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Education: Higher Education

The Healing Elements: A Native Hawaiian Perspective


Class 6. Complementary Healing Practices

Introduction

This final and sixth class focuses on the persistence and revival of traditional healing practices which complement Western medicine with traditional Hawaiian healing practices—lomilomi (massage), la‘au lapa‘au (herbal remedies), ho‘oponopono (family therapy). The objective is for the students to develop a basic understanding of the general benefits of complementary healing practices in overall health and well-being.


Resources


Pre-class Assignment

Students read the articles by Chang, Hilgenkamp and Pescaia, Judd, and Hope and Hope; “Chronology of Events Relating to Traditional Hawaiian Healing Practices Since 1985;” and browse the Papa Ola Lōkāhi website on Native Hawaiian Health. Students also review information about The Native Hawaiian Traditional Healing Center at the Wai‘anae Coast Comprehensive Health Center.


class activity

Teachers provide an overview of the demise and revival of Hawaiian healing practices and lead a discussion on the following questions.


Discussion Questions

  1. What are the main modes of Hawaiian healing practices today?
  2. How is a traditional Native Hawaiian healer defined in the Native Hawaiian Health Care Improvement Act?
  3. What are examples of general traditional holistic healing practices that are practiced in contemporary society?
  4. What are the benefits of complementary Hawaiian healing practices?
  5. How do complementary healing practices contribute to overall health and well-being?

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