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Topic: What if String and in particular String Figures could be used as an energy device?

Lois Stokes, Kauai, Hawaii:
If you take the premise that we are all made up of energy. The same stuff as the computer on your desk and the stars above your head. So it stands clear to me that the string and in particular the string figure is also made up of energy. I come from a belief that everything is alive and responsive (King, 1990). When I hold the string in my hand I am aware of its vibrations. I am also aware of how these vibrations influence me. I believe that we are all connected. This not only means the connection between people but the connection with everything in our environment. I connect with the string and with its vibration and frequency. With my intent and my thought, that is also a form of energy, I can influence changes within myself, others and the environment.

One technique that I use is to hold the string in my left hand with the string crossing over my palm between my thumb and little finger. I then insert my thumb and little finger of my right hand into the loop from above and turn my right palm toward me while I extend the loop to my right. This makes the loop of string have a cross in the middle like a figure 8 or an infinity sign. I then rotate both of my palms towards me and away. This seems to increase the chi or energy in my body. I especially feel this up and down my spine. This is just one use of string as an energy device to increase the flow of chi that we have been working with. We would love to have your comments and other insights on this topic.



I am a member of the string figure list and just today started looking through your very well done website. I was especially intrigued to see your reference to the use of string figures in education. I too am a speech/language pathologist, who happens to be a storyteller and uses her job description to afford opportunities for storytelling and teaching kids to tell! String figures were added to my repertoire about three years ago. I have a storytelling troupe of "middle-tellers," and I know the fact that we play with string figures is what brought some of them into the group. I always enjoy going on field trips or to the lunch room, and watching as one of my tellers engages a group of kids with her prowess in string! So refreshing to see in this day of Gameboys and Walkmans.

I am also intrigued with the concept of string figures as a healing tool. This is something I had not heard of before, though admittedly my interest in string figures has been focused on their use in teaching or in storytelling. I appreciate all the hard work you and Earl have done to bring this kind of information to the Web. Though my own personal belief system is firmly Judeo-Christian, I don't see such approaches as
being in conflict with that, and am interested in learning about alternative approaches to health and healing. Thank you so much for bringing this to my awareness and providing such a great starting point to learn more.

Joy in learning through storytelling


Dear Earl and Lois,

Your new web site is gorgeous! I really like the artisitic photos (string
figures against the sky, the ocean, etc.). Your site adds a whole new
dimension to our appreciation of string figures. Keep going!

Mark Sherman


Aloha! I don't know how i found you , but what a delight. I have always made
string figures as a means of meditation. I have also always wanted to visit
Kauai. I am 47 and was there 3 years ago. As soon as I got off the plane I
had this overwhelming feeling that i had lived there at some time past. I
seemed to know my way through the jungles, and where the turtles hung out at
Ke'e and all sorts of wonderful "memories " flooded my heart and mind. I
spent lots of time sitting by bell rock and the birthing rock busy with my
string. I thought I was the only one since girl scout camp that busied
herself with such things. I felt like I was connecting to the great mother
somehow, but reading your info is a joy. As it turns out, I will be on
Kauai in october and would love to know more...Looking forward to your
jan Mahalo nui loa


Aloha my friends, Of course you may use my letter for your site.....I was in
a haze all day after discovering you. Many memories flood my mind as I have
begun to remember the significant events related to my love for the figures.
I have two daughters, and occasionally they try to impress their friends with
their "skill" Some are impressed, some not as attentive, but I get a secret
thrill when they try to go faster and more deliberately each time... over and
over. Especially the one we have always called "jacob's ladder" I saw it on
your site and just giggled with anticipation at what else i might find.
Looking forward to sharing abit of time in october............as always
Mahalo nui loa


Hello Friend,

I bet that this is going to be your oddest request ever...I would like to
learn how to do string figures and am totally blind. Have you ever taught
it to a blind person before? I enjoy doing macrame and make all kinds of
things with it. I love making bollas with pieces of nature as the vocal
points. I have made thousands of them using coarl, christal, amber,
shells, arrowheads and all kinds of stones. I recently invented a way of
making Roseries with macramae knots between each glass bead. I had had
sight for 12 years and remember seeing I think the Cat's Crattle. Now I
bet this is the oddest request you have ever gotten! I found your web site
and am pleased to inform you that it works well with Window-Eyes my screen
reader and Doubletalk voice synthesizer that reads everything on your site
to me.

Blessings and Love,


Hello Earl and Lois...

Until yesterday I had never heard of you and today I visit your site... alerted by the Aloha Int. newsletter, yesterday... but as you know, the site was down technically, for some reason, yesterday.

Anyway...... thanks.. your approach is most helpful "to find" at this moment...

