LOVE AND COMPASSION
In increasing our effectiveness as shaman healers we learn the importance of expanding our sense of self. Expanding it to include as much of the universe as we possibly can so that our movements are more harmonious. Just like we might not want to injure our own bodies because they are part of us, if we are one with the birds and the earth, the rain and the cars, we might not want to injure them, either. We call this closer connection compassion. Why then, do so many compassionate people believe they must suffer when someone they are connected with suffers. Let's look to the latin roots: com (together) and pati (suffer, endure). Suffer or endure together? The word passion in Websters New World Dictionary means any emotion as hate, love, fear etc. The word compassion means deep sympathy, pity. Pity means sorrow for anothers suffering or misfortune. Why isn't the word love the predominant emotion in compassion.? Or has love taken on the meaning of suffering? Language tells us a lot about a culture.
Let's look at the Hawaiian language, there are two words in the Hawaiian dictionary for compassion: one is menemene. Me means with or like and ne means returning persistently as a thought or desire. So the persistent thought to be with or like another. Me'e means hero, ene means a baby's first attempt to move, ne'e means to move forward, persist. So we have implications of moving toward the heroic or admired.
The second word is aloha. The root alo means presence or to be together with, share an experience; ha means breath or life; oha means joy, joyous affection; a'a means to send greetings or love, joyous hospitality; lo'o means to obtain. So here we have a joyous sharing of life or obtaining life by sending joy.
However we look at these two Hawaiian words, having compassion for other forms of life means to move together in a better direction. If a happier, more enlightened world is what we want, why not choose the love meaning of compassion? Why not share whatever joy we have to lift the spirits of the downtrodden, rather than joining in their suffering? Sometimes our effectiveness is increased when we are appropriate in our expression of love-compassion. Sometimes it feels better to cry along with anothers tears for a short while, and at the same time be sending telepathic messages of peace or thoughtforms of angels kissing away the tears. Use whatever level works!
Susan Pa'iniu Floyd is an Alakai of Huna International and the Managing Director of Aloha International. She trains practitioners of Hawaiian massage and teachers of Huna, and teaches classes and courses on Huna, Hawaiian Massage, Hawaiian Shamanism and Hula throughout the world, especially in Europe. Check the Activity Hut for her schedule and contact her by the information given below.
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Copyright by Aloha International 2001