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Ask Polynesians where they came from?

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When historians asked the Maoris of New Zealand (settled in 800AD) where they came from, they said Hawaiki as in Hawai'i (settled in 500AD) or in Havai'i 300AD or even Savai'i 2000BC.  When historians asked the people of Hawai'i (settled in 500AD) where they came from, they said Havai'i (settled in 300AD) now called Raiatea in Tahiti or even Savaii in Samoa 2000BC. When historians asked the people of Havai'i (settled in 300AD) where they came from, they said from the west Savai'i (Birthed unique Polynesians in 2000BC). Savai'i, according to many Polynesians is the ancient land of lava flows, volcanoes, god Tagaloa which is pronounced Tanaloa or Kanaloa by Samoans {worshiped in Tahiti as Ta'aroa and Hawai'i as Kanaloa}, ancient Ali'is and the Kings of Samoa. " Sa moa " or " Sacred Center/Heart " of Polynesia, the birthplace of pure Polynesians in 2000BC. Savai'i the ancient motherland, where it all began for all Polynesians.
The biggest island of Samoa with volcanoes is Savai'i.  It is the third largest island in Polynesia. The other two are Hawai'i the big island and Aotearoa New Zealand.  Savaii's volcano eruptions, along with inter-island wars between Samoa, Tonga, and Fiji and frequent travels, lost canoes, exiled families or warriors, or a voyaging spirit of the people led to many opportunities for odyssey.  Some odysseys were desired and some forced because of wars and exiles, A POLYNESIAN ODYSSEY.  Today in Samoa, most people live on Upolu rather than the larger Savai'i due to destructive lava flows and volcano eruptions of the past, still very evident today geographically.
In 2003 the research team and wife of Thor Heyerdahl who died in April 2002 at age 87 are studying the largest and oldest man made structure in Polynesia called PULEMELEI in Savai'i, Samoa.  Interestingly, in the Hawaiian language PULE means PRAYER and MELE means CHANT and I means HERE as in I NEI or NE I or simply I.  Literal translation of PULEMELEI in Hawaiian as PULE MELE I means " PRAYER CHANTING HERE."   In Samoan PULE ME LE I means literally " OWNERSHIP or GOVERN HERE."  This is a 2003 translation of PULEMELEI in the two native Polynesian languages.  Pulemelei in Savai'i is about 2500 miles from Hawai'i within the Polynesian triangle.
Thor Heyerdahl was the Norwegian scientist in 1940s who theorized the origin of Polynesians from South America using the Kon tiki raft to prove possible species migration.  A theory he based on the physical properties of the ocean currents.  Like James Cook he realized the changing of these ocean currents to allow migrations vice versa.  Heyerdahl's theory then did not include study of Savaii, Samoa in west Polynesia.   In 2003, Thor Heyerdahl's research team is in Savai'i, Samoa studying what he wanted to research. 
Latest genetic studies in the journals on PNAS 2000 and GENETICS 2002 confirm the origins of Polynesians from sea-faring migrant people originating from around South East Asia.  Both articles had these points made (1)  Taiwan is not a link to Polynesians as once believed and (2) Polynesians have unique genetic markers like the ' Polynesian motif ' that distinguishes them from all other populations even their closest neighbors the Micronesians and Melanesians.  Melanesian genetic markers were found in Tongans like Fijians who border Polynesia.  These Melanesian genes were not found in Samoans, Tahitians, Hawaiians nor other Eastern Polynesians.  At the University of Hawaii as with most other scientists, it is known that Polynesians were birthed pure in the Samoa and Tonga realm ( Savai'i and Upolu), the 'Sa moa' or 'Sacred center or Sacred heart' of Polynesia.  'Sa means sacred' and 'moa means heart or center' in the Polynesian Samoan language.

The Samoan word Tonga means "South." It is held in Samoan oral tradition that the original people of Tonga were Polynesians from Samoa and Melanesians from nearby Fiji and Vanuatu.  Tonga-Samoan Polynesians procreated with the Melanesians of Fiji and Vanuatu and developed the modern-day Tongan heritage, which explains the scientific findings of mixed Polynesian-Melanesian genetic markers of Tongans (Genetics 2002). Melanesian cultural influence was very strong in the Tonga islands, thus Polynesians retreated back to Samoa. To keep the Polynesian bloodline strong, royalty of Tonga sought marriage with Samoan Alii families, hence Queen Salamasina and Taufaahau Tupou. These old traditions are well known in the Southern Polynesian islands.

It is important to realize why the Maori of New Zealand 800-1000AD, the Maoli of Hawai'i 500AD, the Maohi of Tahiti 300AD were able to remember where they came from originally other than their new island homes. The Eastern Polynesians were recent migrants unlike the long settled Mao'i of Samoa 2000-500BC. The newly settled Eastern Polynesians voyaged with a recent recollection of where they came from, because they had only arrived to their new islands not long before the Europeans came into Polynesia and recorded their recollections. The Mao'i of Savai'i, Samoa had been settled since around 2000-500BC and because of multiple generations that remained in Samoa, they only knew their origins as being from Samoa. Samoans according to the latest genetic studies of 2002 AD are unique Polynesians and have been since 2000-500BC without any Melanesian or Micronesian genes. Unique Polynesian genetics is determined from the presence of the Polynesian motif, a specific genetic DNA sequence, present only in the Polynesian people.

References: (1) Thor Heyerdahl's Theories (2) Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium (3) Genetics 2002 (4) PNAS 2000 (5) World Encyclopedias (6) Pacific Journals. 

COPYRIGHT 2003 to Peter Leiataua AhChing at John A. Burns School of Medicine & University of Hawaii at Manoa.