“Aloha ʻĀina is something that, for us, is directly connected and related to the ahupua’a and the way to manage an ahupua’a.
The Hawaiians created this way of land management that goes from the mountain to the sea. Some permaculturists say that the ahupua’a was the second best agricultural model in human history. It worked, that’s the bottom line.
I’ve been around the world talking about fishponds and ahupua’a, and it’s kinda crazy because there are people that say, “Wow, that is so awesome, can you show us how to do it?”
And we’re like, “Oh no, what I’m telling you guys about happened in our past and we don’t practice it today.”
Then they’re like, “Why don’t you guys practice it today?”
I said, “Oh because America took us over, Westernization took over our Hawaiian people, they took over our government, we’re under illegal occupation, and everything is upside down.”
And they say, “Wow, that’s sad.”
And I always reply with, “Yeah, but there are pockets, just like Keawanui, just like Moloka’i, where we’re trying our best to get to a better future, and we believe the better future actually looks more like our past than our present.”
–Hanohano Naehu, kia’i loko of Keawanui
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