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11 Powerful Healing Symbols and Their Meanings (With Images)

A healing symbol is a mark, sign, word, or design that represents and reflects the art of healing. Historically, all cultures across the globe have had healing symbols.

They are used in medical rituals by practitioners and healers for strength and protection. Nowadays, people believe that visualizing healing symbols will lead to good thoughts, positive energy, and tranquillity. They can foster a greater harmony between the body, mind, and soul.

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With that said, let’s take a look at popular healing symbols and their significance.

1. Five Reiki Symbols

The Reiki symbols were founded by Mikao Usui, a Japanese medical practitioner, and healer. They are considered by some as the most sacred and powerful healing symbols in the world.

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The following, are the five most important Reiki symbols:

1: The Reiki Power symbol – Choku Rei

Choku rei reiki symbol

The Choku Rei is also called the power symbol. It is used to channel and direct energy within the body. The Choku Rei is drawn at the beginning and end of a healing process. It serves as a catalyst for physical healing and purification.

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Since the Choku Rei is a power symbol, it can be combined with other symbols to strengthen the healing process. The Choku Rei can be drawn or visualized on a person, place, or thing, to fight off negative energy and protect the recipient.

2: The Reiki Harmony Symbol- Sei Hei Ki

The Sei Hei Ki is also called the harmony symbol. It is used for mental /emotional healing, and most commonly serves as a remedy for depression, anxiety, and trauma.

Healing an individual at an emotional level brings harmony to the whole body. Therefore, the Se Hei Kei strengthens the relationship between the mind and the body. This symbol can be used individually or in combination with other symbols.

3: The Reiki Distance healing symbol- Hon Sha Ze Sho Nen

Hon Sha Ze Sho Nen

The Hon sha ze sho nen is also called the distance healing symbol. It is used to send energy to people who are far away. The energy can be sent irrespective of time, distance, and place. It can also be sent into the past, present, and future, in order to heal problems within those realms.

Healers and practitioners consider this the most powerful and useful symbol.  This symbol can also be used in karmic healing because it can unlock the Akashic records, which some consider being the source of human consciousness.

4: The Reiki Master Symbol- Dai Ko Myo

dai kyo mo symbol

The Dai ko myo is also called the master symbol. Dai ko myo can be translated as ‘great shining light’. It is done for spiritual awakening, enlightenment, positivity, evolution, and self-awareness.

It helps you to connect to your inner self and the world around you. The Dai ko myo stresses that universal energy is everywhere and connects all life forces. This symbol can be used on a person, place, or thing to bring a positive energy field.

When the symbol is visualized, it is said to offer psychic protection. The other stages need to be mastered for the practitioner to reach this stage.

 5: The Reiki Completion Symbol- Raku

raku symbol

The Raku is also called the completion symbol. It is used during the final stage of Reiki healing. Some practitioners refer to it as the fire serpent. This symbol is used to seal energy within the body. 

Although it was not discovered by Mikao Usui, it is seen as a powerful addition and has been incorporated into the Reiki traditions. It is particularly useful because it can heal very small areas in the body. The Raku is drawn downwards from the head of the person to the ground.

2. The Rod of Ascepius

rod of asclepius

The Rod of Asclepius is an ancient Greek healing symbol. It features a serpent coiled around a rod and is an emblem of Asclepius, the god of medicine and healing.

According to Greek mythology, Asclepius was one of the most skilled healers in the world. He was murdered by Zeus, who felt threatened by his powers. Once dead, he went to the skies and took the form of Ophiuchus, the serpent-bearer.

The Greeks believed that Asclepius visited people in their dreams and healed them. The Rod of Asclepius has come to symbolize healing, fertility, and rebirth. It is the logo of the World Health Organization and the symbol of the American Medical Association.

It’s the true symbol of medicine, although the Caduceus, a completely different symbol, is often used interchangeably.

3. Eye of Horus

eye of horus

The Eye of Horus is an ancient Egyptian symbol that represents healing, restoration, and good health. According to Egyptian mythology, Horus, who lost his left eye in a battle with Seth, was able to get it back through Hathor’s magical healing.

The restoration of Horus’ eye came to symbolize the process of healing, prosperity, and protection. Each of the six parts of the Eye of Horus is said to refer to one of the six senses. 

In the Mediterranean, fishermen often paint this symbol on their ships for protection. The Eye of Horus is also used in amulets to protect the wearer.

