Team Hoomana Returns from Molokai…
Have you ever thought that you were giving a wonderful gift only to find that you were the one being showered ten-fold with blessings?
On our beautiful neighbor island of Moloka’i, our lomi ohana of 12 massage therapists, 2 kupuna elders, and 3 keiki (children) were blessed beyond words. I journeyed with my 8 year old son, and my 68 year old father and we all experienced a profound healing that will stay with us forever.
We were invited to stay at a 60 acre, 800 year old fishpond on the South Shore of the island. We arrived a crew of global bloodlines representing South America, First Nations, Europe, and Polynesia. Still, our hosts Maile and Hanohano Naehu, Kalani’ua Ritte, and Ka’uhane Adams, welcomed us family, as keiki o ka ‘aina (children of the land).
As we entered the hand-placed rock wall gateway to the magical Keawanui Fishpond and surrounding 6 acre property, we learned this gateway was called the makaha (maka- eye, ha- breath). Makaha is the eye that opens allowing for the inflow and outflow of breath. This is a reference to the tides as they pass in and out of the fishpond bringing life.
Over the course of two days, we witnessed the inpouring and outpouring of community members through the makaha. We gave 100 hours of free lomi to Moloka’i community members from 8 month old babies to 80 year old elders. As we worked, we could hear the children jumping and playing in the fresh water spring, ladies laughing and talking stories under nearby shade trees while they waited for their massage, and could feel the friendly smiles of support from the spirit realm of ancestors watching over us. Our team gave so much love and were received with such warmth by all the people.
We were shown Aloha in so many ways eating a beautifully cooked, local grown dinner of teriyaki venison. Our hosts had hunted and prepared the deer specifically for our arrival. We also ate fish caught that afternoon from the pond.
Our hosts shared that the 140 ft stone wall separating the fish pond from the ocean beyond consisted of stones hand-carried over the mountain from the North side of Molokai to this south shore. To think that our ancestors carried these stones so that we could eat a fish 800 years later was unimaginable for us to fathom from our modern perspective. We had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude with every bite and felt so incredibly nourished and cared for.
For each participant, it was like returning to the piko, the center of life, as it was in ancient times where communities supported one another, as if time was standing still. My 8 year old son was without walls, communing with nature for three days straight catching frogs, fish and sleeping under the stars. My father took his true place as a kupuna talking stories with all the visitors, sharing his wisdom, leading prayers for our group. For me it was the cycle of life unfolding in a harmonious way as I massaged and took it all in.
There were people who received lomi that shared their memories of their Aunty doing lomi on their stomachs when they were growing up or memories of walking on their grandparents backs. One person shared that they never get lomi because they don’t have anyone to go to. Others were inspired to learn the lomi lomi work so that they could take care of their own Molokai families.
It was an amazing realization to see all the mana that these people had put into restoring this fishpond that the ancestors had held so sacred on this land, and to see the parallels that our lomi practice has by perpetuating ancient ways of living.
Hoomana has offered a full scholarship to our month long lomi lomi immersion this September to a Molokai applicant so that the seed that has been planted can continue to thrive. We are still buzzing from our experience, full of gratitude, blessings, and Aloha.