Initiation Into na Po`e Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki

(Initiation Into the Body of Firewalk Priests)


by Ho`anoiWahinenuiho`aLani


   The: "Are you an idiot?" Test

 The body of the course of initiation I took seems to have been based on two major activities a day, nearly all of which are terrors. And unlike Disneyland thrills, the dangers were all too real.

I’m going to describe to you some of the things we did, but in doing so I am deliberately leaving out major and utterly essential material, without which a person trying these tests will be hurt or harmed or mutilated or killed in an awful way. Why?

Because that’s what would probably happen to you anyway if you tried these things on your own. If you want to do the things done in the initiation of a Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, then find one to initiate you! Or tlak to the Mo`i of the Hunians about that Path.

So to be redundant: Don’t try to do these things without the spiritual guidance of someone who can already do them, and is willing to initiate you.

If you do try it without a spiritual master to guide you, then you ARE an idiot. Don’t bother writing to me from your hospital bed, if you should survive, I will be unsympathetic.



 "Paranoia strikes deep" the old hippie song says, and you know, reality is so complicated that you just can’t but wonder if something isn’t going on sometimes.

I say things sometimes which make me wonder about myself. One can always resort to the idea of e ho’oulu ia, your Aumakua or Divine Nature whispering things into your unsuspecting ear. But even that begs the question.

The Poe Aumakua of Huna exist. They have existed since the last three Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki prayed to them to find someone to carry on their lineage.

They found Dr. William Tufts Brigham and tricked him into coming to the islands where he eventually walked on the fire of a recent lava overflow.. Then when Dr. Brigham was about to check out, they found Max Freedom Long and tricked him to coming to the islands, where Dr. Brigham eventually initiated and adopted him into his sacred lineage.

Then when Max was about ready to pop the cork, Dolly Ware, and E. Otha Wingo and I were pulled in and Max adopted us, although we didn’t know each other. There are others too, William Glover being one who could make that same assertion of adoption even if he might be in the  Dreamworld now, and be sustained.

But the plans of the mighty often go astray. Same for the Po`e Aumakua who are our guardians. Dr. Brigham dropped the ball. He passed on the stories of his initiation, but not the Firewalk itself. He had let our fire die out, and no one had the courage to approach the sentient fire again whilst he lived.

Kahuna Nui Max felt the loss of the sentient fire like an itch from an unknown place in his mind. Like the fear that you can’t find your car keys, even though you are holding them in your trembling hands.

Then the Po`e Aumakua was antsy and frustrated. In all of Polynesia the sacred fires went out one by one, and there was nothing they could do about it.

Then by 1949 there were only two Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki left in all of Polynesia, none of them Hawaiian. So Te–nui Arii–peu, one of the two remaining, came from the Society Islands to make a Firewalk to try to raise money for passage to get his stranded Island folks home. Another trick and trap by the Po`e Aumakua?

This was to be a series of Umu style Firewalks. Which means they are done on white hot rocks instead of glowing embers. Which means that they invalidate David Willey’s thesis about fire not burning because of low conductivity. Many HRA (Huna Research Associates) came for it. One of our members, Charlie Kenn was chosen by Te–nui Arii–peu to be initiated into the lineage, and a good start was made, but the Kahuna died before it could be finished. And Charlie never walked on fire again as far as anyone knows.

I pretty much knew from the get–go that I had been called to return the sentient fire to Huna, but I could never see how to do that. Never dared to dream that I would actually pull it off.

The major thing which blocked me was the fear of what would happen to those who followed me into the fire. Afraid of their pain, their loss of respect for me and therefore my ultimate disservice to Huna itself.

Then a Methodist Minister friend of mine, Rev. Larry Olson talked to me about it. While I was scared for my own self, I was far more scared for the others. I had Charlie’s book, I had been named after the goddess of the Firewalk, I knew my intention—but saw no way to proceed. I didn’t, and don’t yet know how to protect anyone from being burned.

Larry asked me if I could build the fire, do the chants, and get myself to walk. I said that I could do those things. Then he asked me what part I intended for God to play in the whole thing?

And the only answer is that after a certain point you have to give up and let yourself fall into the arms of your Aumakua or Divine Nature or allow yourself to be hurt or even die. But if you are sustained than you actually know what anyone else can only speculate on. Although many will tell that they "know" about the religious or spiritual, these are only speculations for the most part.

That opened the Path for me to enter into the sentient fire as a priest of it. To search out, finally, a kumu to initiate me into the Firewalking.

Now it seems so far away; I sat listening to my kumu while he played a videotape by the number–one leading debunker of the Firewalk. On the screen is a photograph of the 1949 Firewalk in Honolulu, and led by Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki ,Te-nui Arii-peu! That’s pretty damn strange, don’t you think? The camera which took that photo was being held by a member of my religion. That photograph was copied from an obscure publication published by my religion, and created by Max Freedom Long. With whom I sat and talked over matters with in 1968.

In my lap was the Firewalk Handbook my kumu made up for us. In it, and not for that reason, is a photograph of the founder of my religion—Huna—Kahuna Nui William Tufts Brigham.

Surrounding the photograph is an article written by my kumu Max Freedom Long himself on the Firewalk!

Makes me feel strange or as if I am caught up in a drama far greater than yourself. Like going into a stranger’s home, and knowing everything that is in his refrigerator without looking, since it is the same as yours. You don’t say anything, of course. If he didn’t believe you, you’d lose respect in his eyes. And if he DID believe you, he would have to be awfully gullible.

