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ʻŌLELO NOʻEAU

ABOUT LAND 

• ʻŌlelo Noʻeau #387

Ēwe hānau o ka ʻāina

Natives of the land

People who were born and dwelt on the land

• ʻŌlelo Noʻeau #405

 Hāhai nō ka ua i ka ululāʻau

Rain always follows the forest

The rains are attracted to forest trees. Knowing this, Hawaiians hewed only the trees that were needed.

 

• ʻŌlelo Noʻeau #466

Hānau ka ʻāina, hānau ke aliʻi, hānau ke kanaka

Born was the land, born were the chiefs, born were the common people

Since the first recorded contact between the haole and kānaka in 1776, colonizers recorded their observations of the complex society that our kūpuna built. From the ahupua'a system to the balanced social stratification between ali‘i and maka‘āinana, Hawaiian society was at its peak efficiency and inherently exhibited aloha ‘āina in everything that was done. The maka‘āinana harvested the abundant resources of the ‘āina respectfully and utilized it to provide for their families and the ali‘i. In turn, the ali‘i looked after the maka‘āinana and the ‘āina and helped to protect both. With the proper stewardship by the maka’āinana and the ali‘i, the ‘āina continued to thrive and provide for the people. All three belong together. This ʻŌlelo Noʻeau explains this trifecta of relationships cultivate how aloha ‘āina operated and gives us the blueprint to what is possible for the lāhui today.

• ʻŌlelo Noʻeau #531

He aliʻi ka ʻāina; he kauwā ke kāne

The land is chief; man is its servant

As kānaka, our kūpuna teach us that it is our kuleana to take care of the land so that its abundant resources can continually be available for us to thrive. This simple but important ʻŌlelo Noʻeau reminds us that this ongoing cycle is a part of who we are and our way of life. To give back to the land is to ensure that our keiki will thrive as well.