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Just What Is Aloha?

Mahalo For Sharing Your Aloha

Mainlander Version: “Aloha… isn’t that how Hawaiians say hello?”

Hawaiian Version: Aloha is a shared feeling with an attitude to enrich our lives and to be freely given and shared with others. The Aloha concept includes kindness, patience, compassion, peace, mercy, respect, togetherness, understanding, affection, oneness, empathy, and love. It is the spirit of life around us and flowing between us.

You will hear ‘Aloha’ a lot when you arrive in Hawai’i. People use Aloha as greeting for hello and they use Aloha to mean goodbye; but just what does Aloha mean?

Better Than Most Of The, ‘Have A Nice Day,’ Phrases You Have Heard: As a former mainlander this is how I compare it: Imagine the all the times you have heard the phrase, “Have a nice day.” Now think about how many times that the person saying it to you had an utmost sincerity behind it. Maybe 10%, maybe 5% ( maybe 1%) of the time someone (non-family) really, really, really meant it. This means 90-95+% of the time you heard, “Have a nice day,” it was just a polite comment to you. A nice phrase, but hollow in its’ depth.

Cinema of the United States

Aloha – ‘Have A Nice Day,’ On Steroids: Aloha is sorta’ like, “Have a nice day,” on steroids. Probably 90-95+% of the time you hear, “Aloha,” the person saying it to you was be as sincere as the most sincere person you ever heard saying “Have a nice day.”

In Hawai’i, the inverse is true. Aloha isn’t really just a greeting, it is communicating and sharing a way of life, a connection with the land, with nature and between people. And when someone says, “Aloha” to you, they are combining everything into a simple, sincere, powerful word.

Maybe an example of a sincere ‘Have a nice day,’ is when a child goes to her first day of kindergarten and their mother leans down and whispers, “Have a nice day,” then kisses her daughter on her head. Then as the daughter begins to walk away, the mom reaches out and hugs her daughter, tightly, one more time and whispers in her ear, “Have a nice day.” That is what Aloha is; that sincerity, that feeling, that emotion, that truth, that hope.

Aloha Is More Than Hello And Goodbye: WhileAloha is a Hawaiian word typically associated with greeting another person with hello or good-bye.

Aloha is much more than what this web page. Share with Facebook what Aloha means to you.

Aloha Has Depth And Sincerity – The Hose Example: When the people of Hawaii say Aloha, it is like going from a drip of water to turning a garden hose on to turning a fire-fighting hose on that requires four firefighters to hold down the hose. The word aloha from a Hawaiian is a projection of love, of sincerity, of good wishes.  For Hawaiians, the word ‘Aloha’  is a unique way of living, of giving, of the ultimate lifestyle, and the secret to a full, content and happy life. Aloha encompasses a vast collection of everything sincere said all at once.

Aloha Has Depth And Sincerity – The Singing Example: There are many ways to ‘sing’ a song: humming along, softly singing a lullaby, singing in the shower, singing a song loudly or belting a song with a pure passion. There are just some singers that you know they believe in what they are singing and they do it with all their heart. That power, that emotion, that feeling, that passion – that is Aloha. A couple of singing examples are at the bottom of this page.

Of course, now that you have read this far, you can tell a Mainlander wrote this.

Aloha Is A Way Of Life – A Way Of Living: Aloha is the accumulation of all the life forces that create and sustain the people of Hawaii, and Aloha is their way of life, Aloha is their way of living. The Hawaiian culture was forced to live off a tiny speck of land in the middle of a vast ocean. Hawaiians learned the true meaning of Aloha through their daily lives, through living.

Aloha Is A Sincere Feeling: Aloha is a shared feeling with an attitude to enrich our lives and to be freely given and shared with others. The Aloha concept includes kindness, patience, compassion, peace, mercy, respect, togetherness, understanding, affection, oneness, empathy, and love.

A greeting of Aloha is a gift: it is the soul of self, it is the soul of nature, it is the soul of the planet and it is the soul of beyond. Merged and conveyed, all in one word.

When your day, your way, your life is filled with Aloha your heart becomes so full that it has the power to influence others around you, whether strangers of family, with your presence, with your spirit.

Aloha Is Contagious: You will find that the best part of practicing Aloha is that the more you give Aloha to those around you, the more Aloha will come back to you.

A Google search for Aloha shows the shallow, the ‘drip’ meaning, the shallow understanding, of the word.

Cinema of the United States

The Word Origins Of Aloha: Aloha is made up of the words – here is one analysis:

  1. Alo, meaning both sharing and in the present
  2. Oha, meaning joyous affection, joy 
  3. Ha, meaning life energy, life, breath

A second analysis of the words composing Aloha:

  1. Alo, the literal meaning of aloha is “the presence of breath” or “the breath of life.” It comes from “Alo,” meaning presence, front and face
  2. “Ha,” meaning breath. 

Here are videos of Hawaiians explaining Aloha.

The Meaning of Aloha

The Deeper Meaning of Aloha

Uncle Robert Keli’iho’omalu explains this central tenet of Hawaiian culture.

hawaiian culture

A Singing Example Of Aloha: Here is an example of Jennifer Hudson, in her own way, applying her ‘aloha firehose’ type of coaching. She just doesn’t dribble a comment, she doesn’t just apply a hose-full of comment, she blasts a fire hose full if energy, a streaming truth of power and love, sincere in her comments. It is essentially a singing version of Aloha.

And one more Jennifer Hudson ‘blast of singing Aloha’ – this video starts at almost the end.

Hello/ Goodbye: And for those of you who still prefer the simpler way of hello/goodbye, here are The Beatles singing Hello, Goodbye.

Yes, I am a former mainlander, and I don’t profess to have a full grasp or cognition on Aloha… yet.

Comment on Facebook as to what Aloha means to you.

Mahalo.

Mahalo For Sharing Your Aloha
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