the drum, reflective of deer spirit, and also of the many Reiki people who gather together in our community of Reiki Drummers.   He also said how this drum would be in the presence of peoples from all walks of life and all spiritual paths.  That too is true.  Since teaching Reiki Drum I have been blessed to meet many different people who follow different spiritual traditions but who are all attuned to Reiki and who are drawn to working with the drum.  Reiki as we know has no religious dogma and is a system of healing that can be followed by anyone.  Reiki Drumming has followed this ethos and it is because of this I feel it too is gaining popularity as a beautiful healing modality.  During the ceremony a butterfly started to fly around the Yurt, a symbol of transformation perhaps for the work ahead.   Gathering Ceremonial Drum Birthing February 2014 012

Whilst the skin and frame were joined together in the birthing ceremony it will take a few days for the drum to be completely ready to play.  I drove home from Kent on a very high plane of joy and appreciation for the wonderful spirit of this drum.  At present,  she sits in my teaching space and has a commanding and powerful presence.  This weekend I am teaching a level II Usui Reiki class which has a few students who are passionate drummers,  and they will appreciate her.    When the drum is ready to receive her first beat I will do ceremony and bless that process.  Next weekend I am running both a Reiki Drum Master Teacher class as well as a Reiki Drum practitioner class.  I’m excited for this group of people as they will be the first to experience her as a community drum. For those of you who are coming along to our annual Spring Equinox Reiki Drum share event on March 23rd in Essex, our new community drum will be part of the healing which will take place on that day.  She hasn’t got her name as yet, I need to find the time and space to journey for that and meet her Spirit,  but I know her energy, coupled with the medicine of Deer is going to work a very special magic for the Reiki Drum community.

Due to cancellation there are a couple of places left on our annual Reiki Drum day being held March 23rd in Sheering, Essex.  Booking is essential as we are almost full to capacity.  But if you would like to join us for this high energy drumming event and are Reiki attuned, please email to see if there are still places remaining.  

With love and blessings to you all, Sarah x

Forthcoming Highlighted Events

6 March– Monthly Reiki Share, Sawbridgeworth, Herts (repeated first Thursday of every month)

23 March – Reiki Drum Share, Sheering, Essex (2 places remaining)

5 & 6 April – Sacred Sound & Light Immersion, Sheering, Essex (1 place remaining)

3-4 May – Reiki Drum Practitioner Training

8 June – Usui Reiki Kotodama Workshop

17-21 June – Summer Solstice Reiki Retreat “Exploring Your Divine Potential” – North Cornwall

31 Oct-3 Nov – Honouring The Ancestors & Healing The Ancestral Line Retreat

As we come to the close of 2013 and reflect on this year of change, and adaptation to change, our thoughts also are cast forward to what potentiality the New Year will bring.  I love the changeover into a new Calendar year; it always brings so much promise.  Some years don’t always  turn out the way one expects, some bring more challenges than we had hoped for or were prepared for, and some bring peace and many joys.  I personally find my life has been quite cyclical up to this point.  I have “new beginnings” years  followed by “building on those beginnings” years, “challenges associated with” years, “seeing them manifest” years  and then “assimilating them into my normal way of being” years”, and finally  “culmination” years  so that something new is required, hence a period of reflection.  2013 has been that year of reflection for myself, a time to look back at the work I’ve done with Reiki Drum since 2007 and review the next stage of my development.

I have been heartened to see that Reiki Drumming is being widespread throughout the UK.  In 2007 my new beginning was to spread its teachings and I feel this powerful and effective healing modality is working its magic around the country through the efforts of many enthusiastic Reiki teachers who have embraced the combination of sound, shamanism and Reiki.   I will still be teaching regular Reiki Drum Practitioner Classes throughout the year, but my focus has shifted slightly and I am keen to create more opportunities for deep healing incorporating everything I practise in the realms of sound and energy healing.  This year I introduced the very powerful “Exploring your Divine Potential Summer Solstice Reiki Retreat” which is held on the beautiful North Cornish Coast.  The five day retreat is being dont-tell-me-the-skys-the-limit-when-there-are-footprints-on-the-moon-paul-brandt-held in 2014 and is the perfect opportunity to explore what makes you tick, where your passions and talents lie, what your dreams are and how you can manifest them.  It synchronistically brought participants in 2013 who were at the end of one life cycle, ready to move onto other things, and gave them the chance to review where they were going and what they truly wanted in their lives.  It really was “life changing” for those who attended, and I am hoping to create more of these types of opportunities in the way of workshops and residentials in the future.    All information about the 2014 Summer Solstice retreat can be found in the Retreats section of the Reiki Drum website. At this time there are still a few places remaining for this truly beautiful experience, which through the magic of Reiki and the content of the retreat coupled with the fact that we are staying in one of the most beautiful places in the UK and spending time at sacred sites in the magnificent North Cornish coastal area, will be a remarkable and unforgettable experience for those who are attending.

Secondly due to the incredible energy which was raised during the workshop of 2013,  I am holding the Usui Reiki Kotodama and Buddhist Chant workshop again in 2014 on Sunday 8th June in Sheering, Essex.  If you missed last year’s workshop which lended itself to some deep and powerful healings for those who attended, and you would like to discover more about the Usui Reiki Kotodama, then this day is a wonderful way of exploring these sacred sounds in a group energy.  The event is also open to those who attended last year, as it’s a perfect day to repeat and to see how far you have come with your Kotodama practise in the 12 months.    Details can be found on the Usui Reiki Kotodama Workshop Page.

