Monday, September 15, 2014

Keanianileihuaokalani – Healing Stone of Wahiawa

Cultures collided at Keanianileihuaokalani.

Keanianileihuaokalani was a large tongue-shaped stone that has since been split into three pieces. Hawaiians view it as a healing stone; Hindus see it as an embodiment of the god Shiva.  (According to reports, they appear to have worked (working) out how they work together.)

Reportedly, originally found in Kaukonahua gulch by a Waialua Sugar worker, the 6-foot stone broke when it fell off a wagon while being moved.  (They are now situated at the lower end of California Avenue in Wahiawa.)

Hawaiians believe that the stone has sacred healing properties. It was believed that all children of royal lineage were thrice blessed and elevated to a higher status if born at nearby Kūkaniloko, the center of the earth.  (Reveria)

After childbirth, the new mothers would bath in the cool springs of Helemano. It was this mingling of blood and water that culminated into the healing mystic rains that fell upon the land, people and most importantly Keanianileihuaokalani giving the healing stone its healing powers.  (Reveria)

On the day of a royal birth, all work stopped in anticipation of the first healing rains generated from the blessed event. These rains were Waiʻihiawa, mystical rains tainted with the blood of royalty. This healing rain fell freely on the people who lived and worked in Kūkaniloko.  (Reveria)

“This rock being visited by people to worship these days is becoming something that truly is stirring the thoughts of some people here in Honolulu, and some who are living near Wahiawa are appealing to the Government and to the power of the Board of Health to move that rock from where it first stood, because in their opinion, this action by the people will cause an epidemic to grow here where all ethnicities are going and touching themselves against the bodies of others, and this will perhaps cause sicknesses to spread from one to another.”

“The Board of Health refused to step in and block this action by people who believe their ailments will be healed by touching the sick area to that rock of Wahiawa, and the birthing stones of the High Chiefs of this land in ancient times.”

“Some people have said that their weakness due to rheumatism by them going there and touching their areas of pain to that rock. Some say that their weak areas were not cured by touching the rock.”  (Hoku o Hawaiʻi, November 1, 1927)

According to practitioners, the stone should be anointed with Waiʻihiawa rainwater.  Appropriate and appreciated gifts are awa root, olena sprigs, herbs, lei and flowers.  (Reveria)

In 1971 the Wahiawa Community and Businessmen's Association asked the Hawaii Visitors Bureau to put up a sign to again call public attention to the "Healing Stone of Wahiawa."

Hindu, who assumed a caretaker role for the stone also revere it as a manifestation of their deity, Shiva (it is interpreted to have a phallic shape.)

The Hindu recognized it as a Shiva image in 1988.  At the time, the structure that enclosed the stones on three sides was a dilapidated concrete shed; a Hindu family turned the shed into a white marble shrine.

Hindus anoint themselves with smoke from sacred candles, part of the ceremonial cleansing of the stones.  In their ritual, the stone is bathed in milk, rubbed with honey and draped with lei.  (Reportedly, contrary to some claims, Hindus do not put oil or candle wax on the stone.)

The "healing stones" of Wahiawa drew hundreds of pilgrims in the 1930s, but few local people or tourists find their way to the off-the-beaten-path location these days.   (star-bulletin)

The image an earlier image of Keanianileihuaokalani, the Healing Stone of Wahiawa (HAS.)  In addition, I have added other related images in a folder of like name in the Photos section on my Facebook and Google+ pages.

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