So I sit there in class and gripe about David Willey improperly using that photograph, but don’t mention the impact of having all these Huna icons surrounding me. Like a crazy man, I am seeing Huna vectors everywhere I look now. How did I end up being the temporary focus of something beyond me? I just wanted to be a Chiropractor. Or am I just Paranoid with delusions of grandeur? Lala-land for sure for the Lanimeister.

But this story and all continues anyway…

Well I got back from the Firewalk Initiation. I returned well, as does Kahuna Keonaona who accompanied me. She is such a trooper. I present her with such unusual vacation opportunities.

There are lingering effects. Some kind of secret cognitive dissonance going on in my mind. Mostly I notice it when I am falling to sleep listening to the TV news. I sort of jar awake over and over as the subject turns (in my mind alone) into Fire walking. Then I say suddenly, for example, "what does the trouble in Palestine have to do with the Firewalk?" then I turn over and slip into the arms of Morphius once again.

There is far too much to try to remember.


Closure # 1

 You have to understand about dogs. Each breed is made for a specific purpose.

The most ancient lineage of the Dog beings are the Lhasa Apsos of Tibet. They were bred to be sacred. To do exorcisms on their own. To telepathically sense danger to their Lama from hidden bandits, etc.

They are fellow participants with humans in some Buddhist religious ceremonies.

It is they who decided to join the Huna Heiau. My little guardian and companion now is "Buxton", my little, shaggy, Lhasa Apso.

Our kumu, Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, Michael McDermott, DD, told us about the only animal he had ever seen do a Firewalk.

A lady had been coming to several Firewalks he led or was at. She walked and was healed of her partial paralysis.

At one point, her little dog, quite independent of her, walked the glowing embers. No blisters, no rush, his hair which he dragged thorough the embers wasn’t even singed. That little dog was a type of Lhasa Apso, called a Shi-Tsu!

Of course …

That was the only time he ever saw or heard of an animal do a sacred Firewalk.

Kahuna Lani and Kahuna Michael McDermott

 Closure #2

 During the initiatory week we were shown David Willey’s video on Firewalking. In it he, the world’s leading "antichrist" of Firewalking or "debunker" starts off with showing a photo of a Firewalking event.

His assertion is that glowing embers have "low conductivity", hence, fire doesn’t burn. When I showed him photos of Firewalking burns, he just slid over the material.

In 1949 the Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, Tu-nui Arii-peu came to Honolulu and put on several Firewalks. This was attended with many HRAs (Huna Research Associates).

This wasn’t an "American" style Firewalk, but an "Umu" style Firewalk. Done on large stones heated until they are white hot. The stones are very heat conductive. If there is an Umu style Firewalk, then David Willey’s thesis is blown to pieces, and remains where it started. It is a lie. Designed to prevent people from experiencing this sacred, and frequently life-transforming event.

Now, one of the HRA was chosen to return the sentient Fire to Huna, and started to be initiated, but the Kahuna died before he could complete the training.

He put together a little book on the Firewalk and put in it eight photos from the Firewalk he had taken.

Now bear in mind that David Willey’s thesis depends on the idea that no one walks on hot stones. When I put this in an e-mail to him, he denied that it was possible. I didn’t pursue it. After all I didn’t know. HRA Charlie Kenn’s little book was published by my religion, the Huna Press in 1949. It was never reprinted. It is a little obscure publication produced by a little religion many years ago. But in it are photographs which disprove the entire "Scientific debunking" of the Firewalk.

Can you imagine my befuddlement when upon starting the David Willey video, he starts off with one of the photographs from that very same book!?

Then the slime and spin starts. There is no attribution or credits given to the source of that photograph, which is us. It is never described nor explained. David Willey merely ignores it. Ignores a photograph which discounts all of what follows!

How bizarre, unwholesome and arrogant. To spin your story to pretend that you are being confirmed by that which would in fact debunk YOU if the audience only knew the story behind the photograph!

So much for Science and its Scientists …

The Spirit Dancers

 It was the last Firewalk of our long week of experiences which seemed to place us all in some kind of borderland between mundane reality and sacred reality.

It was Kahuna Keonaona’s turn to make the fire bed. It was to be a big fire. The stack of firewood became smaller as each night’s Firewalk took its toll on it. But there was still a lot of wood there. More than we had ever burned before. Our kumu didn’t want to haul it back from the hideaway we were doing these things at, so he decided we would use all that was left.

I had wanted to blow a firebreath on the fire to start it, but when time ran out, we just used a Butane lighter.

Once it was started, Kahuna Keonaona made the Polynesian religious and ceremonial drug, `Awa, for us. I had created a simplified yet still formal ceremony to take it.

We drank the `Awa, and made the formal claps and oblations to the fire.

Keonaona and I chanted the "E Ho Mai" Chant.

Then the "spirit dancers" came. I was the first one to see them. I asked another haumana there, Ed, who had walked about two or three dozen times if he had ever seen such a thing. But he had not, and was full of wonder too.

Our kumu has done many hundreds of Firewalks in the last decade and more. But he had never seen anything like it before either. Never heard of it in all his travels with other Firewalk leaders.

It was a big bonfire. There was little smoke, but what there was would collect at the edge of the bonfire and go downhill to the earth.

Arriving at the earth, it would collect and rise as a pillar of smoke, bending and dancing all around the fire. Mostly one at a time, but sometimes two or three.

They would circle around the fire. It was beautiful. Keonaona tried to get a photo of them, but I don’t think those kinds of things photograph. If they come out, I’ll post them.

Then Keonaona raked out the coal bed. Man what a job that is! And this was by far the largest and hottest fire we had had.

