Posted by: David D. Daggett | October 22, 2007



***Click here or on sidebar to go directly to Ironman slideshow ***

     Don’t we just long for that finish line? In Ironman racing and in life finish lines seem to be so important to us. This past week I competed in the Hawaii Ironman World Triathlon Championship. My article on the race is below, or here. The theme for this year’s event was “Kupau,” Hawaiian for “Completion.”


     The photo above is The Place of Refuge dating back to at least the 1500’s. It was a spiritual place, a place for royalty, a place of safety, and a place where Kupau is obtained.

     In ancient Hawaii there was a sort of rite of passage in obtaining Kupau. It included demonstrating the seven traits of knowledge, understanding, wisdom, strength, inspiration, authority, and endurance. To me an interesting part of Kupau is that part of obtaining completion is the understanding that the journey regarding these traits continues. Most of us probably tend to think of completion as being an end, not a journey.

     Learning about Kupau had me reflecting a lot about what we do as athletes and how we explore the seven traits of Kupau. They are sort of common traits or areas of study for most major religions and philosophies throughout history. It would take a book or two to cover these subjects!

     Understanding that completion is part of the journey may be the most important lesson of Kuapu. The journey toward Kupau is the actually making and forming us as individuals and who we are. Part of the “destination” of athletes is a fitness lifestyle, and that lifestyle itself is part of the journey. Interestingly, much of the efforts needed for this lifestyle are unseen, and therefore unappreciated, by most.

     The journey is a process that we must, like the light of a Hawaiian torch, also pass on to others. We need to celebrate the journey, and celebrate and encourage those who come along with us. Even in the quiet of soft footsteps, after it is dark, great people come forth on our journey. As we continually refine the seven attributes striving for a perfect completion, the true completion is to know that we must continue the journey.

     I plan to continue to further reflect on the seven traits of Kupau, as well as to further understand that part of completion is understanding that the journey continues.

Thanks for joining me on this journey,



  1. […] through confidence, diligence, and preparation. Those results, or completion as we discussed in “Kupau,” are the compilation or developing our various virtues or traits that lead to […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: