Na Mea Pono Learning Series
By Roberta Cross and Zelie Duvauchelle
Zelie Kuliakaikanu`u Duvauchelle invites all those interested to a learning series called “Na Mea Pono” (Pono Things) starting June 2. Duvauchelle and the group will explore Hawaiian ways and cultural concepts.
In keeping with the oral tradition, Duvauchelle will encourage the group to try a new/old approach – a Hawaiian way of learning, listening and sharing.
“I’m really excited about this series,” said Duvauchelle. “What I see as part of my kuleana is being a bridge between people and cultures. I do this through music, facilitating groups, and consultations with individuals.”
The first session is on kuleana — responsibility to yourself, your family and community. One’s kuleana is fulfilled by being of service and contributing in some way. “If you start with yourself, take care of yourself, then you can be of service to others,” said Duvauchelle.
Your kuleana in your ohana (family) is to have balanced relationships. “If you have pilikia (trouble) with parents or siblings, you need to set things right. This is the part no one likes to hear,” explained Duvauchelle with a smile.
She and the group will explore questions like, What is Molokai’s place in the global community? Our island also has a kuleana. What are our gifts, what do we have to contribute, to Hawaii and to the world?
People are invited to come with this same spirit of wonder, and an intention to learn about Molokai, the community, and themselves. “We will sit together and see what comes out, what comes from our hearts, from our na`au.”
Duvauchelle grew up in Puko`o on the east end. In her twenties, Duvauchelle apprenticed with Clyde Halema`uma`u “Kindy” Sproat at his home at the entrance to Pololu Valley in North Kohala. They sang together and Duvauchelle said she listened to stories of the many mele he shared. “Through the mele I began to hear the deep connection our people have with nature and to develop an ear for the metaphoric and poetic character of the Hawaiian language.”
Duvauchelle learned the love of Hawaiian language from her namesake aunt, Zelie Kuliaikanu’u Duvauchelle Sherwood. “My aunty received the name Kuliaikanu`u from Queen Lili`uokalani when she came to stay at the Duvauchelle hotel in Puko`o, owned by my great-grandparents,” said Duvauchelle.
For more than 20 years, Duvauchelle has also been immersed in study and work in healing and teaching. She recently returned to Molokai to give back what was so generously given to her. She offers retreats, classes and private consultations. She also continues to offer workshops in Tucson, Arizona where she spent the last seven years in private practice and teaching at the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine.
The first Na Mea Pono session is Sunday, June 2 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. The group will meet at a home on the west end. The cost is $35 but no one will be turned away for lack of funds.
Call 558 8207 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to register and confirm location.