Being an avid student of cross-cultural spiritual beliefs is one way I’ve discovered to enhance my personal sense of holistic wellness. I find many spiritual traditions have a similar basis in their approach to connecting with higher planes of consciousness and cultivating inner peace but often their amicable messages get lost in religious politics and dogma. I believe the best spiritual guidance comes from within one’s self by contemplating simple, universal truths. Looking past the obvious Eastern and Western religious traditions can help one to uncover these basic spiritual verities. A lesser-known but profound and sensible metaphysical practice I’ve connected with comes from the beautiful land of Hawaii’s ancient lore.
“Huna” is the New Age movement associated with ancient Hawaiian and Polynesian religious beliefs. The word “huna” means “secret” in Hawaiian and refers to the esoteric practices and spiritual traditions of the peoples of Polynesia before Western influence. Its rituals have been said to originate ancient healing practices and spiritual shamanism from India to Africa. Some have claimed its wisdom and power have their roots in a legendary lost Pacific civilization called Lemuria or Mu. The word “huna” was derived from the Hawaiian word “kahuna,” meaning “chief” or “expert,” by Max Freedom Long in 1936, a teacher and metaphysician who lived in Hawaii. Many Hawaiian historians have discredited Long’s teaching of New Age thought and metaphysics in association with ancient, original Hawaiian shamanism, but his Huna school of thought has endured as a spiritual belief system in several international organizations.
Whatever the name of the ancient spiritual tradition, it was likely a “kupua” or Hawaiian shaman/adventurer that held the secrets to connecting with the realm of spirits, not a Westerner who probably had limited access to these practices. Aloha International is the most reputable organization associated with Long and his Huna school of metaphysical thought and they promote Huna practice as a way to create one’s own experience through conscious belief and action. It celebrates the cycles of life, time and creation that are universal. I find its basic, humanist, virtually Buddhist principles to be quite magical in their simplicity and definitely worth sharing. As always, please draw your own conclusions and take what you can from yet another example of how spirituality can be delightfully direct without layers of dogma to sift through for kernels of truth. These are the most basic kernels of Huna and can be applied to any personal spiritual practice.
Let’s break it down…
Huna practice has three parts: The 7 Guiding Principles, the 4 Realities and the 3 Selves.
The 7 Guiding Principles are as follows:
1) “Ike” – The world IS what you THINK it is. (So YOU make it wonderful!)
2) “Kala” – There are no limits, but what we decide. (Everything IS possible.)
3) “Makia” – Energy flows where attention goes. (So focus on what you WANT.)
4) “Manawa” – Now is the moment of power. (So stay in the present and BE.)
5) “Aloha” – To love is to be happy with. (So be happy and LOVE life!)
6) “Mana” – All power comes from within. (Tend to your light, know THYSELF.)
7) “Pono” – Effectiveness is the measure of truth and worth. (IF it works, it is true.)
Aren’t those principles so simple and perfect and yet also magical in their power? Take a few minutes to meditate on these principles each day and you’ll find your mood elevated and your mind opening. I think we can consciously influence our world and indeed ourselves to feel, know and do better each day. This is a nice way of guiding better experiences and shaping a happier reality and need be nothing more or less. Unless you want to delve deeper! I think about it when I need a reality check and add it to my “gratitude list” while praying or meditating. Here’s more…
The Huna’s Four Realities:
1) Scientific Reality – All reality can be seen objectively, based on physical, empirical evidence, measurement and scrutiny.
2) Psychic Reality – All reality can be seen subjectively, based on insight, intuition, belief and emotional, energetic understanding and assumption.
3) Shamanic Reality – All reality can be seen symbolically, based on signs, signals, coincidence, association, parallels and synchronicity.
4) Mystical Reality – All reality can be seen holistically, based on the inter-connected nature and inter-dependence of people, animals, things, experiences, thoughts and actions.
Reality is relative. Science is starting to discover how subjective the concepts of time, perception and thought can be from person to person. My view of certain “facts” or “evidence” may be vastly different from yours. One man’s fact is another man’s lie. We have agreed on certain conscious states of being or reality as a species. We can all recognize the sun, moon, earth and sky for we have decided that they are real to us, collectively. In quantum theory, all things are relative and changeable. You or I or anything in existence becomes reduced to vibrating energy streams, particles and waves reacting and interacting on a deeply, intrinsically dynamic “zero point field” of creative force and manifestation. Thoughts become things. Reality is what you make it.
The Huna’s 3 Selves or Levels of Consciousness:
1) The High Self (Kane or Aumakua) is the super-conscious self that inspires creativity and change.
2) The Middle Self (Lono or Uhane) is the self-conscious self that imagines and wills change.
3) The Low Self (Kanaloa or Unihipili) is the sub-conscious self that remembers and reminds one to change.
It is said that when self-conscious and sub-conscious awareness are realized and combined a state of super-consciousness is attained in which a greater understanding of one’s place in the universe can be accessed and limitless love, joy, peace and forgiveness can be found. Finding your path to greater consciousness may indeed be the point, the purpose to existence and to eventual transcendence. Looking for ways to expand the awareness of your mind, body, feelings and spirit can only serve to make you more whole.
I hope this gives you a healthy overview of what Huna is and what it can inspire in your own spiritual practice. Please check out the following link for more information. My huna related goal? To go to the Big Island of Hawaii and study the Huna with adepts at sacred spiritual sites, deep in the jungle! How cool would that be? “Kala!” There are no limits! Unlimit yourself more everyday by seeking out the most benevolent truths that feels right to you and help you to discover your sacred self!