Touched by Healing in Hawaii


Oahu, Hawaii.  Kaneohe

At the Papahana Kualoa Waipao taro farm, I was invited to a public gathering of healers and hula dancers called the Pā I Ke Ola – Touched by Healing event.  It began with a Hawaiian oli (chant) to open the honoring ceremony, followed by traditional Hula dancing.  Each song  that was sung and danced honored a different aspect of Hawaiian culture, including the beautiful land of Kaneohe where the event took place.


In the distance, a wonderful mist covered the tops of the Ko’olau mountains in Kaneohe.  Participants crossed the nearby stream to view the taro patches that were fed by the fresh water.  Taro, which is the staple traditional food of Hawaii, had been planted in traditional fashion and used to make poi (mashed taro).


There was a tent for people to receive lomi lomi, the Hawaiian bodywork that incorporates massage, bone/joint adjustment, as well as spiritual cleansing.  Students of Kumu (teacher) Alva Andrews set up their stations, with some working on massage tables and other working on traditional Hawaiian mats.  The traditional Hawaiian music gave way to more modern blues as a live band played in the background as they began to serve the delicious food.

Traditional Hawaiian foods were served including Ulu (breadfruit), Kalo pa’a (steamed taro), and Laulau’s (meat and fish filled taro leaf packets).

In the past, I have received powerful lomi lomi sessions from Enrick Ortiz, one of Kumu Alva Andrew’s original students.  After years of hearing about uncle Alva from Enrick, I finally had a chance to meet his mentor who was being honored at Pa I Ke Ola. Kumu Alva has studied with lomi lomi master Kumu John Kalua and also studied ho’oponopono (traditional Hawaiian counseling/mind healing) with Aunty Abbi Napeahi.  His big hearted approach to healing lead him to also study outside of his own tradition with Hindu Master Gaush Supun.  These trainings have melded together to craft his own unique style of healing which he shares openly with people of all backgrounds.


The Hula dancers and lomi lomi practitioners, honored lomi lomi Kumu Alva Andrews.

Under the Lomi tent at the conference, a mutual friend, Aunty Diane Stevens-Poire, introduced me to Kumu Alva.  As we engaged in honi, the traditional Hawaiian greeting where our noses met and we breathed in each others’ breath, I felt a rush of care from Kumu Alva. The purpose of the honi is to have a pure exchange of each person’s Ha (breath of life), a moment to truly share each others essence.

We talked story, as I shared with him my training in the Iroquois healing arts that were transmitted to me through my uncle. He said, “your tradition is Native American, and mine is Native Hawaiian, but in the end it’s all the same spirit.  We just have different vocabulary.  All peoples come from the same source.”  He smiled brightly, then invited me to gather with him again to talk more about how to build that bridge between our different approaches to healing.  I felt honored by his respect.

It really warmed my heart to see these ancient practices in Hawaii continue on with the younger generations.

Categories: george hunter, hawaii, healer, healers, healing, holistic, Huffington, Hula, Kamana, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Trusting Men

