In November 2017, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs published Mana Lāhui Kānaka, a multidimensional study of mana: what it is, how to articulate it and how to access and cultivate it in order to uplift our lāhui. This book shared manaʻo from community contributors, including Billy Fields, discussing what mana means to him.
Mana is your spiritual well being.
With my work, working with re-interring ʻiwi, I have learned that Hawaiians never marked their graves. And one of the reasons for that is or I was taught that they didn’t mark their graves so nobody would steal their mana. Their mana is in their ʻiwi. And just like the stuff that we do as cultural practitioners, I was even taught that, it is in your genes. And it is the same with your mana. You are born with it, whether you know it or not but, you got it. And it will eventually come out. But that‘s my take on mana.
In my travels – I have built structures on every island. I’ve probably re-interred over 2,500 people and I’m a Vietnam vet. So, I would say there is no one moment. My whole life is a moment of mana which I think keeps me alive. This was my calling to do what I do, and teach what I do.
Tap into your mana by downloading a free copy of Mana Lāhui Kānaka at www.oha.org/mana.