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Forgiveness and Ho’oponopono

Photo of Kumu Jeana Iwalani Naluai

Forgiveness and Ho’oponopono


Is there someone you need to forgive? Do you need to forgive yourself?

The practices of Ho’oponopono give us the tools to restore harmony in our relationships with ourselves, with others and with the Divine. Ho’o is a word of action. Pono describes harmony, balance, wholeness, rightness and being complete. In short, Ho’oponopono means to make right, more right.

At the Hawaiian Lomilomi Conference, I was moved by gifted kumu (teacher) who shared her story of being called to do blessings, clearings and spiritual work within her community.

When she was young child, she was hanai’d(adopted out) to her auntie, who couldn’t have children. Hanai was fairly common way of raising children at that time. If you couldn’t have children, someone in your family would hanai them to you.

If there was a chosen child who needed to learn from the elders, the elders would caretake that child, and you would hanai your child to the elder’s family.  It would be considered a privilege to do so.

Even though she had wanted a child, the auntie turned out to be very abusive. The girl was raised with a traumatic childhood. I don’t know the details, but she shared enough that I could imagine her deep hurt and pain.

The girl grew up, tuned into her gifts and expanded spirituality. She began to feel a calling. The calling was to do blessings, clearings, and spiritual work in her community.

The young woman began to study with a kahu, a priest. She told him that she felt a calling, that she wanted to learn and that she felt ready to do blessings. “I feel like it’s time,” she said.

“No,” the kahu replied. “You’re not ready. You still have more work to do on yourself”

Spiritual work, blessings and clearing work, require a clear channel. You have to be listening. You must use your intuition. This wise elder could see that she had not yet reached her full potential. That something was holding her back.

Time for Ho’oponopono


“Go visit your auntie,” he said.

The woman’s auntie was in the hospital. Dying. She had known it but had refused to visit. Too many wounds. So much hurt.

But her heart was being called… so she gathered up the courage and decided to go and see her auntie.

She went with the intention of forgiving, and clearing her own path through that forgiveness.

The auntie was not at all what she remembered. This auntie was frail. Old. Tired. Not the monster in her memories.

When she arrived there, the auntie looked at her with shock.  Gratitude. And Relief.

In those moments, with her auntie stroking her hand and refusing to let go, she chose to forgive. For everything. They shared some time together.

When this woman returned back to the kahu, she felt lighter and clearer. “I see light all around you,” he said.

“You are radiant.”

And then he asked her, “Do you know why I sent you to your auntie?”

“Yes,” she said. “So I could forgive her.”

He replied, “No. The reason I sent you to her, was so that you could give her the opportunity to forgive herself. You were there to give a gift.”

This was the woman’s own personal Ho’oponopono, a heart wound that needed to be healed with forgiveness. The experience opened up the way for all of her gifts to come in fully.

The Antidote for Blocks, Resistance and Trauma


When we have blocks, resistance, past traumas that are obscuring the path, the way isn’t open. It’s tempting to think it’s someone else who is obstructing the path. We might blame others for the way that we’re feeling.

We can blame our shortcomings and past situations for why we’re not moving forward. The truth is, we have power to unravel ourselves from the web of disharmony that’s been created.

It’s up to us to decide to take action and Ho’oponopono is all about action.

Take action and restore the harmony to your life and relationships. Give gratitude to the ones who pushed and challenged you to rise, be better, to raise your vibration.

Looking back now, I see that some of my toughest relationships provided the opportunity for  growth and expansion. I thank them for the lesson.

Today, this kumu is doing the work that she was meant to do. She’s living her purpose teaching, sharing and blessing the people in her community.

If you hear anything in this story, I hope it’s this. It is never too late.

Allow that truth to sink in. Feel it.

You are relieved of the burden that you’re carrying. You are now lighter and able to fly towards the freedom of living your life’s purpose unencumbered.

Is there someone you need to forgive? Do you need to forgive yourself?


Life is too short to carry these burdens around with us. Your soul’s journey is too beautiful to allow those burdens to weigh you down on your path, or keep you from living your life’s purpose.

