Holding Hands

Hawaiian Thought of the Week April 28, 2014

Hawaiian Thought of the Week April 28, 2014

paʻahana:  hard working, industrious 

If we look at this word paʻahana, it can be split into two separate words that can help us to realize the intensity of its meaning.  Paʻa means to be firm, fixed, durable and complete and hana means to work, labor and do. 

Our kūpuna were very hard working and industrious people. They made the time to accomplish just about everything. They were aware of the appropriate seasons to go fishing for different types of fish, or specific times to plant and harvest.

Each person within the ahupuaʻa had kuleana; men, and even keiki too. Our kūpuna built waʻa (canoes) and loko iʻa (fishponds). They constructed loʻi (taro patches) and heiau (religious structures) some larger than a football field without any modern day tools, all by hand. The work of our kūpuna still exists today. It is our kuleana to continue to preserve what they have done by continuing to work hard and persevere.

Each day we go to work. We see the same people and we usually perform the same job duties day in and day out. It can be easy to get caught up in the routine of things.  Sometimes we just do as we do each day but are we practicing this value of paʻahana (being industrious) or is it just hana (work, doing)?