Sunday, March 15, 2009

Uncle Bill

photo courtesy of Mike Foley

Yesterday, I along with a multitude of people throughout the islands and from different countries paid our last respects and bade a fond aloha to "Uncle Bill," William Kauaiwiulaokalani Wallace III. He was and still is a very good uncle. I say still is, because although he is gone in the flesh, his spirit lives on, and though I don't see him; I know he is there alive and well in the spirit world.

I just wanted to take a moment to remember him. He accomplished so much in his life. He was a young 60 years of age when he passed away, but he had lived a very full and awe inspiring life. He was a lawyer, judge, professor, kumu hula, and a very loving father. If I know anything about Uncle Bill, it is that he LOVES his family, and although he has tons and tons of extended family, myself included ;) it is like EVERYONE is related to him... for reals :) He treated everyone as his family and everyone loved and respected him as such too.

Uncle Bill was one of my professors at BYUH. One thing that stands out the most from what I learned from him, is that it is very important to KNOW WHO YOU ARE. I was taught this from my parents, grandparents, church leaders, and friends. It is something I was taught is important as I was growing up and I understand that it is important, and in one of Uncle Bill's classes I had had a true "Ah Hahhhhh," moment.

We were reading through the book, Vaka: Saga of a Polynesian Canoe (a very good book for anyone interested in a good read about the populating of the Polynesian islands). Uncle Bill was generating a discussion of our reading assignment and rather than trying to explain what the author meant, he "did" it. We were covering a section about the importance of genealogy. Upon stopping and visiting an island populated with lethally fierce people, the main character was able to stay alive by greeting the islanders' with a chant of his genealogy. The royal leaders or ali'i of the different island kingdoms maintained strong ties by intermarrying. By chanting his genealogy, the main character renewed those bonds of family and was welcomed with open arms and love.

Uncle Bill went on to chant his genealogy, five generations from the past to him in the present. I totally felt "chicken skin," and not cause my chinese sign is the rooster :) LOLOL. All the blocks of information I was taught growing up clicked right into place. He then went on to display his skill as a kumu hula and demonstrated through dance. I was totally amazed. He was such a beautiful dancer and chanter. He could have easily done that in his life and been renowned for it, but Uncle Bill chose education and the law and those of us who were his students have truly been blessed.

His lesson was further instilled because he assigned each of us to do the same with our own genealogy. We had to start from five generations back to us in the present and we had to get up and present it to the class. I felt very proud being able to do that. With each generation I recited I felt the mana of who I am, who I came from, and that they and I are one and the same. It was a very powerful personal and wonderful experience.

I remember him for this and for the love of family that he always shared with me. I know he is in a better place. I know he and Auntie Niki are reunited again in love and joy. We who are left behind are the ones suffering the loss of a great man and a good loving caring leader, while those in Heaven joyously welcome him home.

I love you Uncle Bill! Thank you for all that you have done for me!

Alofaaga e le Mavae, Siana

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Magic is Within Me.

Why does it take some of us forever and a day to realize that all we ever want to be in life is within our grasp?... We just have to believe and do the work... "I" need to believe and do the work. I know, the hard part is doing the "work."

It's been two and a half months since I have really been online. I was going through withdrawals, :) I needed to do my taxes, and so last week Saturday I signed up with Hele Wireless. :) Now I am online, I have completed my 2008 taxes, and I am trying to get my online groove back. :)

I just watched "Kung Fu Panda." I told myself I would never watch that show just cause I did not want to pay to watch anything Angelina Jolie is in (so dumb but I hate what happened in that love triangle). Well a friend and her daughter came by today with the dvd and the next thing you know I am watching it (at least I didn't have to pay to watch it :). Anyways, it is a good animation movie, I did enjoy it, and I walked away with the message that, "Within each of us individually is the secret to unlocking the all encompassing power of the universe." :)

Presently, and throughout this whole past year, I have been reading a lot of fantasy books. I really enjoy books about magic and dragons, other worlds and other peoples, and I have come across some really good books. One of my favorite authors is Raymond E. Feist. His stories deal with a lot of magic where good is pitted against evil. In one of my favorite books of his, "Prince of the Blood," he introduces an interesting character into his sagas, a wizened old man whose name is Nakor. Nakor possesses a lot of wisdom and power and yet he is famous in Feist's books for saying, "There is no magic." It is a recurring line throughout his books and I have always understood it to mean that the power for overcoming evil or getting the quest done is not left for some vague or nameless magic to do, but for each of us to do with the wits we have been blessed with and by the sweat of our own brows. I have read and thought about that line so often that when a similar thought presents itself, that line, "There is no magic," comes to mind.

Today, as I watched "Kung Fu Panda," and heard Panda Po's father tell him... "There is no secret recipe," I totally thought of Raymond E. Feist's line... "There is no magic." In "Kung Fu Panda," the sacred dragon scroll containing the knowledge of the all encompassing power of the universe was a blank reflective scroll where the person reading it could see nothing but his or her own reflection, meaning the power of the universe is within each individual :) and works according to what we truly believe of ourselves. There was no secret ingredient in Po's father's noodle soup but because people believed there was, it made them believe the noodle soup was more delicious. In Feist's books, there are beings of power and magic, but the ones making the sacrifices and completing the important quests were regular everyday people like you and me, so in that sense there is no magic.

What I truly believe, is that in life, all power comes from our Heavenly Father. He is the magic, He is the secret ingredient, and with faith and belief in Him and our own belief and confidence within our individual selves to do what is right, and to do His will in righteousness, eternity is our oyster and anything is possible.

The Magic is within me, and if I believe in the Lord, believe in myself and do the work, I can accomplish anything.