Interview with Bboy Paul Skee of Mighty 4

Recently Anais Szabo & I caught up with our friend Paul Skee in Kauai.  Paul Skee is a b-boy and founder of Mighty 4.  Mighty 4 is a grassroots Hip-Hop company aimed to enrich the youth and young adult lives utilizing the dynamic arts of Hip-Hop Culture as its main vehicle (B-boying/Girling, Djing, Emceeing, Writing and more).  Paul Skee talks to us about the youth, the A.R.T. Center in Kauai and hip hop elements as a catalyst for change.

 

Our interview/session is much like a divination in that we give the Ancestors and Spirit an opportunity to have voice.  Often when you hear Anais or myself speaking about ‘them’, we’re talking about Spirit.  It may be the ancestors or kontomble or the genies talking to us.

Liv:  I honor our collective ancestors and ask that whatever comes through during this session, may it be in service to community..

Anais:  Your far away ancestors are whispering to the spirits that I work with.  They’re saying to make sure that you clearly recognize the piece about what happened to you and to talk on that. What happened to you as a young person that would encourage such kind of work in the world?

Paul Skee:  Yeah, definitely.  When I was young I was always into these dances and art forms, as early as 5 years old.  Growing up I’d always see my friends who would get into it and we would be doing it, you know, every summer the same thing.  But, gradually as they got older, like, 11, 12, 13, we would be plagued by drugs and gangs.  So everybody would either start selling ice or start doing ice or whatever drugs, really young.  11, 12 or 13, can you imagine that?

That actually really messed me up when I was a kid because I didn’t have anymore friends.  Everybody was doing something else and it just wasn’t cool to break anymore or to do any of the art forms because everyone wanted to either make money or spend it away on doing drugs or something of that sort.  Or be in a gang.  So I would always gravitate more towards the youth.  I would be a sophomore or junior and be kickin it with 7th or 8th graders after school.  That’s how bad it got.  Nobody in my sophomore or junior year were dancing anymore.

Anais:  Where did you grow up?

(Photo below:  Mighty 4 workshop, Union City.)

Paul Skee:  Union City, California, about 15 minutes from Oakland.  My whole high school years I didn’t kick it with high schoolers.  I was kickin it with middle school kids because these were the only kids that wanted to dance or to do these art forms.  So picture me being 17 years old waiting for these kids to get off school to go practice.  I would always hang out with these kids and eventually even these kids would get into the gangs and drugs.  I still remember to this day one of my closest friends, I came into the garage one day and he was just high out of his mind.  And I told him, “hey man, don’t ever stop breakin’ man.  I’m serious.  Let’s keep going.”  And, you know, saying that to a kid that’s wasted, that’s in one ear out the other.  Eventually he quit due to unfortunate circumstances.  This is one of the kids that had super talent beyond me and beyond everyone in the neighborhood.  If you can imagine growing up in a neighborhood full of kids 20, 30 kids in the neighborhood and then watching them all fall off to where there’s only 2 of us left.

Liv:  Paul Skee, why do you feel like you never got into drugs?

Paul Skee:  I did but I didn’t get too hectic into it.  I would get it from my parents.  Really, I think that it just wasn’t that appealing to me at the time.  I just loved the art forms so much that that was my high.

Liv:  So you were mostly dancing?

Paul Skee:  Dancing, yeah and trying to do the writing.  I wanted to learn everything about the culture, listening to the rap music and really trying to get to the root of it as far as learning my history.  Learning the people and the architects that created it.  I flunked high school because I was so consumed by the culture of hip hop.  It was kind of a weird trade off.  I learned so much about the culture but my schooling was just out the window.

Liv:  You got schooled in a different way?

Paul Skee:  Yeah.

Anais:  When did you really get serious?

Paul Skee:  Probably when I got real serious was 1991, 92.  I’m still a student trying to catch up from there.  But to go to the whole trauma situation, that’s why I do what I do and I try to influence kids into the culture because I just hated seeing what happened to my neighborhood.  That was very traumatizing.

Anais:  That’s very mature.  You were very mature.  Were your parents born in America ?

Paul Skee:  My mom was born in Japan and moved to the Philippines.  My dad was born in the Philippines and then moved to San Francisco.  Then they hooked up in San Francisco .

Anais:  When you were growing up were you exposed to their culture, their roots?  Did they speak their native tongue?

