Traditional Hawaiian spirituality has been practiced for over 500 years on those beautiful tropical islands. Christianity and other religions only made an appearance there in the last 180 years. This paperback examines "the rich, multi-layered, all-encompassing spirituality deeply rooted in the land, the wind and rain and ocean." Scott Cunningham has studied traditional Hawaiian culture for 25 years.
The ancient ones speak of the 400,000 gods and goddesses who govern every aspect of life, including each handicraft and occupation from weaving and carving to thievery and navigation. Every sports is presided over by a specific deity. The most famous one is Pele, the mother goddess.
Hawaiian spirituality recognizes a powerful energy (mana) in humans, animals, plants, fish, and places. Even stones possess this life force and are used for healing and fertility. Cunningham discusses the "hula" as a means of recording and displaying the history of both the people and the deities of Hawaii. He also looks at the importance of experts (Kahunas), temples and shrines, prophecies and dreams, and the use of magic to fend off dangerous creatures and to expose ghosts. One of the most interesting chapters covers taboos (kapu), a rigid collection of behavioral rules believed to have originated with the gods and goddesses.