By Virginia Beck

Starting a new year means new projects — after we finish up the old ones! Of course if we have a new project we want to succeed.

Kaua‘i has a lot to teach us about success. This enduring jewel of the Pacific is resilient, alive and fragile. Nature started working this project about five million years ago. Huge volcanic eruptions from the Earth’s heart ejected lava, slowly building up above the ocean. Centuries later, rains, winds and waves carved it into staggering rocky cliffs, velvet green mountains and valleys. Winds brought birds and seeds, and time created beaches out of old coral beds, shells, and shattered lava rock.

The brave navigators who left Polynesia in fragile, but exceedingly clever and seaworthy canoes, brought not only their knowledge, but outrageous courage and endurance to this island. A new life required reinventing everything they needed and adapting to what was here.

Ho’omanawanui is what they brought. It means to enact and express a steadfast, enduring patience that is the very foundations of the earth, our solar system and the universe. Or any new project.

It means to have a great spirit, a strong will and courage to accept the tumultuous changes of what life brings. This could be either the natural environment, or our life at work or home. In our own lives, it is an action word — meaning that endurance or the success of our projects will not take place without action on our part.

This kind of faithfulness this steadfastness, what is what brought my family to Kaua’i, after making many voyages. around the world. Learning to carve out a new life in a whole new environment requires new traits, including making friends with strangers and learning new cultures. Learning how to respect the protocols of a new community, and willingness to be instructed and corrected by the elders about community.

Being faithful to the end, means being impeccable in all the details. Hawaiian protocols are very detailed in every aspect, from attitudes to preparation of materials and implements, to the chants and dances. A Japanese tea ceremony starts with the education of the tea master, and the potter who will 50 years later create the perfect teacup. In the same way, we need to start all projects with a clear vision and a strong commitment. We need to appreciate the process, not just the products.

When we begin a new project we want to invest our best resources and our strongest skills to create a pleasing outcome. Our work demonstrates the values and the strength of our family expressed in life. Being faithful in the details gives integrity and strength to the final design.

Virginia Beck

While current Internet culture is very much dedicated to the quick, the easy and the temporary; the things we value most are the ones we keep forever. Family experiences, skills, and the strength and health to enjoy them — this is what we value and keep.

You need to end a project with the level of energy and impeccability that you want to bring to the new. If you want a new project, you want a great result. So as you end one project, you are laying the foundation for the next one. This requires a brave heart and the courage to keep your eye on the goal while you struggle through the challenges.

You can take comfort in the solid strength of Kaua’i’s mountains and waves; the eternal sunrises and sunsets that will occur; and the warm beauty of our flowers, na pua, our youth, our families and our friends.

You can count on Aloha to bring patience, steadfastness, and joy. Share it.

  • Virginia Beck, NP and Certified Trager® Practitioner, offers Wellness Consultation, Trager Psychophysical Integration and teaches Malama Birth Training classes. She can be reached at 635-5618.