|Previous Page||Next Page|
- 9) The first constitution setting up a constitutional monarchy was promulgated by Kamehameha III in 1840 (Malo was forty-seven );
- 10) The first partitioning of land in the Great Mahele took place in 1848 (Malo was fifty-five);
- 11) The Kuleana Act of 1850 gave the maka'ainana title in fee to land (Malo was fifty-seven);
- 12) Kamehameha III died in 1854; Malo was already dead in 1853 at the age of 60.
The list of critical events does not include the difficulties experienced by the fledgling kingdom with foreign nations between 1793 and 1853. During this period Kamehameha III witnessed the civil war on Kaua'i in 1824 (death of Liholiho in England); the struggle between the clergy of Protestant (American) and Catholic (French) missions, until 1839, when freedom of religion became a constitutional guarantee; the Lord George Paulet episode in 1843 by which the king temporarily ceded the government to Britain; restoration of sovereignty to the Hawaiian monarchy by Admiral Thomas in 1843; and the smallpox epidemic, 1853.
It would seem then that in 1853-1854 two great Hawaiian representatives of the post-conversion period of immense change in Hawaiian life and society died: David Malo and Kauikeaouli (Kamehameha III). Their attitudes were interesting contrasts. Malo, destined for the Hawaiian priesthood, followed that career out by switching allegiance in the midstream of life away from the Hawaiian akua to the Akua Mana Loa, Jehovah of the Old Testament and the "Perfect Spirit" (akua Hemolele), or "Father: (Makua) of the New Testament." By the end of his life he had become too disillusioned by the knowledge that foreigners would be arriving in such sufficiently larger numbers to eventually overwhelm Hawaiians:
- Malo was one of that class to whom the prophetic vision of the oncoming tide of invasion--
peaceful though it was to be—that was destined to overflow his native land and supplant in a measure its indigenous population was acutely painful and not to be contemplated with any degree of philosophic calm; and this in spite of the fact that he fully recognized the immense physical, moral and intellectual benefits that had accrued and were still further to accrue to him and his people from the coming of that man to his shores. And this sentiment, which was like a division of councils in his nature, controlled many of his actions during his life, and decided the place of his burial after death. 11/
In order to escape the "tide of invasion," Malo requested burial atop Mount Ball high above Lahainaluna Seminary.
By contrast, Kauikeaouli, although king, never submitted to conversion to Christianity and never became a member of the established Protestant Church at Kawaiaha'o in Honolulu, although he attended services. What would Henry 'Opukahaia say if he had lived to be a bold instigator of such changes wrought by two living Hawaiian personalities, Hawaiian priest and ruling chief, after the 1819 overthrow of the kapu system that propelled them into changed roles of diminished authority and power? This is the background against which to evaluate the search today by Hawaiians for traditional values in the culture that got away from them.
|Previous Page||Next Page|