Moʻolelo – A Teaching Story: How the Naupaka Flower Came to Be

Moʻolelo – A Teaching Story: How the Naupaka Flower Came to Be

A Moʻolelo is a story. Every story preserves important information for a healthy, spiritually-driven life. Teaching Stories have many layers and levels. We call this the kaona – the deeper, sacred meaning concealed within what is shared.

A Haumana/Student learns a moʻolelo word for word so they can share it acurately with the next generation of listeners to benefit from the Teaching. And the story of how the Naupaka Flower came to be goes like this…

There is a shiny green plant that grows near the beaches of Hawaii called the Naupaka. It has small delicate white half flowers. It was named for Naupaka, a Hawaiian Princess who lived many, many years ago at a time when the Naupaka blossoms were whole.

Her people loved Naupaka. She was always smiling and she had sweet words for all the people of the village. One day they noticed Naupaka was very sad. “Aue! Oh dear, why is Naupaka so sad?” they asked each other.

Word reached the King and Queen. They found Naupaka at the mountain pool. The face reflected in the water was a very sad face. “O dear daughter, why are you so sad?” her mother asked.

Naupaka shook her head “I am deeply in love, in love with a handsome young man named Kauʻi”

“Is he of noble birth?” her mother asked.

“No my mother, he is not”

The social order of the day did not allow members of the royal family to marry commoners. Her father said “we must consult the Kupuna/Elders of the Village. They will tell us what to do.”

Alas, the Kupuna did not give their decision. They said “Naupaka and Kauʻi must journey far, they must journey to the Heiau. There the Kahuna will tell them.”

Naupaka and Kauʻi journeyed for many days until they finally reached the great heiau at the top of the mountain.

There they waited at the lava wall and called out to the Kahuna within. “We have arrived here at your temple. Please answer us and come to speak with us.”

The old Kahuna arrived and listened to Naupaka and Kauʻi. He shook his head sadly. “The Hawaiian Gods must decide.”

Suddenly the sky darkened and the wind rose. There was a torrent of rain, a loud clap of thunder and flashes of lightening. Naupaka and Kauʻi embraced sadly. The Gods had given them a sign. They were not to marry.

Naupaka tore the blossom from her hair. She broke it in two and placed half the blossom in Kauʻiʻs palm. “We will separate” she said. “I will remain here in the mountains and you will journey back to the seashore. And, my beloved, never again will we meet”.

The Naupaka blossoms growing nearby heard the lovers sadness and bowed their heads.

To this very day the Naupaka blossom of the mountains and the Naupaka blossom of the seashore remain in perfect halves

The Hawaiians believe that some day Naupaka and Kauʻi will be reunited and the flowers will again bloom as whole, perfect blossoms.

Mahalo Anakala Pilipo Solatorio – this moʻolelo was shared with Uncle by Anake Noni Beamer. Mahalao na Kupuna for preserving this beautiful Teaching Story for us all to learn, live and share.

☝🏽 Learning Challenge From Kumu Nālani:

  • Challenge yourself to “think like a Hawaiian” (thatʻs one of the things we help Seekers and Practitioners interested in Hawaiian Culture & Healing to develop) as you read this Moʻolelo
  • Can you find the main points that tell you what this Moʻolelo is about?
  • What is the purpose of this moʻolelo – the Kupuna/Elders always did things for a purpose, moʻolelo is not different
  • Now, can you take it a step further and find the “kaona” – the deeper, sacred meanings placed carefully within this story?
  • Write or record your answers – send them to me if you like and Iʻll give you some feedback 😍 here to share with me
  • Next Step: put what you learn into practice in your own life…

🌺 We always start each module of our Hawaiian Studies Courses with a Teaching Moʻolelo – you can begin learning about Hawaiian Spirituality, Culture and Healing right now in our distance education, self-paced course: Path to Paʻa. You work your way through all of the learning materials and reach out to Kumu when you need help or clarification. And if we donʻt hear from you, weʻll reach out to you.

🌺 The Path to Paʻa is also in a live, online facilitated format with weekly classes with Kumu Nālani. Suitable for Spiritual Seekers and Healing Practitioners – especially Lomilomi Practitioners to make sure you have our correct cultural teachings in place…youʻll find (as everyone does) your work will go next level very quickly. Get on the mailing list so you know when the next Course is on 👉🏽 here to be first 👉🏽 learn more about our Courses and do the free preview course too (and yes, you can always send Kumu questions too without enrolling in the full course 😊) 👉🏽 click your heels to go here 👉🏽 want to join something really cool that will help you grow into the true essence of yourself – open to Spiritual Seekers and Healing Practitioners especially of Lomilomi – join the Hawaiian Studies Club: the Path to Paʻa is one of the Courses included as part of your membership along with HEAPS of other KA BOOM Learning Activities, Forums and Biz Building Resources 👉🏽 go for a browse here 👉🏽 and then get on the waitlist here

🌺 Things not chugging along as you want? Do one-on-one online Healing Sessions with one of the Wise Guides. Each Wise Guide works with you in a different way 👉🏽 here to find a Wise Guide

☝🏽 We are a Social Enterprise – which means Course Fees and some of your Wise Guide Session Fees go into our Projects Fund, so youʻre helping us to do good things in the world…

Moʻolelo – A Teaching Story: How the Naupaka Flower Came to Be

Keep It Real World Simple

The Kūpuna – the Elders, wise people – continually tell us to keep everything simple. They stress that life is simple but we make it complex through the decisions we make and the distractions (or busyness) we create. The Kūpuna encourage us to think about the world we live in and how we live in it… 

They teach us that there are two worlds – one is REALITY and the other is the DREAM. The REAL WORLD is the world of our Ancestors and loved ones no longer with us, where we all come from; and then we have this world, which is a DREAM WORLD of schooling about how to learn how to become good people.

