The literal translation of kumukahi is “one source,” or “source of origin.” I use this term frequently when I am speaking on the subject of (Hawaiian) spirituality. There are other terms in the Hawaiian language that can be used to describe the omnipresence, the divine, one consciousness, God, etc. The two that stands out are “I” (pronounced ee) and Akua. Of the three, Akua is the most commonly used term in modern Hawaii to describe Source; however, it almost always refers to the God based on the Christian belief system. This is because when the Christians (Protestants first followed by the Catholics) arrived to Hawaii they needed a description for their interpretation of God. Although many were suggested along with an explanation of its complex definitions and protocol uses, Akua was chosen. The Christian’s version of its interpretation was then developed to fit the needs of their doctrine. This interpretation holds true today for most Hawaiians.

When I am in Hawaii (or any other place in the world for that matter) speaking or lecturing on a particular subject, it is important that I am able to communicate from a neutral platform. I do this (and when speaking to others) so that the dialogue remains open without conflict or misunderstanding. This is especially true when I am speaking to Hawaiian nationals (kanaka maoli) because many have a Christian upbringing. For example, when I describe the healing power of spirit that exists in all of us and the importance of connecting with Akua versus Kumukahi, the indoctrinated Christian automatically refers to the church’s interpretation of what that means, which in my view is a hierarchical system of subservience and dependence to the church to reach God. By praying to God, you can receive anything you want as long as God allows it. The power of healing is achieved only from God (outside the self) and only if you give your life to “him” (the church). Conversely, when I use the term Kumukahi, most native speakers wait to hear my interpretation based on the subject matter. It keeps their minds open to possibilities they may not have thought of and perhaps a different realization of the world we live in.

The Hawaiian concept of kumukahi as it relates to the universe and our function within it has an entirely different perspective than that of western scientific or modern religious perspectives. Focusing our attention within to find answers or being self-aware (i.e., healing abilities) is the key to unlocking the potential wealth of the universe. We are part of and connected to the universe therefore we have access to its unlimited resources of intelligence.

Growing up in Kona, Hawaii, I was given two different versions of the universe and our connection to it. In high school, we had a model of the universe that had a crank on one end and when you turned the handle the planets revolved around the sun while the moon rotated around the earth. All of these movements were happening in a stationary position within our universe. We were also taught that within the universe there are planets, stars, star systems, solar systems, Milky Way, etc. and between them were (empty) space. Later in life as I studied deeper and deeper into the Hawaiian healing philosophy (la’au lapa’au) and our relationship to the universe, a different version was presented to me. Space is actually matter that has function and is the intelligence that connects all things within our universe. Interestingly, physicists today are proving this to be true. Learning to be aware of this connection unfolds unlimited potential of creative manifestation.

Our solar system is actually not stationary, but rather traveling at an incredibly high speed through “space.” The sun’s forward momentum combined with the planet’s rotational movement creates a helix wave somewhat similar to our DNA strands. All of this and more paint a totally different picture of the potential we have as a human race and the true power we really have within us. Our world is more than a Man sitting in heaven looking down upon the people watching their every movement and actions in judgment.

When I hear different speakers (kanaka maoli or other) speaking or teaching on an aspect of the Hawaiian culture using Akua as the source of the work, it is usually based on a Christian reference point. They may even embellish the information, making it appear that it is “real Hawaiian.” Reciting handed down information (even manipulating the information) doesn’t mean the speaker understands the original intent. Living it and doing the work with conscious understanding of the original Hawaiian culture and its language makes a huge difference.

I wrote a chant titled “’Oli Kumukahi” with the intention of reminding ourselves of the many possibilities of manifesting positive outcomes in our daily lives. Doubt is the one thing that can cancel out the positive attributes used to reach positive outcomes. Eliminating doubt (ho’oponopono) is critical in achieving an outcome you are focusing on. Enjoy. Maka’ala


‘Oli Kumukahi


E aloha Kumukahi ea ea                                         Love to the One Source

E aloha Kumukahi e

Kumukahi Kumukahi ea ea                                   The One Source indeed

Kumukahi Kumukahi e

Ho’o (long) pono pono ea ea                                 Living in balance

Ho’o (long) pono pono e

Ho’ona’au pono (long) ea ea                                 Trust

Ho’ona’au pono (long) e

Ho’omana’o pono (long) ea ea                              Will Power

Ho’omana’o pono (long) e

Ho’o (long) maika’i ea ea                                       Gratitude

Ho’o (long) maika’i e

No’o no’o pono (long) ea ea                                  Positive (outcome) thinking

No’o no’o pono (long) e

Mahalo Kumukahi ea ea                                         Thankful

Mahalo Kumukahi e


Note: Above (long) means to hold the previous tone longer.



About Maka'ala

Maka'ala is a Kanaka Maoli (Hawaiian ancestry) trained in Hawaiian medicine practices since the age of six. He is the founder of Indigenous Botanicals and Mana Lomi®. He enjoys traveling around the world teaching Hawaiian principles and concepts of being well. In 2005 he was awarded the "Kaonohi Award" for excellence in Hawaiian medicine and community support. He is the author of "Na'auao Ola Hawaii - Hawaiian Principles of Being Well." Maka'ala is the Ambassador-at-large and Minister of Health for the Polynesian Kingdom of Atooi. His focus is "breaking the blueprint" from disease and illness and his mission is "bringing the healer back into the family."
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1 Response to Kumukahi

  1. Pingback: Kumukahi – di Maka’ala Yates | Giovanna Garbuio – Ho'oponopono

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