The Psychics Blog
# 53 Talkers Kahuna Ventures
While reading the books written by Serge Kahili King, I found the Hawaiian language way with words very interesting.
As Sun Bear said it though, and why my interests here, is: Hawaiian shamanism.
‘For people seeking deeper knowledge of the shamanic wisdom of today and how to apply it to their everyday lives.’ Sun Bear.
While I won’t detail much here about one’s Aumakua, Uhane, Unihipili, and Kino Kanaka, these were new concepts/ideas, that related to my journey with and into my seeking to scratch the ‘itch’ within my Being. Words and concepts about Huna, Kahuna, shamans, Hawaiian shamanism and the spirit of aloha, were touching my inner Being tones with a clear sounding harmony, as were Ku, Lono and Kane.
Aah, but that’s more story, waiting to further unfold and get blogged into posts.
Scratch the ‘itch’ within my Being, led to other needs.
Hope I don’t butcher this to badly.
If I do, I ask, kalana. (better be what I think it is)
Short Lesson in Hawaiian:
Want to learn a bit of Hawaiian because you are visiting, or are lucky enough to live in the Islands? It really isn’t difficult to acquire at least a nodding acquaintance with a language that ties in so graphically to Hawaiian culture and heritage. Here are a few basic rules and a word list designed to help you with the pronunciation and meaning of place names and frequently-used phrases.
First of all, if you know any Spanish, Hawaiian will seem easier to pronounce because of the similarity in vowel sounds. We can glibly rattle off the vowels in English…a,e,i,o,u…but the Hawaiian equivalents are:
a like in father
e like in set
i like in ee in see
o like the o in pole
u like in oo of moon
Now, there are variations on the above themes when there are accents or other diacritical markings, but you won’t go too far wrong with the rules above.
Take the word ‘aloha. ‘ It is easy to learn the pronunciation of ‘a’ and ‘o’ by saying this lovely Hawaiian word that means hello, goodbye, peace, and love, all rolled up together. ‘Aloha nui loa (new ee low a)’ expands on the theme, ‘nui’ meaning’ much, great’ and’ loa’ meaning ‘very.
If you sign your letters with “love”, or “affectionately”, try using the Hawaiian phrase Aloha Nui Loa instead…Very Much Aloha.
Mahalo, ‘meaning’Thank you,’ should be another familiar word. You will hear that word on flights to and from the Islands, in many stores as you pay for purchases, and on all the occasions when that response is in order.
Have you wondered what people meant when they asked you if you were ‘pau’? That’s Hawaiian for ‘done,’ or ‘finished. ‘ It’s a tricky word, however, that has four different spellings with as many meanings. Note that the word meaning ‘done’ has no diacritical markings and all the letters are together. It sounds like “pow.”
‘Mele Kalikimaka ‘and ‘Hauoli Makahiki Hou’ are the equivalents of ‘Merry Christmas’ and ‘Happy New Year, ‘greetings you should know if you are in Hawaii for these holidays. Remember to pronounce every single vowel, and don’t run any together. The accent or stress is generally on the second to last syllable unless otherwise accented.
Place names are usually difficult for newcomers unless they apply the simple rules given above. There are some really long titles but they will become simple to pronounce if you concentrate on those vowels and the stressed syllable. Let’s look at the name for a popular tourist attraction, ‘Place of Refuge National Park ‘ in Honaunau. The Hawaiian name is ‘Pu’uhonua O Honaunau. Pu’u = poo oo. Nau = now.
Here are a few more tips. Restrooms often have the Hawaiian equivalent of ‘Men’ and ‘Women’ on the doors. Best to learn that the gentlemen use the one marked ‘Kanes’ and the ladies head for the one marked ‘Wahines.’
When getting directions, you may hear someone say ‘mauka ‘or ‘makai.’ The first, means toward the mountains and the second means on the ocean side.
What better way to describe places on an island!
Good luck with your new language skills. Don’t be afraid to try them out. Hawaiians and others who are fortunate enough to have lived here a while appreciate the attempt to establish communication in the first language spoken in these beautiful islands of Hawaii.
