Saturday, August 6, 2016

Ho'oponopono: A Hawaiian Message for Us All

In January I walked down a lava rock path to join my best friend under a coconut tree. With waves crashing on the rocky bluff, we united in marriage. Our celebrant, a local Hawaiian minister, warmed our hearts by his presence and genuine happiness for being a part of this day. Ohana, Ho'oponopono and Aloha, were the three Hawaiian words he shared as treasures to bring into our relationship. Each rich with meaning, I am excited to share them all with you, but for today we'll uncover the beauty of Ho'oponopono.

Ultimately, ho'oponopono means to make right. Much more than a word, it is steeped in tradition within the Hawaiian culture. It encompasses a forgiveness ritual that welcomes a healing exchange to those who practice. Of course it's not limited to romantic relationships. Ho'oponopono offers an opportunity to express connection "I love you", repent "I'm sorry", request forgiveness "Please forgive me" and extend gratitude "Thank you" in any relationship including for one's self.

I have found the words behind Ho'oponopono to be healing when I've repeated them to myself and when I've extended them to another. Using it as a mantra, the repetition provides a focal point for me to begin to release attention from my anger and blame. It transforms the energy within me to be more compassionate for myself as well as others. It is from this place I am more present and able to respond rather than react out of fear, hurt, or shame.

I love you.
I'm sorry.
Please forgive me.
Thank you.

Whether it's in a text or scribbled on a piece of paper, my husband and I know that ho'oponopono means we're human and trying our best. There's no blame in ho'oponopono, only acknowledgement of personal intention. It seems to soften the sting of words and actions ultimately bringing us to a place of kindness.

Our relationships and yoga mats serve as a place for us to practice compassion and ho'oponopono. May you find the strength to own your actions and forgive others.

Always a Yogi,
Lynn Marie