QUESTION: How can Hawaiian tradition talk about "aloha" when they actually bake pigs, chickens and other animals for eating when they are our brothers or sisters in different bodies?
ANSWER: In Hawaiian tradition the Aloha Spirit is applied to everyone and everything. This means that everything is alive, aware, and responsive, and nothing is more alive than anything else. This tradition includes respect for all things, including rocks, plants, animals, humans, and stars. The Creator in deep wisdom made everything interdependent. Rocks (minerals) consume plants, animals, and humans; animals consume plants and other animals and rocks; humans of different kinds and beliefs consume plants, animals, and rocks. It is good to respect the rights of different people to consume what they believe is good for them, and even better to encourage them to have respect and appreciation for what they consume, whether it is plants, animals, or rocks.