Paul Skee:  Yeah.  They spoke Tagalog growing up.  I didn’t really learn how to speak it but I learned how to understand.  If I’m in a room and people are speaking Tagalog, I’ll be able to pick it up.  But as far as speaking it, it was kind of looked down upon because at school you get called a Fob or something like that.  Anything that kids don’t understand, they’re going to treat you like you’re an alien.  So I kind of held that in.  It’s something that I look back and am pretty embarrassed about, that I just didn’t say I don’t care what you think I’m going to do what I do.

Anais:  Well, that’s part of being raised in the West, right?

Paul Skee:  Yeah, exactly.

Anais:  You have a lot of protection around you from both sides, from both lineages, heavy ancestral protection.  You’re very protected.  That’s a very rare story, just on a simple level its like growing up in the hood and everybody gets caught up — everybody’s making money.  Why were you so different?  Getting caught up is getting caught up.  So I keep looking at that and that’s what they keep showing, your protection is very strong — you’ve got some genies too.  They have bracelets going up their arm further than I can see.  They are holding you very protected.  That’s been the thing that’s kept you out of it.

Paulskee:  Wow.. I never even saw it like that.  I never even imagined.  I mean, the most that I could relate to when it comes to that is, eventually my city and the people in it would know that I was breakin’ and when the people would go out and ride out they’d just be like, stay doing what you’re doing.  Don’t come out with us.  People would actually encourage me, the gangsters and everybody there, they would encourage me just to keep dancing.  That’s amazing to hear.

Anais:  When you talked about the roots of it that’s when they came in to say, it’s like the roots to everything and it’s not so far from you.  Maybe many of the people in your neighborhood, their parents are from wherever they came from too.  They’re not 5th generation in America.  But this thing with these particular ancestors and then these other beings, their eyes send out such a strong energy, their eyes are on you non-stop

Liv:  Remember, Anais, when I was talking about a global ancestry?  That was something that had come up with Paul Skee before, that there’s a global ancestry, there’s something global protecting him.

Anais:  That’s real.  I can watch what they’re saying and they’re showing pictures and saying you are tapping into about 10 percent of your capacity.

Paul Skee:  Wow.

Anais:  To light a wildfire of change.

Liv:  the sun just came out when you said that!

Anais:  They show maybe you can feel them because they make you really hot, they say on your back.  They’re showing 2 parts.  You know how you have your right side and the left side of your back?  They show that they sometimes will make friction fast and hot, make your back feel really hot.  Do you know that feeling?  They’ve been trying to show you ways that you could start to tune into them.  They say when you’re doing some particular movement, there’s a certain movement.  If you pay attention more, they say when you dance feel when your back will get hot.

Paul Skee:  Oh, wow!  That’s amazing that you said that because it’s something that I actually teach.  The first thing I teach somebody is utilizing your back to rock forward and back, forward and back.  Basically that’s called rocking, kind of like when you have a dj scratching, they’ll kind of be rocking back and forth.  Or a drummer is rocking back and forth.  The basis of what we do in hip hop, we rock the beat.  We rock the turntables.  That’s been one of the biggest things that I’ve learned.  Once I get into that soulful rhythm, that movement, utilizing my back, I’m always left, right, forward, back, constantly doing that to the beat.  That’s when I get that feeling, I kind of channel off to a —

Anais:  Yeah!

Liv:  Woah!

Anais:  They say that’s when they’re playing their rhythms.  That’s when you can hear them.  That’s them!

Paul Skee:  Wow!

Anais:  That’s so great!  You got it!  That’s them.  I’m smiling and laughing and they’re like (roar!)  there’s so much energy.  They’re all the do, not a thought, the action.  That’s what they are.  This is making them beat their — that’s not a drum.  I don’t know what they’re playing, some animal looking thing.  Really hard, my heart wants to beat harder.  That rhythm gets louder and harder and stronger and they’re wanting you to stretch a lot more because this is the wave that comes out of you and creates and then flows all around.  You’re the middle,  you know when you drop a pebble in the water and it makes a (making sound)?  You’re like that but with a boulder and then all the waves reach out to all the people that can be washed over with this.  It’s healing.

Paul Skee:  That’s amazing because I don’t stretch as much as I’m supposed to and I’m now feeling the effects of it at 33 years old.  I’ve really been trying to put more emphasis on my stretching.

Anais:  Oh, literal stretching.  They’re saying yes, yes because the stretching they’re talking about is through your body and then all the way through your spirit.