Yesterday (before even getting the email newsletter) "I" wrote the piece below ... which is part of the ever-on-going intuitively-received course of instruction that I get.

You will see the potential correspondances between string figures and dream locks.... I think "dream locks" could also be appropriately called "knots" or "ties that bind" (One into a particular Life Dream).

Unlocking such locks (or untying such knots) allows transformation.... and also "hooking up with" other streams (tying new knots) allows or causes new Life Dreams.....

Dream Locks
If One’s life is but a dream, then the question becomes how satisfied... how dissatisfied... how pleasant... how horrible... how glorious... how inglorious is The Dream, from One’s own perspective?

And what to do about it?

How to “wake up” from the nightmare (should it be so)?

Or how to “transform” into an even-more entertaining or useful or (fill in the blank) Dream?

The answer to changing One’s current dream is to find THE DREAM LOCKS THAT HOLD One into this particular dream........ to find that locks that make the dream, seem real (that is: to find those locks which cause this particular dream to be accepted AS real, AS relatively-inalterable, AS “who I am, really”.

Such dream-locks EXIST..... they are the VERY FOUNDATION of this dream........ they are precisely what this life is built upon.

Should One’s life-dream be difficult or horrible, then it is very likely that the dream-locks consist of traumatically suppressed incidents of self-definition that have “dis-appeared” from conscious awareness. (1)

However, be it known, that their apparent-invisibility in no way makes them unreal...... indeed, it is just the opposite: It is their invisibility that MAKES What-Appears-To-Be-Real-To-You .......

Thus should One desire to make a dream-change (a change of Life), it is necessary to find and to unlock the dream-locks.......

(1) and we emphasize, again, that such incidents are most-likely scattered through a multi-dimensionality of time and of space..... that “you” (in this moment) are a composite of incidental-feeds...... most of which are “hidden” from conscious-awareness precisely because your (societally-accepted) dream of reality does not SERIOUSLY acknowledge or include the possibility of simultaneous trans-temporal “existences”. We have also suggested that such incidents may be called “turning points” (within time). Most dream locks ARE at such turning points.


First, many thanks to you and Earl for the String Figure class. I didn't have much of an idea of what I was going to, as it was a treat from my mom. It was delightful! I am fascinated by symbolism and the sacred in many cultures, and found the way you emphasized meaning and ritual into what is usually thought of as a childrens game (by most of us anyway!) a wonderful thing. And thank you for making me feel so warmly welcomed into the group.

I practiced what I had learned on the airplane on the way home. Soon I was playing Cat's Cradle with the woman next to me! And the day after, I was showing a friend , who picked up my string and did Jacob's ladder. Just like that, lickety split. She was amazed because she hadn't done it for over 20 years! So I guess you are right about "body memory". These figures really are fun. I have briefly looked at a few web sites, and bookmarked them for later. I was surprised how many there were. Mom and I were practicing the evening after the class, and I invented a new one I call "The Rainbow" ©2001 Jennifer. It's pretty simple, so I'm sure it's been done before, but here it is;

"The Rainbow String Figure":

Cross the string once before you loop it over your thumbs and pinkies, so you have a figure eight. Loop your index fingers through the palmar strings as usual.Take your thumbs over both index strings and pick up the near pinkie strings. Pull the thumbs back to their original position. Dip the index fingers down into the big holes left by the pinkie strings. Hook those with the back of your index fingers and bring them back to their original position. Extend your hands in front of you, and you have a rainbow.

Like I said, it's a real simple one, but I thought it was kind of neat!

I just transcribed the lyrics to the song of the story I told in class. I am going to mail it to you, as it is rather long. But I'd be happy to e-mail it too, if you would like. I'm still researching the Crane Skin Bag. I've found a little, but not the reference that I was thinking of. So that will be forth coming. While looking, I did find some things on knots and thread in Irish and Scottish folklore. So I'll organize that and send it as well. None seemed like string figure kind of things, so it's not quite on the mark. But it's all related in the bigger picture and you might find it interesting. So be patient, and I'll send you all kinds of stringy stuff! I'm going up to Washington to see my parents next week (we will practice our strings!), so I might not get this to you right away, but I'll have time after that.

Once again, it was a pleasure meeting both of you, Aloha.

~Beir Beannacht (Best Wishes to You), Jennifer


Lois... thanks for the long reply that I just read after it sat in my inbox for a number of days.

My wife and I were in the Yucatan for about a week, visiting with my son and his Mexican wife... doing the beach (yes I got to go) and the ruins like Tulum, Coba, Chitzin Itza, and Ek Balam...... I actually saw your message from an internet cafe somewhere down there... Tulum, I think......and I felt comforted to be "in contact"... but I did not read it until today. (I hope someday to get back to Kauai to see you folks and the Huna crowd.)