It was viciously hot. It was the second deepest bed of glowing heat, about six inches deep. About four feet wide and about fifteen feet long.

It was shaped sort of like a Kidney bean (which is sort of shaped like a Kidney, I suppose).

It was scary. Really scary. When I looked at the shimmering glow, there was a face clearly to be seen looking at me. When I reached my mind into the fire, I could feel the same challenge I had faced all week, it seemed to say, "Try to pet me if you can. See if I love you and accept you, or tear you to pieces. Maybe I’ll protect you from harm. Maybe I won’t. You have to be a man here. It isn’t safe."

Our kumu announced that to honor the fire, this was to be a nude Firewalk, for those who decided to go without any pretense of artificial protection. Most of the haumana got nude, I wasn’t so disposed. My loss. But I just don’t feel that I’m that decorative in the buff.

I walked through the fire. It was my only walk that night. I was accepted, but the fire also bit me several times in a playful way. I’m not sure now, I might have walked twice. After a time of fright, day after day, they all begin to concatenate.

There was the supernatural protection, and the blisters were completely healed by morning, and no residual tenderness remained.

One of the nude haumana ladies slowed down on her walk, then simply stopped and stood in the fire. She walked three times that night and there were no symptoms. In fact on that night, I was the only one whom the fire had kissed (other people may remember things with small differences).

One of the major sources of peace, Ed, a nude Firewalker that night, slowed his walking until it looked like he was in slow motion. No symptoms.

Our kumu stood in the fire too. The fire accepted him for a minute, then got tired of the game and bit him a little on his left foot only, to get him off the firebed.

One of the finest things was that every night he faced the sentient fire he was scared. Boy did I feel at home with that!

Whatever else you may hear about it, don’t ever take it for granted! It isn’t safe! People who are scared stiff usually do just fine. Those who believe that fire doesn’t burn, the fire enjoys teaching them something new.

It isn’t safe. But it is sacred, and many if not most enjoy the acceptance and supernatural protection of the goddess Wahinenuiho`alani, through their own Aumakua.

What is a "Firewalk"?

The word "Firewalk" is an idiom. That is, it is defined as really a phrase meaning something else than what appears on the surface. A Firewalk is anything which requires the sacred fireimmunity to be present to accomplish the task without undue injury.

Normally and usually when Firewalks are presented to the public they are done on fire made sentient. But this is only a small example of the protective miracle of Fireimmunity. Unfortunately for me, just about all Firewalks require you to actually endanger your life to see if "God" or your Aumakua or the goddess Wahinenuiho`alani or Jesus or Allah or Krishna or Miriam or the Saints Constantine and Helen in the Christian tradition of the Firewalk, etc. will save you.

It isn’t a game, although it can and should be approached with a cheerful heart. It is a serious thing. It is dangerous. If your God doesn’t do something to save you, you will really be harmed.

But if you pass through the test you will actually know yourself what you could only have guessed before. You are known to the Universe, or however you conceive of God. And you are precious and if approached in the PROPER way, it will respond to your cry. BUT if you are arrogant or do not approach it correctly, the sentient fire will hurt you and injury will become your teacher. It doesn’t seem to make any real difference to the sentient fire. It doesn’t seem to get coarse or cross with us. If our soul is on the mark, it saves us from harm. We are arrogant or distracted, it burns us. No problem.

 Why Firewalk?

Oh, that’s easy for me. But you’ll have to find your own need. For me it is the ONLY way to actually prove the nature and character of Reality all around us.

I have spent my life doing religious healings and exorcisms, but they all require you to be sick in body or mind or spirit for you to actually feel the Grace or mana of Io. If you were well, this knowledge was beyond your grasp. Now it is here. The Truth stands before you, if you have the courage to grasp it. Otherwise your fear will lead you away from it.

The Fire walk has been said by some that it is a metaphor for life. It isn’t. Life is a metaphor for the Firewalk.

I stood at the edge of the Firewalking pit. My body shaking in the fear. I melt my mind into the fire and it challenges me to love it, and take what consequences I may have to live with. It may hurt me greatly, for REAL!, or it may love me and hold me harmless (as it usually does for the Firewalkers). But my fear isn’t a joke. Isn’t a metaphor for anything else. It is real. And has perfectly sensible reasons for its existence. My "normal" life isn’t this clean cut. My reality not so quick and personal and very real. A few people have to be hospitalized after a Firewalk in which they didn’t listen to their own heart. A few people die in the sentient fires each year (usually not in the USA).

No. If I am afraid to ask my boss for a raise, if he denies it, he won’t also cut off my feet. If anything, life is a metaphor for the Firewalk. I am beginning to see now why some tribes worship the fire. I never really saw faces in the fire before…

The only common denominator is the fact that we allow our fears to block us. And here the fear is very real. We stand at the edge of the raging inferno. Our fear blocks us from passage. Suddenly someone we know overcomes their fear and calmly walks across the fire. We are encouraged. We slowly overcome our fear, and wonder of wonders, we are sustained.

What it looks like on the outside isn’t what it looks like on the inside. On the inside, you can’t really think too much. You’re trying to remember the mental steps to take. You remember that you have to surrender something. But what?

You feel a sudden wind which no one else can feel. It comes for you alone. You have to actually STOP your body from walking into the fire if you listen to your fear. You have to actually stop yourself from your arising fear, to not prevent your body from walking. Your body will carry you over the fire harmlessly if and only if you have already gotten your duckies in a row, then give up completely in faith.

There is the fire before you. There is a feeling of a spiritual wind. You hammer your fear for a second. Then the fire is behind you.