Paul Skee:  Okay!

Anais:  Through your consciousness, through your ability to radiate, grow, be really big.  You have a grandiose story, that’s what they say.  Your story is grandiose and you’re still rockin’ a seedling.

Paul Skee:  Yo, I gotta work on it is what you’re saying?

Anais:  Yeah, they are going to require some separate honoring from your ancestors, separate honoring from the Earth.  Which they say this needs to be, this is mandatory for you now.  The Earth, always Earth.  Everywhere you go honoring the Earth and the ancestors of the land and then your ancestors and then these beings separate.  They require their own acknowledgement.  They’re the grandiose energy that makes you want to expand out to the whole world.

Liv:  My attention keeps going to what you were talking about earlier, Paul Skee, about when you travel to these different places, being interested in what’s happening on the streets.  Why do you like to go there?

Paul Skee:  For me, I like to know what’s going on in my surroundings because I like to walk into a situation — early on when I first started traveling in ’98, flying around to places  and even before that really — this is what’s going on in Oakland.  This is what’s happening in Hayward.  This is what’s happening in Fremont or Vallejo.  I have family everywhere so it’s something where I felt like I had to know what was going on.  Because if I didn’t know what was going on, I could go into a different place wearing the wrong colors.  It’s something that could happen.  I’m always real keen to respect other people’s cities or territories, whatever you’d like to call it.  Then it became something where I really studied hard on other countries, so that by the time I landed in a different country I was able to pay homage to some of the pioneers from that land and meet them and acquire their wisdom.  That’s kind of how I made my way over the last 13 years.  It was something inside that kept telling me, understand where you’re going.  Understand their history.  Respect where you’re going.

Anais:  That’s very wise.

Liv:  How do you pay respect at this point when you travel to these different places?

Paul Skee:  It all depends.  If I go somewhere like the Netherlands or Holland, 9 times out of 10 the hip hop cultural community is based in urban or ghetto-like environments.  So I’m trying to study what’s going on here, in Rotterdam, or this is what’s going on.  I just figure out what’s happening in the scene.  Is the government, what are they up to?  What are they doing to the communities?  Are they helping it or are they tearing it down or what’s going on on their streets?  Is it gangsters?  Is it mobs?  Is it mafia?  There’s all sorts of stuff that I’m trying to understand because I just want to understand the social environment to understand the people there.  I’m also trying to understand what’s going on so I don’t get hurt.  I’ve been in ghettos in Casablanca, et cetera.  I don’t really know how I managed to do it.  When you broke down the ancestral help I have globally, I kind of understand now.  Looking back I wondered how did I make it through all of these cities and countries.

Liv:  Right.

Paul Skee:  I’m just some regular dude.  I don’t know how I did it or why I was really welcomed open armed wherever I went.  But, I was thankful.  I just didn’t know why it was happening like that until recently.

Liv:  What happened recently?

Paul Skee:   When we had the divination together, when you broke down that there was ancestral help across the planet.

Liv:  Right..  The ancestors are asking about your child.  They’re asking about little Paul Skee.

Paul Skee:  Oh, Skee’s doing well.  I’ve actually been teaching him how to do offerings and really understanding his ancestry as well.  From our bloodline to his family’s bloodline and the land bloodline, etcetera and going up into the cosmos.  So he recently turned 10 and I’m real excited to really put him on a path where he can think outside the box like that.

Anais:  And he’s feeling it when he does offerings with you?

Paul Skee:  I think he’s kind of — as all kids — going through the motions and maybe later on they’ll get it.

Anais:  Yeah.

Paul Skee:  There was a good story.  Maybe it was on his 7th birthday, I took him to New York City.  I took him to Bronx River projects, in the Bronx in New York.  That’s where the Zulu Nation formed out there.  It’s a real historic spot.  When I took him there we took the train.  We had to walk real far and we’re in the middle of the projects.  I told him that it was real special to me and I hope one day he’ll understand why.  Just paying homage to this organization that helped spread the culture around the world.  And it was one of those tear jerker moments.  He was 7 years old.  So I know he kind of understands.  At the same time I don’t expect too much because he’s just a youngster going through his motion as well.

Anais:  And what about the kids at the youth center?  You guys have such an open canvas to gently weave those kinds of things in, subtly, thanking the ancestors, gently, so you don’t have all these sideway looks.  But maybe just a little bit and see how they respond.

