Subject: Healing Ritual, Superstition


Informant: Tye Griffith


Background Information/Context: Growing up, I had a nanny who helped raise me, and who had been working in my family since before I was born. Her name is Eva, and she is from Monterrey, Mexico. Eva also worked as a nanny for a close family friend of mine, Tye. Tye and I essentially grew up together, and had the connection of Eva, who I feel linked our two families together even closer. I asked Tye about a healing ritual Eva would perform called Reiki when we were little.


Tye: So, I don’t remember as much about this one, but I remember Eva would do it, and it was supposed to be a transfer of energy from one person to another through the placement of hands. I think she only did it if something was wrong, like if you were sick or in a bad mood or something, maybe.


So [Eva] would take our hands and run patterns along your palms with her fingers. And then she would, like, put her hands over yours. I don’t think she said anything while she was doing it or anything though. I’m pretty sure she didn’t. Yeah, Reiki was supposed to send good energy into you if something was wrong, and it was just a ritual involving your hands. It was kind of cool actually.


Me: Do you think it worked?


Tye: [laughs] I don’t know. I mean, at the time, I remember like fully believing in it.


Me: Yeah, me too, actually. I think it was like a placebo effect or something.


Tye: Yeah, because I do think if I was feeling sick or something before, and then she did it, I would feel better. Honestly, I think Eva is magic [laughs].


Conclusion: I asked Tye about two of the rituals Eva would do with us, and I actually really enjoyed looking back on them. I could tell when we were talking that Tye also had fun looking back on the experience. I do believe that the Reiki ritual worked to a certain extent, but more of a placebo effect type of thing. But when I was little, I did believe it worked. I thought that Eva was performing magic and that the magic was healing me magically.