What to make of those Maya? and does ANYBODY have ANY idea what the maya were thinking?

They appear to have been in quite a different reality from anything we "modern" men and women understand or relate much to.....

I do wonder, however, about the heiaus possible relationship to the maya pyramids... and also the practice of human sacrifice in both cultures.

AS YOU RESEARCH ABOUT THESE STRING FIGURES...CONSIDER ALSO THE "CROP CIRCLES"..... I just shared your website address with a crop circle researcher that I met some time ago. His latest release tells the story of an artificial man-made crop circle experiment they did in England this summer..... and guess what? They found that the energetic patterns as measured by an ES meter were amped-up, even in their known-to-be-made by human circle. My explanation is that energy is induced or modulated according to the geometrics of the design... which I would guess to be the case with string figures, as well......

In case you want to check their experiment.... you can find some info at: www.cropcircles.org

And in response to what you said:
(Lois Stokes <stokes@lava.net> wrote:What if every thought was a prayer?)

This is kind of making me a bit crazy because I KNOW I WROTE A PIECE EXACTLY STATING THIS.... a few days before I left for Mexico.


and "The Universe" does respond... this is how Serge King's dream change process works, I believe.



best to you from Colorado.... and oh yes... here is a piece I found while looking for my writing on prayer...... I thought you might relate....

Becoming The Blow Hole (title from 7/19/01)
You have seen blow holes of the ocean in which the power of waves is caught in a confined chamber and forced out
through an opening at the top to become geysers of spray. With the geyser is a most impressive thunder and whoosh.

So it is that waves of information pulse through the universe, like waves upon the sea.

And so it is that should there be a chamber - a vessel - that is aligned properly to take in the on-coming wave... to capture
its power.... so it is that the captured power may be shot out upwards into the air - “into reality” with great vigor and
thunder, for all to see.... for all to hear.


Lois... your words being read now at 7AM here are timely... for me.

About the coconut wireless: another way of thinking about this phenomena is this: rather than considering it telepathy which is usually thought of as a "sending and receiving" between two or more human parties, it can be thought of as: "non-local mind". This term I encountered in a book by Russell Targ and Jane Katra... I think the term is used a lot now but for me it is an informative model.

From this viewpoint, it is not that messages are "sent" or "received" but rather that those individuals tuned similarly into particular "realities" SHARE the same mind.... access and express the same data base, so-to-speak.

We have the expression of: "being on the same wave length".

Just possibly it so.......

and I have experienced too, several times, that I and others shift on and off the same wavelength..... people appear via email or other means and we converse for a time.... then they (or I) loose interest and "disappear"...... "loosing touch" with each other, as it were.

Actually... to bring this email full-circle... explaining this to myself..... I SEE that my cycle of disillusionment could be thought of as precisely this kind of shift..... being a process of re-tuning.

At the moment I have left one radio station of truth and am spinning the dial... but so far have not obtained a new clear signal.....


Lois Stokes wrote:
Aloha David,

Many of my Hawaiian friends communicate telepathically through what we laugh at as "The Coconut Wireless". It seems that we may be on the same wavelength as well.
We made at least four telepathic connections that I am aware of:
1. The Dream Lock and Dream Knot connection
2. Just the other day people were telling me to look into crop circles
and you can be sure I will.
3. Re: Every thought is a prayer. When I get the FUDS: Fears,
Unhappiness/Anger, Doubts and Stress I imagine a delete button
and I push it. No reason to give those thoughts more air time than
necessary. Then I fill the space or the vessel as some would put it
with a blessing
or two. Energy goes to what you put your attention on. Focusing on
what you want and not on what you don't want really works.
4. Blow Holes - we have them in Kauai. And I was just writing about
the flow of thoughts as waves and why some prayers are answered
and others are not and that there must be a blockage that inhibits
the flow, the prayer, the energy if you like. That we have the power
within us (vessels if you like) to store and send off the energy the
prayer intothe universe.

Wow connections are being made faster than ever. You need to get over
here and experience the energy of this island and of the people that are
gathering here. But at the rate you are going you just need to tap into
the coconut wireless, into the energy and strengthen the connection of
those aka cords and we will hear you.

Many blessings my friend,


Dear Mark, Lois, and Shane...

excuse me for writing you jointly on this subject, but it will save me time and is relevant to each of you, I think..... although each of the following sections is addressed to one or
more persons, each section is for all: ----- the ideas are "strung-together" (a pun for the benefit of Lois).

