Aloha Oe - Aloha Mai E
I Invite Aloha Upon You
by Kumu Jairo Kealoha
ALOHA, a word that is widely recognized but do we really understand its meaning?
Aloha is the Hawaiian word for LOVE... through the years has been used and abused and has become an almost commercial cliche used to sell everything from magazines to airlines. However, when we return purposefully to its original meaning, the power in the word suddenly leaps forth afresh.
Traditionally, the word Aloha meant "the joyful sharing of life in the present moment," or equally, "our hearts are singing together." When we understand "ALO" as meaning "to be with" and "OHA" as meaning "happiness" - the deeper intent of the word becomes clear.
Furthermore, the core term ha means "breath of life." When combined with alo, the meaning of ALO-HA becomes "to be joyful together and filled with the breath of life."
~ alo = to be with; to share an experience; to be in the moment.
~ oha = joy, happiness.
~ hâ = life, breath, spirit.
Aloha has a great number of possible meanings, but in its simplest form, Aloha is a gift and its meaning may be understood, may be lived, may be shared, and may be an an integral living part of our own existence... as famed Hawaiian waterwoman Rell Kapolioka'ehukai Sunn once so beautifully described it as: “ Aloha is…giving and giving some more, from the heart, until there is nothing left to give” and sharing the happiness of life here and now.
In my personal quest to share its meaning, I sought definitions from some of my dear family, friends and teachers. Here are their thoughts:
~ Graeme Kapono Urlichd:
" All realities are made up of relationships. Relationship between people, people and Nature, people and their bodies, people and their beliefs. Aloha is the ability to exist in any reality in total harmony - without judgment or comparison."
~ Jillyan Baldwin:
" Aloha can be a way of life. Everything we think about, feel, act upon will be transformed when we channel love through from our hearts. Aloha not only transforms us, but transforms the world around us to higher levels of consciousness."
~ Serge Kahili King:
" Aloha is the joyful sharing of life energy in the present."
~ Cynthia Lynn Beanblossom:
" Aloha as described by Kahuna Harry Uhane Jim is "the Breath of God is in our presence" (p. 144 Wise Secrets of Aloha, 2007).
To me this literally feels like pure beauty, joy, grace, happiness radiating throughout my heart, mind, body, spirit ~ my whole being ~ and radiates around me.
Thank you for asking me this. What a joy to call forth this feeling....to remember and to be in this presence."
~ Katia Yachmann:
" Aloha is the true expression of unconditional love, when I think aloha I imagine someone with open arms and a hughe smile just waiting to share all their love with me."
~ Heather Kennedy:
" Aloha is my deep connection with the Infinite, and through that I am able to tap into that Source and in turn share it with those that I come in contact with in my daily life... Sharing the Spirit of Aloha..."
~ Heather Dopp:
" Aloha is like the welcoming home of one's own soul housed in another self."
~ Pamela Fay-Brennan:
"Aloha for me is: lovingly powerful and powerfully loving, it is the spirit that motivates my every breath and action."
~ Sandy Friedland:
" Aloha reminds me of the Jewish word Shalom--coming, going, for all time - a salutation of hello/goodbye/peace. I experience it as a universal term of endearment, acknowledgement, recognition, beauty, love & acceptance..."
~ Valerie Dean:
" Certainly... I acknowledge that you are here, and that is a special moment for all."
~ Renee Thomas:
"Aloha to me is not just a greeting, it is Love and Happiness in harmony, dancing together, living as one in the moment..."
~ Michael Brechtel:
" Aloha for me is like spiraling down a drain. Your consciousness circles, becoming more and more focused on a smaller and smaller space, the now. Then, suddenly, you actually get there, you go down the drain... through a portal and the sense of connectedness leaves you feeling immense, as though all time and space, all people, all love and energy was contained inside you.
It reminds me of Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God." When you are still, you know that you are God. If God is indivisible, whole, complete, perfect, then we are one, we are God and our separateness is an illusion. When we are still and we touch that current of divine energy, we burst and our boundaries are vaporized. We are infinite."
~ Roman Shamsutdinov:
" When saying ALOHA , I feel it as someone would wish you may the sun shine above your head whenever you are :) "
~ Karla Nole:
" Aloha Affection, Love, Peace, Compassion and to love to Be Happy!!!"