And finally, but by no means least, I have spent my Christmas period spiritually “downloading” lots of exciting practises for a new retreat “Honouring The Ancestors & Healing The Ancestral Line Retreat” to be held October 2014.   For the past five years I have been running a variety of events around Samhain, The Celtic New Year.  This is a very powerful time energetically; a time to remember and honour all of our Ancestors, as well as letting go of the past and looking forward to the New Year.  All the events have been high energy, very moving and incredibly powerful because of the nature of the work, and this weekend scheduled for the end of October is no less.

Ancestral LineThe weekend will be a whole weekend dedicated to the Celtic New Year and all that symbolises.  We will be particularly concentrating on honouring our own ancestral line as well as healing inherited traits that no longer serve us and have been passed down our own line.  That in itself will be powerful, but we are going to work with Sound in many forms during the weekend to facilitate deep healings for all of those who attend. The weekend will be a weekend of voice work through toning, chant, song and mantra, many gong baths, sacred drumming, journeying, shruti, crystal bowls, monochord, earth chanting and much more all with the group intention of honouring the ancestors and healing the ancestral line.

Besides the ancestral healing that will take place during different sessions, we will (weather permitting) take part in a coastal walk along the beautiful Dunwich coastline where we will do some Earth Chanting, before the highlight of the weekend which will be the all night community group vigil on Saturday evening.   The vigil will be initially led by myself with a variety of practices, but it will also give each of those who attend an opportunity to honour their ancestors in their own way as part of the group.    For anyone who has attended a gong puja, it will be something very similar, although there will be a variety of beautiful energetic offerings made during the evening by all of us, as well as some silent time if members of the group are shy!

The Phoenix Centre BarnI am holding this retreat at the fabulous Phoenix Centre on the Suffolk Coast.  I’ve been running residentials there for about six years and missed 2013, so am thrilled to be going back to the incredible energy again.  It’s perfect for really deep healing work, and is very self contained.  Accommodation is shared in the lovely Southyard Cottages and the main Bridge Barn house.  We will be catered for over the weekend by Trish Dent who has done all of our catering before.  Trish is a talented vegetarian and macrobiotic chef who specialises in particular in allergy cooking which has always been appreciated by our sensitive clientele.

The retreat starts  on Friday 31st October and will finish after a group breakfast on Monday morning November 3rd.  The area around Dunwich is quite magical, an area of outstanding natural beauty, so when the retreat is finished, you may wish to spend a few hours exploring this lovely part of the Suffolk Coast.

For those of you who have been to any of the Celtic New Year events I have run in the past, I believe this particular event is going to surpass anything we’ve done before.  And for those of you who have been to Dunwich before, then this is a great opportunity to return to the wonderful energy there.  This is going to be such a beautiful weekend and will effect deep healing for all those who attend.   The Reiki Drum website angel, Jo is still on holiday at present so the Retreats section hasn’t been updated as yet, although I expect it to be in the next few weeks, but you can click on the following link to download the full brochure for the weekend. Honouring The Ancestors Celtic New Year Sacred Sound Celebration Retreat  (it takes a few seconds to download).    If you have any questions about this magical opportunity, then please don’t hesitate to let me know.  The Phoenix Centre is a small centre and places are limited, so if this is something you would like to attend, I urge you to book at your earliest convenience so as to avoid disappointment.

Glastonbury July 2012 036I have several other new things planned for the coming months and will let you know when I have more details.  Of course we will be running the usual Usui Reiki and Karuna Reiki classes throughout the year as always and one more exciting change is the new monthly Reiki share being held in Sawbridgeworth the first Thursday of the month starting in February.  For the past decade or so I have traditionally run shares from my home, but over the past couple of years it has become apparent that numbers were exceeding the space we had available, so from February we will have a much larger space to share the magic at the Sawbridgeworth Memorial Hall.  All Reiki attuned practitioners are welcome to attend what is fundamentally a traditional Reiki share, with Reiju, Distant Healing, Japanese practises and Reiki sharing, although Western practises will also be incorporated and I am sure we will have many of the community Reiki healings which have become a main feature of the Reiki events I run.  Fee is £5 for the evening and the evenings will run from 7pm for 7:30 start, finishing at 09:45 pm.  All dates are listed on the Events page, along with all other classes and events this year.

The next big event is our legendary annual Reiki Drum Share on 23rd March.  There are just a few places remaining for this event if you haven’t yet booked and I expect them to disappear in the next weeks as people get back into the swing of things after the Christmas break, so if you are keen to come along, then please let me know at the earliest opportunity.

On a personal front I am exploring lots of new things myself next year which I hope to share in the future, and I’m really excited for 2014, it feels like it’s going to be an amazing one full of adventure and new opportunity.

So it just remains to wish all of you a beautiful turn of the year.  I hope 2013 allowed you to look at yourselves as it did myself, look at the good and the not so good, and take the best of all of it into the New Year.  Wishing you all a joyous one, a year of expressing your radiant selves in the optimum way.

With love and blessings, Sarah x

Forthcoming Highlighted Events

6 February – First monthly Reiki Share, Sawbridgeworth, Herts (repeated first Thursday of every month)

23 March – Reiki Drum Share, Sheering, Essex (5 places remaining)

5 & 6 April – Sacred Sound & Light Immersion, Sheering, Essex (1 place remaining)

3-4 May – Reiki Drum Practitioner Training

8 June – Usui Reiki Kotodama Workshop

17-21 June – Summer Solstice Reiki Retreat “Exploring Your Divine Potential” – North Cornwall

31 Oct-3 Nov – Honouring The Ancestors & Healing The Ancestral Line Retreat



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