Skip to main content

About Auntie Margaret

Aunty Margaret Kalehuamakanoelulu’uonapali Machado is a world renowned Kahuna (healer in Hawaiian). She is renowned as a master of Lomi Lomi, traditional Hawaiian massage. She is the only person state certified to teach Lomi Lomi in Hawaii. People come to her from all over the world and atribute miraculous cures to her work, but she doesn’t make those claims herself. Aunty Margaret Machado is to lomi lomi as Ida Rolf is to Rolfing. She is considered a living treasure in Hawaii .

She was so popular that a top 5 star hotel, Mauna Lani, requires therapists to study with her before they will be hired. In 2000 January/February issue of Massage Magazine she is recognized as one of the “Stars of the Century”.

“She does not heal. And she’ll be the first one to tell you that,” naturopathic doctor Glenna Wilde says. “She heals with her love of God. It’s never about herself. She absolutely with every ounce of her being loves God. Her whole message in massage is to love the body.”

Lomi Lomi is handed down within families for generations. Her family’s knowledge was transmitted to her by her grandfather, a man she didn’t know well. Aunty Margaret was not raised by her Big Island family; instead, before her mother died, she sent young Margaret to a missionary home in Honolulu for a Christian upbringing.

When Margaret was ten, her grandfather flew over to give her his blessing and to impart his wisdom and lineage. Before her birth, he had named her Kalehuamakanoelulu’uonapali, a name that indicated he had chosen her to carry on the family secrets. Within the name are several meanings: the lehua flower, eyes, mist, scattered pollen, precipice.

“I was the chosen one of the family to receive the blessing,” she explains. “Because my grandfather named me, he had to see this little girl. He wanted to give me the blessing because he named me before birth. Hawaiian children are named before birth. The parents or the grandparents are given a dream of what to name the coming baby.

“So he blessed me and he chanted over me. It was a long, long chant. And his tears ran down his cheeks. After that he kissed both my cheeks, my forehead and the top of my head and he left. He didn’t live too long after that and he passed away. Then when I was sixteen I came home.

Typically, the knowledge of her lineage was kept within the family. As Aunty Margaret says: “My family didn’t want me to teach. They thought maybe it belonged only in the family. But because I was raised up in a missionary home, I want to share it. The Lord wants me to share it. Even now my relatives say, “Don’t teach, Aunty. Don’t teach.’ I say because it’s love work, and because I love the Lord, I’m going to teach.

And thus she has done so since the 1940s. She has no idea how many people she has taught in her one-month classes, and has no idea how many people she has massaged over the years. What she does know is that from her own name comes her inspiration.

“My name means my work. Ka lehua means flower–I’m a flower. Maka is the eyes–I’m looking at you. I can go right through you and tell you just exactly where it is. When I look at you I know all about you. You don’t have to tell me about yourself. It’s written on your countenance. All your muscles and your bones reflect your countenance, how you work with your body.”

“Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. That’s why pali (is in her name)–this is your pali, this is my pali, my mountain, my temple. So I’m going to open it up so you have better circulation so you feel better. I want you to feel better.”

Lomi Lomi is the only massage Aunty Margaret uses. She knows of the other massage styles, but finds them too rough. “They dig in,” she says. Lomi Lomi she calls “very thorough”, and says it’s “just working with the heart.”

“The Lord does the healing. I don’t heal,” she reminds you. “That’s why I say prayer. I ask the Lord to intervene. It’s said that Hawaiian massage is praying work.”

Prayer and the Hawaiian art of family mediation (ho’oponopono) are what Aunty Margaret considers her special ingredients for healing. “And the secret part of it is that before the sun goes down you ho’oponopono, you search your heart. Ho’oponopono meaning we empty all ourselves and ask for forgiveness before the sun goes down. You can’t go to sleep with a troubled mind or troubled heart. you feel good because you’re open minded. Every day you ask forgiveness. So your blood vessels open, your nerves open, your muscles open, you relax. Don’t worry. I never worry. The Lord going to open the way.”