One of the most unique things about Hawaii is the convergence of diverse cultures. We’ve got the Hawaiians, the Samoans, the Japanese, the Chinese, the Filipinos, the Koreans, the Caucasians, the Portuguese, just to name a few. And then, of course, there is the amalgamation of some or all of those–the locals. Here racial jokes are funny, and people actually laugh at them.
Throughout the year, there are various festivals or celebrations of specific ethnic groups. And on this Memorial Day in Honolulu, there was the 10th anniversary of Lantern Floating, a celebration hosted by the Shinnyo-en temple, a Japanese Buddhist denomination, during which lanterns are sent floating along the shore of the Pacific Ocean in remembrance of loved ones who have died in conflict and dedication of peace for future generations.
I knew about the event in years past, but has never made it down until this year when I was hired to sing in the chorus for the event. The ceremony itself was short and sweet, the view was gorgeous as dusk turned into night and the lanterns lit up the shore once again. I’m no Buddhist (deja vu of a previous post), but it was a beautiful ceremony that reminded me how blessed I am to be in this unique place.
Photos courtesy of T.C.
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