Back to Butler. In the past I have been surprised that no one on the islands gives a shit about this little Hawaiian cult in their midst. Knowing full well the Gabbard's and other follower's connection to Chris Butler. It is literally an open secret in the media and in politics going back to the 1970's when Independents for Godly Government first appeared on the horizon.
I have figured it out. To explain; Hawaiians still harbor a deep insecurity complex from the days of the lost Hawaiian monarchy. In Tulsi, they have restored their dignity and found their new Queen Liliuokalani, their Patsy Mink, their "local girl does good". They don't really care about how she got there. This is family - Ohana*.
The other cultures that took root in Hawaii (Japanese, Filipino, Chinese, Samoan) found a refuge against racism and freedom of religion in Hawaii. They essentially became influenced by the prevailing culture and became accepted as part of the whole.
The tolerance of the Butler cult has a lot to do with the Hawaiian attitude of "live and let live" - as long as you don't step on the local’s toes (hints of Hawaii's violent past). For the many people that know all about Butler in Hawaii, he is also a "local boy" - albeit, the weird guy in the family. He made good in his own way, in their way of thinking. His success with the Gabbard's, Reed, Nishiki is their success. Tulsi's success in also shared collectively. This is the mentality of Hawaii. It is ultimately a tribal society and they are vociferously loyal to their own. It may look all westernized on the outside, but it is still culturally far from mainstream America. For me, this has answered the question of why the media does not go after Butler and his cult.
The loyalty to the ohana* is what makes it very difficult for Hawaiians to see how the cult undermines one's individuality, as this is not valued as highly as it is in the west.
Hawaiian Beliefs & Values
Hawaiians embrace the family as the basic unit of society and the best form of human expresssion, and readily reject the rugged individualism so highly valued in Euro American societies.
As I dig deeper into the spiritual beliefs of the native Hawaiians and other island peoples, there is a great similarity to what Butler has preached. Not only are his teachings a hybrid of Vaishnavism/ Hinduism, he infused them with many Hawaiian beliefs (e.g., Aloha Aina ~ love of the land). Even the prevalent "us against them" is deeply ingrained in the local psyche. Fear of outsider influences still prevails.
FROM BELIEFS & VALUES: ON BEING HAWAIIAN
Congress defines "Native Hawaiian" as "any individual who is a descendant of the aboriginal people who, prior to 1778, occupied and exercised sovereignty in the area that now constitutes the State of Hawaii." (U.S. Public Law 103-150)
However, Native Hawaiians are so much more. They define themselves by their relationships to each other, their ancestors and their land...
Being Hawaiian involves nurturing and honoring these ties. In the Hawaiian society, one is expected to know and understand what it means to be a contributing member of the community. Everyone has a responsibility to use their talents to the benefit of the entire ohana (literally, family).Ohana is defined as a group of both closely and distantly related people who share nearly everything, from land and food to children and status.
By fulfilling their duties to the ohana and recognizing the accomplishments of others, Hawaiians increase their mana or spirituality.
Built upon the foundation of the ohana, the family, Hawaiian culture ensures the health of the community as a whole. The Western concept of "immediate family" is completely alien to indigenous Hawaiians. The Hawaiian ohana encompasses not only those related by blood, but all who share a common sense of aloha (love and compassion).
It is common to hear Native Hawaiians who are meeting for the first time ask "Who is your family?" and then joke they must be related "because we are all related"
To make it in Hawaii as a white person you have to adopt and respect their values. When Gabbard went off the mark with his anti-homosexuality campaigns, he lost favor in Hawaii and only made allies with the religious right. This is counter to the Hawaiian culture of tolerance. It raised the specter of the pain experienced from missionaries. He had to back pedal and Tulsi had to do adopt the prevailing tolerant views, against her childhood beliefs, to win elections. As ever, Hawaiians forgave a member of their ohana.
see: Sexual Behavior in Pre Contact Hawai‘i: A Sexological Ethnography
Sex in pre contact Hawaii
...Both sexes heard the sex-positive conversations, songs, and stories of their elders and learned accordingly. By the age of puberty sexual exploration with same-sex age mates was actively encouraged...Individuals of both sexes were expected to initiate and participate in coitus at puberty, although sexual activity, play, instruction, and so forth occurred much earlier. For instance, as part of exploratory play, the young investigated each other’s genitals, and young males and females might masturbate each other heterosexually or homosexually. This activity occurred without adult disapproval, and it was considered to be an introduction to adulthood.
Finally, there is another aspect of the Hawaiian culture which resonates with the Japanese, Chinese, and Philippinos; that is the idea that people should "mind their own business." This is why Butler's secretive cult can live and work in plain sight and have such a powerful impact on Hawaiian politics. Looking the other way is why they can not see Butler. I doubt he would be as successful on the mainland where he would be easily discovered.
Butler's main thing is to collect the adulation and worship of others along with his follower's financial resources for his own narcissistic gain. He also likes to play god using the Hawaiian political landscape as his game board. As long as the Hawaiian culture prevails and allows it, he will carry on taking advantage of it. IMHO.
VVD ~ check your private messages.