Souls Traveling to Pulotu

PULOTU

Manatua, o ulua’i tagata faimalaga pei o ulua’i Samoa, ua leva ona taunu’u pe tusa o le 100 po’o le 150 tausaga muamua i Savai’i ma, e lē taumate a^°U n°f°la ai f0’ua ls3moa), sa latou filifilia ogā lau’ele’ele aupito mānanaia i le tala Upolu ma atonu fo’i ma Tutuila. O i latou nei i le talafātai o Upolu, ma latou na lē fiafia e tu’uina atu nei lau ‘ele’ele mo nei tagata ese. E ui lava ina o ulua’i Samoa fa’atasi ma tagata fou na fa’atoā taunu’u mai, o le lanu e tasi, e lē taumate ona o le umi tele o lo latou nofo valavala ai fa’apea ma le ‘ese’esega o a latou gaoioiga lautele, sa tutupu ‘ese’ese a’e ai i latou ma o a latou aiga. O lea uiga moni, o le a fesoasoani mo i tatou e mālamalama ai, pe aisea na pogai ai ona le fiafia ulua’i Samoa e fai tuā’oi ma i latou na se’i fa’ato’ā taunu’u mai.

E le tioa la, na le’i umi ae fepa’ia’i i latou ina ua taumafai e tagata fou na fa’ato’a taunu’u mai ona ave fa’amalosi ni lau’ele’ele aupito mananaia i le talafātai. Mai se tasi o nei taua’i misaaga, na le’i pine ona fofoa mai ai o se taua tele, ma o lona uiga ese, na manumalō tagata na fa’ato’ā taunu’u mai, e ui ina fa’atoluina e to’aitiiti ai i latou. O le mea moni, o tagata na fa’ato’ā taunu’u mai, na matuā a’oa’oina lelei i le faiva o tau na latou a’oa’oina mai Melei.

Masalo fo’i po ona o le lē galulue fa’atasi ma au’aumea fa’atasi ulua’i Samoa, po ona o le tele lava o le tomai o’i latou na fa’ato’ā taunu’u mai i le faiva o tau. Ona o lo latou atamamai i le faiva o tau, atoa ma lo latou tomai e fe’alo’alofa’i, na mafua ai ona fa’aigoa i latou e ulua’i Samoa, o Togafiti, o lona uiga, o tagata na latou maua le sini ona o le popoto o a latou togafiti ae le o so latou loto tetele. Talu mai ai, o i latou e a’afia i lenei vaega lona lua na malaga mai, e ta’ua pea o Togafiti.

Peita’i, a’o fa’agāsolo atu pea lava aso, na i’u ai ina fefa’auōa’i nei vaega e lua ma, na avea ai lava ma tagata e tasi i latou uma, na o’o atu ai i le tupulaga soso’o, fa’apea ma nisi fo’i, ua to’atele ai pea ma i’u ai ina la’itiiti Samoa mo i latou.

I na lava aso anamua, sa feto’ai pea tuaā o Samoa ma ni osofa’iga fai so’o ma, na sosola solo ai i latou ma folau atu e sa’ili le filemu ma ni nofoaga fou. Peita’i, o aso nei, ua folau lava i latou i o latou loto malilie, pe fa’amālosia fo’i i o latou agaga fia sa’ili mālō po o le tata’ina atu fo’i e le vasa laolao tele o le Pasefika. O le mea lea, mai Samoa, ua pei o le ogātotonu lea sa latou folau atu ai i matū ma toga, i sasa’e fo’i ma sisifo, ona o le fia maua o ni lau’ele’ele fou, ma fia maua fo’i ni la’au ma ni meaola e aogā mo le soifuaga. So’o se motu lava latou te maua, e au ili’ili saili’iliga ina ia iloa tino pe lelei mo ni nofoaga o tagata. O lea uiga na latou maua ai ni motu tuā’oi se tele; sa nonofo ai ma fai ma nofoaga o Polenisia na malaga atu i Sāmoa.

Peita’i, o lea fa’atasitasiga na fausia i ni motu e tele sa salalau solo ma na le’i tumau. O le mea moni, na o’o loa ina ua ‘ainā motu mamao ma ua to’atele tagata, na latou iloa ai ua lava lo latou malosi e galulue ai lava latou. O lea sa fa’atū ai loa fo’i lo latou lava mālō. O tupulaga la na mulimuli atu ai, sa aga’i lava ina seāseā ona toe feiloa’i, ma na i’u ai ina avea latou o ni tagata ese.

Souls Traveling to Pulotu

While the scholars will search feverishly to uncover the precise origin of the Samoan people, and chart the paths of their migration to Samoa, others unquestionably accept what Brother Fred Henry writes, i.e. there was no migration at all, since “. . the old Samoan chiefs and orators firmly believe that the Samoans had always been in Samoa. In proof of it, they will remind us about the myths in accordance with which Samoa and the Samoans were created by Tagaloa, the highest of their gods.” (see History, p. 4-5)

The original ancestral home was Pulotu, (the home of the gods), and the place where they return after their earthly experiences were completed. It is known as the “world of darkness” (lalo fonua).

According to the Samoan tradition, Pulotu was situated far, far towards the west, in their original home, while the scholars have evidence that “westernmost” extended as far as Havaiki (Hawaii), and even as far west as the ancient lands of Mesopotamia. Samoan lore places Pulotu at the westernmost point of the westernmost island: the Village of Falealupo in Savai’i.

One legend narrates that later seafarers, while on the high sea, constantly met with the souls of those who had already died, as they travelled west to Pulotu. Some of these souls were weeping, some laughing and singing, and some even playing different instruments, especially the flute. Once they reached Polutu, they entered a lake whose water conferred immortality.

While we are unconcerned with how Pulotu was located, Samoan lore is settled that one entered the mystical road to Pulotu leading to a pool at Fafa, on the extreme west of Upolu, where the souls needed to enter through the correct entrance, one of which was reserved for the chiefs (Lualotoali’i) and the other for ordinary people (Lualototufanua). An aitu, named Leosia, watched to ensure that every soul entered through the correct hole into the abyss.

Pulotu was ruled by the cannibal god Saveasi’uleo, who lived as half man- half eel and ate all of his brothers but the youngest, Ulafanuase’e (Ula). Ula was the father of Tilafaiga (and therefore of her conjoined twin sister Taema). In some versions, when Tila and Taema finally departed one another to go their separate ways, Tila married Saveasi’uleo and gave birth to Nafanua, the warrior goddess.

Pulotu is also where, according to legend, the first war began. The four sons of Saveasi’uleo went on a journey to Papatea, where the fearful Papateans, anticipating an attack, struck one man named Ua on the neck, which act is considered a great insult. When the sons returned to Puleto and reported on this outrage, their King Elo became enraged and set about to completely destroy the Papateans, which he succeeded in doing with only three exceptions. Everyone who fled inland was conquered and killed, but those who set to sea survived and swam away: Tutu and his wife Ila (Tutuila), U and his wife Polu (Upolu) and Sa and his wife Vaila (Savai’i).

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