A Message to my Global Island Ohana (and the rest of you, too!)
There is a time when we must realize that truly, enough is absolutely enough. It has come, the time, for us – all of us, but namely those who share ancestry with me, to stop only looking at what is different between us and to embrace that which is the same. While this message is meant for those with whom I share a collective ancestry with, it is also for the rest of the world of peoples, and not only the indigenous type….read on…
A wise man once said, “I do NOT judge a Hawaiian by his blood quantum, nor the location of their home. Hawaiians are Hawaiians are Hawaiians whether you have 1% or 100%. I just care about how much a Hawaiian cares for Hawaii. You may live in freakin Russia…but you are still Hawaiian by blood. However, if you deny being a Hawaiian, or if you look down upon your own people…well then…you are who you are…Keep reading up on the issues. Education is the power. Enlighten others, even haole about us. We need more allies and not enemies. Choose to educate rather than intimidate. Remember that the person with the loudest voice is not necessarily the “winner.” Love Hawaii, no matter where you may be. K? ‘Nuff said.” (Clifford Nae’ole)
I could not have said that much any better myself, and it is a sad, sad testament to our position in life regarding who we are, not just in the world, but more importantly, with one another.
The Life of The Land…
It is our very rallying cry to the masses, to remind them just how Sacred the Land of Aloha truly is, and even while many of us leave the Mother Land for other shores, the idea that we are different or even damaged because of where we were born is the thing that is separating us, and this is the collective self-imposed ideal of who we truly are in the world that too many of us have carried on through our lives and have chosen to impart onto the generations which follow our own. It is very easy for anyone to quote that the life of the land is preserved in righteousness, in the pureness of thought, in the very Aloha that we are all and each so very lucky not only to be a part of, but more than that, that we are tasked with the Kuleana to pass on that Aloha to our children. We are not only the messengers, but are the very message itself, of Aloha, of all the things which embody us as a people who were placed into this lifetime and on this planet to preserve our roots through measures of sharing that which is Aloha, and Aloha, I find, is free…just like we should be.
Free of the thought that we are different, and free of the belief that we should ever believe that somehow, we are not the same because of whatever it was that someone else told you was the truth. While that truth you were told might be someone else’s, it never had to be and never has to be yours. It will never be mine, and that is a promise.
Very dearly, we must think about and ask ourselves the question that the song, “Hawai’i ’78” cries out ” “AUWE!” to us, and not only because of the railroad tracks and highways which cut through our Sacred ground, but because in all of the thinking throughout the history of ourselves, we have managed to find ourselves on two different sides of the ocean, fighting with one another, and not because of how much we all – every single one of us – Loves that little island chain which is in the middle of the sea, but because we simply do not understand each other.
My thinking is that it is time that we learned to know one another, because the truth is that we all already know each other. We know that we are strong in the shared effort toward solidarity, toward Lokahi, and we know that our collective heart is broken just as is that of our Native American Nations Brethren and Sisterhood, and all for some of the shared same reasons. It is in the failure to realize that it is not the government who has made us hateful, but our misunderstanding of that anger that has been left to fester for many generations. We must turn our hearts and our minds away from those things which anger us about ourselves, and know that our anger is expected, but it is misplaced. We should be more inclined to turn that anger and that rage, that historically there collective tear stains which mar the very face of Aloha, from those things which continue to divide us into the blended heartache that will save us, if not from the assumptions that others have of us, but more, the thoughts that somehow, we should be against one another, with one set of us in the Mother Land, and the rest of us here on the Mainland.
We should be, but we are not.
While I know that the collective of parents who have brought into this lifetime the new generation which seeks solidarity, there still is the rest of us, the rest of us who learned from the generations which preceded our own how to choose to Love rather than to hate or to be angry with our very selves, because when we are able to hate others for no reason at all, we are also more inclined to only see what is collectively “other than good” about us all as a whole, and this self-hatred is where who we are and what we do are not aligning correctly with who we need to remember being. We have been blessed with the gift of being the purveyors of the Aloha Spirit, and instead of embracing the part of us which is all Love, we chose, instead, to take up the sword of historic anger and resentment and make it our own. Do you not all see that this is not what we were meant to do with this birthright? Are we all so very jaded by our shared and ancient past and what we each think or have thought about ourselves that we cannot begin anew with the idea that we can let go of the past and embrace the future which together, we cannot miss the mark.
