Ho’opono’pono by Gaylyn Aitken

I grew up in a household that avoided conflict, so I never did learn how to manage myself within conflict and how to resolve it. I usually let myself be pushed around and took the blame, anything for peace, but underneath I’d feel angry and sad, mainly towards me as I allowed myself to be treated disrespectfully.

It wasn’t until I was in my 40’s during my years of training in Hawai’i with Kahuna Abraham Kawai’i I learnt how to manage myself in conflicts and how I can turn it into a win / win situation.

Kahu often said ‘you stand in the centre of your universe, so take your place.’ Our universe is made up of everything to do with our body, spirit, psych and emotions. Everything else is outside of us and none of our business, so if someone says or does something to me that causes hurt, my business is with how I manage myself within that situation.

One of the universal principles he applied in his trainings was resetting. It’s about being responsible for the consequences for our actions. In the bodywork trainings, we reset the room and table for the next day, so arriving in the morning, we were set to go without having to back track to clean yesterday’s clutter.

Resetting can also be applied to conflict. I learnt that when conflict arises, I need to be fully aware of how I’ve contributed to the situation and take responsibility for my actions. This removes blame, guilt, anger and frustration from the scene…. for me. I’m concerned only with my actions, no one else, as we all stand within the centre of the universe we’ve created. However, I’ve found if I remain calm, focused and non-judgmental, that energy can help others find resolution.

Hawai’ians have a ceremony called Ho’o’pono’pono which literally translates as ‘to correct, to put to rights, amend, to reset and to make ready.’

They believe unresolved conflict creates illness, so acknowledging the cause and asking forgiveness for one’s actions and forgiving the others involved resets the energy, releasing the bonds of blame and anger between each other, cutting off the past and moving on.

A simple Ho’o’pono’pono you can use for yourself, takes about 5 minutes….

Find a space where you’re undisturbed. Place yourself in a comfortable position and close your eyes. Imagine you’re in a place you resonate with; the ocean, mountains, outdoors, indoors…it’s your place and you dress it up in whatever colours, sounds, aromas that contributes to feeling grounded and at peace with yourself.

Think of the person or people you conflict with. Say to yourself, (Name) please forgive me for anything I may have done or said that has caused you pain. You can say this once or several times, each time with more honesty and open heartedness. As you speak to them, see them in front of you, look them in the eyes.

Then say to yourself…I forgive you for anything you may have said or done to cause me pain. Again, in your imagination place them in the scene and look them in the eyes. You may say this several times also.

Sit with yourself and feel your body and the effects of this silent interaction. When you’re ready, take a shower, ending in a salty water sluice or spray.

Within the next three days write a letter to the person or people you have previously conflicted with acknowledging the gifts they brought to your life, wishing them well for their future endeavours then burn it. In every situation there’s always something for us to contribute to our evolution. Remember, the universe provides us with lessons when we’re emotionally and spiritually capable. Just say yes!


Gaylyn Aitken

Kahuna Mist began operations in 1996 as The Body Care Centre and changed it's name to Kahuna Mist in 2001. Owner and founder Gaylyn Aitken was trained by Kahu Abraham from 1997 until his passing in 2004 and continues with his work of evolutionary transformation through movement.

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