Beginning cleansing


The ho‘oku‘u process is a guided process that has helped hundreds and thousands of people. Once I teach people, I always say they now know, and have a responsibility to practice it anytime something comes up. At level 2 of our Huna workshop, we initiate haumana (students) with awaiku (good spirits) to help them work with others. This book provides a way for you to begin to tap into this. If you are interested in studying level 2, please visit for upcoming courses.


Papa Bray would say that the worst thing to do is hold onto the black bag because it would just build up. Like our volcano here in Hawai‘i, if it is not continuously erupting (as it has been for about 20 years now) then there will be a problem, eventually an explosion. Constant release keeps the volcano from blowing its top.


Just like an active volcano, you can begin to practice what Papa taught my father, and what psychology calls emotional disclosure. It means to talk or write about it.


Studies have shown clearly that by talking or writing about a negative situation, the negative affect and bad feelings are reduced. We tend to make issues worse in our minds. Have you ever held something in, gnawed on it until it felt worse? When you do finally blow and let it out, you often realize that it wasn’t that big a deal.


Here is how to begin. Ask a loved one or friend if you can vent with him or her. Asking permission is preferable to just springing it on someone and possibly making them feel as if they had done something wrong. Ask them for a time where you can vent, let out what is bothering you, and let them know it is about you, and not them. Make sure you do this in a space that is appropriate.


I met a couple in Toronto in one of my workshops who were having marital problems. Also, they had heard me teach this venting process. They told me they were considering a separation. When I asked where they were venting — they said in bed! I explained that spaces in our homes and in our lives are made for certain types of energy. The bed is not usually the place to vent. I asked them to suggest a better place, and they decided to try the living room. By changing where they practiced venting for just a week, they found that love and intimacy came back into their relationship. This happened because energetically we want to release our negativity. We simply need to find the right space and time to do it.


Negativity and Doubt


Our black bags contain not only negative emotions but also the self-imposed limitations of negativity and doubt that come from the mental plane. The mental body listens to your conscious limiting beliefs about who you are and what you can do. So, if you don’t think you can be happy, the mental body ensures that you are correct.


Doubts are limiting decisions and/or limiting beliefs about yourself and your abilities. Self-doubt manifests in words like “I can’t,” “I’m not good enough,” “I’m not smart enough,” or “I am not spiritual enough.” Limiting decisions usually live in the mental body. They have less emotional quality though they may be strongly held. As you light up these doubts in your neurology, the black bags will feel a little bit different. The flavor is more mental than emotional, though some limiting decisions and beliefs have an emotional aspect as well.


Why “Black” Bag?


Papa Bray said that the color black was used because in life we progress down a path. Whether that path is an aim in life to be healthy or more spiritual, or if the path is a specific goal of creating an amazing relationship or reaching a specific weight, the path to get from the idea of what we desire to the desired goal itself is the path we travel.


When we literally walk down a path, we need one very important thing. When I ask students in my workshops what that very important thing might be, they respond with things like “resources” or “friends.” But it’s even simpler than that: You need light! When you walk down a path, you need to have enough light to see where to place your next step. The color black was used for our black bags because black or darkness is the absence of the light.


When you have negative emotions or limiting decisions stored up in black bags and you attempt to go down a path, the darkness of the bags prevents you from seeing where you need to go or what you need to do. They cloud our judgment and sometimes make us take a misstep. For example, my fear prevented me from starting a weight reduction program for many years. Every time I thought of doing it, I couldn’t even see how to start. Many of us feel like we are stumbling around “in the dark” at some point or other. This is the effect of maintaining those black bags beyond their usefulness. It is the release of these negative emotions that allows the light to shine and illuminate our path.


Begin Your Release Process!


The best advice I can give you is to schedule the time to release now. Call your friend, talk to your partner, ask him or her if you could make a time and space to just let some things out. As an energy exchange, you could give them some time and space to do the same. Schedule it now, while you are thinking about it, because you will be more likely to do it if it is on your calendar.