Together we cannot miss the mark of showing to those among us that this is who we are, and that this is what we are all about, and that no, we do not hate you because you were born elsewhere instead of in the islands. Together we can keep the good energy that is meant to be our own so as to be out in the world, showing the Light of Aloha and shedding the hatreds of the past. There is no more need for hatred and there never was, no more need for the massive and collectively felt inferiority complex that we ourselves have brought to our own lives. Where we are meant to be strong and together in thought is where we come to a place within us that we cannot see past those things which have blinded us all the way back to the cave, and if you have not seen so lately, we were outta the cave a long, long time ago.
Out of the Cave and into the Light that is our Shared Kuleana of Aloha
This part is particular to all tribes, no matter the origin, and most notably the tribe called “humankind.” We need dearly to stop seeing that which is not the same about each other, because in that lack of sameness we are negating the other parts, the parts that tell us we have more in common than we don’t. We have been trained so well in the idea that we have to be the best, have to be better than anyone else, even and especially including those to whom we refer as being “our own,” that we cannot see past the judgments that have been passed down through the generations that bespeak only that we are to perpetuate the things that break the collective heart of us, and crush the collective Spirit within the Tribe called Aloha.
The Tribe called “Aloha.”
This is simple – Love each other.
Love each other because we are the same, prone to all the same heartaches and triumphs, and all that which makes us crazy, all that which makes us cry, seethe, laugh boisterously or cry quietly. Love each other because in truth we are each other, and love each other because truly, no matter how much stuff we each have, all we really and truly have is one another, and the more that we close our eyes to this one truth, the more “hamajangs” life becomes for us, all of us, as no one is immune to that which is not Love as much as we are meant to embrace what IS Love.
There is no more reason that we have to do anything that will hurt the very collective Soul of us. We were never required to see our differences, never needed to know the very distance across thousands of miles of ocean from “91768” to “96813,” ever, and the longer we choose to only move ahead with the hatreds of the past and carry those same hatreds into the future, and the more that we impart these lessons to our collective Na Mamo – our own cherished ones…the keiki who we brought into the world…the longer and more these things which mar the very face of Aloha that is ours, the longer we stay saddened by the death of the Aloha within, and it is the Aloha within that is meant to be shared, not the guy down at the grocery store on Ventura Boulevard whose boss told him that “today is Aloha Friday! Today we wear our flowered shirts and today we wear our Bermuda shorts and today, yes, today, we shall opt to wear long black dress socks with our sandals…yes, that day is today!” for whom the Kuleana is most dearly important.
We need to live by the words we speak, and we need to start the delivery of that combined energy of Aloha now. We cannot do this on “Hawaiian time” anymore, and no one but us is meant to fix the energy, to live the Kuleana that tells us all and each that we are the very embodiment of the Soul of Aloha, that ours is the Kuleana which tells the keiki in our lives that they, too, must carry this very torch that we are so very and dearly wanting for the flame to never be extinguished.
It is up to us, folks, to see to it that we take care of one another, that we Malama the ‘Aina that is ourselves, that is one another, that is truly the very heartbeat that is that of the People of Hawai’i…
As Hawai’ians, it is our duty to portray the beauty that is the Soul of Aloha. As Human beings, it is our duty to the very global Tribe, the Ohana that we call “ours” in the global sense, that we care for one another, always, because without each other, we do not exist.
Without Aloha, we are not ourselves.
Without Aloha, the Hawaiian race has no claim to fame.
Without Aloha, the Human Race ceases to Be.
I thought not….
I Love You All !!
Reverend Roxanne Cottell is the Kumu Hula and Creator of the Spiritual Hula Program for Women and the Co-Founder of Na Hula O Ka Wahine ‘Ui. She is a blogger, book author, choreographer and Spiritual Consultant, an advocate and public speaker against domestic violence and emotional abuse, both of which she is also a survivor. If you would like information about Weddings or simply just to contact Roxanne for information about the Spiritual Hula Program for Women or information regarding private hula or Spiritual Guidance sessions with her or would like to book her for a speaking engagment please feel free to send her an email.
(c) 2013 Roxanne K. Cottell. All Rights Reserved