As many of you know, Brandon and I were recently blessed with the opportunity to embark on what I refer to as, sacred travel. The Hawaiian Islands were born from lava millions of years ago creating what I consider one of the most magical, ethereal places on Earth. Four years ago I set the intention to find myself on the Islands and as the stars aligned, I was able to take on the adventure with my best friend.
We knew with anticipation that this trip was going to be life changing for both of us but within an hour of touching down in Maui we began to realize the extent of the power residing in the Islands. Hawaiian culture is filled with spiritual and mystical knowledge evolving from priesthoods and the kahuna, which were experts that may have served as shamans or sorcerers. Max Freedom Long studied this ancient mysticism for years, coining the term "Huna" meaning "secret" to encompass many of the Hawaiian beliefs and teachings. (Charlotte Berney, Fundamentals of Hawaiian Mysticism).
We spent the first few days driving down the Road to Hana. We had done little research before starting the two day trek which only added to the adventure. We found ourselves driving through all sorts of terrain, mainly steep and winding roads with signs for falling rocks, only wide enough for oneway traffic. The landscapes were something out of a Jurassic Park film; picturesque waters crashing over jagged lava rocks fifty feet below, jungle vines and leaves the size of ones face hanging over the roads, and every shade of green imaginable. We spent a few mornings at the Red and Black Sand Beaches and continued making our way through jungle territory. Pure exhilaration, I don't think we stopped laughing that entire drive, asking ourselves, "Is this real?".
After a few days of driving the Road to Hana, our snack pile dwindling (being unprepared for the drive, we only had fruit from two stands we had passed by) we finally made it our favorite spot, Paia. We spent the majority of our time finding ourselves drawn back to this cozy little surf town. Conscious cafes, local surfer spots, and live reggae music on the beaches, we felt right at home. Halfway through our trip we were able to fulfill a longstanding dream for both of us, which was to travel out of an old VW camper van. We drove our temporary home on wheels all over the Island and back again, stopping to sleep at beaches and campgrounds. My favorite nights were spent watching shooting stars as we slept on top of the van.
We spent two weeks driving around that island together - exploring and healing. We set aside time in the mornings to sit in meditation by the waters edge; offering and receiving blessings from the land, writing water prayers, and reconnecting to our guides. We laughed until we cried and we cried until we laughed. We sang our hearts out, danced under the new moon in a drum circle, and gathered every night with the community to watch the sunset. There is something special about a place where everyone greets you with a word that means peace, compassion, and love. And that is exactly what we found here.