Manaole U Manaole. This is the traditional greeting among the tribal peoples who have lived the ways of Ka Ta See for tens of thousands of years.
Translating other languages to English is not always an easy task. Our language is filled with words that exude judgments, fear, separation, warring, better-thans and less-thans, worthiness of love or not.
The life-changing gift of encountering a traditional lineage and language that are rooted in a different existence is that our minds and hearts can expand beyond our blindspots. We become aware of things we’ve not been able to see before.
I’ve spent years pondering this seemingly simple greeting: manaole u manaole (prounounced: mana – oh – l – oo – mana – oh – l). The translation is: from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart.
Words, like all sounds, radiate particular energies and vibrations. We shape this with our intent, with our inner experience as we think or speak. Can you feel the fullness of the weaving of connections in these words ~ manaole u manaole, from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart ~ as you read or say them outloud?
I love imagining a whole tribe of people, generation after generation after generation, greeting each other in this way. What a beautiful way to say hello! What a beautiful way to relate! The natural, genuine connectedness among us is being acknowledged, respected, and woven together in everyday interactions and encounters.
This is so very different than a common greeting in our contemporary society: “How are you?” “I’m fine. How are you?” We’re talking in sound bytes with empty words. We’re not really asking. We’re not really listening. We say we’re fine when we’re not. We’re distracted and ready to rush onto the next thing. We’re pushing facades between us from the very beginning of the exchange.
It doesn’t have to be this way.
I’ve come to understand manaole u manaole not only as a greeting, not just something to say, but rather a way of life. There are extraordinary treasures and teachings inside these words. Here’s what I’ve been discovering:
Every relationship, every social interaction between you and me, between us and them, involves the mother earth too. We are inextricably woven together. Most of the time, we forget this. We ignore the beauty and vastness of how this really feels. We separate ourselves from this natural way of being that could inform every word we speak, every thought we think, every next action we take.
The traditional greeting, manaole u manaole, all by itself, can help us remember something fundamental about who we are, about our innate relatedness, about living in harmony with all life, with our mother earth.
You can experience and share heart to heart connection without speaking the words. Say the words on the inside. Feel your connectedness energetically through the everyday moments of your everyday life. From my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart. Start where this is easy ~ sharing a belly laugh with friends, admiring the sunset, playing with your child, on a walk with your dog. Then keep stretching into other experiences where the habits of judgment and disconnection more readily get triggered. Stuck in a traffic jam. Reading the headline news. Balancing the checkbook. Facing a challenge with your spouse. Stress about meeting a deadline at work. Sensing someone else’s judgment of you.
Awareness of the truth of your connectedness ~ with yourself, the earth, everyone, all life ~ opens the possibility to change the conversations, to feel and relate differently, to cultivate a safe space of respect, to find remedies that hadn’t been seen before. The old patterns that are infused with judgment or fear, the old webs of distractions and empty words, will start untangling and fall away if they’re not fed and rewoven, over and over again.
Connecting heart to heart does not mean that you condone violence or have to stay in a threatening situation. Reaching out from your heart, respecting the heart of all others, weaves a web of connection that is healing, transformational, and opens space for birthing something new. Manaole u manaole offers us a grounding cord, a way to remember our natural ability to see with the eyes of the heart. This centers us in a vast field of connectedness and creativity. Isolation and separation are misunderstandings and lies. When we are aware of our connectedness, the potentials and possibilities are boundless. The knowledge available to us ~ from within, from others, from the earth, from all life ~ is astounding. The choices we have are far beyond what we’ve even dared to dream.
We can share heart to heart connections with humans and many many others. Greet the sun in the morning. Say hello, manaole u manaole, to the land and the waters around your home. Honor the animals, birds and plants who live miles away as well as those in your home and backyard.
It can take just a moment. And imagine what would happen if we all took just a moment to connect heart to heart….we’d fill ourselves and the world with the power and beauty of everyone being loved, respected, and seen.
Seeing with the eyes of the heart opens up a universe of possibilities, a vast flow of creative energy and vision, beyond the habitual mode of judgment and fear, fight or flight. Change on the inside ripples out and touches all life. This is how we change our world.
Manaole U Manaole,
from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart,