T H E   P I O N E E R   F R I N G E

Max Freedom Long
Fellow of the Huna Fellowship

(The first of a series of articles dealing with the theory and practical applications of Huna, the workable psycho-religious system of the Polynesians.)

As Illuminists and students of the psycho-religious sciences, we stand today on the Pioneer Fringe of human knowledge of CONSCIOUSNESS. And thanks to the recent rediscovery of the long lost and very ancient psychological system called HUNA ("The Secret", pronounced who-nah), the Pioneer Fringe promises to extend more rapidly than at any time in the past century.

As the century began, psychologically speaking, about 1840, we saw the advent of Spiritualism with its production of psychic phenomena. Soon we had societies for psychical research. Mesmerism was in full stride. The infant Science of Consciousness - "Psychology" was born (or, we may say, reborn, after about 3,000 years).

Up to this time, religions had made little psychological progress. Christianity and related religions agreed in the main with the Faiths in India and China, that man had a soul, which was a SINGLE unit of consciousness and which survived death. The subconscious (as a lesser and separate soul connected to the first) was not known.

In 1848 and the decade following, the New England mesmerist, Quimby, made the significant discovery of a "Wisdom" with a "Power", which stood ready to aid men in healing without drugs or manipulations. This was the first modern (if tentative) identification of a Superconscious part of mind. The Quimby description of this entity was far more definite - vague as it was - than corresponding descriptions embodied in religious accounts of guardian angels, lesser gods and so on and so forth.

He had begun the work of increasing the stature of the soul to get an oversoul. Following hard on the heels of mesmerism came the discovery of the potency of suggestion. We passed from the use of iron magnets for magnetic healing, to the use of suggestion. Soon the subliminal was discovered and described as a part of mind. This sub-self accounted for the painful fact that man could hold complexes or fixations which were hidden and which were beyond the control of the conscious mind, through "will", or the control exerted by hypnotic suggestion.

At Lourdes healing miracles, both instant and taking up to three days, were being observed, studied and recorded. On a lesser scale, miracles of healing took place at other shrines, usually in Catholic circles. The period of blanket "scientific" denial began to pass its peak.

In Psychical Research amazing phenomena were observed and studied. A definite test procedure was worked out; a vocabulary descriptive of elements in the phenomena was evolved and a special literature accumulated - largely unnoticed and unread. The survival of human consciousness was sufficiently established as a fact to satisfy many advanced students. The search for explanations of phenomena grew intense.

In the middle period Theosophy was assembled, its doctrines being drawn from many ages and lands as well as from the psychic revelations of Madam Blavatsky. (It is odd that she should not have at least touched on the basic holdings of Huna, it still being in good use in Polynesia, and lost only to the WEST.) In any event, the religions of the East were made widely known. New Thought also was born and grew. [11] Judge Troward came out of India and preached a suggestible "Universal Subconscious" which was a Superconscious in its miraculous abilities, but which was supposed to be forced to obey by "holding the thought". Christian Science rapidly reached the end of its philosophy of the non-materiality of physical things. (None of these doctrines postulated a hindering element in fixations of guilt or doubt, as did the Polynesians in their Huna.) Healing of body and purse, however, was obtained often enough to attract many followers. Quimby died of a tumor at an advanced age. His vastly important discovery of a superconscious in the form of his "Wisdom" and "Power" became lost in a reversion of New Thought to God in its "All Good". Mrs. Eddy died, freezing her teachings through her will so that nothing can be changed.

In this period the last of the divinely inspired religions, Mormonism, appeared. Many psychically given writings were published, including the work, Oahspe, most surprising of all. From these sources little appeared to advance the psycho-sciences. As for religion, only new dogmas were offered.

Psychiatry, as a branch of the Science of Consciousness, was very backward in its development during this jumbled but fruitful period, although the theory of spirit obsession was greatly encouraged by the observation of mediumistic phenomena. The psychologists were making exciting studies of dual and multiple personality cases, and were adding Abnormal Psychology to their list (although they failed dismally to dare to add the study of man-in-his-after-death-state-of-consciousness - Psychic Science - to that list). In 1911 Hideyo Noguchi obtained a pure culture of Treponema pallidum, which organisms were seen to cause dementia paralytica. Other physical causes of insanity were rapidly becoming known. The influence of mental states on organic functions was recognized and compared with that of fixations. Psychoanalysis developed, but failed its first bright promise.

Just recently an absurd situation has arisen in Psychiatry. The doctors, while trained to deny all chance of spirit obsession, practice insulin and electric shock methods, frequently with excellent results, although it is admitted that neither method has any effect on any physical condition known to cause insanity. According to the older school of thought, obsessing spirits might often be driven from a body by making residence in it painfully unpleasant. With the offender driven out, the rightful owner of the body could return; and with it, sanity returned. Of course, insulin and electric tortures are less harmful than beatings. (It is to be hoped that some University will eventually create a department in which psychiatry and the findings of Psychic Science can be studied in their proper relations.)

During the century, vital force was discovered. and pronounced electrical in its nature. In the late 30's part of the period a startling further discovery was made, that all thinking was accompanied by an electrical action. "Body" electricity was found to be of a much lower voltage than "brain" electricity. Dreams produced electric discharge lines on the measuring machines. In states of unconsciousness, no lines were produced. (Huna assigns a low voltage electrovital force to the subconscious entity in man, a middle voltage to the conscious mind entity, and a third and highest voltage to the superconscious. We moderns have not yet found the superconscious or its atom-smashing voltage of mana. This lies still ahead of our advance on the Pioneer Fringe.)

In Psychic Science, the production of material phenomena broke all existing records for six decades, then, mysteriously, almost ceased. Today the researchers can find almost nothing to observe and study. However, invaluable date were accumulated and are in hand. We know the verity of apports, materialization, transportation, temperature control, premonition, ectoplasm (visible and invisible, and capable of storing or conveying electro forces,) "doubles", poltergeists, etc.


As the century drew to a close, it became apparent that all progress in the psycho-sciences had bogged down and come to a grand stalemate. No new discoveries were being made. No new methods of healing were being advocated. In fact, a dark reactionary trend began to send psychologists back to Behaviorism and Pavlov's dogs. In the psycho-religions the stalemate had come earlier by far. Psychology had offered new knowledge to Religion in the form of the subconscious and suggestion. Quimby had offered the Superconscious and its vast healing powers. Not one of these elements was understood. God became a Universal Mind subject to human control, first by "holding the thought", then by affirmations, and recently, by "decreeing". "Sin" vanished. Spiritualism, with its many psychically given writings offered little but contradictory descriptions of heaven, its mechanisms, and its denizens. It offered nothing to help us understand the physical phenomena of the seance room or the instant healing at Lourdes or in the Hawaii of yesterday. The wife of Stewart Edward White (Betty Book and others) reversed the process by which spirits come into our world of the living, and went herself, during trance, into the spirit world to see and to study. She came back with much theory, but little that was of practical aid either in understanding psychic phenomena or healing.

It has gradually become evident that the spirits who are active at the seances where physical phenomena are produced, have no more knowledge than we have when it comes to identifying: (1) the entities who are behind the scenes and who have a wisdom superior to ours, which enables them to take physical substances apart and later reassemble them - in apporting, materialization, formation of ectoplasms, transportation and so on; (2) the force used by these unrecognized superior entities, perhaps a higher voltage of the same electro-vital force we have found in body and brain activities; (3) the mechanisms, vehicles, organisms - visible or invisible - etc., etc., through which this unrecognized form of superior consciousness acts, using its still unidentified FORCE, to get the amazing results which we of the lesser consciousnesses and forces cannot get, try as we may.

In the face of this general hogging down and stalemate, the outlook would have been anything but encouraging to the psychologist, religionist or Illuminist. Fortunately, however, the ancient and long lost system of Huna has been sufficiently recovered to enable us to again go forward, perhaps with surprising speed and certitude to greatly desired ends.

The task ahead of us, as we join hands as Illuminists, and begin to push forward the Pioneer Fringe of psycho-religious knowledge, is easy to visualize. We have before us a blue print of an ancient and very workable system which includes all that we know in this field, and which presents to us much that we have not been able to discover for ourselves. With this blue print before us we can quickly produce a fair explanation of psychic phenomena, (a thing which our SPR scientists have failed to be able to do in over sixty studious years.) We can at last begin to order and understand the tangle of unexplained materials which have been collected and certified. And, in due time, we can begin to experiment with our newly reconstructed system to learn to use it. We may not fire-walk, or heal instantly, or produce the phenomena common to the kahunas and our Western seance rooms - not for some time. But we will be able to check the system as we are able to see it, and to have the satisfaction of working under a clear and logical plan.

For the Illuminist, Huna is both an alcahest and a catalytic. In its presence, useless and groundless dogmas dissolve and unrelated accumulations of facts are ordered, given meaning, and fitted together to make a definite pattern ....... The ancient "Light" of Huna is being relighted once more.