The Workable Psycho-Religious System of the Polynesians.
An Abridgement of the Pamphlet Huna, of Max Freedom Long.
Third Installment -

Section III
How the Aid of the High Self is Obtained.

(NOTE: Comments added by the present writer, ML, are enclosed in parentheses.)

We have seen that there are three selves: the low self or subconsciousness, the middle self or ordinary brain consciousness, and the High Self, or 'Superconsciousness'. This last concept, tho familiar to occult thinking, has never been clearly recognized by Christianity nor by western psychology. Religion, however, recognized prayer as a means of contact with the Deity, and it is clearly to prayer that we must look for an explanation of the very effective practises of Huna. The Kahuna, like esotericists in all lands, prays to his High Self (the Superconsciousness, The 'Guardian Angel', the divine Augoeides, the Egoic consciousness) and his problem is precisely the same as theirs - how to establish the desired contact. (It is in the High Self that all wisdom and power and knowledge abide; a full and true contact with it is 'expansion of consciousness', and this is known to western Illuminists as Realization, Illumination, and by many other terms. But contact is also established fleetingly in many ways - the 'hunch', the inspiration, the flash of genius, or some touch of supernormal cognition)

Contact between sentient beings takes place by means of thought, expressed by sounds, words, gestures, symbols. Telepathy is the direct transfer of thought apart from any gross material medium, and this is the means which must be employed in communicating with the High Self in prayer (tho ritual and its adjuncts are also helpful).

Thoughts are formulated by the low self, or the middle self, or by the two working in cooperation. They are an action or process of the vital energy. Vital energy does not work in vacuo; it operates on matter - etheric matter. The etheric matter which is worked on, modified, is the shadowy body, or etheric double of the low self. The atoms or electrons of this etheric body which are modified by a thought, constitute a thought-form (an instructive extension of the meaning usually given to this phrase) - when the low self leaves the body at death, it takes these thought-forms or memories along with it, in the etheric body which it then occupies. In transmitting a telepathic message, the low self sends out a copy of the thought-form which it is holding. It creates (as we understand it) a double, or shadowy body of the thought form, and projects it. In mind reading the low self reaches out to another person and brings back duplicates of thoughts or memories.

The mechanism of this projecting or reaching out will be discussed a little later.


The middle self can direct the low self to send or receive telepathic messages, but cannot do either of these itself. (Telepathic communication with the High Self is thus seen to be below the threshold of brain consciousness. The western Illuminist, recognizing this, strives for the integration of the selves, which is equivalent to an expansion of consciousness when viewed from 'below'.) During sleep, however, it is probable that contact of some kind is established with the High Self. Dreams of the future which come true give good evidence of this, since it is only the High Self which knows the future. (There is that 'within us' which is near omniscience, which transcends time and space and solves all problems, yet western psychologists have been compelled, for the most part, to crowd all these miraculous powers into the subconsciousness, along with all the malice, perversion and selfishness of human nature - or, the inspiration of Plotinus and of Gil de Hais are water from the same well).

During these night contacts, the thoughts of the low and middle selves are averaged by the High Self, and in some way used to materialize the future. Thus, persistent fears, hopes and expectations are likely to be realized. (Presumably, it does not matter greatly whether these are dwelt upon consciously, or driven under cover in the low self; the High Self reads them every one, and casts up its nightly accounts from them, and decides upon aspects of the future.)

(This concept sheds considerable light upon the relation of our habitual thinking to our lives, upon the effects of 'holding the thought', on the peculiarly effective quality of last thoughts before falling asleep, on the influence of fears, hopes and the like, and many other practical matters. The great events of our lives are fixed, 'crystallized' beforehand; but the details of our future are made as we go along, day by day. The key to what shall be lies in what we are doing now. This seems like good occultism, good philosophy and religion and sound thinking from any angle. It allows for the play of both 'free will' and of fate; it is both deterministic and realistic. If prayer and repentance correct our thinking, they may modify our future; but if they are no more than fears and wishes and hope to escape consequences, very little can be effected by them. The power of prayer is allowed for, as being very great; but it is not at all a matter of wheedling some omnipotent God into giving us health, prosperity and full bellies, as naive orthodoxy has long believed. We have here, however, what amounts to a personal and private God for each of us, our own Father-and-Mother in heaven, the great One who will never leave us or forsake us - for the very intelligible reason that He is in us as we are in Him - being His own earth-projection and individual experiment. Perhaps we go a bit too far here, interpreting in this way, since some aspects of the Huna thinking are vague or quite lost in the processes of time, but it is clear that the general concept is intelligible and acceptable to esoteric thinking everywhere.)

The great obstacles to the all-important communication with the High Self are thought habits, fixations, complexes, set beliefs about the nature of things - and particularly complexes of sin, guilt, and unworthiness. These exist largely at the subconscious level. And since it is through the subconscious that the approach to the High Self must be made, they have the effect of blocking the channel of communication. For Sheer practical realism, bare bones of the psychic mechanism, HUNA has few equals.

- To be Continued -