Aloha & Mahalo:
Two of the Most Important Words of the Hawaiian Language
Aloha & Mahalo
[Pronounced: ah loh’ hah & mah hah’ loh]
If you learn just two words in Hawaiian, learn these. They are two of the most important words in the Hawaiian language, representing paramount Hawaiian values.
In Hawaiian thinking, words have mana [pronounced: mah’ nah], meaning spiritual or divine power], and aloha and mahalo are among the most sacred and powerful.
Say them often as they can be life-transforming and -enhancing.
Be careful to use them ONLY if you truly feel mahalo or aloha within. Do not exploit these words for personal gain, and neither cheapen, nor trivialize their use by verbalizing them carelessly or without sincerity. Aloha and mahalo are ineffable, indescribable, and undefinable with words alone; to be understood, they must be experienced.
Deeper meaning and sacredness is hinted at by the root words of these words.
Linguists differ in their opinions as to the exact meanings and origins, but this is what was told to me by my kupuna (elder):
On a spiritual level, aloha is an invocation of the Divine and mahalo is a Divine blessing. Both are acknowledgments of the Divinity that dwells within and without.
[Alo = presence, front, face] + [hâ = breath]
“The presence of (Divine) Breath.”
[Ma = In] + [hâ = breath] + [alo = presence, front, face]
“(May you be) in (Divine) Breath.”
Think of them as single-word blessings or prayers.
The following are dictionary definitions using English words, which are approximate translations,at best:*
1.Aloha, love, affection, compassion, mercy, sympathy,pity, Kindness, sentiment, sentiment, grace, charity; greeting, salutation,regards; sweetheart, Lover, loved one; beloved, loving, kind, compassionate, charitable, lovable;to love, be fond of; to show kindness, mercy, pity, charity, affection;to venerate; to remember with affection; to greet, to hail. Greetings! Hello! Good-by! Farewell! Alas!
[ah loh’ hah oe!]
May you be loved or greeted!
Farewell or greetings to one person.
[ah loh’ hah KAH’oo (w)ah!]
May there be friendship or love between us!
Greetings to you and me!
[ah loh’ hah KAH’ kou!]
same as above, but to more than one person.
Ke aloha nô!
[ah loh hah NOH’]
[ Ah loh’ hah!]
1. Thanks, gratitude; to thank.
Mahalo nui loa.
[mah hah’ loh noo'(w)ee loh'(w)ah]
Thanks very much.
[OH’ leh loh mah hah’ loh]
Mahalo â nui
[mah hah’ loh (W)AH’ noo'(w)ee]
Thanks very much.
2. Admiration, praise, esteem, regards, respects; to admire, praise,
`O wau nô me ka mahalo,
[oh vau NOH’ meh kah mah hah’loh]
I am, [yours] respectfully,
Ka mea i mahalo `ia, Laki
[kah meh'(y)ah ee mah hah’loh ee'(y)ah, lah’ kee]
The esteemed Laki.”
*Source: Pukui, Mary Kawena & Elbert, Samuel H., HAWAIIAN DICTIONARY,
University of Hawai`i Press, Honolulu, 1986.
One of the most frequently requested translations is:
Aloha au iâ `oe.
[ah loh’ hah vau’ ee (Y)AH’ oe]
I love you.
Ke aloha nô me ka mahalo kâua!
Aloha indeed with mahalo to you and me!
THE HEAVENS, THE SKY, THE ROYAL ONE (in Hawaiian);
FORGIVENESS: derivation of Kala-kala (formal and binding statement to the effect: I release you from the wrong, thus I may be released from it) – the official unentanglement of all parties
(This is where the word kalana comes from, and why it doesn’t just mean ‘forgiveness’ in the English sense, because that denotes blame and victimization, but ‘forgiveness’ as a recognition that the world is not a perfect place, and none of us are perfect beings.)
Kalana as a pro-noun; or for use in Hawaiian language