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Sunday, March 22, 2009

Ho'okupu...


Someone left an assortment of gifts as an offering to those on the other side of life. In the spiritual realm. I am not sure if it was for a deceased loved one, an ancestor, or Akua Pele since it was at the volcano. It sure looks pretty. The fish is a farmed tilapia from China bought at Foodland or Sack n' Save. Tilapia are cichlids and pretty tough fish. They survive in brackish water streams, reservoirs and canals in Hawai'i. They are often considered rubbish fish because they can be found in polluted and contaminated water. A testament to their hardiness. There is a white version being sold as "sunfish" now for the fish consuming public. I was always taught that when you make an offering, you provide the best you can. Maybe these spirits like tilapia. I hope so. And underripe papaya too. Then again, maybe it is the thought that counts.

Someone reminded me that in the old days, if you were going to offer something to Akua Pele or some other revered spirit. You may spend a long time preparing your gift for the offering. If it was going to be a pig, you may raise that pig in a special manner knowing where it would end up. Or take special care in growing a certain food or plant for the offering. Months and months of planning and preparing. Sometimes years before your made the special sojourn. Seems like everything is caught up in the rush of life today. Even our spirituality...

1 comments:

Anonymous said...

It is true that in Hawai'i, you have a nice selection of fish in the stores. Here, all you can get is tilapia, catfish, and once in a while, salmon or rockfish. None of it fresh, all frozen and not that good.