What is the Cho Ku Rei Symbol?

Cho Ku Rei
Cho Ku Rei is a power symbol used in Reiki healing practices. It denotes power, strength, and action. The Cho Ku Rei strengthens and speeds up the Reiki healing process and combines with other Reiki symbols. The symbol is used at the beginning or end of the Reiki session. Reiki Level 2 practitioners are taught to use the Cho Ku Rei symbol to ask for universal energy to aid healing.  

How do You Pronounce Cho Ku Rei?

Cho Ku Rei is pronounced as Cho-Koo-Ray. Like other Reiki symbols, it is also a Japanese form derived from Sanskrit. The power symbol is shared with Reiki students when they learn to become Reiki masters by taking advanced-level classes. 

cho ku rei
The Cho Ku Rei symbol written in sand.

Where does Cho Ku Rei Come From?

Mikao Usui, the father of Reiki practice and alternative healing techniques, created the Cho Ku Rei symbol. It is one of the Usui Reiki symbols developed to work with healing energy to promote human well-being. 

This Reiki symbol is slightly different from others as the Japanese Kanji script doesn’t contain it. It is in Kana, an alphabet form that represents sound rather than meaning. According to Mikao Usui, this made it hard to understand what Cho Ku Rei actually means. However, it is commonly considered a powerful healing symbol. 

Cho Ku Rei means to place the power of the universe here. When the Reiki practitioner draws the symbol on the patient’s body or in the room, they call the universe to send Reiki energy to aid in healing the person. The symbol is used for chakra healing. 

What is Reiki Healing?

Reiki is an ancient healing technique that uses Ki energy to improve a person’s health and well-being. Ki energy is the same as Chi Chinese and Prana in Hinduism, which is responsible for keeping a person alive. Reiki combines Rei (Rye), omnipresent, and Ki, life’s energy. 

Reiki healers restore and align the seven chakras in the body to stimulate natural healing abilities. It is a holistic healing process that removes stagnant energy from the body to make space for healing power. They use different healing symbols in this process. 

Cho Ku Rei
Reiki healing is an alternative approach to healing that seeks natural healing through balancing chakras.

What are Reiki Symbols?

Symbols are just drawings without proper attunement. The Reiki Master teaches the symbols first and then guides the students through the attunement process. It is where the energy of the symbol enters the student’s mind. This allows them to connect to the symbol and its relevant energy spiritually. Unless the attunement is invoked, using the symbols will not help to heal.  

Cho Ku Rei
The major Reiki symbols are associated with the healing that takes place in chakra alignment.

Sei Hei Ki (Sei He Ki)

Practitioners use this symbol for emotional healing and to create harmony in the body and mind. It brings peace to the patient, improves memory, helps get over an addiction, and relieves headaches caused by emotional stress. Sei Hei Ki is used to help patients suffering from depression, anxiety, and extreme emotions. 

Cho Ku Rei
The Sei Hei Ki symbol is intended to address emotional and mental health issues.

Hon Sha Ze Sho Nen

This is a symbol of distance healing. Reiki practitioners can heal people who are physically away or at another location. The healer will send positive energy to the person they want to heal, whether in different rooms, cities, or countries. The symbol heals past trauma and harmonizes the energy flow to align the body, mind, and soul. 

Cho Ku Rei
The Hon Sha Ze Sho Nen seeks to heal past trauma.

Motor Zanon 

It is a part of Seichem Reiki or Karuna Ki practice. The symbol works similarly to the Usui master symbol by removing the virus from the body to bring it out and facilitate healing. 

Rama Symbol 

It symbolizes God Rama (from Hinduism), and those who practice Karuna Ki use it. The symbol denotes the bonding of masculine and feminine energy. 

Cho Ku Rei
The God Rama highlights a combination of masculine and feminine energy in Reiki healing.

Midas Star 

The Seichem Reiki practice makes use of the Midas Star. Though the star represents prosperity, it refers to internal peace, harmony, and good relations with people around us. The symbol removes blockages that affect clients from achieving their goals. 

Cho Ku Rei
The Midas star is about creating internal peace and harmony.

Dai Ko Myo 

This is known as the master symbol and has the highest vibration. It uses intense spiritual energy to heal the upper chakras like the heart, third eye, and crown chakra. Dai Ko Myo is also called the empowerment symbol and is a tool for ‘all-purpose healing.’ 

Cho Ku Rei
The Dai Ko Myo symbol is a symbol for all purpose healing.

Uses of Cho Ku Rei Symbol 

The Cho Ku Rei symbol has many uses in the Usui Reiki healing process. 

  • It empowers other Reiki symbols to increase their effectiveness
  • It cleanses negative energy from the surroundings after a Reiki session. 
  • It can heal specific injuries by projecting positive healing energy at the injury/ ailment. 
  • It is used for protection and acts as a shield/barrier that prevents negative energy from affecting a person. 
  • It cleanses negative energy from food items. 
  • Reverse Cho Ku Rei is used to calm hyperactivity and soothe agitated people. This is done only by experienced Reiki healers. 
  • It purifies the air around the person and protects them from harm (physical, emotional, and psychological). 
  • It is drawn on gifts to improve the relationship between the giver and receiver. It symbolizes the good intentions of the giver. 
  • It can be drawn in the air, on the door, etc., to protect the person or home from ill intentions and bad vibes. 
Cho Ku Rei
Reiki healing symbol Cho Ku Rei stamped on a muslin bag.

How to Draw Cho Ku Rei Symbol 

  • Start with the short horizontal line at the top to connect with universal energy. 
  • Continue downwards to draw a vertical line, a ray of light connecting the seven chakras (root chakra to crown chakra). 
  • Draw a spiral to intersect at the seven points of the chakras and end it in the center of the vertical line. 

The symbol has to be drawn as a single continuous line/ movement. Reiki practitioners visualize the symbol and invite the universe to send healing energy when they invoke Cho Ku Rei. The spiral can be in a clockwise or anticlockwise direction, depending on the usage of the symbol. 

The Reiki symbols are considered powerful only when used by practitioners with attunement. However, you can use them as Reiki meditation tools. 

Cho Ku Rei
The Cho Ku Rei symbol is drawn in a single motion.

If you found this article on the Cho Ku Rei and other Reiki symbols interesting, be sure to learn more with this great article on healing symbols.


Vanessa's liberal arts background has prepared her well for Symbol Scholar. A self-proclaimed theology nerd, Vanessa has interests in world religions, Reformation theology, history, and more. When she's not working, Vanessa enjoys spending time with her family, reading, exercising, and watching professional basketball.

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