Paul Skee:  At the center, it’s kind of a challenge because we’re here on an island and, I mean, granted technology, You Tube, the internet, kids are hip to it as well.  It’s just, seeing some of these dynamic art forms, aerosol writing and breakin’ is kind of like, wow, what is this?  Or they’ll kind of be timid about it.  So that’s the challenge of trying to inspire them.  You know what I mean?  It’s a work in progress but I feel that, myself and East 3 have the experience to inspire them and possibly get them interested.  We’ve been doing pretty well over the last couple of months, getting kids to come in and try things.  The key part of it is to get them inspired and maybe to commit to an art form and understand it not just through movement and body but spiritually and mentally as well.  So that’s always the challenge.  But once a youngster starts understanding the spirituality of the art form, that’s when you know that they’ll kind of stick with it.

Liv:  Paul Skee, what inspired your focus with the youth in the first place?

Paul Skee:  As I spoke about earlier, it was just seeing youth growing up getting into the wrong things.  That is my main inspiration.  I really wouldn’t want any other parents or their kids to go through what I’ve seen.  I am just trying to give them a better opportunity, possibly to take that energy.  Kids have so much energy, it’s not even funny.  At some point in time that energy has to be harnessed.  At this point in the game they’re either going to be connected to the internet, technology and the matrix or they’re just going to do something else on the streets.  And there are very few kids that I see that are proud to be artistic, whether it’s skating or any art form.  It’s almost looked down upon, art forms.

Liv:  Yeah, what’s up with that?

Paul Skee:  I think it’s just society.  I think that they really want us to be robots.  Either that or just get kids to consume, consume, consume, junk food, technology, clothing.  It’s a capitalist society we live in, in the Western world.  To be a dancer looks like, oh man you dance?  Ah man!  It’s not really cool, I guess, being artistic, which is really backwards in this society.

Liv:  Yet it seems — we’ve talked about this a little before — but it seems to have the potential of liberating one from the matrix.

Paul Skee:  Definitely.  I mean, I can only do my part.  I try to do as much as I can but my battery runs low and I have to recharge myself.  I just think it’s kind of tough when all you hear on the radio, when all you hear in hip hop really has nothing of cultural value to it like it once did in the 80’s.

Liv:  They’re asking me to ask you about the water in Hawaii.

Paul Skee:  The water?  Well, the weather has been really irregular here these last couple of months, compared to last year when I was here.  I think a lot of it has to do with the tragedies that have been going on all over the world, everything with Japan, et cetera.  I’m not an expert on it but I believe that Mother Earth is crying out.  So there’s so much stuff going on with the radiation, water privatization.  There are certain things going on on this particular island, Kauai, and Oahu, where people are trying to control it, corporations and what not, and it’s getting real ugly.  So, I mean, it’s paradise but I think that there are so many different things going on with the Earth with corporate capitalism that it’s really messing things up.

Liv:  They were just talking about the Earth!  They were saying, “Ask Paul Skee about the potential of taking the youth to touch the Earth.  Ask Paul Skee about the potential of taking the youth to touch the Earth and remember where the real source is.  Remember where the real source of life is.  Tell Paul Skee that it’s important to touch the Earth with the youth there in Kauai .  Remember that it’s the source of life.  It’s where regeneration comes from.  And it’s unplugging from the matrix, going back to the Earth to become regenerated.  Tell Paul Skee that all of the ancestors are smiling upon him and are telling him that he needs to keep doing what he’s doing because he’s doing it well.  And tell Paul Skee that his offerings are being well received and that his life is being enriched for it.  Ask Paul Skee if he feels his life being enriched from his offerings being received by the Earth.”

Paul Skee:  Right on!  I’m trying.  I’m trying my best.  Sometimes it gets overwhelming at times because spiritually, on that level, a lot of stuff is new to me.  So I’m trying to be a student to everything.  When they were speaking of taking it back to the Earth, I was actually having a class today and we were inside a center.  The floor is all smooth, wood floors, and I actually spoke about that.  I said, if you really want to ask, going outside on this concrete, right there on the street or just being outside is being the most free.  The wind is blowing in our face, birds are chirping outside and I’m getting free on the floor.  Whether it’s concrete or whether it’s dirt, just getting back to that.

