Category Archives: Spirituality

OUROBOROS, TRANSFORMATION & some other serpents…


The Ouroboros is an ancient symbol of a serpent devouring its own tail, the word being of Greek origin meaning ‘tail devourer’. This symbol has its birth in several ancient cultures nameably in the Egyptian book of the dead, the Silk Road & even a mention by Shakespeare. There is reference in the America’s, Europe & West Africa.

Ouroboros is seen in several ways, one being the uniting of the conscious mind with the subconscious. Jung held the view that Ouroboros was hermaphroditic, compounded of opposites, & at the same time a unifying force…something akin to the Yin & Yang. In Celtic mythology, the wyrm (serpent) symbolizes continuity or infinity. And, a circle of protection. Certain philosophies hold that it is a dynamic, evolving process leading towards a higher level of existence…our beginning & ending. Two most diametrically opposed destinies spiralling, meeting & fusing. Alchemy? Definitely points to ponder on in this year of the snake, from beginning to end.

The Aboriginal culture has their Rainbow Serpent, which participates in the creation of the world in their myths of the Dreamtime. Named for the snake-like meanderings of water across a landscape. In these myths, the serpent is female & called the creation into being from the Dreamtime. Most fitting for this year of the Water Snake.

Then there is the Cadaceus, often confused with the Rod of Asclepius. The cadaceus, or herald’s staff represents Hermes or Mercury, symbolic of commerce & negotiation. In his article ‘On Tradesmen’s signs of London’, A.H Burkitt notes that among the very old symbols still used at that time, which were based on associations between pagan gods & professions ‘we find Mercury, or his cadaceus, appropriate in trade, as indicating expedition & Esculapius, his serpent or staff for professors of the healing arts’.

The Rod of Asclepius, most well known symbol of medicine (the cadaceus has 2 winged serpents entwined around a staff) is a combination of the snake, held to symbolize rebirth, fertility & rejuvenation with it’s ability to shed skin & the staff, symbolic of resurrection & healing. Asclepius, another deity of Greek origin was specifically associated with the medicinal arts.


– a through or dramatic change in form or appearance

– a metamorphosis during the life cycle of an animal

So many more snakes pop up in myth & culture…right back to the original Garden. To this day there are cults built around faith healing & the handling of snakes…so we share a long history. Frankly, I like the Ouroboros & Rainbow Serpent for what they symbolize.


Golden Buddha, painted by Heine De Waal

What is Reiki?

Heiné de Waal received has Masters Initiation (Shiki Ryoho) in 1998. Additional initiations were later received into Karuna Reiki and traditional Japanese Reiki (Ryoho). Heiné can be contacted for treatments and tuition at 072 293 9478 or

What is Reiki?

Reiki is an ancient method of natural healing dating back to the Far East. This technique was named after the founder, Mikao Usui – a Japanese theologist. He rediscovered this art of healing in the mid 1800’s through years of studying history and medical books; both Buddhist and Christian scriptures; psychology; Taoism and even the art of divination. Following a prolonged period of meditation, Mikao Usui acquired this ability of transferring Universal Life Energy, which he called Reiki (Usui Ryoho Reiki = Usui’s natural method of healing with Universal energy). He then committed to teach others how to act as channels for this energy.

Reiki is not a religion or doctrine, but more of a philosophy, a way of living. When a person undergoes a session of Reiki, they allow the energy to be taken with beneficial effects. This puts the recipient in an empowering position and not the practitioner. Those whom use Reiki regularly often find that they are more joyful, lively and their inbuilt energy is enhanced. It is almost as if their batteries have been fully charged!

There are many energy healing modalities and can be confusing to the lay person. Reiki is a simple and uncomplicated technique, requiring only your intuition and obviates the need for props. In order for technique to “qualify” as Reiki, it needs to consist of 5 elements:
• Five daily principles
• Breathing techniques
• Symbols with mantras
• Initiation/attunement
• Palm healing

The Reiki Treatment

Deep relaxation is central to a Reiki session. The extent to which Reiki can work is defined by the receiver of the energy, because only the necessary amount of energy is absorbed. If the receiver is not accepting of the energy or feels negative about it, then its effectiveness will be reduced.

How do I learn Reiki?

One does not need any previous experience to become a Reiki practitioner; however, you would require an attunement or initiation. This attunement (Reiju = blessing) can be done only by a Reiki Master (Teacher). The student should also have an open heart, the desire to receive the Reiki transmission and carry the intention to use it. Through the process of attunements, energy will automatically start flowing. The more you work with the energy, the stronger the flow of Reiki will become.

There are four degrees of Reiki. Reiki I is primarily for self-healing and hands-on healing to others.

The next level of Reiki focuses on emotional-, mental- and karmic healing. In this second degree the student is introduced to symbols and how to work with them. Healing with Reiki II adds considerable power to direct sessions. It also adds methods and tools for performing healing on a person or animal not physically present. This is referred to as distance healing.

The third degree of Reiki is an advanced level of this technique. It involves higher spiritual energy and achieves more spiritual healing. Reiki III is recommended especially to those who wish to make Reiki a major part of their lives.

The last level is the Master level. A Reiki Master is simply a teacher of Reiki and one who has mastered the discipline. No ego or ownership should be involved in this title.

You don’t need to be a therapist to use Reiki. Most people use it on themselves, family and friends, even plants and animals. It can promote a better quality to life and greater harmony with the environment. Some practitioners of Reiki see it as a form of art.