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Could You Be Heard Without Utterword?

My father is a master in the art of silence. If this was a form of martial arts, I’d say he is a sensei at speaking without uttering a word. His message deafened my ears. And it is a lesson that is forever inked in my gray matter, “No communication is communication.”

Are you thinking, “Wow, that’s intense to direct at a little kid, or even an adult?”, “Mean buggah (person).” or “He must be angry and resentful deep down.” Some good thoughts, but way off base.

No communication is communication has never been the first line of instruction but hands down it is one of the most effective methods of learning I have ever experienced.

There are so many layers of who, when and why but suffice to say when it is used on someone in the inner circle, it is a very emotional, practical and “calling you on the carpet” practice.

Let me start by saying this…If you’ve spent a lifetime of giving, sharing, and teaching; a life devoted to supporting in-kind, being obligated to, and accountable for; a life committed to passing of family ‘ike (a knowledge that reaches from the past, is deep and wide); and a life based on respect, intelligence and unconditional love, then sometimes, just sometimes, the person receiving this wealth of ʻike kūhohonu (deep knowledge) or na’auao (wisdom, enlightened) is reminded to use the stuff between their ears.

Once you heard the words, “you’re blank”. You knew you missed something big. And you just didn’t miss it once.

Blank meant exactly what the word infers. Bare and empty of any sense, reason, or human thinking. Human in ‘human thinking’, meant applied intelligence. The maze was to figure out what critical observation, nuance, vocabulary or context, information, word, scent, breeze, movement you completely missed.

This meant, you needed to retreat back and figure out where you went astray. Where it stopped making sense. Trust me, there was no moving forward until you found the place where everything was in perfect unison.

If you remember watching Mark Sptiz swim butterfly in the 1972 Olympics? Or if you crewed in a 6 man canoe when five paddlers and the steersman are in perfect rhythm with the ocean? Or if you’ve ever danced hula where every step, hand motion, body movement, and gesture is perfectly aligned with the music and feeling of the mele (song)? Or when you fit the last piece of a 1000 piece puzzle? There is that perfect second, that one point in time when it all came together.

Once you’ve re-discovered the link and put it into practice, every, “babe”, “let’s go”, “too good”, or “mix the poi” meant you were back on track and every kiss on the cheek, prideful smile, shake of the head was a gentle reminder, you (me) are too good.


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