Take a moment to think on someone who perhaps you’ve had a disharmony with. Send them love. Send them forgiveness. Ho’oponopono. Restore harmony.

Do it today. Do it right now. Their presence and participation is not required, because the change will happen in you. As change happens in you, it will illuminate the change occurring in all those around you.

You will be the positive epidemic of Aloha.

Now, it’s your turn…what was your biggest takeaway from this post?


I read and respond to every comment. It’s the highlight of my week!

With aloha,

Photo of Kumu Jeana Iwalani Naluai

13 thoughts on “Forgiveness and Ho’oponopono”

  1. Thank you. I am reading a really good book right now called the Self Compassion Diet. Everyday I remind myself to have self compassion and then I am more compassionate towards others.

    Hollyanne (Anna) Samuelsen MA, NCBTMB

  2. Despite my fears, it is time to take action.
    I hear the call, I have been trying to hide from my purpose. Others see what I am choosing not to…it is time for me to put off my insecurities & accept the call.

  3. Judi A Trupiano

    I am having such a terrible time with forgiveness. I have siblings that have completely destroyed our family for years and they used me to take the fall in my parents eyes. Two out of 4, took away everything my parents had built over a lifetime and they started a deception before my father passed then complete it with my mother who was going into dementia. And I was the fall guy. “girl” My sister kept me away from nieces and nephews for a life time because she believed I violated her husband.. I just learned that when my mom passed. A niece confided in me the secret they were all sworn to keep. “she said it disturbed her for her whole life” Now knowing that truth it disturbs me. I lamented my entire adult life why she hated me so much.. Now I know and having a hard time finding a place to forgive.. She kept me away from family.. Away from my mom after she gained custody of her because of her dementia. I have no family because of the hatred of my siblings. I just don’t understand that kind of hatred. “I do have two daughter so I am not completely alone.. I am very grateful for them and all of my Ohana connections.. I have moments of extreme emptiness. Not depression, just empty. I have not confronted my sister and I am struggling to do so.. Also, please extend energy for my daughter who has been exposed to the covid 19, currently isolated and waiting for her test results.. She has along history of asthma and I am very worried for her and family. (husband and 10 yr old boy)

    1. Judi, from an outsider looking in – it seems so unfair for someone to have been born into a family like that. I couldn’t imagine being put through such rejection and mental trauma from the people who are supposed to be your foundation in life. There is something special I see in this almost unfair situation you’ve been in, and it is that the harder it is to forgive the sweeter and more strong the love will be when you finally do forgive. I don’t think you would have been put into this situation if you didn’t have the capability to forgive and move on, and I don’t think you would have been put in such a tough spot that most people would never have to face if you weren’t supposed to face it to begin with. I could just be rambling on and my words may have no value for you but I just felt compelled to help you if I could. Honestly I wish I could help myself right now with my own forgiveness issues, but then seeing other people’s problems gives me great perspective of just how easy it should be for me to forgive the ones whose caused me pain and myself for ive caused pain to. Maybe you need that disconnect from you’re own issues for a minute to realize your problems have not created you and are only attached to them because you’ve allowed them. You may have been born into a rough road, but you choose to let the bumps give you reason to get off of it without seeing where this road can take you.
      Point is, gaining perspective by looking at someone’s struggles that seem worse than yours may give you the ability to realize how small your issues are… it’s tough to forgive something that seems like a mountain blocking out the horizon before it, shrink it down to baby hills practice forgiveness every day until its gone. Ok I’ll stop rambling I’m not good at explaining things sometimes and I don’t usually reach out to comments I read on websites, but my heart feels for you. My heart feels for your daughter and family as well. May she recover covid19 and it not affect the rest of your family. Sending love to you my friend!

    2. Prayers rising for your daughter and for your situation with your siblings. Ho’oponopono is a powerful practice that brings freedom and lightness. Stay tuned next week for our free webinar on Ho’oponopono.

  4. Rhonda Mickelson

    Thank you again Jeana for sharing insight. This comes to my attention at the perfect time— of course. Sending you aloha from Iowa.

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