And I'm wondering, how did it get behind me? People are congratulating me. Why? What happened? Did I miss something. Are my feet OK? Am I hurting anywhere?

Others now who were behind me have found their courage. They too face their fears. They seek to overcome their fear. To master their own lives, oddly, by submitting them to their God; in whatever name or guise it has for them. Sometimes the fire will nip at them to teach them they are a little off. Or throwing up some arrogance or distraction or thinking that the fire doesn’t burn.

My kumu calls these bites, "symptoms". That is so much more friendly than "burn" isn’t it?

Upon no occasion are all of us "kissed" by the fire or have any symptoms on the same night. On almost no occasion are not at least one of us bitten in playfulness and instruction by the fire.

But even then there is the sacred and disturbing fireimmunity. The blisters disappear later that night. In the morning, normally, nothing remains of the hurt.

I have never in my life before had a blister disappear on me. In the sentient fire, it happens all the time, to all of us. I wonder why I find this also disturbing. Again I feel the mental sand and floor of my reality shifting. It sort of numbs my mind. Each morning when the night before I had symptoms, now there is nothing on my feet to give testimony. There is no soreness left in them.

The Firewalk of the Arrow

All my Firewalks scared me. I can overcome my fear usually about them. But the fear never goes away. In my ignorance beforehand I had imagined how things would be. They didn’t turn out that way. What a surprise.

I had thought it might be a hunting arrow. But it isn’t. The only others I’ve used are target arrows, but this isn’t one either. The metal point is shaped like a metal leaf. It stands off from the shaft a little.

Something in-between a hunting arrow and a target arrow. It is new and obviously a common commercial arrow.

I had imagined that there would be a slow pressure. I would never have thought that it would demand speed. I thought there would be some warning if the fireimmunity failed and so one could stop the process. I was wrong.

Usually the nock of the arrow is braced against a wall. The point of the arrow is placed in the small of the neck, right there just below the Adams apple. In that little "v" shape on the lower front of the neck. The fireimmunity state achieved. And then a quick thrust of the whole body into the arrow.

If it is a scientific thrust, your neck will be punctured, your throat pierced. If you don’t die from asphyxia or blood flow into your lungs, you might survive the trip to the hospital. but Martial Arts students will recognize that spot as the most lethal part of one’s body.

Nothing can save you but your God. It is simple. Your God protects you or you die or are badly wounded.

Our kumu, Michael McDermott decides he wants to be looking at us during this, so that he can do the best he knows how to open us to our deity’s miraculous protection.

I can’t really believe this is happening. I recognize the danger. Nothing here is faked. There are no tricks. It is real. Too real.

He holds a board up to him. I place the nock end of the arrow on the board. The point I place on my neck. Then apply a little pressure to hold the arrow in place, and let my hands drop down to my side.

Michael is talking to me, I’m trying to follow what he is saying, but I really can’t, the sudden fear is too great. I feel a sudden wind at my back. I don’t make my body move forward, but I don’t prevent it. I feel my body’s motion. There is a loud report. I’m looking down at the pieces of my arrow now on the floor. People are congratulating me. Why? I don’t really know what happened. It all seemed to happen so fast.

I am really beginning to feel sorry for Keonaona. What have I gotten her into now? An odd vacation opportunity I have presented her with.

The Firewalk of the Broken Board

When in the Fireimmunity state, one can’t be broken, so one can break other things. One of these "other" things are boards, roofing tiles and rocks.

Michael had some boards, and so he decided that that would be just a nifty thing to do that afternoon.

I’m just like everyone else, until I actually experience a thing, I conjecture about it. And when I actually experience it, it is quite different from what I imagined.

I didn’t like the idea of breaking boards. I imagined that the boards would break if you just gave then a harsh look. Boy was I wrong.

If you think that breaking a board is so simple, go outside right now and try to do it. but your hand is more likely to break, or your wrist before the board does.

Our Kumu got up to demonstrate it for us first. The sound of the collision on his hand against the board echoed off the walls of the large classroom we were in.

But the board remained whole. Time after time he did the same thing, only to have the same result. He thought that he was "failing" in front of us. But that wasn’t the case. Not even close. It took a lot to convince me that boards didn’t just fall apart!

Another lady tried her hand at it, and she too failed several times. This was also very instructive to me.

Then it was my turn. Getting my mental duckies in a row. Setting my body. Then giving up into the Fireimmunity. There was a "pop" and the board was lying in pieces on the floor.

Everyone broke their boards, but for some, it took them more than one try. They weren’t in state deep enough.

Why did Michael fail to break his board until about his seventh time? It remains a mystery. All I know for sure is that it was only because of that that I became convinced of the verity of the experiences.

The Firewalk on Broken Glass


I had been worried about this test since I had first heard about it about six months before the actual event took place.

There are two reasons why it held so much emotion, other than the fact that it is just rational not to walk on broken glass shards if at all possible.

There was a series of films that I saw after my graduation from high School. They were all called the "Mondo Kani" films, or something like that.

In one of them, there was a vignette about a small medieval city in Italy. Here on Easter morning, the local Catholic older boys wake up early and leave their homes. They have prepared wooden disks with pieces of broken glass. The movie showed close-ups of these brave boys tapping the glass pads onto the soles of their feet. Their flesh shreds. Their blood flows. They run through the village up to each home’s door, then from there to the town’s Cathedral. When the folks leave for Church that morning, they see footsteps in blood going from their door to the Church. Symbolizing Jesus’ walk to the crucifixion.

While I appreciate them. It still makes me shiver to see them tapping the glass shards into their feet.

