Superstition – Hawaii

Never take any lava rocks or black sand away from the island.

Jillian learned this superstition as she was growing up in Hawaii from the other children at school.  Though she is not of Hawaiian “blood” herself, she was born and raised in its culture, so she identifies herself as Hawaiian.  She said that it is known that lava rocks or black sand should not be taken away from the island, or else bad things will happen to that person.  Pele, the volcano goddess, will be angry because taking the lava is synonymous to taking part of her away from the island.  Jillian claims that when people take rocks away from the island, they ship it back to Hawaii because of the bad luck that comes with it.

The Hawaiian culture firmly believes in the island gods and goddesses who control the islands.  If a native or visitor does not please them, then it is understood that they will have bad luck.  Pele is the volcano goddess, so the lava rocks and black sand are considered part of her being.  Taking away any of the remnants of the volcano is taking her away from her home and terribly upsetting.  The Hawaiians always want to please the gods and make sure that they are always obeying them for good luck.  This superstition also shows the pride that Hawaiians have for their island.  Like Pele, the people of the islands do not want to be taken away from their homeland either.

The superstition that bad luck will happen through a certain action is very common in Hawaiian culture.  Hawaii has a very unique and tightly knit culture that believes in all of these myths.  These mythological figures are directly connected to the superstitions, which work because the people do not want to upset the gods.  They think that as long as the gods are happy, then the people are safe from harm.  The informant strongly believes that these beliefs are true and accepts it as a rule not take volcanic ruins away from the island.