Talk Story with Poʻokela Ikaika Dombrigues

He is a Hawaiian Healer, High Priest, Laʻau Lapaʻau, Laʻau Kahea, Lomilomi Ha Ha, Hoʻoponopono, and Maiola Kahuna throughout Hawaiʻi nei and around the world for well over 46 years. He continues to heal and educate about spiritual knowledge and the art of healing - as his Kahuna once did. According to Poʻokela Ikaika, “Without our poʻe Hawaiʻi (people), we have no Hawaiʻi nei or Aloha.” Kahuna are the “Keepers of the Huna Mana (secret energy)” whose purpose is to help the people know Hawaiian Culture, teach the traditions of our kupuna, and spread the faith of lapaʻau healing.

Q. What is La‘au Lapa‘au?

A. La‘au Lapa‘au is a practice that’s been in the Hawaiian
islands for thousands of years. It has to do with natural
herbs from the land; plants, animals, minerals from
the ocean. Through the power of pule (prayer), we apply
it to our bodies. It’s a very spiritual connection that falls
upon the person who needs help.

Q. What can La‘au be used to treat?

A. There are over 3500 different type of La‘au. Historically,
they were used to treat hypertension, diabetes,
cancer, arthritis, stress, strengthening immune system,
purifying blood.

Q. What is the future of La‘au Lapa‘au

A. Our Kupuna knew what was coming. What they have
taught us - all the protocols, all the la‘au, all the spiritual
connection - will save our future. We just have to continue
on. Our island here is an island separated from the
world - we just need to know how to live off the land to
provide us with food, la‘au, water. We will continue this
practice and perpetuate, preserve, and protect it, so to
ensure that it remains pono (righteous). It is our Kuleana

Q. How do you find the La‘au?

A. It’s getting scarce, hard to find nowadays. We ask
permission to enter the forest and there’s protocol we
follow. Through pule you are asking to take life from
a plant to give life to someone who is sick. It’s part of
understanding the oneness of all elements and life.

Laʻau comes in all shapes and sizes. For example, mamaki is a popular laʻau for use in herbal teas.
Q. What is a Kahuna, and how do you become one?
A. It’s placed upon ke akua (God) and the ancestors of
Hawaiʻi that you are chosen to practice this. A Kahuna
is a master, a priest, an expert. There are 14 different
types of Kahuna of the healing arts, and there are 9
levels of knowledge and practice from kakoʻo (assistant)
to Kahuna Nui (high priest). It takes over 40 years to
become a master. This is not an overnight thing or a 3
year scholarship - no it don’t work that way.