Sunday, July 12, 2009

Ulupo Temple

Welcome to the Hawaii
of Old
click on photos to enlargeSaturday I went to pay my respects to our host culture and to a favorite place.
"`Ike: To see, feel, know, greet, recognize, experience, understand, to know sexually, to receive revelations from the gods..."
From Hawaiian Dictionary, Univ of Hawaii Press
A "Heiau" is a temple.
Ulupo is the largest stone platform and temple complex on Oahu. It was a very important place, made of stones carried hand-to-hand from all over our island.
Hundreds of volunteers over the years have helped to clear, restore, and "malama" or care for it.

Hawaiians leaving "Ho`okupu" or offerings
before the tall stone platform

Our guide

What it may have looked like back in the day.

This picture shows the height.

View from the top.

View Across Kawainui "the great water" Marsh, a very important ecosystem that developed in the crater of a huge volcano that formed a good portion of this island thousands of years ago. It is the largest wetland in the Islands of Hawaii and home to many endangered species of birds.

Kupuna, seniors, shared traditional skills.
Here you see keiki learning to make traditional Kapa cloth and to imprint historic patterns upon it - a technique similar to Polynesian tattooing.

Ipu are gourds that play an important role as containers, and as small drums used in chanting, ceremonies, and hula. See the contemporary plastic ipu?

The temple grounds are once again home to numerous Kalo Lo`i,
or taro patches. Hawaiians consider Kalo their older brother. It is their sacred staff of life. Here, a father and son share a quality Saturday on the `Aina, the sacred land of Hawaii

- And everyone enjoyed a traditional lunch.