The ADC 2013 Kawa Festival

Kanoa by Solomon Enos for the 'Awa Development Council and the Kava Festival. All rights reserved.

Kanoa by Solomon Enos for the ‘Awa Development Council and the Kava Festival. All rights reserved.

Aloha Join us for this years celebration of the 2013 Kava Festival

The Kava Festival will feature live local music from Hawai’i’s hottest artists, educational and cultural booths, ‘awa sampling, ‘awa plants, ‘apu making workshop by Ka Papa Lo’i o Kanewai (Hawai’inuiakea School of Hawaiian Knowledge at UH Manoa), preparation demos, pa’i’ai/poi pounding, lomi lomi massage, food booths and local vendors. The Kava Festival will also host a variety of cultural and scientific talks in the ‘awa gardens on lauhala mats open to the public. In addition, a traditional Hawaiian kapu ‘awa ceremony will be performed by La‘akea Suganuma honoring VIPs who have made contributions in culture, education and science.

Location: UH Manoa main campus, on McCarthy Mall Honolulu,Hawai`i

Free Admission
Parking on street or on campus.

See you there.


The ‘Ulu‘ulu perpetual archive

Uhane Path of history

In Moke Kupihea’s the Kahuna Of Light, he outlines the importance and tragedy of uhane.

The uhane refers specifically to the life spirit. At death, the remnants of the spirit still cling to the body, but the uhane is not immortal. It dissipates at the end of each generation, unless it is held in consciousness by the following generation.

Fortunately through technology we can preserve much of the rapidly vanishing landscape of our culture through modern archiving.

‘Ulu‘ulu: The Henry Ku‘ualoha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawai‘i aims to perpetuate and share the rich moving image heritage of Hawai‘i through the preservation of film and videotape related to the history and culture of Native Hawaiians and the people of Hawai‘i.

ʻUluʻulu is a Hawaiian word meaning collections, assembly, or gathering. The archive is not just a collection of moving image items, but also an assembly of voices, communities, and stories; a gathering place for people to share Hawaiʻi’s culture, traditions and collective memory.

Here is a clip of Representative Jo Jordan with Heather Giugni about `Ulu`ulu: The Henry Ku`ualoha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawai`i located at UH West O`ahu.

The Henry Ku‘ualoha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawai‘i


E hanai `awa a ikaika ka makani.


The grain (Alcohol) and the grape (Wine) in both ancient Greece, and the present millenium, it has been credited with the powers of inspiration and destruction.

In Hawai’i and throughout Polynesia we have a cultural alternative.

Awa:”Awa (Piper methysticum, pronounced ah-vah with the “w” as a “v”sound), a member of the pepper family, grows in the wild now and is also cultivated increasingly throughout the Pacific Islands, where it is called Kava or Kava Kava.

This plant grows well at low elevations where there is constant moisture and partial sun. More than a dozen varieties of `awa were known in old Hawaii.”

Currently ‘Awa is grown in Vanuatu, Hawaii, Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Pohnpei, and a few regions of Papua
New Guinea.

” Hawaiians view kava(‘Awa) to be very sacred and have incorporated kava in a wide variety of religious
rituals. In these rituals, kava would be used as an offering by a farmer for the success of his
crops .Kava(‘Awa) consumption by all Hawaiians, while limited only by supply, was endorsed by chiefs,
village elders and healers to promote social ability and social cohesion.”

As described in the history of Kawa Nakamalathome.com

All parts of the plant contain a relaxant or sedative element. However the roots which are grinded down to a fine powder. This powder is then used to make the ‘Awa drink.

Depending on the freshness and plant variation, ‘Awa can have a earthly bitter texture. Coconut water, or black tea can be added to distill the flavour.

It is recommended to drink ‘Awa in one gulp.

Here is a instructional video on ‘Awa (kawa making)

My perrsonal ‘Awa preparation process:

  • Buy ‘Awa / Obtain ‘Awa – I generally obtain by ‘Awa from the University Stop.
  • Use 1 gallon of water to 3/4 bag (I use cheese cloth)
  • Let soak for an hour or so.
  • Start kneading for 15 minutes.
  • Strain ‘Awa, and store in gallon size containers, refrigerate.
  • If the ‘Awa is cold, it will be smoother and slightly stronger.
  • I buy my ‘Awa from : The University Stop

    View Larger Map

    Further reading and sources:
    Kava by Rex
    Image by Hawaiian Plant Detectives


ABUNDANT LAND – Documentary by Natasha Florentino


ABUNDANT LAND is a broadcast length documentary about a Hawaiian community’s efforts to heal their island from the ecological damage caused by industrial agriculture. Monsanto, Mycogen and Syngenta operate fields of experimental genetically modified seed crops on over 1200 acres of Moloka’i. These fields are using limited farmland and depleting fresh water while causing dust storms that spread unknown pesticides and contaminants onto neighboring schools, homes as well as the reef off shore. Community members are standing up to these large agro-chemical companies by demanding transparency and organizing for GMO labeling legislation in Hawaii.

Please support this Documentary by contributing to the Kickstarter project.

