Saturday, August 6, 2011

"Where the hands move, there let the eyes follow."




Keep your eyes on the lovely hula hands for they tell a story. Every movement, expression and gesture in the sacred dance of hula has a specific meaning. The secret hand movements signify the different aspects of nature and the heavens. A chant, the pounding of a drum made from the trunk of the coconut or breadfruit tree and a gourd accompany the dance. The chant has its own hidden meanings, for example rain as a metaphor for love. Before the dance begins, a performer slips into a light trance by meditating on the god, spirit, or the intention of the dance. And this is where the magic happens when that connection transpires.

“For when it is done well, hula represents a metaphysical union of the forces that have always characterized man’s attempts to make himself one with the universe.” Ishmael Stagner

I am fascinated with the sacred art of the hula, not only because it reminds me of home, but because my young heroine in my wip embraces the spiritual significance of the dance. It is a symbol of her connection to nature and the heavens.

Feast your eyes on these beautiful videos.

Ke Alaula - Hula by Tiana Komeiji from Chad Brownstein on Vimeo.


LYRICS
Ke Alaula by The Makaha Sons

E Kumuola, e ku'u tutu,
Poha mai ka 'onohi 'ula,
Wehi 'ia ke alaula,
Mai ka mole, ke kikowaena,
Mai ka mole, ke kikowaena,

Ha'alulu ke kumu honua,
Haku 'iku'i i ka' 'aina nei,
Wehe 'ia ke alaula,
Hoaka
'O Kamawaipolani
'O Kamawaipolani

Hane'ene'e hele i kai.
'Oni me ka muliwai 'ola,
Wehi 'ia ke alaula,
Uhi pono i ke ea,
Uhi pono i ke ea,

Puana ke ha'ina,
Ho'okukaulani i hei kapu,
Wehe 'ia ke alaula,
No nahanauna nei.
No nahanauna nei.
No nahanauna nei.


ENGLISH TRANSLATION
The Dawning

Oh, Tree of Life, My tutu,
Burst with rays of fire,
Opened a flaming pathway
From the source, the center
From the source, the center

The foundation trembled,
Echoed throughout the land
Opened a stream of life
Appeared Kamawaipolani
Appeared Kamawaipolani

Moving toward the sea,
Onward like a living river
Opened a seaward path

Enveloped in life’s' breath
Enveloped in life’s' breath

The story is told,
Restore this sacred domain
Opened the path of life
For the generations of this land
For the generations of this land
For the generations of this land




Sacred dance is a very old art form used by many different cultures. Have you thought of using some form of dance or music in your work?

Till next time,
Elizabeth

6 comments:

cgibson5o said...

This was beautiful. A great hula dancer can tell a story with the hands to rival any written in words. As with the written word, one only needs to understand the language. Even if one doesn't understand the language, the art form itself is beautiful to behold. Communication through art, a universal linkage between cultures. A basis for understanding. Something any 2 characters in a story would appreciate.

Nancy Jackson said...

Very lovely post :) I've always enjoyed watching hula dancers. I remember being taught when I was seven during a week-long stay there on vacation with my parents. It's quite fascinating to watch.

:)

Melanie said...

mahalo.
m

EW Gibson said...

CBGibson,

Beautifully put!

Elizabeth

EW Gibson said...

Nancy,

I find myself occasionally swaying my hips and lifting my hands to the music. I guess it's in the blood.

Elizabeth

EW Gibson said...

Melaine,

`A `ole pilikia.

Elizabeth

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...