What is Lomilomi?
~The Sacred Tradition~We are often asked the question, What is Lomilomi? What makes it different than any other form of massage?Over the years, I have stumbled a little trying to answer this question, and after going to Molokai, I saw why I have been stumbling when I answer this question. After connecting deeper on Molokai to Hawaii and its people, I realized the depth of knowledge that this tradition carries. I had a glimpse into real Hawaii, and what it is to follow tradition, to follow protocol. In order to understand Lomilomi, one must first understand what it is to be Hawaiian. What makes lomilomi different is the mindset behind the massage. The mindset of a Hawaiian. Nana ka maka; ho`olohe ka pepeiao;pa`a ka waha. Observe with the eyes;listen with the ears; shut the mouth. Thus one learns. This is the way of learning for a Hawaiian. They were taught to be very attentive, and to search within for the answers to their questions, or to use their eyes and their ears; wait for the answer to present itself. This taught humbleness, patience, and self-empowerment, all core Hawaiian values. The lomilomi practitioner comes from a mindset where everything is connected as one, everything has a voice, and everything has a spirit. The role of a lomilomi practitioner is to remove any limiting beliefs or "baggage" from within themselves that may be blocking their aka chords, the channels that connects them to all things. The body (heart), and mind must be clear in order to be a clear channel for a higher power. For it is a higher power that actually gives you the mana to help someone. Forgiveness is a daily practice for the practitioner, and also a core aspect of lomilomi. Lomilomi is not only a practice of massage. It is a tradition, a way of life. A lomilomi practitioner was taught to scan the body, either by examination of the face and look of the person, or by the use of haha, which is the practice of scanning the body with the hands to find the ailment in a person. Once the condition was revealed, the person was treated holistically: · lying first in the sun or in a steam bath · being treated with herbs (la'au lapa'au) or salt rubs · working with the mind though the use of ho'oponopono prayers and chants were used · lomilomi and bone setting or restorative healing work would follow · periods of cleansing would often be Incorporated to clear the colon (ocean water cleanses or tonics were often used) So you see, massage was just a part of the over all treatment! Lomilomi ~A Gift from the Heart~ He kehau ho`oma`ema`e ke aloha. Love is like a cleansing dew. The cleansing power of aloha can soothe and heal. Hurt, pain, and suffering yield to aloha's healing power. The massage itself is a huge gift which comes from the heart. Lomilomi is heart-centered, it is love. Auntie Margaret is often quoted as saying both, "I just love the person" and, "lomilomi is praying work". I was once told by a Hawaiian I met on Kauai that it's the prayers that do the healing, not the massage, not the strokes. In lomilomi, as in all things Hawaiian, there is an association with the ancestors, and it is understood that the ancestors are always here with us, guiding us; and connected to us through our bodies.On a physical level, lomilomi is also very heart centred. Fluids are being pushed in a variety of ways to and from the heart in a rhythmic, flowing pattern. In this way, the circulation is increased, and the lymph system is deeply flushed and cleansed. A large amount of attention was also placed on the opu, the belly. The belly was known as the ruler of the body and working with the colon was an essential part of healing the whole body.This is truly a fascinating and humbling path to be on, one that opens many doors. I am eternally grateful for the spirit of aloha that flows through all things, and through those who help to keep the traditions of lomilomi alive!Mahalo nui loa,to all my teachers and the people of HawaiiImua! (Press on, go forward!)Aloha~ Written byRev. Wayne Kealohi Powell & Patti Kale'aokalani Miller www.ShamanicBodywork.com
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