"Ke Akua pū!"

Translation:God be with you!

December 11, 2018

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I dont understand why this is a whole section. Its important to learn the term ke akua but this is just a weird reminder of the wrongful colonization that took place. Not every Hawaiian converted to Christianity. I think this section assumes too much and is slightly insensitive to the native hawaiian.


Mahalo nui loa e Moanimk. I've heard from Duolingo discussion boards it's because this Hawai'ian 'olelo on Duolingo is contributed by Kamehameha schools, with their missionary (i.e. Christian i.e. colonial) rooting. I, a Kanaka Maoli fighting for sovereignty, hate this section.


I agree with Moani, this should be learned much further into the lessons, like maybe last. We were wrongfully colonized and forced into believing in the Christian God. Hawaiian Gods or no gods at all. May as well invlude Mohammad, Buddah, Hindu and norse gods.


Why does "Ke Akua pu" require "Ke" as compared to "Iesu pu"?


Because akua is a "common noun", it usually has a noun marker in front of it. The common way to express "God", with a capital G, in Hawaiian is with "ke Akua" (with a capital A). When referring to other akua, a lower case a is the norm. Iesū is a name, so it doesn't appear with a noun marker in front of it.


I'm not sure but I think it's because Iesū is a name, while Akua is only a noun, so we have to place a determiner before it...


The literal translation is The God bless. There is no ʻoe to make it you.


I will continue this because I do want to learn some of this language. But I am rather concerned that early on in this course there is a lot of "God is with you" and "Jesus is with you." Of course, down the line in a language those phrases may be a part of a language. But at the beginning of the course. Also, any number of those on Duolingo learner are likely to to be Jewish, for example. I am very uncomfortable with this at this stage. It really feels like be proslytized. I don't believe I am being oversensitive here. I have now gone through very few of the exercises and a rather amazing amount of it is about Jesus. I do find this offensive. If done the line a language tutor were to include information about how to speak of religion, fine. But this is really uncomfortable. I would like a response from Admin on this.


I think because it's a translation of the expression "God bless" in english. Many Hawaiians converted to christianity in the 1800s and accepted the monotheistic God of thee bible. The expression "God bless" is mostly a Christian term. So "Ke Akua" is referring to the God of the bible. In the bible when "God" appears with a capital "G" the original language usually has a definite article... basically "The" God. This distinguished the God of the bible from other gods that were referred to. Anyway, that's my guess... I'm no authority.


I think the word akua and atua are the same, only in a different language


What is the accent at the end meant to sound like?


The "ū" sounds like a regular "u" in Hawaiian, just pronounced longer.


Does Akua mean God, or can it mean any god? Like, could it mean Ke Pele pū as well?


Because akua is a "common noun", it usually has a noun marker in front of it. The common way to express "God", with a capital G, in Hawaiian is with "ke Akua" (with a capital A). When referring to other akua, a lower case a is the norm. Iesū is a name, so it doesn't appear with a noun marker in front of it.


I'm guessing pū means "with you"? Do the pronouns in Hawaiian decline?


I am not a linguist, and do not have a linguist's understanding of Hawaiian, but I think it is fair to say that it is common for pronouns to not appear in a Hawaiian sentence when you might see them in a counterpart English sentence.


This is a link of sentences in Hawaiian using the word "Akua". (link): http://ulukau.org/chd/baibala/baibala-conc-akua.htm


I think i need to learn more about Hawaii and religion because of these comments. My school has not taught this lol. Im Christian myself, but maybe these phrases should be in a separate religion section? However, i see that Akua can mean the tradition Hawaiian God(s? I am so sorry-) so im not sure about the discussions here...


I am assuming that "(Iesu or ke Akua) pu" is an idiom? I can't find any translation of "pu" that fits (https://wehewehe.org/gsdl2.85/cgi-bin/hdict?e=q-11000-00---off-0hdict--00-1----0-10-0---0---0direct-10-ED--4--textpukuielbert%2ctextmamaka-----0-1l--11-en-Zz-1---Zz-1-home-p%c5%ab--00-4-1-00-0--4----0-0-11-00-0utfZz-8-00&a=d&d=D18711) other than the first: "Horn, a musical instrument," "Large triton or helmet shell," "any wind instrument," "trumpets"... So, sort of an exhaltation (trumpeting?) of God or Jesus, inferring he "be with you"??


Maybe it means more like definition 12 in this link (http://ulukau.org/chd/p344.pdf) - pū₁₂ part. together, entirely, completely, also with, together with. (Gram. 7.1) PPN puu. like pū exactly alike Me ʻoe pū. Same to you [as in reply to a good wish]. moku pū broken completely noho pū to live together, as without benefit of clergy ʻO au pū. Me too. ʻO kāua pū. So will I; you and I both. Pau pū kāua i ka hoʻopaʻi ʻia. We'll be punished together. ʻula pū entirely red **(or this one - although it didn't have a macron...???): pu adj. With; together with; along with; in company; ku pu, to stand together; like pu, just alike.


I'm not understanding the grammar of this sentence. In my understanding you would typically have some kind of po'o, something verb-like. Is it that this is like the English (and other languages too) where there's sort of an implied "(I wish that) God be with you"?


Aloha e Gary! These phrases are somewhat idiomatic, and also shortened. I want to send you to two comments from Kumu Hōkūlani Cleeland, in which he talks about the phrases "Ke akua pū" and "Iesū pū":



I also just saw another post in which Hōkūlani mentioned that a new edition of his well-known book, ʻŌlelo ʻŌiwi will be coming out soon, and at a far more affordable price than is currently available. I would highly recommend it.



Aloha e Māui a mahalo no ka wehewehe. Currently I am using Nā Kai ‘Ewalu but I think it’s great that these other resources are becoming available. It’s exciting to me that minority languages like Hawaiian are receiving attention. I am a duolingo host for another minority language (Esperanto) and recently started learning ka ‘ōlelo after being fascinated by it 30 years ago on my honeymoon on Maui. Mahalo nui loa for your support here - I know the creators of the Duo Esperanto course and it’s a thankless job. Mahalo no kou hana o ke aloha.


Mahalo for your kind words. I hope these lessons on Duolingo can be an aid and a stepping stone in your language journey. Also, for anyone who hasn't heard of it, I think Nā Kai ʻEwalu is a fantastic resource and would recommend it to anyone interested in learning ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi.


Totally agree on Nā Kai ‘Ewalu. Its cultural educational content is especially good for somebody like me who didn’t grow up on the islands or among Hawaiians. And it provides the grammatical background that courses like duolingo cannot easily provide. I always advocate for multiple learning resources (but not too many! “One more resource” probably isn’t going to help you when you already have 3 or 4. I have to keep relearning this lesson over and over...)

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