Mark: Remember how in our recent visits to the Mayan sites in the Yucatan, we saw (and walked upon) several sacred "roads" constructed by the Maya with great effort? Sometimes these roads were elevated 15 feet or more out of the surrounding land and were as wide as 20 meters and the longest was over 100km? The ones we walked upon connected various secitons of sacred sites... but were known to also extend from one sacred site to another. We marveled at the huge amount of effort expended in construction...especially given that the Mayan had neither wheels nor wheeled vehicles to make use of these carefully smoothed "roads". I forget the spelling of the Mayan word (or spanish word) for these "roads"... something like "sacrabes".

Mark & Shane: Remember how we used to go visit Anasazi sites in Southwest Colorado and Utah? Remember that it was said that these sites, too, were inter-connected with "roads"? For instance from Mesa Verde extended in several directions "roads" to other Anasazi sites... sometimes of great distance... and of course the Anasazi also had no wheeled vehicles.

Mark & Shane & Lois: Read now this quotation from page 103 of Fred Alan Wolf's The Eagle's Quest. (Wolf is a Phd physicist/author who has a done a lot of study on the possible relationship between quantum physics and shamanism): "I met Paul and Charla at a wonderful old Welsh hotel in the center of Brecon called the Wellington. I asked Paul to explain what his work was about and how it might relate to my project on shamanic physics. He was originally an artist who found great interest in the geometry of the earth. His research dealt with ley lines - somewhat mysterious markings on the planet that are often mistaken for ancient roads. Paul told me that when ley lines were discovered, researchers explained them as indicating that ancient peoples placed some of their spiritual sites in alignments. He had performed extensive research trying to show that the ley line has spiritual significance. While I was interested in their spiritual significance, I was after their physical significance and what they might have to do with shamanic healing power:"


Lois: What would happen if string figures were considered to be hand-held, hand-created geometric formations analogous to... and perhaps serving the same purpose as..... gigantic earthen constructions such as the Mayan sacred sites that were laid out, themselves, in specific patterns... and which were inter-connected one with another by sacred "roads"..... which are perhaps indeed POWERLINES?

Everybody: What if the Maya, Anazasi, and perhaps Hawaiians were not "superstitious" but actually knew about and practiced certain consciousness-tuning techniques? What if it is unnecessary to build geometric earthen configurations? what if... what if.......


My name's Jennie and I just stumbled across your website. I have some friends who are having a really hard time dealing with everything that's going on in the world right now, and your Aloha String Figure and bracelet seem like they would brighten their days. Can you send me some information on how I could get ahold of a few booklets and strings? It would be much appreciated!

God bless you,


Dear Lois and Earl

I have just visited your beautiful website - the experience moved me to tears of happiness! You see, after a personal experience of cancer (now fully recovered!) I have become aware of my own spirituality, and I have since been on an amazing journey of discovery, finding special meaning in the wisdom of the world's older cultures.

My websearch for string games began after showing my three children how to make the figures I remember from my childhood; I am delighted that there is such a positive web presence for this art, and can't wait to share all the discoveries I have made with my children tomorrow!! Most of all, I am very moved by your concept of the Aloha String Figure and the Incredible Rainbow Bracelet!! I would very much like to purchase some of these bracelet and booklet sets and give them out to people over here in Derbyshire (U.K).

In friendship, unity and peace


Aloha Lois and Earl,

I have been sitting in front of my computer for two hours working out honu from your illustrations on the web site and I have to tell you how impressed I am with all you are doing. Lois and I were in the Huna Healer Training together in 1999 along with my friend Judy. Lois and Judy emailed some after we got back home. I hear you on the Talk Story tapes telling all that you are doing with string figures and I'm amazed with what you are accomplishing. I'm looking forward to hearing more.

Thanks for the beautiful and educational web site.

Blessings, Lynne


I have mostly been using the Averkieva/Sherman book; it covers a lot. actually people(natives) who know figures are few and far between, as I'm sure you know. I will be posting a website database of the figures I have learned...sometime. I have solely been studying the figures from this area for nearly a year. The figures seem to have a real connection to the area from which they came. With this in mind, I'm interested in studying and comparing the Hawaiian figures w/ those of the Pacific NW when I travel there. I have noted several comparisons listed in 'Kwakiutl String Figrues' and am excited to trace any possible places of intersection.

What does your 'school' offer? How many native figures have you accumulated? My schedule in Hawaii is both busy and flexible. I am currently enrolled in university here in Bellingham, WA. Next quarter I have arranged for my studies to take place in the islands, there. Part of my work will be helping to edit a documentary that a friend has been compiling for the past few years. I will also be taking a web based class through Outreach at the University of Hawaii on Political Futures. To round out my studies for the quarter I have considered exploring the string figures of the area. Besides the strictly academic approach, I have begun to explore an artistic angle in my life direction so, there is possibility to document the figures in this way as well. Your approach to figures(as seen on the website) seems very different than most others I've been exposed to.

Let me know what you think.

© 2011-20 Lois & Earl Stokes