What is Ho’oponopono? Everything you need to know


Holding on to resentment for a long period of time can destroy our relationships and bring harm into our mind and body.

We all have a painful memory that brings hurt every time we think of it but for some, this is a much deeper pain and misery; as if they are reliving the traumatic event all over again.

A woman once said to me “being raped once is traumatic enough but being raped over a hundred times is more than my body can bare” this is what reliving a traumatic event feels like. This ritual is something that when done repeatedly will help the healing process however big the trauma; it will disconnect you from the trauma to the point that when you think of the traumatic event, it raises no negative emotions in you. It is not about apologising to the person who hurt you (this may be appropriate in some cases) you can also take it as an apology to yourself, your inner child, or the divinity within you.

What is Ho’oponopono?

Ho’oponopono is a Hawaiian practice for healing and forgiveness. A technique used traditionally by Indigenous Hawaiian healers, often within the extended family by a family member. Traditional ho’oponopono is usually conducted by a group of family members including the members with the dispute.

 In 1976 Morrnah Simeona, a healing priest, adapted the traditional hoʻoponopono of family mutual forgiveness into modern day personal events. She expanded the practice to become a general problem solving process outside the family and to a spiritual personal self-help technique rather than a group process. After Simeona’s death in 1992, her former student, Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len popularized the practice further when he co-authored a book with Joe Vitale called Zero Limits.

The term “ho’oponopono” is Hawaiian for “correct a mistake”. This is a simple practice that does not need much teaching, but it is powerful for purifying the body of negative energy and emotions.

What are the Benefits of Ho’oponopono?

Ho’oponopono has a lot of benefits, benefits to all aspects of life. The following are the most common benefits:

Memory renewal/ Memory forgiveness

Ho’oponopono has the ability to cleanse and neutralize our painful memories; by this the memories have no power over our emotions and we are free of the pain they cause us every time we remember them. This is especially helpful when a loved one has hurt us with their action or words; you can’t truly forgive them if you can’t forget the pain they caused you.

With this practice, the pain can be forgotten and then true healing and forgiveness can take place. This applies to people going through a bad breakup or grieving a lost one; the sense of loss will be transmuted into a pure and loving energy towards the person who is out of your life. Simply put, it helps us in the art of letting go.

Responsibility of One’s life

One of the biggest teachings in ho’oponopono is that we are responsible for our lives no matter what is going on in it; it is not about blaming yourself for the events going on but about taking responsibility for them.

The idea of being responsible for your life may be a hard pill to swallow because playing the victim is easier in some cases. But once you accept responsibility for your life, you develop independence and the sense of powerlessness which is linked to suffering will be far away from you.

Emotional stability

Because this practice helps to release negative emotions and energies; you will constantly be in a calm and peaceful state regardless of what ever is going on in your life. Not that you won’t be able to feel negative emotions but they won’t control you or push you to make the wrong decision; and they won’t last too long in your body.

Healthier Relationships

Whenever we have a misunderstanding or conflict with someone else, we tend to think that only the other person is wrong. Ho’oponopono helps to dissolve this rigid way of thinking and helps you understand that you are also part of the problem, and when you change, your relationships will also change.

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How it works

This practice teaches that everything that happens to us is influenced by our inner self. This means that what you feel, hear, see and even the things that people do to you are influenced by your inner self; sounds unfair but the sooner you accept this the more power you will come into.

The notion that everything around you involves either your conscious or subconscious participation, means that you are responsible for what you think and feel. Have you heard the term “self-sabotage”? It indicates that we are sometimes our own worst enemies and this is because our negative thoughts and emotions can create a world of problems for us.

The main purpose of ho’oponopono is to heal and transmute those negative emotions and energies; thereby fostering more positive thoughts and providing solutions to those problems we caused in the first place. If our minds and emotions can create problems, they can certainly provide the solutions to those problems.

You must understand that what happens to you doesn’t matter; it is what you do with what happens to you that really matters.

Ho’oponopono contains four main phrases:

1. I’m sorry

2. Forgive me

3. I love you

4. Thank you

These four phrases are four of the most powerful phrases in any kind of language and all you have to do is repeat them as often as you can. You can either set aside thirty minutes to an hour a day to repeat them or you can repeat them like a chant all through your day. The decision is up to you.

You don’t need to believe in deities, be religious, or be alone in a quiet place. Just say (mentally or out loud) “I’m sorry”  “Forgive me” “I love you”  “Thank you”

As a beginner of ho’oponopono, it is advisable to practice your first round of ho’oponopono for three months straight without stopping; that way you will feel the impact quickly. You will begin to feel a new dimension of compassion and have a new sense of self and peace of mind, no matter the occurrences in your life.


Ho’oponopono is not a quick fix to your problems, it is a way to develop your soul and mind thereby creating a new you… a better you but you must go through the process to come out on the other side. Be patient with yourself and appreciate yourself as you go along… do not criticize yourself for any reason even when it feels as if you are not making any progress. Feelings/emotions are visitors… not a true picture of what is going on within you; they always leave. Start practicing today and take charge of your life.


DO THE MENTAL STRENGTH CHALLENGE (find out what your mind is constantly doing)

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