Sunday, November 1, 2009

Kukaniloko Birthing Stones

There are a number of places across the Hawaiian Islands that were sacred to the ancient Hawaiians. Some believe that spirits remain in one particular site in Central Oahu, in the middle of a sugar cane field. Just off Kamehameha Highway, opposite the road to Whitmore Village, there's a dirt path that leads to one of the most sacred and significant cultural sites on Oahu. Welcome to Kukaniloko -- also known as the Royal Birthing Stones -- said to be the geographic center of the island. Centuries ago, high-ranking Hawaiian women were carried here to give birth to potential "ali'i" or chiefs on these unusually shaped "pohaku" or rocks. Today, Kukaniloko is a tourist destination. At least during the daytime. We came back at night with famed ghost storyteller and Hawaiian historian Lopaka Kapanui. "Why are we here at night and not during the day? Well we're here at night because at night is when it becomes unusual," said Lopaka. Unusual feelings, smells, sights, and noises. "Out in the distance for the past few seconds we've been hearing a screeching sound," said Lopaka. And lopaka had a feeling we weren't alone. Do you see what appears to be three figures in the distance? Not only that. "Where I'm shining the light, the beam is where I could see the shapes, right outside the outer perimeter of where we're standing," said Lopaka.And take a look at these photos we took with our digital cameras. They also reveal we may not have been alone. Some of our pictures had orbs, or balls of light. Those who deal with paranormal activity believe that orbs represent spiritual energy. One of our pictures also had a strange white image in the corner. But of all our photos, this one was the most interesting -- and freaky. Lopaka sometimes brings his ghost tours to the Birthing Stones. "On occasions like this where it's absolutely still and there's been no wind, these coconut fronds will begin to vibrate back and forth," said Lopaka. As for the pohaku, legend has it, some of these still have spiritual powers. But is it simply a legend? Lopaka doesn't think so. "Usually I ask a volunteer female volunteer on my tours to sit on this pohaku and we all take a picture of that very special female who does that and on more than one occasion that female will emphatically say they are no longer able to get pregnant or she and her husband aren't trying, and I get a phone call about 3 weeks to half a month later, guess what after sitting on that birthing stone I am now pregnant," said Lopaka. Mere coincidence? One thing's for sure, Kukaniloko, which means "to anchor the cry from within," is a special place. And we'll let you decide if all these images are normal or paranormal.