Mahina (mah-hee-nah) is a beautiful name that means moon and moonlight in Hawaiian. In Hawaiian mythology, Mahina is the Goddess of the Moon, similar to the Greek Goddess Diana.
Throughout the world in many cultures, there are stories about the beautiful face of the woman (or man) in the moon.
As I recall the story, Mahina was married to a man who insisted that she work all day long, gathering and preparing food, and beating and decorating kapa, or tapa (bark cloth). Mahina gathered, soaked and beat endless yards of her beautiful white kapa from the bark of wauke (the mulberry tree). After many years, Mahina tired of the endless labor and her husband’s nagging, and asked if she could be released from the drudgery.
The Gods sent for her, and she climbed up on the kapa as it rose in the air to a special ladder, upon which she climbed to the moon. Mahina now looks peacefully down upon us from her perennial home in the light, sad not to be with her husband, yet restful in the night.