Another time I was still living at home. My beloved sister Sharon had married and moved out. My brother-in-law was a glazer and came over one night to replace some cracked window glass we had. He did his job and left. I went outside, barefoot, to see what he had done. It was night. He couldn’t have known about the pistol shaped and sized piece of glass in the grass.

I stepped on it and it completely penetrated my foot except for the upper layer of skin. It was stuck in there, and I had to grab it by its handle and tug it out.

But everything seemed to be OK. Mom went to bed, and a little later I went into the kitchen to graze on whatever I could find.

As I stood with the refrigerator door open, I felt some stickiness on the floor. This annoyed me. I looked down and I was standing in a deep puddle of my own blood.

Boy did I freak out. My shout woke up mom, and she came in a panic to see what was wrong. Standing on the wound had simply opened it up.

I still shudder at that one too.

So my poor little Unihipili has been traumatized by images of bloody feet.

In some of my dreams of the last six months, I see myself and others leaving bloody footprints after the Fire walk on Broken Glass.


 Glass Shard I walked on

 Now it was time to go from those metaphors into the reality of it. The pit of broken glass was before me, and the other haumana there.

Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, Michael McDermott, DD (which Keonaona says stands fro Dare Devil!), has made a pit from a sheet of plywood about 4 feet x 8 feet by about 4 inches deep. This has all been lined with sheet metal. He pours broken glass shards from a 50 gallon drum he has to save the glass in.

He starts to talk to us. He always seems to be our combination loving older brother and Prison Guard. The more he talks the more I want him to talk. So long as he talks, I don’t have to walk on it! I still see flashes of bloody footprints. There is a part of me that wants him to stop talking. This is the part of me which wants it all over with. No matter what the outcome, just get it over with!

There seems no part of me that is enjoying this or is really, Then he slowly really happy about it all. No part which is excited.

Then he slowly walks across it. He had the Fireimmunity and is unharmed. Then a lady haumana goes for it. I am ashamed that I was a little relieved that she took the initiative.

She did a perfect job. Even started to dance in the glass at the end. She was unharmed. I don’t remember now if Keonaona went in front of me, or behind me.

I "saw" Wahinenuiho`alani throw a beige blanket over the glass to protect me. This was a thing that happened. For some infantile part of me, it seemed to be of no comfort.

I let it be like standing before the sentient fire. I just stood there before the glass shards. In time I felt a spirit wind blow my soul across the broken glass. My fear arose to suppress by body from following, I suppressed my fear. But I didn’t try to walk or not walk. My body was on the other side of the broken glass, but I don’t really remember doing it.

I just remember starting to take a step where a tiny tower of glass found the ball of my foot. I became aware, but surrendered. All my weight came down on that knife, and my skin remained intact.


The Firewalk of Body Piercing


I don’t know why the Fire walk of Body Piercing should have the effect it does on me. Perhaps that, unlike the others, it is devoid of all possibility of deceit or mistake. And, of course, it is ugly.

Anyway it is very simple: your kumu hands you a 5 inch needle. You talk to your body to let it know that this isn’t a punishment of any find. You enter into the fireimmunity relationship. You push the needle through your hand. There is no pain nor blood.


 My Firewalk needle, a little bent from use


 Actual size, more or less

Simple. I sort of failed it though. The fireimmunity was only partial, and there was pain, VERY much pain when I was coming out from the inside of the palm of my left hand.

Our kumu then had the pin remain where it was for about ¾ of an hour. My hand fills up all golden like, all warm and tingling with joy and deep pleasure. I would love to have my whole body feel that wonderful, but it would require so many needles piercing me at once…er, forget it!

Then he had us pull it all the way through. I don’t know why he wanted it to come out in that direction, instead of being pulled out. But anyway, there no pain in it.

When he read this, he sent me this:

"Thanks for reminding me. I meant to tell you the following story in class, but I forgot to. I learned the body pierce from Steve Bisyak.

 "The only place I ever saw Steven pierce his hand was the one place we pierced in the class.

"I started pushing beyond my own limits by piercing my face, ears, lips, nose, tongue, arm, etc. and Steven found that pretty freaky & bizarre – i think it scared him.

"Steven explained his viewpoint to me and his logic was as follows: because the end of the needle is so much wider than the point, it's not possible (that's what i remember him saying!) to pull it all the way through.

"I wanted to experience a complete "passing of the metal" all the way through flesh, not just put it in and then pull it out. Also, if it was not "possible" i wanted to know for sure by my own experience

"When I was able to run the needle completely through my hand instead of just put it in and pull it back out, this experience created an additional feeling of legitimacy in the experience for me personally. It just felt more valid to me as a "mind over matter" exercise."

It was grim to look around the room and see all these flashes of long steel hanging out of everyone’s hands.

But there was a few moments of pain for me in it. So I took the needle home with me. I'll have to do it until I am competent in establishing the sacred Fireimmunity.

And for practice, it is a LOT easier than a Firewalk on fire, or even a broken arrow.

Oh yeah, there was no blood. And except for that one moment, no pain. But there is a sensation to it.

The Firewalk with the Rebar

I wasn’t scared of this test, maybe that’s why it almost did me in.

You’re seen rebar, it is those iron/steel large rods sticking up out of concrete constructions. Indeed that what its name, "rebar" stands for: "reinforcement bar".

The length is cut into thirds, each length is about 6 feet long.

It’s easy. You stand at one end of it, your bud stands at the other end. You both place the ends into your "v" at your neck. You both lean forward a little to trap it in pressure than let go and put your hands down. There’s a little patch of clean cut sweat sock between the end of it and your soft neck. It just helps protect your neck from the sharpness of any metal pieces.