~ Jo-Anne Beggs:
" Aloha means to me oneness. An experience of oneness with myself. Oneness with others. Oneness in the experience of Spirit. Oneness in love's communion. It is bliss. It is humility and absolute joy. Aloha allows me to experience love and "knowing" of a virtual stranger for they are not...we are One, joined in Aloha Spirit."
~ Sylvie Slos:
Aloha means welcome to me, share with me this beautiful moment. What I have, feel I share with you to experience the same. "
~ Gayle Wentworth:
"Aloha is more than Hello or Goodbye. It's a Way of Life with Humility, Honor and Appreciation."
~ Carrie Collins:
"I'm never been to Hawaii and have never said Aloha to another person. But when it's said to me - I feel the feeling of gratitude, respect and utmost sincerity of a wish of wellbeing. It's truly a word with a lot of amazing energy. "
~ Monica Costa-Moreno:
" Aloha to me is the coming and the going, the hello and goodbyes of everything, the impermanence of life, as we come and go. The birth, the dying, the rebirth. The knowing that every time we come, we leave, only to return again."
~ Francis Sanjuan:
" Aloha es un saludo, una despedida calida... una vienvenida que se da desde el corazon, una palabra que suena a grandes montanas, olas ..ondas y volcanes... palabra calida como los nativos de Hawaii o quizas como cualquier nativo de cualquier isla en cualquier lugar del planeta."
"It's a greeting, a warm farewell ... a warm welcome, one that is given from the heart, a word that sounds like great mountains, waves .. waves and volcanoes ... warm word as Native Hawaiians or perhaps as any other native of any island anywhere else in the world. "
~ Deborah Reid:
" I lived in Hawaii for 7 years and experienced the Aloha spirit of the Hawaiian Islands - mostly Honolulu. Aloha means hello, goodbye, and love and can have a spiritual or divine meaning.
There is a spirit of Ohana and connectedness that I noticed while living in Hawaii - people helped me out all the time and there were always invitations to someone's house for huge festive meals on holidays!
For me Aloha is: "embracing the love, beauty, and spirit of the Hawaiian Islands."
~ Cindy Norton:
" Before taking your Lomi-Lomi class Aloha was just another word for hello. Now Aloha for me is the inspiring word on living my life. Knowing everything is connected in this world and be grateful for everything and everyone that crosses our paths. Not to take things for granted and to enjoy and love every moment in life the right now. It is the happiness and love within us, shining on the outside for others to feel and see that we come in contact with. It is striving to be the best I can be to myself and all my surroundings. Aloha is about always learning and not closing off our mind. Aloha is inner growth thru life."
~ Jackie Ferrerosa:
" Aloha to me is our original human spirit essence. It is a sutra seed, sound and vibration. It is multidimensional. As you go within your awareness expands and realize you are Aloha.
Thank you Jairo for asking me to give a short sentence to describe what Aloha means to me. It was a beautiful way for me to go within, express and be in the now. All is flowing and i give gratitude.
~ Juan Manuel Lombo:
"The spirit of aloha is the transition between the divine universe and the physical body..."
~ Fabienne Souffrant:
" Aloha to me means: welcome, and open your heart, be free spirited ready for a great experience..."
~ Wayne Kealohi Powell:
“The Way of Aloha” is a path that emphasizes acceptance, forgiveness and cooperation through the development of hyper-awareness, the cultivation of Mana –inner power, friendship and unity, the practice of survival/exploring skills, and an ethic of “love and be loved.” The typical ideal is to act in such a way as to get the best results for everyone in a given situation with the emphasis on enjoyment and creating peace and harmony.
Aloha is a very active, nonviolent path. We practice non-judgement, and an attitude of “what can I give?” rather than “what can I get?” Aloha also neatly encompasses the golden rule…”do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
~ Kahuna Harry Uhane Jim:
"aha like a well spring of cool nourishing water ..... i 'm blessed to receive this in my mind, being and mostly in the company of your love of Aloha thank you kumu.... harrry "
There is much wisdom, joy, kindness and love in each of these quotes ...
What would happen to our planet if we all lived this kind of Aloha?
What a wonderful thought!