There was one brother who’s a Native American.  His name is Remind.  He was actually at a park jam and he was breakin’ on the dirt, literally.  When he’s breakin’ all the dust is flying out.  Some of the b-boys and b-girls are like, yo, what’s this dude doing?  He’s getting his clothes dirty.  When I heard how he broke it down, it was, this is how we did it!

Anais:  Exactly.

Liv:  So beautiful.

Paul Skee:  This is how his native people did it, let alone people in Africa, et cetera.  This is what it was.  There was no dance floor.  There were no concrete streets.  Basically he broke it down by saying that what we had was lost, he’s just bringing it back.  And if the majority of the people didn’t feel it, it doesn’t bother him because he did his history.  He did his math.  “He was being free.  And that’s what it is, when you’re breakin’, you’re getting free.” So that’s in relation to getting open to the Earth on that level

Liv:  Is that the meaning of his name, Remind?  Is he reminding people?

Paul Skee:  When he first made it up, I don’t know (laughing).  I can’t remember the exact story.  But once he started going back and researching his people’s history, his ancestors, I really think that name just, it suits him perfectly.  He’s grown so much that even if the people ridiculed him, it’s nothing but a brush off his shoulder.  I respect him wholeheartedly for that.

Anais:  Deep down they’re not.  They might talk shit and say, oh, you’re getting your shoes dirty.  But they’re walking away and it’s implanted.  He’s planting seeds in them.

Paul Skee:  Word!

Anais:  That’s what I can see.  He’s doing the work.  It’s getting in there.  Whether they recognize it right away or they’re thinking about it when they go to sleep, like, that fool!  It’s not so far off that it’s getting lost in translation.  It’s getting in there.

Paul Skee:  I see.  Even as we were kids, when we were 5 years old, it didn’t matter where we were at, as long as we were having fun doing it.  That’s the way I look at it.  A little kid can be jumping up and down in the sand and having fun!  That’s what it is.

Anais:   Are most of the kids that come to that center native to Kauai or to the islands?

Paul Skee:  Some are, some aren’t.  There is a lot of transplants coming from the mainland.  We’ve only been open for the last couple months.  We’re trying to get a steady flow of kids, especially native kids to come in.  What we’ve been doing as well is learning about Polynesian history, ancient history on that level.  We just had a Kahu bless the place.

Anais:  Nice.

Liv:  That’s lovely..

Anais:  That’s what they’re talking about.  Pele, do you know this deity, the Goddess Pele?

Paul Skee:  I’m not too familiar.

Anais:  They say that’s something to find out about.  There are these volcanoes and these deities.  This kind of fiery energy is abundant in the native youth.  So this could be drawing them in somehow.  They say you can figure this out.  It’s the same as your researching into the history.  Research into the stories that came from the history, the Deities and their actual mythology, and look hard.  They say, “When you get the stories look hard.  There are going to be embers and you’ll see the embers.”  That’s going to be something to bring to the youth.  It’ll be part of your repertoire.

Like a bird that has many songs.  When you go to each place and you’re learning about the place because you want to fit in with the people properly, that’s going to be how to get connected with the youth, through spirit.  Find their stories and their Deities.  They’re saying Pele and the volcano Deities.  Learn some stories so you can have that as part of your vocabulary.  This will start to tingle their ancestral memory.  They might be very awake.  Some might be very dormant but it’s going to tingle them in a way that’s going to make them want to come back.

Paul Skee:  It’s funny you say that because I had a conversation about the Menehune.

Liv:  Menehune!  The Kontomble!

Paul Skee:  Yeah.  I’ve had stories with a lot of youth.  I asked them, yo, what’s the stories you’ve heard about them?  Just to get their take.  That’s the conversation.  You’re exactly right.  That’s when we started bonding.  They’re like, oh, okay, now you’re talking Paul Skee.  They started saying, oh, you go over there and over here.  That’s how we started building.

Liv:  What did they tell you about the Menehune?

Paul Skee:  They said that there’s a lot of architecture out here that was built by them.

Liv:  Wow!

Paul Skee:  They were telling me, go check out this site.  They said that the Menehune built this.  Or that they come out during this time and you don’t want to piss them off!  These are like 12, 13 year old kids that I’m talking to about it.

Anais:  This is so powerful because this is where they can actually start to teach you too.  This can be so reciprocal in the exchange.  So when you bring that to them and when they see that you’re interested in that, you can share with them some stories you know about the land and your ancestral people.  This is where they’re going to want to trust you and want to come.  Because they’re going to know it’s real.  You’re also cool and hip and you’re talking about their stuff.  And you have your own stories.  It engages the whole spirit.  You know what I mean?  It engages them mentally, physically and spiritually.

