Ke welina mai nei. I am Manulani Aluli Meyer, the fifth daughter of Emma Aluli and Harry Meyer. The Aluli ohana hail from Mokapu, Kailua, Kamamalu, Kohala, Hilo One and Wailuku – Oahu, Hawaii, Maui. I am a 30+ year practitioner of hooponopono [healing process through ritualized communication], and a scholar-practitioner of Hawaiian knowledge working as a Wilderness Instructor and Outdoor Educator for 20+ years, and as a Professor of Education for 15+. My work is in the field of Indigenous Epistemology or Philosophy of Knowledge as it applies to world-wide awakening within systems [ie: education, economics, evaluation, prison reform, health]. I earned my Doctorate from Harvard University in 1998 on this topic and have taught at the University of Hawaii at Hilo – Education Department; at Te Wananga o Aotearoa – largest Maori University in NZ; and currently as the Director of Indigenous Education at the University of Hawaii West Oahu. I now evaluate Indigenous PhD’s from around the globe, and discuss/write about native knowledge systems throughout multiple countries and universities. My job now is to assist the University of Hawaii to become a clearly definitive and inspiring Indigenous serving higher education system.
Indigenous Epistemology – Philosophy of Knowledge
I am writing this testimony through the trilogy of what is now known as Holographic Epistemology within Indigenous scholarship and philosophy. Here is how we critique the “One-Truth Epistemology” – [aka: “There is only one way to see the world and it is through belief structures shaped by European, WASP and the commodification of land, time and people.”] – within academia, society and science. Tacit knowledge of native peoples is now expressed in this clarity because of the needs of our time.
• Manaoio: Physical/Objective lens: The physical impact of continued use of Maunakea
• Manaolana: Mental/Subjective lens: The impact of what polemic discourse means to our clarity
• Aloha: Spiritual/Quantum lens: The transpatial relationships we cultivate with Maunakea
Manaoio: Physical/Objective nature of knowledge
Indigenous sensibilities must prioritize ideas so that mo`o/continuity occurs. What this means is that continuity is the priority of people that have a relationship with land. It is what makes Indigenous an enduring concept in these modern times and contiguity a growing ideal. We are simply from a place and thus have responsibility to steward and care for that place. The following ideas inspired those with this priority to be clear about why we must protect this immense resource, inspiration and environment:
• The physical destruction of land affects all facets of our psyche whether we know it or not
• The drilling, probing, and altering of lands will eventually effect our pristine water resource
• The disregard for native life and habitat affects all systems connected to their life force
• A continued drastic change of environment affects us all and creates an unwanted compromise of our own values found within Indigenous epistemology
Manaolana: Mental/Subjective nature of conflict and its purpose
The subjective reality of what Maunakea has helped us experience is to learn about ourselves through conflict. Here is why the Kapu Aloha was called forth and here is the energetic field of continuity or mo`o. The mookuauhau [genealogy] of the slogan: Ku Kia`i Mauna! – Stand and Guard our Mountain! – came from Aloha Aina which grew from our older understanding of Aina Aloha. Our beloved lands/ocean/waterways have always loved us. The love we hold for land thus inspires and extends compassion for others as practiced in the Kapu Aloha. Kapu in this idea is synonymous with reverence for the purpose and function of Aloha/Life. Aloha in this ideal is not defined through commodification, or through a Waikiki ukulele melody. Aloha is where the mo`o lives. It is a statement of mature intelligence nested in Indigenous epistemology and life-ways. Aloha as our true intelligence is about loving. We know it was a difficult process to keep at the center of our hearts and expressions, but it was the stated goal and enlightened process, none-the-less, of this movement. Here is the strength that keeps us evolving, transforming and remaining steady – against all odds. We are learning the following with regard to Maunakea and how to address those who do not hold our world-view… even as we think of our own Hawaiian people who do not share this same priority.
• Aina is Papa – our beloved ancestor who has given us our lives. We are her. She is us.
• Aloha Aina – care of land is central to continuity and the gaining of wisdom
• Aina is the space of our practices, philosophy, dreams, and food production
• Ike pono is the practice of seeing things clearly without entanglement and confusing emotions
• Ike pono also allows us to see the interconnection and mutual causal relationship we have with life
• Kokua mai, kokua aku – compassionate reciprocation is a hallmark of enduring cultures
Kapu Aloha instructs us to see this polemic [Science vs. Hawaiian] as false and give care to what cannot be understood easily without mo`o continuity found in Indigenous knowing.
Aloha: Spiritual/Quantum nature of life
The third holographic lens of Indigenous philosophy and education is vital to see through, and thus to understand why Maunakea is beloved and why we must be clear at this juncture. Wailua/spirituality is the animation of knowledge/knowing as it sustains life and continuity/mo`o. Here is the quantum world science is now calling The Implicate Order, Complimentarity, Non-Locality, and Wholeness. Finally, a recognition of the ineffable and transpatial qualities of aloha/spirit/life and the search to understand what is present but not measurable in mainstream empirical ways.
Here is the purpose of Indigenous epistemology needed for these times, and why care for aina, and love of those who do not agree, is fundamental. The following statements help define a spiritual relationship we hold with life and why we are guardians of Maunakea through the use of a Kapu Aloha:
• Aloha is a Hawaiian value that inspires and directs our Aloha Aina movement
• Aloha as the process of mutual causality – what we do to land we do to ourselves
• Aloha mai, aloha aku – simultaneity of actions/ideas: Love comes from loving
• Simultaneity is a quantum field way to describe how values/thinking impact reality
• Ulu a`e ke welina a ke aloha – the growth of compassion is from Spirit
• Wae aku i ka lani – allow life to unfold and remain flexible and open to its lessons
We are transforming and becoming clear through our conflicts, not despite them.
A world-wide collapse of our oceans, fresh water, cultures, and land environments should inspire us to be courageous about the priorities of our times. Here are three ways in which I have viewed this issue of TMT/Aloha Aina.
This cosmic clashing is a sign of our times that we must recognize and articulate with grace and intention.
Hawaiians are not against anything (!) We must simply be clear about our values and priorities of life, oia wale no.
I stand in reverence to our mauna and to the awareness this conflict has brought forth in us all. I stand in awe of our ike kupuna, of the ancestral knowledge inspiring my world and found within this document both in written and quantum form. Mau ke aloha no Mauna-a-Wakea.
Read more on Dr. Manulani Aluli Meyer’s Testimony as a wittness at the Conservation District Use Application for Permit of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).
“TMT Hearing: Protestor’s Wittness Speak To Hawaiian Culture, Practices:”
Video Archive of cross-exam of Dr. Manulani Aluli Meyer Part 1:
Video Archive of cross-exam of Dr. Manulani Aluli Meyer Part 2:
Written direct testimony of Dr. Manulani Aluli Meyer:
More on Dr. Manukani Aluli Meyer and Kapu Aloha:
Hear a deeper discussion of Kapu Aloha with international indigenous scholar/practitioner Manulani Aluli Meyer and Aloha ‘Āina and Protect Kaho‘olawe ‘Ohana member Luana Busby-Neff:
To continue to win Sacred Mauna Kea Hui, 95,000 worldwide, growing and strong, is grateful for your continied support and asks that you consider our crowdfunding source as well as the funding needs of all true parties and their crowdfunding sources for the various Supreme Court cases we are all litigating in. Click, consider, donate and share as advocacy and litigation costs in hearings amd Supreme Court cases are tremendous. MAHALO: