Mikao Usui was the originator of what we today call Reiki. He was born on August 15th 1865 in the village of 'Taniai-mura' in the Yamagata district of Gifu prefecture Kyoto. Mikao Usui probably came from a wealthy family as at that time only children from wealthy families could get a good education.
As a child he studied in a Tendai Buddhist monastery school entering at an early age. He was also a student of different martial arts. His memorial states that he was a talented hard working student, he liked to read and his knowledge of medicine, psychology, fortune telling and theology of religions around the world, including the Kyoten (Buddhist Bible) was vast.
He married and his wife's name was Sadako, they had a son (born 1907) and daughter. Usui sensei studied and travelled to western countries and China several times, this was encouraged during the Meiji Era and later, to learn and study western ways.