Abundant Land Kickstarter


Ka au Poolipilipi O Kalihi

Giuseppe Randazzo-Fractal Art Using Algorithms

In the olden days there were a man and a woman who loved each other and stole away to hide in the forest without the knowledge of the girl’s parents, and indulged their passion. A little patter of rain fell on them but they paid no attention to it. After a pause, one went to see if the rain had cleared. It had not and they fell asleep. After some time
they awoke, and found the rain still falling and again went to sleep. For several days and nights the two slept and the rain fell. At length they woke and found that their heads had been sharpened and flattened from the long sleep while the rain fell, day and night. Hence it is called Ka au Poolipilipi 0 Kalihi “the rain that sharpens the heads in Kalihi”

Poepoe Coll
HEN: Vol II, p 155


Ike Pono

Ike Pono

The concept of balance comes up frequently in Hawaiian thought and is pivotal to it. The English word does not fully describe the Hawaiian idea of Pono, in which all is right with the world and all aspects of life are working harmoniously together. For optimum life, balance was considered necessary, first of all, among parts of nature–humans, animals, birds, plants, weather, water, land, and sky; among the female and male polarities; among the gods, demigods, and spirits, greater and lesser, and the humans who interacted with them; and finally, among the members of the extended family, the community, and the various strata of society.

The Hawaiian view also held that a healthy life maintained balance between the material and spiritual realms, and these were not to be separate from one another.


The Valley of Spears

Weapons are made of wood and/or stone with the inclusion of sharks' teeth on some of the weapons

Weapons are made of wood and/or stone with the inclusion of sharks’ teeth on some of the weapons

When the slow-moving board of army officers at Washington, comprising a board of selections of the War Department, to select a site for a great army post on the island of Oahu, it considered carious locations, and then decided upon Leilehua for the future Schofield Baracks cantonment, they probably had no idea that they were merely continuing the ancient “School of War” established in olden times by the Hawaiian chiefs.

And similarly the board members probably had no idea that the swift-descending slope overlooking Haleiwa, through which the Waialua Hill road threads its way from the Schofield Barracks to the sea, was called “The Valley Of Spears,” and that it, too, had a military significance.

In ancient days soldiers were taught the arts of war as now, but with very different weapons. Instead of bayonets for the coup de grace, they held a shark’s tooth in the palm of the hand, bound to the rest of the hand with olona fiber, and with this they disemboweled their opponents.

But in the absense of weapons, they learned another art, the lua–the art of dislocating the joints and rendering an opponent helpless.

Like all other arts, the lua was prostituted to become a feature of brigandage. While the young Hawaiians were taught at Leilehua the arts of war, including the lua, brigandage flourished on the hill slopes overlooking Waialua, and there the brigands waylaid travelers passing from Kou (the present site of Honolulu) to Waialua and beyond. The victims were disjointed and often put to death. One had to be wary in those days of traveling. The soldiers at Leilehua warned travelers of the menace beyond their borders, and advised them that if they would elude the spears of the brigands they must use wariness and detours.

And so the slopes and gulch became known as

The Valley Of Spears.

The Bystander
Hon, Adv
Nov.22,1925 p8


The Power Of Myth

Mechanical Icarus

Mechanical Icarus

I found myself in a debate recently on the notion that myths are no longer relevant. I, of course, stood on my Joseph Campbell soap box and defended not only the story telling aspect of Myths, but also how we cannot, as a society function without them. Here is a passage I shared with the disputant.

Where do our myths come from? Do they mean anything?

Why do we continue to talk about Hercules, Thor, Pele, and Laka? Why are stories of Zeus, Moses, and Martin Luther King Jr so resonant?

When we bring up the Mahatma or Steve Jobs, are we talking about real people or the ideas behind them?

Joseph Campbell nailed it. Myths aren’t about gods (real ones or imagined). They are about us. They are about humans acting human and doing it while wearing the cloaks of gods, of legendary figures. Myths highlight the very best of ourselves (and sometimes the worst). These stories don’t spread because a king or despot insists that we hear them and memorize them. No, we engage with and remember and resonate with myths because they’re about our favorite person, our best possible self.

Myths aren’t myths at all. They are mirrors, paths to walk, and bars to be exceeded. The forgotten part of the original story of Icarus was a powerful talisman, a reminder to avoid selling ourselves short, a reminder to honor the opportunities in front of us.

Seth Godin
The Icarus Deception


The Legend Of Kolekole



In the old days people from Wahiawa side would meet those from Waianae at Kolekole and attempt to cross over. Each would challenge the other for the right to pass. The losing chief would then have to kneel before the big rock and place his head on it and be killed. His skin was then stripped form the flesh and bones (leaving it raw- Kolekole)*. The spoils of the battle and the bones were then brought to the heiau in Halona and offered in sacrifice. Below Kolekole and beyond Kailio is a hair-pin turn known as Hupe Loa for the retainers of the vanquished chief because of the weeping and blowing of noses.

As told to Tutu Ana Kahahawai of Waianae by Koanaeha, a relative and associate of Queen Emma,

* Mrs, Pukii says “holehole” is to strip the flesh. She believes the name Kolekole most likely came because of the battles and the wounds the warriors received, leaving their flesh raw–“kolekole”. The idea of the chief kneeling before a rock to be killed seems modern.