Oh Maui who pulls up the islands, Oh Maui who slows down the sun, Oh Maui the deliverer of fire, Oh Maui the kite flyer, Oh Maui the lifter of the sky, Oh Maui who clings to the back of Wākea, Oh Maui, the masterful son of Hina.
Growing up, through stories, songs, and chants, we learned about the many strifeʻs of Mauikiʻikiʻiakalana, each designed by the makua in his life to build up his knowledge and skill of the natural world. At a young age, his grandmother recognized Maui`s natural abilities to commune with the atmospheric and terrestrial entities of the honua, thus identifying him as kaula.
The people of Tongatapu in the Kingdom of Tonga claim Maui as their son who is responsible for many invaluable feats. Tavita Fale spent many years in Hawaiʻi studying the accounts of Maui of his native home. Tavita has penned a few books about Tongan astronomy and its relationship to the larger Pacific and her people. Much of his research was spent understanding Mauiʻs relationship between Maui, the sun and the awa ceremony. We were taken to visit the Haʻa Monga A Maui – a monolithic edifice of coral and limestone set approximately 6-8ʻ deep in the ground and standing 15-20ʻ above the ground. Its shape can be compared to the capital letter “H” in the alphabet with its upper parts cut down to stand 6 inches above the top of the parallel line. This parallel stone weighs well over 1,000 pounds