Today, Kilauea eruptions continue on the Big Island of Hawaii, and we know the significant lava threats are the work of Pele. She has many names, but when the volcano erupts she is known as Pelehonuamea, Pele, land creator.

Indigenous Hawaiians and other locals accept the volcanic activity. It has consumed hundreds of homes to date as well as displaced many others. A strong presentation of Pele’s power as well as her charm.

Pelehonuamea, or Pele of the sacred earth, is also referred to as “ka wahine ai honua,” woman that feasts on the land. She is additionally called Madame Pele or Tutu Pele.

” I use Tutu Pele because she’s a kupuna to me as well as one of our family aumakua.  We have the utmost respect for her,” said Lilikala Kame’eleihiwa. A professor at the Kamakakuokalani Center for Hawaiian Researchers on the College of Hawaii’s Manoa school. “We have a personal connection with Pele.”

Pele is the central figure of many chants, mele, as well as hula.  She is portrayed as an all-powerful force that dwells at Halemaumau.  The pit crater inside the Kilauea summit caldera situated within Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park.

Halau Kekuhi and What is Hula  Courtesy of Blue Land Media



Pelehonuamea Is Her Honorific Name

” Pelehonuamea is her honorific name,” Kame’eleihiwa stated. “Honuamea is not just land, honua is additionally the earth. Aina is the land you eat from. Honua is earth, including the seas. Mea indicates spiritual, however likewise means (the shade) red.”

With the collection of eruptions, dozens of homes and other structures in the Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens location have been destroyed. That has caused thousands plus citizens to leave their houses and also covering thousands of acres with lava. Hawaii County Civil Protection has warned of the opportunity of steam-driven surges of rocks and ash at the Kilauea summit that can release boulders greater than a half-mile away with little warning.

Road Blocked By Lava

Road Blocked By Lava

A Destructive, Creative Force

Impressive tales tells of Pele as a child birthed to Haumea in Tahiti. After a battle with her sister Namaka, goddess of the sea, Pele embarked on a trip, accompanied by family members, in search of a new house. She took a trip from Kauai down the island chain to Hawaii island. There, she found a residence at the pit of Kilauea.

She is the force behind Kilauea’s eruptions consisting of the current episode, which has been continuous since 1983. She is powerful, and she is unpredictable according to history.

Merrie Monarch Halau Dances About Pele Photo by Honolulu Star-Advertiser

Merrie Monarch Halau Dances About Pele Photo by Honolulu Star-Advertiser



Chants Recorded Natural Phenomena Throughout Time

Kalei Nu’uhiwa, a social scientist at the Edith Kanaka’ole Structure in Hilo, explains the eruptions as “myth reviving.” Chants she learned to discuss the different stages of eruption credited to Pele, that is among a plethora of divine beings adding to volcanism.

” The entire occasion makes me consider those tales, or observations. That we contributed to chants to remember,” she stated. “Those chants are timeless as we see those very same things taking place today, despite the fact that they are centuries old.”

The ideological is that you must surrender, understanding you are in Pele’s land, Nu’uhiwa stated.

In this instance, akua can give you life or provide you with death,” she stated. “It’s the suggestion of Pele herself offering us a new land. That is her function and in some cases, it’s refrained in a wonderful form. Sometimes it’s harmful as well as it damages things. In the long run, we gain from all of it.”

Gifts for the Goddess Pele Land Creator

Kame’eleihiwa claimed those that have a connection to Pele may place markers at the borders of their property hoping she will spare it. Others could clean out their residences and leave hookupu, or presents, for her.

Offerings to The Goddess Pele

Offerings to The Goddess Pele Star

Hula halau goes to Halemaumau crater prior to the yearly Merrie Monarch Festival Celebration competition held in Hilo every springtime to honor Pele. They offer leis, ho’okupu, as well as chants and hula.

” I feel a wonderful unhappiness for them,” Kame’eleihiwa stated of those who lose their residences and have actually needed to evacuate.

The old place name for Leilani Estates is Keahi-a-Laka, she stated, which traditionally is referred to as a place where lava has moved in the past. There are chants about the area being a well-worn path for lava, she stated.

Prior to restoring homes in the location once more, Kame’eleihiwa claimed she believes it would certainly be wise to have a look at the place names as well as history.

Kame’eleihiwa visited Tahiti to check out the birthplace of Pele, where she intended to supply a petition as well as a present of Hawaiian salt.

Recognizing Pele

A picture of Pelehonuamea by artist, chronicler as well as the author

Herb Kane is displayed inside the Thomas A. Jaggar Gallery.

Pelehonuamea by Herb Kane

Pelehonuamea by Herb Kane @ Hawaii Volcano House


She Is Pelehonuamea


Pele the creator of land

Pele the Creator & Destroyer of Land

As she creates devastation, Pele likewise opens brand-new paths for production,  according to Oahu kumu hula Vicky Holt Takamine.

The movement of lava is the inspiration for song composition and also choreography, according to Takamine.

” She is likewise the designer of new lands and islands,” Takamine claimed. “She aided to create the different developments. For Oahu, specifically, she’s responsible for Punchbowl Crater, for Leahi (Diamond Head), for checking out all the islands and stretching the land a whole lot further.”.

For Takamine, the volcanic process is a type of “cleansing of the land” from diseases such as rapid ohia fatality. This type of fungal disease is killing aboriginal ohia lehua trees, as well as the intrusive types impacting Hawaii’s natural and also cultural resources. She claimed the cleaning leads to a rebirth of colonies and also developments.

After a lava circulation, the initial plants to grow are native species consisting of ohia lehua and kupukupu ferns, Takamine stated.

Earthquakes and also lightning are all connected with Pele’s family members, as are volcanic ash, winds and also rainfalls, she claimed. Pele’s siblings, consisting of Hi’iaka and her good friend Hopoe, are ideas for songs and dances of creation.

“I have actually been enjoying the lava fountains and how well it moves. “There’s the sluggish relocating lava, pahoehoe, then there’s the a’a that’s crumbly, and it has a different movement to it. Those are all motivation for motion.”


A’a is a very rough and rugged lava that is produced when lave flows quickly.


The photo above shows a’a lava in action.  Notice the rough texture on top.



Pahoehoe (pronounced like “pah hoy hoy”) is a smooth lava produced when lava flows slowly and gently.




Kapoho Bay Before and After, Pele Takes Land Back Courtesy of KHNL News