“I just don’t trust men in general,” she said. “They have hurt me and dissappointed me too many times. Most men lack integrity.”
“Well, as a man, I thank you for trusting me enough to admit that,” I replied calmly to my client.
“I don’t mean you. I mean…well, you’re different,” she said nervously, afraid that she may have offended a supportive man.
“It’s ok. We’re talking about you right now. How am I different to you?” I asked with encouragement.
“Well, you’re different because you’ve earned my trust. You showed me that you care each time that I see you. You’re very accepting of me…I can feel it.”
This conversation is not just from one client. In fact, I can recall this script being repeated by both male and female clients in different forms. I hear it as well in the candid conversations of my everyday life, that yearning for more trusted men. But with that yearning comes the struggle to find trustworthy men, and then the challenges of letting those men in emotionally. This repetitive notion has shown me there is a prevalent mistrust of men, which can be held by anyone who has been betrayed or abandoned by a man in the past. At its basest level, this notion is an unaddressed stereotype that can be harmful because it keeps open-hearted men veiled by our suspicions.  It is also harmful because it can shame all men, whether they have committed an offense of not. By keeping good men out of our lives, we feel neglect, and further the stereotype. By not distinguishing honest men from men who lack integrity, we let the wrong guy in which leads to betrayal. This is a painful cycle experienced by many of the people I have met.
I too, have struggled to trust men. Though there have been a few gems in my life, I have not deeply connected to most of the men I have encountered. I’ve never been a big sports fan. I don’t have an obsession with cars and I’ve often felt like an odd ball on sports teams. These are some of the culturally encouraged ways for a man to connect with other men. Yet, I was left starving for male contact.
As a straight man, I have both admired and envied how gay men were able to come together, bonded by the initiation that is the “coming out” process. In many ways, they have been pioneers of safe male connection. I was able to find some of this male bonding through Native drum groups and the Cornell Thai Boxing Team. But I longed to have a space that was just about men supporting men. No competition, no distraction, just a space where men could reveal themselves without trying to impress each other. There were good men in these teams and groups, yet we never slowed down enough to connect heart to heart.
I used to work with a Navajo medicine man in New Mexico. He told me about the great lengths they went through for the initiation of their girls into womanhood. I was touched by the care and preparation that went into the ceremony, especially since not every tribe still has this ceremony in modern times. Then I asked him what ceremony they did for the boys in his community. “We don’t have a initiation ceremony for men anymore,” he replied. My own longing led me to create a men’s initiation ceremony while living on the Cochiti Pueblo Reservation. The private ceremony brought men together from different walks of life, a place where men were allowed to express their feelings and struggles. They had no other place to share this part of themselves. Being the facilitator of this initiation was powerful, fulfilling, yet incomplete for me personally. To further build my trust in men, I needed men to hold the space for me. I needed to be witnessed as a man, not the facilitator.
I recently had this experience when I joined a men’s support group in Hawaii called the Mankind Project. In addition to weekly support groups, I also took part in the New Warrior initiation weekend. It was the first time I was able to be in a group of 70+ men that I did not know, yet still feel safe. I was seen as a good man, a brave man who was willing to help others in need. But even more significantly for me, I was able to receive support from men who were perfect strangers. 
Honest, consistent communication and presence seemed to melt that mistrust which I have developed towards men. Going through an initiation together showed us that we were not going to cut and run. It formed a bond worth forming. We supported each other in being in our integrity and didn’t ask each other to apologize for being a man. I felt a deep relief after this initiation that I had never experienced before.
Having this support is helping me to see that I am not a lone man of integrity, living on an island of accountability with little male support. There are trustworthy men out there that are often painted with mistrust. But perhaps honest men just need to be seen by each other so that we can reveal ourselves more freely. I now believe that men who are regularly supported in their integrity will treat men and women with greater care and consistency. Feel free to comment with your beliefs and experiences by joining me on
Categories: g kamana hunter, initiation, Kamana, manhood, mankind, mankind project, men, native, thai boxing, trust | 6 Comments

Making Actors Cry

I recently went to Los Angeles to work with clients as a Healer. The trip was mostly work, with a few stops for fun. I sat at one of the the outdoor tables of a nice Italian restaurant by the fountain at the Grove. While I was debating on whether or not to see the Avengers a second time, I began thinking about all the actors I have seen in my private practice. It’s not uncommon for me to be sitting on my couch, watching a movie only to see a client reciting lines on the screen. My eyebrows rise in surprise, and then I smile to myself on the inside, because no one in the room knows that I have met this person before. Their confidentiality, of course, is protected. But in my head, I remind myself of Will Farrell in the movie Elf when he screams, “Santa!!! I know him!” By the way, Will is not a client of mine. 
My actor clients often come with an intriguing irony. These same clients which I saw having a tearful moment on screen often have the toughest time shedding their tears for themselves. To cry on screen, they often recall sad moments in their own life, with the aim of giving a better performance. They cry to be liked by their fans and to ensure that their employers keep hiring them.  Yet, they often struggle to cry for themselves. They’re like a boxer who needs to save up their angst to be able to perform well in the ring.
In my own life, I usually save crying for special occasions like funerals, big life realizations, and really good movies. Good performances by actors have been the most consistent inspiration for my own tears. Its only fair that I return the favor to them in session. Witnessing them peel away their masks helps me more easily find compassion for this person in front of me.  Their fame drips away to reveal a real person with a heart filled with struggles. This is an essential part of the healing because much of their power of captivation resides in that vulnerability. In essence, they must unlearn their old habits to be able to feel their heart again.
I have found that looking beneath a person’s outer persona can inspire release. By seeing something inside of them that very few people get to witness, you validate that person’s inner most world. By honoring and acknowledging something special about them that has nothing to do with what people demand from them is a form of liberation. That recognition of a secret dream or tender sentiment that they hold for their family or project feeds a dry spot in their heart. Then, the tears flow, a sweet release of long held feelings, making room for something new to enter that person’s heart. Finally, someone understands them.
The more I reflected on actors, the more I realized that this applies to nearly every people that I have met. How often are you truly seen for who you are, rather than what people expect you to do?

Thank you to the actors who have touched my inner story.