Paul Skee:  Definitely.

Liv:  They’re talking too, the Menehune!  They’re saying, “The Menehune are alive with you too, Paul Skee.  And we’re asking you to talk to us about your purpose for the future with the youth.  We’re asking you to talk to us about where you see this all going because intention is very important.  And understand that the youth need guidance about the future, about the matrix, about unplugging sufficiently.  And so we’re asking you to bring your intention into the equation and talk to us about the purpose of working with the youth.”

Paul Skee:  I think, just being able to inspire and encourage on a level that they could sustain themselves in the future if they take the art form seriously, the art forms that we’re doing here.  What I’ve seen with working with kids in general, there’s usually a couple odd kids out that kind of get teased.  Oh he can’t do that yet!  Oh, he don’t got it yet!  And I’m constantly trying to have them work together to build rather than destroy.  That’s the main intention.  Regardless, if they take the art form to doing it as a career or not.  At least for that moment in time, for how many hours a day they came in to train to sit down and build, that moment in time was well spent.  That’s pretty much the main intention.

Liv:  Paul Skee, my attention is going to your organization, Mighty 4.  Can you talk about it?

Paul Skee:  Yeah.  We got started in 1998.  It’s really grown over the last decade or so.  I’ve been really honored and blessed to have been able to produce these events which started out in the San Francisco Bay Area and branch out around the planet.  Mainly, it’s a cultural event, where we entail all of these different art forms from street culture and try and put it in one show.  And maybe in the last couple years — since I didn’t do too well in school and had no direction as far as where to take it on a business end — I’ve learned how to turn my company into a nonprofit company and utilize different ways to create spaces like the A.R.T Center in Kauai and future Mighty 4 art centers as well.  We’re moving in a totally different direction from the normal festival events that tour every year.

I think over the last decade I really go to a point where I just got tired of touring.  My body got tired of it because you’re cooped on a plane every weekend.  You’re living out of a suitcase.  It was really tiring on my body.  I had to at some point figure out a way to sustain without having to travel so much constantly.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to go to new places and build with people but I think that it’s just not suitable for a person to be on a plane every weekend, years on down straight.  This is how you sustain.  For me, I just couldn’t take it anymore.  I had to figure out a different way.  Doing centers like that, operating after school youth programs, in my home area or on the Hawaiian islands was more of what I wanted to do and where I wanted to head.

Liv:  They’re going to go back to the Menehune again.  Paul Skee they’re like the Leprechauns, right?

Paul Skee:  Yeah.

Liv:  It’s the Kontomble there.

Paul Skee:  And in the Philippines, I believe they’re called duendes.  I guess in every part of the world there’s ancient stories like that.  I personally haven’t seen one.

Liv:  Do they have stories about them in the caves there in Kauai ?

Paul Skee:  Yeah, caves and that they literally build monuments and what not.  Just stuff that normal humans would have a hard time building.  That’s what I’ve been gathering.  I still have to actually go out and check out some of these sites.  But for the most part, what I’ve been told, don’t mess with them and they won’t mess with you.  And just keep the respect in that form.  Don’t just seek out and try to get them on tape, things of that nature.  Just offer the respect that you would want from people.  That’s what I’ve been told from a lot of the elders.

Anais:  That’s good advice.

Paul Skee:  I’m not really trying to get a spell put on me (laughing)!

Anais:  (laughing) Yeah, all the sudden the A.R.T. center is no more.  If you do go to the sites, maybe you can give them food or some sweets.  That’s the way to be respectful, is to bring a gift.  If you go to somebody’s house, you take a gift.

Paul Skee:  I will do that.  That’s right.  It’s an offering.

Anais:  And again, I don’t know how close you get in with the local youth.  Maybe one of them can take you.  Just to build on the relationship.  Maybe one of them will want to take you there.  See who steps out in that.  There’s something in the exchange of you being on the land and the children having the ability to welcome you into their culture, with their spirits and their stories and them actually taking you there.  It’s such a round, beautiful, flow for you all to flourish more with them, to really sink in.  Where it’s always in motion back and forth from you and them, you and them- that way.

Paul Skee:  I’m pretty much going off the instinct that I gain from doing this.  I know there are actually people who went to college for this sort of thing.  I’m actually reading a little bit more and get insights from people who really are youth teachers.  I’m always trying to build a better respect on that level and reaching out.