When you see your bud go into Fireimmunity and you feel yourself do likewise, you both walk forward towards each other. One of two things happens. If there is supernatural protection, you both keep walking until the ends of the rebar are bent into a hoop and you hug each other—or the rebar collapses your windpipe (Trachea) and you die of asphyxiation, or you might be fast enough to back off to relieve the pressure before you are clearly damaged.

It starts. Suddenly my fear pops up and stops my walking. Fireimmunity fails. The rebar is choking me. I quickly pull back. Choking and coughing. Keonaona is watching me. Worried.

I recover. My breath returns and I’m game again. I didn’t invest all this fear to get nothing in return. This time everything works as advertised, and I get to hug and get hugged by my kumu Michael.

You can imagine just how happy I was to "demonstrate" to Keonaona there, just how good I was to do it first!

Now it is Keonaona’s turn. She and her bud do it correctly on the first try! I’m so proud of her.

Opening night—Our First Firewalk


I’m writing this backwards in time for some reason.

In the main, I have been recounting the terrors for your amusement. There was a lot that wasn’t terrifying. Although I think that this is because Michael just couldn’t think up BOTH how to make it fearful and still actually do it.

This is one such thing which we did that wasn’t life-threatening:

How to Unshrivel a Raisin

God has killed every animal that has ever lived. I ran into a militant vegetarian in my Firewalk initiation last week. He asked Keonaona if her compassion went down to the animals. She said yes. He then asked her how she could eat meat. She asked him if his compassion extended to Carrots? He went ballistic and blew up.

During the initiation we had a meditation of transformation involving our relationship with a raison. We each had to put a single raison in our mouth for half an hour and pay attention to it. We could do anything with it that we wanted to but swallow it.

First it was all wrinkly and tough. Then it began to expand into an almost grape sized mass. Then when I bit on it, it filled my mouth with grape juice!

During the quiet of the half hour, my mind saw an image of a dinosaur chomping on a bunch of vegetation of some sort. The voluntary sacrifice of the vegetation's life to sustain a higher life struck me. And how it goes all the way up to us, layer after layer of clean and honorable souls sacrificing their temporary bodies so that others might live. Libido (The Good) all the way down.

And our Doctrine of EVO-CON, and how this chain of sacrifice leads up to us. And McDonald's fast food restaurants. The many twists and perturbations of our lives. And how one reaches out to the souls of the bodies—both animal and vegetable—which were sacrificed to sustain us.

A Hunian "Grace":

"I humbly bless and recognize and appreciate every being who has given it's life to sustain me and everything else throughout all time."


Opening Night—Our First Firewalk cont’d


Well, now that I’m almost at the end of this series, I’ll start from the beginning of our trip. We had flown up for this to the State of Washington, next to Microsoft, in Redmond. It was late at night. We really had no idea of where we were going. And we were hungry. We started to pass a Denny’s restaurant, and stopped for dinner.

I asked Keonaona if she had brought her cell phone. I wanted to call our kumu and let him know we were late but still coming. She had brought it, but it was WAY out of its useful territory, she said. A different phone company entirely. She can make and receive calls only from California and Nevada unless she makes a special arrangement.

I felt more antsy, so I asked her to call him on it anyway. Our kumu Michael McDermott answered immediately. She was nonplused, it shouldn’t have worked. Michael drove down to lead us back to the hideaway camp where we would be for the week’s initiation.

The next morning is a blank to me. That night our kumu put on our first Firewalk. I had walked on fire before under the auspices of Tony Robbins. She had never walked on fire before.

He prepped us as well as he could.

I stood at the edge of the firepit. I was barely in control of myself. Odd. I thought I would be more in control of my mind.

There was a full moon, it was directly behind the end of the firepit. It looked as if the moon was pulling me forward. Wahinenuiho`alani was pulling me into the fire. I could feel the spiritual wind, and I didn’t stop myself. I walked across the fire. The sentient fire lovingly accepted me. The coals were glowing red hot, and the hot heat on my face, but the embers felt cold. Everyone else walked too. I walked a second time. This time the embers were warm. I walked a third time, and the heat nipped at me. Lightly hurting me. I decided that the fire had decided that I had walked enough for that night.

Another haumana, a lady, also walked three times that night. Her experience was the exact opposite of mine. Her first walk had been hot, the second warm, and the third, which almost burned me, was cold.

On another night, which one I no longer remember, our kumu wanted to have a very deep layer of embers. So he made it about 6-8 inches deep.

It was the first time when the hot coals rolled over the tops of my feet, they felt very hot. At the end of the Firewalk, I accidentally walked into a Bramble Patch and the tops of my feet were badly scratched.

Later on that night when we were all in a hot tub, The soles of my feet began to hurt. I reached down and felt a thorn in my sole. Keonaona got it out. In doing so, she discovered the blisters on my feet. I had been unaware of them, there was no pain.

There were two young men who showed up for that Firewalk that night with some others. One was David and the other, Mark. David was tall and lanky and Mark was a little shorter and more muscular. Both were handsome with good clean spirits.

During the night, I felt the need to smoke my pipe, and wandered off a little to do that in contemplation. David saw me, and came after me, asked if he could stand with me. I said sure. He was some kind of computer system administrator, but he wanted to go into massage. He was asking me about the Hawaiian "Lomilomi" Massage. Wanted to know its history. I told him a lot about it. I told him about the style of Lomilomi I practice. He couldn’t imagine how you massage someone without denting their skin. So I took his arm and put some Lomilomi into it. He was impressed, and we returned to the fire.