Everything in this dream world has positives and negatives and we have the ability to see positive or to see negative. And because this life is a dream, anything that you disagree with you can change. And the way you change it is to find the positive in it so that it doesn’t become part of your life anymore – too simple? Yes, it is and that’s what the Kūpuna teach, simplicity, not just the solution itself.

The solutions are simple. The process may be unpleasant at the time, but that’s what the schooling is about. It’s finding and understanding what the situation has for your learning not just in the immediate but for the bigger picture. In the Ancient times (we’re talking way back before Captain Cook came to that islands in the 1700’s and before him the Tahitians in the pre -1000’s), the Kūpuna understood that we’re all here trying to climb to the highest level and, because it’s a dream, what we’re trying to do is become one with ourselves – to become what is called PONO or righteous.

(Righteousness in the traditional sense it is about living right and in right alignment with the Higher Being which we call Akua but is however you know it to be for you).

But sometimes we get it wrong. In order to live Pono, you have to rid yourself of all negative memories so that when you look back at the situation and how you felt at the time you’re able to see the whole picture, and through that, the positive in it for you, which is the lesson. It’s just a lesson, but we take it personally. When you get into the groove of this kind of thinking then you understand that when you experience a similar situation again, you won’t respond in the same way, because you’ve learned. Not to judge but to understand

Rely on your intuition and pay attention  – it’s the Kūpuna, the Ancestors talking to you..

Aloha is so much more than “hello” or “goodbye” – in fact in the traditional language the word for hello is Welina and there is no word for goodbye. Like all things Hawaiian there are many layers to be understood within a simple word, but here, where we’re talking about living Aloha and Pono in the context of Manaʻo – thoughts, ideas, knowledge, the how to of the Ancestors, the purity of Aloha means living with the breath of Akua.

Take a moment right now to reflect on how can you be and live with the breath of Akua (or God, Spirit, the Higher Being); there’s something so very sacred in the simplicity of those few words. They’re an invitation to open the door of your potential, an invitation to make a decision, to give the best of yourself to yourself.

Here’s the thing – Aloha isn’t about judgement, it’s about understanding, and when you can get to understanding, there’s no problem. Both Aloha and Pono are about getting to know and understanding yourself so your relationship with yourself is in the right alignment. That’s when things start to flow and change for you.

Because time is a fantasy – it doesn’t exist in the REAL WORLD – there is no yesterday or tomorrow, there is only Now. What each of us is experiencing “now” is the outcome of the decision or choice we made before and what we will experience tomorrow is the result of what we decided/or chose today.

We have been given such immense power which isn’t ruled by the tick tock of the clock, but most of us don’t yet understand the full extent of what we’ve been given and for those that do, or have even an inkling, the understanding and kuleana (responsibility) that goes with it can be overwhelming.

Being and living with the breath of Akua means not getting stuck in the thinking of time – “I just have to get through this…“, “I’ll be happy when…“, “when my children grow up...”, “I’m too old to…“, “I have to stay until I….” NO!

Do you honestly think you are meant to stay in an untenable situation forever? NO, you’re not. You’re meant to understand it and then take action to change it and move on. That is your kuleana, your responsibility. That’s the power you’ve been given.- accepting being 100% responsible for yourself now – huge! That’s Aloha and Pono.

The majority of people are afraid to look into themselves, their lives and the choices and decisions they’ve made, to look at who they truthfully are. In the Hawaiian concept we are all both male and female. The male side has the EGO and the Ego is trying to control us, but the Ego is here to help us do what we are trying to accomplish in life. For that to happen you have to be in control of the Ego and recognise when it’s the Ego starting up driving you into fear.

On the other hand, the female side is what we might call INTUITION and we are all encouraged to develop and use it because Intuition is understood to be the KUPUNAS, ANCESTORS, ʻAUMAKUA talking directly to you. It’s for this reason you should learn to rely on your intuition and to pay attention to any thoughts, even odd ones, that come into your mind.

When you neutralise your Ego you open the gates. When you are quiet and in balance – which is Pono – you can hear their message to you. The takeaway of all this is don’t be afraid to look inside because making things right with others starts with making it right within you. Keep life simple… 

We can help you if youʻre not sure how to do it by yourself. Our Path to Paʻa – Part 1, is a good starting point because it gives you the foundation and framwork. or work with one fo the Wise Guides – you can book them online.