By Samantha Fox Olson

IMG_4147The meaning of “aloha” runs deep. It is a word that we hear and use daily on the Hawaiian Islands. It is used as a greeting of “hello” and as an expression of love.

The meaning of aloha that inspired a breathing meditation I love sharing with in my yoga and fitness classes is:

Alo = to share, and

Ha = the breath or the spirit.

A traditional Hawaiian greeting we are all very familiar with is the gifting of a beautiful lei. Yet another salutation is the sharing of breath. This is done by two people bringing their foreheads together and breathing. It’s a beautiful expression of connection. A sacred way to share who we are with one another and to show reverence.

This is a sharing that requires each individual to be open, sensitive, receptive and willing to experience something bigger. My husband and I shared the breath of aloha in our wedding ceremony. You may have shared the breath of aloha with someone you love and admire too. It is a very powerful, tender connection. Deeper than an exchange of air, it is a sharing of spirit.

There is a desire to recognize and feel someone or something at its essence with aloha. And today I invite you to share your spirit with the spirit of Ma Kaua‘i and her magical nature.

A Simple Breathing Meditation

Find a place in nature where you can sit comfortably. This can be on your front porch, at the beach or out on one of Kaua‘i’s exquisite trails.

Take the time to ground into your seat, sit up tall and listen to your breath move in and out. Feel the breath expand your belly with each inhale and feel the belly contract with each exhale.

Once the mind has settled and the body relaxes you can begin.

Samanta Fox Olson

Samanta Fox Olson

As you inhale, mindfully breathe in the exhale of nature. Let the mana (life force) move in with a sense of gratitude into your being. Exhale and do so in love, knowing that nature is breathing in your exhale.

Continue with this exchange of life force, exchange of spirit, exchange of breath for as long as you’d like. Enjoy the place this opens you up to. Enjoy the feeling of gratitude, reverence and love. Feel the contribution your heart and spirit is to this space. Feel the miraculous ways our divine Kaua‘i shares herself with and supports us too.

Aloha breathing in.

Aloha breathing out.

Continue to carry this intention with you throughout your day. Thank you for sharing your aloha. Thank you for keeping this spirit alive.

  • Samantha Fox Olson host retreats and teaches yoga and fitness on the North Shore of Kaua‘i and online. Visit or to take her 7 Day Challenge.

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