How to say “river” in Hawai’ian and ASL


Our Hawai’ian word of the week is “muliwai,” which means river.

Wai is water.

Muli means to follow. 

A river is following water or water that follows a flow. 

Repeat after me, muliwai.

Sign language

How you sign muliwai, river— is exactly that. 

You make a W with your 3 fingers. You tap your chin. 

That’s water.

Then, you do the muli— the following the flow. 

Face your palms down in front of you and flow like a river— wiggle your fingers.

Water. Flow. Water flow. 

Muliwai. River. 

Muliwai Incantation

Let’s try an incantation, which is like casting a spell on ourselves.

Nature Spirit

Witches practice what is known as paganism, many of which are daily rituals of self-love and self-care. 

When you do a daily ritual, you can chant an incantation.  Such as when you are petting your dog, you can sing a song to him. Or when you are massaging knots on your own body, you can sing a song to your body. Incantations help you put spiritual intention into your physical activity— thereby calling help from angels, spirit guides, and nature—to make your actions more powerful. 

Here is our muliwai, our river incantation. Please feel free to say it out loud along with me while doing the sign language.

English version

Be a river.

Flow like a river. 

Don’t let anyone block my flow. I am a river. 

I am a river of well-being. 

A river of effortless abundance.

Hawaiian version

Be a muliwai

Flow like a muliwai.

Don’t let anyone block my flow. I am a muliwai

I am a muliwai of well-being. 

A muliwai of effortless abundance.


What do you want to be a muliwai of? 

Do you want to be a muliwai, a river of kala— a river of money? 

A river of aloha aloha, of romance? 

A river of manaʻolana, of hope? 

A river of ikehu, of energy? 

A river of laki, of luck?

Write in your journal what kind of muliwai you are. Manifest it by writing your own personal magical incantation.

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