Anais:  Your instinct is on point.  Whatever you guys got going on is sinking in.  It’s not something blowing across there.  It’s settling in.  And that’s where they feel safe.  If you can settle in with them and they can trust that you’re going to be there.  For whatever that means, a six week class, a day.  How you’re doing it, they can’t teach anybody how to do that in the university, how to come from your heart and actually be present with a young person.  That’s mostly what the youth need, is guidance with love and guidance where they trust you and you’re not talking down to them.  It’s a mutual situation, where you’re letting them tell you things and you’re telling them things.  There’s a reciprocity in the energy.  You’re doing that.  They all go (making noise) when you talk about, I didn’t go to school for this.  There is no school for that.  You already don’t need a school by somebody else who doesn’t know how to teach it to try to teach you something that probably wouldn’t work anyway.  You already got it.  They’re giving you praise.

 

Paul Skee:  The island, it’s something else.  Being on the island is totally different from the mainland or being in a suburban or urban area, it’s something else.  It’s surrounded by water.  Back on the water, it’s definitely beautiful and there’s definitely a big spiritual push and it’s just relaxing to me, to be honest.

Liv:  The Menehune are talking.  They’re saying, “Ask Paul Skee to recognize that we are a part of his process at the youth center.  We’re asking him to acknowledge us more directly, not only through the children but also directly with offerings at the youth center.  Understand that we surround him there and we are with him and we’re also coming through the children.  Understand that we come through the children.  We come through their eyes and we come through their laughter and we come through their joy.  We also come through their sorrow sometimes.  So understand that as you sit with one of the youth sometimes, you also are sitting with the Menehune.  And we ask that you honor and recognize that.  And also ask that you pay homage to us directly.  And the way to do that as well is by offering us some candy sometimes.  Also we like chocolate.  We like sweets.  We like sweets!  And we also like to connect through singing and through dancing.  And so understand that we bless your path and we lay flowers at your path and we adore you and we love what you’re doing, Paul Skee, man of liberation.  And we also love that you are serving the future.”

Anais:  Do they make some sort of sweet bread, some sort of doughnut sweet bread there?

Paul Skee:  Yeah!

Anais:  They want that!  They want something like that.  There’s something that they make there that’s a sweet doughy thing.  Sweet bread.

Paul Skee:  I hope they’re not diabetic!  (laughing)

Anais:  (laughing)  You go ahead and offer them some alcohol and sweet bread!  That’s what they want.

Liv:  (laughing)  I can hear them laughing!

Anais:  (laughing) I know they’re totally laughing.  And they’re saying, “Make sure he understands the dough bread!  And it’s sweet and it’s bread and it’s doughy.”  And there are some spirits, some kind of alcohol, some kind of grainy alcohol, something that they drink there.

Liv:  It looks like it’s clear.  They keep saying, “Clear, clear, clear!”

Paul Skee:  Will do!

Anais:  All right!

Liv:  And they’re saying, “Understand Paul Skee that little Skee is one of us as well and don’t be surprised if he teaches you some day soon about us.”

Paul Skee:  Wow!  Can’t wait..

Anais:  So you can flow in with Duendes and whatever they call them in Japan.  And you’re teaching him about your culture.  That’s all part of it.

Paul Skee:  Yeah!

Liv:  They’re talking still.  They’re saying, “Ask Paul Skee to be sure he knows how much we respect and adore him and that we lay flowers at his path.  And understand, Paul Skee, that your path is lined with gold and your path is lined with spirit and understand that we appreciate you and adore you more than words could ever express.  And we want you to know that we blow wind underneath your wings.  And understand that we will continue to do so.  Even more powerfully.  And understand that this conversation between the 3 of you has the ability to reach far and wide, far and wide and we ask that it do so.  And so understand that spirit connects you all 3 collectively and we blow wind underneath your wings and we ask that you continue to listen, continue to place your ear to the Earth and ask her what she needs from you and understand that she will always respect you for that.”

Paul Skee:  I definitely will do my best..  Thank you.  I appreciate the work and always do my best to be conscious on an ancestral and spiritual tip..

Liv:  Thank you for taking the time, Paul Skee..

Anais:  Yes, thank you.

Paul Skee:  No doubt.  Thank you!  And I’m definitely looking forward to building with you both!

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