This happened towards the end of that evening’s Firewalk. Everyone had walked by him. He had walked on fire about six weeks before, but now his fear had arisen for him, and he had returned to the sentient fire to face it one again. For a long time, he just stood at the edge of the firebed, and couldn’t walk it.

Then turning away, he asked our kumu, Michael, if he could break a board like he did last time. He needed to experience to focus his intention to overcome his fear.

Michael obliged and got the 1 inch plank and held it in front of him. David went into Fireimmunity and the board shattered like it was window glass. A chunk of the flying board struck Michael in the face, even setting his glasses askew.

I watched as an instant later Mark was at his side, appearing to adjust Michael’s glasses, but I saw Mark surreptitiously checking his fingers for blood. Michael was a little stunned at the force used to dissolve the board, and probably didn’t even notice Mark’s checking him for wounds. But he had already shown us, inadvertently, his Service commitment earlier that evening, when Keonaona faced the sentient fire for the first time.

She had been afraid, this was her first Firewalk, and she didn’t know what to expect, but knew that fire burned. And that the slightest touch of the fire would bring her pain and damage.

She had kept asking Michael where he was going to stand, etc.

Finally he understood that she was asking him to save her when she burned, and Michael, brought her into Malamaka`opuahiki or Enlightenment by saying to her, "This isn’t about your relationship to me, but about your relationship to the fire." Keonaona became enlightened for a moment and could face the sentient fire, really for the first time. Now the Way was open for her to walk, but she still had a lot of residual fear that she didn’t need. I saw Mark come up to her and reassure her, and tell her that if anything happened, he’d jump into the fire to save her.

With that, she strode harmless across the fire.

Mark had been serious, and even before I could get to her, Mark was there hugging her. Mark hadn’t walked yet. not that night, not on any other. He knew it was a dangerous thing to do to, but he didn’t know if he would make it. But he knew through instinct, as I knew through tradition, that he was taking the station of a sacred Firetender. This meant that if he jumped into the fire, there would be no Fireimmunity for him. If he jumped into the fire to save someone, he would sustain bad burns on the soles of his feet. We both understood that.

That’s what I meant that he had a clean spirit. He had never met us before. Never been to a Firewalk before. Would take pain for Keonaona if he had to, to assist her to attempt to walk the firebed.

But that was earlier. Now we had come to the end. And all, including Mark, had walked on the fire, all but David. He stood transfixed at the edge of the firebed for twenty minutes to a half hour. That was a long time for us just to stand and watch him stand there. Finally people started to really want to leave, but didn’t want to abandon David either. When I sensed this, I spoke to David and told him that if he continued to want to brave the fire, that I’d stay with him all night or until the fire went out. But that if he had decided not to walk, then we should go now. I told him that in no case should he walk if his soul was telling him not to. That there would be other Firewalks for him if he didn’t walk that night.

David just stood there silently staring with, it seemed to me, horror reflected in his eyes. I was afraid that my presence was a possible distraction to him, so I turned my back to the fire, so he couldn’t see me watching.

Then he walked. Perfectly and straight! I hugged him, we all did.

He did was all a great service that night. We might have also been in his shoes any night like that. He took that burden upon himself so that we didn’t have to be the one who was stuck in his fear. Many times during the initiation I was to take that onus, as well as everyone else too.

David performed that service for us that night.

In her first Firewalk, Kahuna Keonaona had received a small symptom, so had our kumu.

At 3:00 am she suddenly awoke from her sleep because the pain had suddenly ceased. Reaching down, and then later by light, there was no trace of the blister.

She had not received it in the Firewalk itself. The moment you finish, the fireimmunity fades. If there is a "Clingon" or spark clinging onto your foot, it will burn you at that point. She had had a small clingon. She had still had a little fading fireimmunity, so it didn’t hurt her as badly as a burn normally would.

Now I had my first symptoms. I could now feel the water-filled domes. In the morning there was no trace of them; neither visually, nor by sensation.

Umu and The Sweat Lodge

We arrived on a Friday night. Saturday the initiation started and that night was the first of many Firewalks, implements during the day, and on fire at night.

Sunday was very different. Michael had decided that we should be as pure of spirit as possible for the remaining time we would be there. He decided to have a "Sweat".

This was done in his home, because it had the Sweat Lodge, and it wasn’t portable. This was my first Sweat.

Because of the frailty, we had decided that I would just participate in the first two "rounds". There are four rounds to a regular Sweat, and each one gets hotter as more red hot rocks are brought in.

Some of the rocks were small, about the size of a double fist. But most were a little larger than a football and a little smaller than a basketball.

Once inside the Lodge, the door is closed and you are in complete darkness.

The second round was way more intense. Now we could see all the rocks glowing red with their heat.

I knew that in Honolulu in 1949 the rocks, about the same size had been white hot, and the earlier Firewalk by Kahuna Nui Brigham was on a self-luminous lava overflow. I couldn’t believe that anyone could walk on such rocks. I’m not sure, but they looked even more menacing to me than the firebed I had walked through three times the night before.

Michael told me I could walk on those rocks right then and there. I decided not to.

I asked him if he had ever walked Umu style (over glowing rocks), like the ones I saw in front of me.

He told me that he had. That he had arranged it himself. I asked him if he had had any symptoms? But he had not, nor anyone else who had walked that night. "But", he said, it was very challenging.

I looked at the glowing stones, and wondered at the career choice I had made

The First Huna Firewalk since 1949

There is a fine Huna Practitioner, Steven Varro who has held Firewalks at some Huna (HRI) conferences. He even tried to get Otha’s wife to walk on fire, she refused.

When I talked to him about it, it was clear that it wasn’t a Huna or Polynesian style, but a sort of Tony Robbins style of a Psychological presentation. Not anything to do with Huna, apparently. But he is really a fine gentleman.

One of our members of the Huna Heiau, Lamaku Schmall drove all the way up from the San Francisco area to offer service to us in the Firewalk I was scheduled to lead, scheduled by our kumu.

Kahuna Keonaona and I spent the morning of the initiation by giving a seminar on Huna. She led in the afternoon a process of "Conscious Dreaming", a technology she is proficient at.

We built the fire, and set it. We all went back inside, and the three of us put on a formal `Awa Ceremony. I did the chief part, Keonaona made the `Awa. Our kumu was gifted with an `Apu`awa (a cocoanut shell cup especially made for `awa), and Lamaku served it.

The type of `Awa was the "Mokihana" which was picked out for us by the farmers who supply the `Awa used in our Huna Heiau Church, John and Rebecca Fowler at Nuka Hiwa Farms in Hawaii. It served us well.

After everyone had had the `Awa, we all went out to the Firewalk — the fire now sentient.

Two of the haumana did the actual raking out of the glowing embers. As my health is irregular, they chose to help me. They helped me so much that they ended up doing it all!

Keonaona and Lamaku and I chanted into the fire.

Several other people had showed up for the Firewalk. I handled this is the same as all the Firewalks I put on. I will make no effort to get the public there, but if someone comes, they will be welcome and I won’t charge them or turn them away. (Or maybe some also showed up for the first Firewalk, I’m not sure now.)

I tried to set their minds into lokahi with Wahinenuiho`alani, and their Aumakuas.

This was the first time I was to lead it and be the first to cross it. If all went well, I’d tell the others how the fire had responded to me.

It went well. It welcomed me with great love and kindness.

It the first of the truly sweet fires.

It was wonderful.

No one had any symptoms from it. It wasn’t rambunctious at all.

When you walk to the other side of the sentient fire, you will have found something which no one else who has not traveled that path can ever know.

The plans of Io are advanced both in peace and in war. When it is time to party-down and have fun, and when it is time to be the courageous one. In the Light and in the Darkness,

Io abides.

-Kahuna Lani


 How To Do Your Own Firewalk:


 How To Do the Trick

"There must be a rational explanation!" I know, I’ve heard it all my life. What this really means is: "There isn’t any real magic or God left in the world. This meaning must be a mistake!"

But it isn’t. There is a Priest of the Sentient Fire, a Kahuna I Ke Umu KI. What or who is that? A person, usually trained for it, who can elicit the awareness of God in the fire. Turn it from a Scientific fire into a Religious Fire. And while usually trained and ordained and called to that purpose, anyone who can do it is a Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, even if they have never heard of anything like that before.

By some means or other, actually respect and intent whilst making the firebed. Respect and aloha for it when it is made, invokes a goddess which Kahuna Nui Max Freedom Long calls an "externalizing lesser manifestation" of Io. The goddess named in the Huna religion as Wahinenuiho`alani (or to simplify it: Wahine [woman] nui [great] ho`a [sets fire to] lani [the sky] wahine-nui-ho`a-lani).

It can happen that a Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki, or by any other name hasn’t had the grueling and very dangerous initiation we’ve had, and still do it.

Once the Kahuna I Ke Umu Ki has created the sentient fire, he or she then helps the haumana who will walk, to get their physical and mental duckies in a row.

When all this is done, there is one final instruction, and the haumana is left alone with his fear. That final instruction? "Give up to your God your protection. Nothing else suffices."

Then the sentient fire will look into your heart and judge you of your purity. And if the Kingdom inside you is secure, you will feel what I call a "spirit wind" pushing you into the fire. You will walk on wings if you walk then. But also in that moment, your fear will arise and try to stop you from the Firewalk.

It is then that Io is testing your courage.

The whole of Malamaka`opuahiki is founded on koa or courage.

But it is not the fearless one who has courage, he is simply insane or underchallenged. No, to have courage means to experience fear and do what you intend to do anyway.

I used to resent the Psychological presentation of the Firewalk in the New Age movements. Now that I have actually experienced it, I can see what they are talking about. They reduce the religious implications to make more bucks and haumana, which is silly; but it isn’t silly at all to focus on the overcoming of fear. In many ways, fear is the fulcrum of the experience.

And at the grossest level, that you are saved from the burns with the overcoming of your fear is the teaching. That there is "something" (Io) out there, which, if approached with intention and faith, will save you, supports you in the strangest of ways.

Some of my Christian friends I’ve talked to about the Firewalk, use the idea in their Bible to say that they must not test God. But this is pure sophistry on their part. It isn’t God who is being tested, it is them.

But if the judgments of your God, Aumakua or Io or the goddess Wahinenuiho`alani, or anything else, are so strict that only a very few can make the cut, then the fear and backing away would be more understandable.

But the aloha of Io is bountiful. When approached correctly, everyone gets across the sentient fire unharmed. Those who do the Firewalk many times, will be reminded that the fire burns if it is not respected, but unless a person is way out of integrity, or startled out of Malamaka`opuahiki, they will walk in safety, hand in hand with their god?

And what do they really learn? What do they really know then which everyone else can only speculate and have "faith" in?

They know what any others can only guess at, that if they reach out in the fire, they will find a hand to hold. They will literally walk with their god. It isn’t a trick. It is a reality.

When they get to the other side of the sentient fire, they will find that their god walked them, and like me, they will wonder how the fire got behind them.

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