To complement the MASSAGE Magazine article, “Lomilomi: Hawaiian Sacred Healing,” by Gloria Coppola, the March 2011 issue. Article summary: Lomilomi is an ancient Hawaiian restorative healing system, one component of which is the art of compassionate touch. Lomilomi goes far beyond massage, however; it also reflects the connection we have with the land (‘aina), the spirit guides or ancestors (‘aumakua) and the breath of life (aloha).

by Tom Cochran and Donna Jason

Lomilomi is a style that does not separate the physical from the spiritual or emotional being. Lomilomi teaches us that we are integrated whole beings.

In Temple Style, or Sacred Lomi, the vibrational state of the practitioner is as important, if not more important, than the physical runs. If a practitioner is nervous or has a deep well of repressed feelings for example, that vibration is what he is “offering” through his touch. One’s deeper truth can’t be masked in the intimate realm of touch.

On the surface, the forearm runs of Temple Style Lomi are flowing, circular, embracing and loving. Looking deeper, in order for the movement to be as all encompassing as the ocean, or as clearing as the wind, the practitioner needs to be: totally relaxed; use his entire body; be supported by his breath; allow himself to be fully present in each moment; and trust his intuition, so he can surrender to and follow his inner guidance in each moment.

In addition, the consciousness of the practitioner affects the client. When a client enters an office, she instantaneously and possibly unconsciously reads the blueprint of the practitioner’s inner world. In the first 20 seconds, she has already assessed the safety and depth of what can happen based on what she can sense.

When a client feels safe, honored and is able to relax, she can surrender into a state that allows deeper hurts, injuries and emotional wounds to be held in the loving hands of the practitioner. The circular, flowing movements and figure-eights stimulate the right and left brain alternatively, re-wiring the nervous system and encouraging buried cellular memories to surface for healing.

When the practitioner can hold a nonjudgmental space while offering loving, sacred touch, the client’s opportunity for healing reaches quantum proportions.

Ultimately, the path to becoming a powerful lomilomi facilitator comes back to learning self-love and self-care. Like the age old adage, “We teach best by example,” when a practitioner can hold and transmit a vibration of health, clarity, presence, power and love, that energy invites clients to let go of things that are not serving them, re-pattern experiences and return to a natural state of wellness and vitality.

The physical craft of lomilomi can be learned by nearly anyone. However, embodying the vibration of love, aloha and enlightenment requires a deep commitment to one’s self and one’s life path.

Sacred Lomi® founders Tom Cochran and Donna Jason ( offer a system of healing rooted in Temple Style Hawaiian Lomi Lomi and integrated with principles of personal growth and spiritual awakening. They are continuing education providers with the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork and have been teaching together since the 1990s.