4. Native American Healing Hand

Healing hand symbol

Symbols play an integral role in the cultural and spiritual lives of Native Americans. The symbol of the Healing Hand features a hand with a spiral in its midst, and together these elements stand for healing, protection, and life.

Men who went to the battlefield etched this symbol onto their shields, or tattooed it on their skins, for protection from the enemy.  The Healing Hand is also called the Shaman’s hand because it is said to have the powers of the Shaman’s tribe.

The Healing Hand is still worn today for luck, protection, and positive energy.

5. Naga – The Snake

snake naga

In Hindu Mythology, Naga, or the snake, is known to have many characteristics, such as destruction, protection, and preservation.

The snake is also a symbol of the Kundalini Power or cosmic energy. Kundalini is believed to be inactive within an individual and is awakened by spiritual rituals. An awakened Kundalini is said to aid with emotional healing.

Additionally, the shedding of the snake’s skin is symbolic of healing, rebirth, restoration, regeneration, and renewal. There are special shrines in India where the naga (male) and nagin (female) snakes are worshiped.

6. The Antahkarana

antahkarana symbol

The Antahkarana is said to have originated in Tibet/China and is used by Reiki healers (among others).  The symbol creates an energy that directly impacts the human aura. 

Healers call it one of the most powerful symbols as it has a consciousness and energy of its own.

The Antahkarana is used to heal various ailments, both big and small, and it’s believed that placing the symbol on a person, place, or thing will keep negative energy and illness at bay. It is a valuable tool for meditation due to its 3-dimensional qualities. Regular use of the symbol is said to generate greater inner clarity and focus.

7. Medicine Wheel

medicine wheel

The Medicine Wheel is also known as the sacred hoop. It has been used by Native Americans for healing, protection, and good health. It has four directions within a circle, that can represent elements of nature, seasons, stages of life, aspects of life, animals, and plants.

The symbol also reflects the sky, earth, and tree, which stand for health, life, and rejuvenation. The Medicine Wheel can be drawn, visualized, or worn as a pendant.

8. Spiral Sun

spiral sun

The symbol of the Spiral Sun comes from the stone carvings of the Anasazi people. In many shamanic traditions, the Sun is seen as the first healer or the first Shaman of the people.

The spiral symbol stands for motion and the movement of the universe.  

The symbol is said to help us return to a happy, healthy life when something goes wrong. The Spiral Sun incorporates the healing power and energy of the entire universe.

 9. Abracadabra

When we think of the word ‘abracadabra’ wizards and magic come to our mind. However, the word was first used in alchemy as a healing symbol.

The first mention of the word was in the second century AD in a book called LiberMedicinalis, authored by Serenus Sammonicus, a  physician to the Roman emperor. The physician had written in the book that the word abracadabra could heal malaria if written on an amulet.

The word had the power to prevent disease and keep people healthy. Even during the great plague of London, this belief was so strong that people wrote abracadabra on their doors to protect them from the disease.

10. The Yin and Yang

It is a lesser-known fact that in Ancient China, the Yin and Yang was used as healing symbol, for treating both physical and emotional ailments. Ying and Yang represent the duality and balance found in the universe.

In Chinese medical practices, some parts of the body are seen as Yin and some as Yang. The basic idea is that the Yin and Yang should be healthy, creating a harmony of movement in our lives. 

11. Om Symbol in Hinduism

om symbol

Om is a sacred sound and a spiritual symbol in Hinduism. It symbolizes the whole universe and the essence of the soul.

The Om symbol is commonly used to initiate a spiritual ritual. Those who recite the Om sound or meditate in front of the symbol, often report feeling relaxed and purified.

It aids in emotional concentration and healing. Om takes away negative energy and evil spirits. It is also a symbol of protection and is often used in Reiki rituals.

In Brief

Although healing symbols were used by ancient practitioners, they continue to be relevant even today. Many people practice healing rituals or meditate in front of healing symbols for a healthy mind, body, and soul. Healing symbols are said to be an effective way to obtain positive energy and rejuvenate the spirit.

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Dani Rhys
Dani Rhys

Dani Rhys has worked as a writer and editor for over 15 years. She holds a Masters degree in Linguistics and Education, and has also studied Political Science, Ancient History and Literature. She has a wide range of interests ranging from ancient cultures and mythology to Harry Potter and gardening. She works as the chief editor of Symbol Sage but also takes the time to write on topics that interest her.