Thursday, March 4, 2010

Without Breath, Learning to Breathe...

Aloha in the Hawaiian language means affection, love, peace, compassion and mercy. Since the middle of the 19th century, it also has come to be used as an English greeting to say goodbye and hello.

A folk etymology claims that Aloha derives from a compound of the Hawaiian words ALO meaning "presence", "front", "face", or "share"; and HA, meaning "breath of life" or "essence of life."

In ancient times Hawaiians greeted each other by touching each other at the bridge of the nose (honi) therefore "experiencing and exchanging the breath of life". This is very honorific as this represents the exchange of ha--the breath of life, and mana--spiritual power between two people.

The coming of the foreigner and the hand shake, in place of the honi, as a greeting created the word "ha 'ole" meaning "breathless."

Life in paradise is good! I have been in Oahu now for 1 month and 15 days. As usual I have not wasted any time jumping "head first" into life here. My job is going well. I am learning a lot about the importance of agriculture in Hawaii, as my boss is the chairman of the House of Representative's Agriculture committee. I also received my first pay check in 3 years, it has been a long time since I filled out a checking deposit form.

Her and I have been venturing around the island having a blast. We have been surfing at diamond head and Waikiki, took a stand-up paddle board to Kaneohe Sandbar, ate poke (cubed Ahi tuna sashimi marinated with Hawaiian sea salt, a small amount of soy sauce, inamona, some sesame oil, limukohu seaweed, and chopped Hawaiian chili pepper) and drank tall boys of Heineken in heaven, enjoyed a sun set at the blow hole, spent love day on a stay-vation (a vacation in the area where you live) at the Moana Surf rider in Waikiki, watch the fire work show from Waikiki on Fridays at 8.00 p.m. from our balcony, strengthening my yoga practice with plenty down dogs, warrior A poses & Savasana adjustments and waited out a tsunami warning with brownies, tofu curry and carrot cake with no tsunami ever arriving.

A parting shot...

All of us might wish at times that we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don't. And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging and filled with opportunity."
- Robert F. Kennedy

Aloha, with breath and essence of life.

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