I still think that as a modern society we have so much to learn from the ancient Hawaiian culture and perhaps most of all about the spirit of Aloha-- the endless, kindred sharing of self and possessions that characterized the original Hawaiian culture. The Ancient Polynesians cultivated a caring heart to protect and nurture everything and everyone in a practice they call MALAMA (showing respect and love for the macro 'ohana, the extended family of life):
When a child began to speak, the family began to teach him Aloha...
When a child began to speak, the family began to teach him about the world of which he was a part...
Aloha is being a part of all and all being a part of me.
When there is pain—it is my pain.
When there is joy—it is mine also.
I respect all that is as part of the Creator and part of me.
I will not willfully harm anyone or anything.
When food is needed I will take only my need and explain why it is being taken.
The earth, the sky, the sea are mine,
To care for, to cherish and to protect.
These Hawaiian values are the foundation of The Spirit of Aloha:
Aloha Unconditional Love
Aka hai Kindness
Olu olu Agreeableness
Ha’a ha’a Humbleness
Aho nui Patience
ALOHA was/is the very essence of the ancient/modern collective Hawaiian culture. Their vision for all humanity is to embrace these Values as the basis for our personal, family, cultural, educational, financial, corporate, and governmental systems. The idea of aloha is so important in Hawaii that the “Aloha Spirit” is part of State law. The statute reads in part:
“Aloha Spirit” is the coordination of mind and heart within each person. It brings each person to the self. Each person must think and emote good feelings to others. In the contemplation and presence of the life force, “Aloha,” the following unuhi laula loa may be used:
Akahai, kindness to be expressed with tenderness;
Lokahi, unity, to be expressed with harmony;
Oluolu, agreeable, to be expressed with pleasantness;
Haahaa, humility, to be expressed with modesty;
Ahonui, patience, to be expressed with perseverance.
These are traits of character that express the charm, warmth and sincerity of Hawaii’s people. It was the working philosophy of native Hawaiians and was presented as a gift to the people of Hawaii.
“Aloha” is more than a word of greeting or farewell or a salutation. “Aloha” means mutual regard and affection and extends warmth in caring with no obligation in return.
“Aloha” is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence.
“Aloha” means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen and to know the unknowable.
In exercising their power on behalf of the people and in fulfillment of their responsibilities, obligations and service to the people, the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government may contemplate and reside with the life force and give consideration to the “Aloha Spirit.”
Aloha is the working philosophy of the native Hawaiian. It has been defined as a collection of desirable social, emotional, and spiritual traits that lead to reciprocal, joyous, sharing relationships. Other traditional Hawaiian values are ohana (family), kuleana (responsibility), kokua (helpfulness), laulima (cooperativeness), ike (recognition, vision), ho'oponopono (setting things right; correcting problems and conflict by openly discussing them with forgiveness), and lokahi (peace, balance, unity, harmony).
Many Hawaiians believe in a divine and spiritual power that provides the Aloha Spirit. Kawika David Blaikai writes about the meaning of Aloha in his article Aloha and the Heart of Huna:
"Aloha to the Hawaiians of old of was 'God within us.' It means come forward, be in unity and harmony with your real self, god, and mankind. Be honest, truthful, patient, kind to all forms of life, and humble."
Deep knowledge and wisdom are found in Aloha. Aloha starts within ourselves; loving, respecting who we are. The key to ALOHA is to first apply it in our hearts, next our minds and the final step is to act on it. Aloha then will be understood as a special Gift with a special meaning where the giver, the receiver and what is given are the same.
Aloha is a peaceful state of mind and a way of life: Every day I am thankful to be surrounded by so much love and by such an amazing group of genuine people blessed with great intellect, knowledge, generosity and passion for life. You all are my 'ohana ~ family, and I am blessed to be able to share our life-journey together. Today I honor the spirit of Aloha in each of you, mahalo nui loa to those who shared your thoughts about this subject. You are a source of inspiration to all.
“Inspiration” is when we say we are ‘in-spirit’ and have the respect for each other which helps to grow personally, professionally and spiritually. Thus to me, Inspiration is Aloha.
This is Hawaiian ~ This is YOU ~ This is ALOHA!
May we all 'Live Aloha'!
Aloha Mai - We come with love!
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