Categories: actors, avengers, cry, crying, g kamana hunter, george hunter, Kamana, pacific, the grove, will farrell | Leave a comment

Cleansing Your Heart

Is it possible to care too much for others? Many of the world’s religions and inspirational humanitarians encourage us to be compassionate to the people in our lives. Yet, it is difficult to find tangible tools on how to refill our hearts when Compassion Fatigue set in. I am not referring to the burnout from working too much or from excessive stress. Compassion Fatigue is the strain that your heart feels when you are in prolonged caregiver roles. Nurses, Teachers, Physicians, and Therapists are people known for experiencing this heaviness in their heart from the countless, heart wrenching stories they hear. Yet any parent who has been in an emergency room waiting room more than once can also relate.
As a Healer, my experience of Compassion Fatigue is that my heart gets dry when I see too many people. I get grumpy, and my normal filters begin to wane. In this depleted state, my heart becomes a magnet for the heavy stories of the people I help. Another way to say it is that when my emotional endurance dips, my clients stories somehow become my stories. Before the session, I might feel happy or bright. After the session, I may feel heavy or tired, even though the client had a great session. This is my indication that I have taken on something from my client.
Though Compassion Fatigue is so prevalent, I am surprised at how little practices are out there for remedying a burdened heart. The cure to Compassion Fatigue clearly requires self care. In other words, you need to love and care for your own heart even more than you love and care for the hearts of others. But how do we make this shift? How do we tend to our tired hearts?
At the end of each week, I have a personal ritual that I do to release any heaviness in my heart from the deep emotional work. In Hawaiian, they call this Au Au Kai, (cleansing to the ocean).
The first part of the Ritual is the Exhale, or the release. I think of each client that I have worked with one by one while feeling my body. If I took on any burden from them, I name it. I express anything I am feeling to the ocean out loud, whether I feel confused, hurt, angry, sad, or anxious. It doesn’t matter what the feeling may be, I just fell it and release it. By letting myself express these things uncensored, the charge or heaviness in my body can move into the ocean. For me, saying them aloud makes it more powerful. Then, I make a wish for that client based on what we did in the session. By doing this, I ensure that I do not carry the heaviness of my clients into my own life. It’s just good Healer Hygiene. 
The next part of the Ritual is the Inhale. This is where I let the beauty of my surroundings, that fresh, tropical mana, to flow into my body. I don’t just breathe through my nose and mouth. I also soak up the sun through my skin and feel the ocean mist go into my chest. It is the Celebration of my own life which is separate from the suffering of those I help. The Exhale creates the space for Gratitude, and the Inhale Celebrates it. What makes this ritual powerful is the clear intent to care for your own heart and the consistency of making that space for your heart to breathe. It prevents you from dumping these hard feelings on those you love.
At times, I sing an honor song to acknowledge the ancestors of those I work with. I recently worked with a survivor of the Holocaust, so I sang for their family to the ocean. A moment later, a pod of spinner dolphins raced across the water, squealing, playing, and breaching. Joyous.
Join my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/people/G-Kamana-Hunter/669812856  I am available for personal sessions by phone if you would like to create your own Heart Cleansing Ritual. email ghunter199@aol.com  Be good to your heart!
Categories: compassion fatigue, dolphins, hawaii, healer, holocaust, kai, Kamana, physician | Leave a comment

Return of the Healer

Welcome.  This blog is the journal of a traveling Healer, in which I share how a Healer sees the world.  Whether I am working with a client one on one, working on a community healing event, or sharing a Healer’s point of view on world events, the stories aim to help you find growth from struggle.

A few years ago, I went into a dentists office to get a cavity filled.  On the intake forms, it asked for my occupation.  Since I have worked as a Healer full-time for several years, I put “Healer” on the form.  The dentist went through the form and stopped at occupation.  “You’re a…huh?”  She said.  I explained to her that I had been trained by an uncle in the oral traditions of Iroquois (Native American) medicine as a child.  Later, I studied with other Healers, both in the US and also in the Amazon Rainforest. After years of study, I gave a healing session to an open minded physician.  She was so impressed with the experience that she referred me my first clients.  Eventually I was able to build a private practice and leave my Research Associate position at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  I have worked as a Healer ever since.

The Dentist was curious, so she asked, “But what exactly do you do?”
I answered that through ceremony, intuitive guidance, storytelling, and hands on healing, I help people release the trapped stories of their lives.  Regrets, resentment, fear, and insecurity can be carried in our bodies in the form of stress.  Stress is not random.  Stress has a history.  When the story of our stress is held in our bodies long enough, it can affect our relationships and also affect the physical health of our bodies.  I specialize in finding ways to help people release their stress and learn from the unfinished story which they were holding. 

In modern times, Healers do exist, although our society has lost recognition of this ancient role.  Medicine men and women still function in indigenous societies and professional Healers are nestled into offices throughout major cities.  I have met many health practitioners who serve as Healers in the form of Physicians, Nurses, Clergy, Educators, and Therapists.  Each role represents a color of paint on the palate of health care.  Think of professional Healers as a very old and still relivant shade of help.

Check back for my weekly posts on Sundays.  My next post will address the Riots in Egypt.

Categories: alternative, Bloodline, cairo, cancer, egypt, egyptian, family tree, healer, healing, holistic, Hunter, Kamana, medicine, Mohawk, native american, stress, travel | 2 Comments

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