top of page

Ho'oponopono: A Simple Practice for Cultivating Inner Peace and Joy

Updated: Feb 18

Ho'oponopono (pronounced HO-oh-Po-no-Po-no) is a spiritual practice deeply rooted in the Hawaiian culture and tradition. It is a practice of reconciliation and forgiveness that aims to restore balance and harmony in relationships, families, and communities. The word "Ho'oponopono" is a combination of two Hawaiian words: "ho'o" which means "to make" and "ponopono" which means "right."

At its core, Ho'oponopono emphasizes the concept of "Total Responsibility," which means taking responsibility for everything that surrounds us, including our thoughts, actions, and relationships. This approach encourages individuals to examine their own lives and take ownership of their experiences, rather than blaming others for their problems.

One of the most well-known aspects of Ho'oponopono is the use of a simple yet powerful mantra: "I'm sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you." This mantra is used as a form of prayer and meditation to help individuals heal themselves and others by releasing negative thoughts and emotions and promoting feelings of love and gratitude.

Ho'oponopono is widely regarded as a tool for personal growth and healing, and its benefits extend beyond just the individual practitioner. By practicing Ho'oponopono, individuals can strengthen their relationships with others, promote peace and harmony in their communities, and contribute to the overall well-being of society.

In recent years, Ho'oponopono has gained popularity as a complementary therapy and has been used to help individuals cope with a range of physical and emotional health issues. It has also been applied in a variety of settings, including hospitals, schools, and workplaces, to promote healing and positive relationships.

Overall, Ho'oponopono is a powerful and transformative spiritual practice that offers a unique approach to healing and personal growth. Whether you are looking to improve your relationships, find inner peace, or promote well-being in your community, Ho'oponopono can offer valuable insights and practices to help you on your journey.

Here are the four principles of Ho'oponopono

This method has four easy steps, and their order doesn't matter much. Only four forces are at work - Repentance, Forgiveness, Gratitude, and Love - but they are incredibly powerful.

Responsibility: I’M SORRY

The first principle of Ho'oponopono is responsibility. It means accepting that we are responsible for everything that happens in our lives, including our thoughts, emotions, and actions. This principle acknowledges that we are the creators of our own experiences, and we have the power to change them.

When we take responsibility for our lives, we no longer blame others for our problems. Instead, we acknowledge that our problems stem from within us and take the necessary steps to address them. By embracing responsibility, we can gain a sense of control over our lives and transform our experiences.


Forgiveness is an essential part of Ho'oponopono. It involves letting go of negative emotions such as anger, resentment, and blame, and replacing them with feelings of love, compassion, and understanding. Forgiveness also means accepting that we are all connected, and the actions of one person can affect others.

Forgiveness is not just about forgiving others; it also means forgiving ourselves. When we forgive ourselves, we acknowledge that we have made mistakes, but we do not let those mistakes define us. Forgiveness helps us let go of the past and move forward with love and compassion.

Gratitude: THANK YOU

The third principle of Ho'oponopono is gratitude. It involves focusing on the good things in our lives and expressing appreciation for them. When we are grateful, we shift our focus from negative thoughts and feelings to positivity and joy.

Gratitude also helps us to see the beauty in life, even during difficult times. By cultivating an attitude of gratitude, we can attract more positive experiences into our lives and strengthen our relationships with others.


The fourth and final principle of Ho'oponopono is love. Love is the foundation of this practice, and it involves cultivating feelings of love and compassion towards ourselves, others, and the world around us. Love means treating ourselves and others with kindness, respect, and empathy, and seeing the interconnectedness of all things.

When we approach life with love, we can create a more positive and harmonious world. By practicing love and compassion, we can heal ourselves and others and create a more loving and peaceful world.

How does Ho'oponopono work?

Ho'oponopono works on the principle that everything in our lives is a reflection of our inner state of being, and that by taking responsibility for our thoughts and actions, we can bring about healing and transformation. The practice involves recognizing that we are all connected, and that our thoughts and actions have a profound impact on ourselves and those around us.

At the core of Ho'oponopono is the belief that all problems and conflicts arise from the memories and programs stored in our subconscious mind. These memories and programs can lead to negative beliefs, emotions, and patterns of behavior that can create disharmony and discord in our lives.

The practice of Ho'oponopono aims to address these issues by focusing on four key principles: repentance, forgiveness, gratitude, and love. By taking responsibility for our thoughts and actions, acknowledging our mistakes and seeking forgiveness, expressing gratitude for the good in our lives, and cultivating a sense of love and compassion, we can release negative patterns and beliefs and bring about positive change.

The practice of Ho'oponopono involves the use of a mantra or prayer, such as "I'm sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you." By repeating this mantra and focusing on the principles of repentance, forgiveness, gratitude, and love, we can clear our subconscious mind of negative memories and programs, and cultivate a greater sense of inner peace, harmony, and well-being.

Through the practice of Ho'oponopono, we can learn to let go of negative patterns and beliefs that no longer serve us, and to cultivate a greater sense of compassion and understanding towards ourselves and others. The practice can help to improve our relationships, reduce stress and anxiety, and enhance our overall sense of well-being.

How often should I practice Ho'oponopono?

There is no set number of times or frequency for practicing Ho'oponopono, as it is a personal practice that can be adapted to suit individual needs and preferences. Some people find it helpful to practice Ho'oponopono daily, while others may choose to practice it as needed when they are facing difficult situations or emotions.

The key is to practice Ho'oponopono with intention and focus, taking the time to connect with the emotions and feelings that each phrase evokes. You may find that repeating the phrases several times in a row or focusing on one particular phrase that resonates with you is more effective than simply reciting them once and moving on.

Ultimately, the goal of practicing Ho'oponopono is to cultivate a sense of responsibility, forgiveness, gratitude, and love in your life. By incorporating this practice into your daily routine or using it as needed to address difficult situations, you can experience greater peace, joy, and fulfillment in your life.

How I like to do this mantra practice?

When practicing this mantra, I prefer to find a calm and quiet environment where I can concentrate on the words and immerse myself in the emotions they generate. I usually repeat each phrase multiple times, allowing myself to fully experience the sentiments of repentance, forgiveness, gratitude, and love. This approach helps me to release negative feelings and foster a sense of inner harmony and positivity.

Here are some steps you can take to do this practice:

Find a quiet place where you can be alone and free from distractions.

Take a few deep breaths to calm your mind and focus your attention.

Repeat the four phrases slowly and intentionally, either out loud or in your mind. You can say each phrase several times before moving on to the next one.

Begin with the phrase "I'm sorry," acknowledging any negative thoughts, emotions, or actions that you may have contributed to your current situation.

Move on to "please forgive me," expressing your sincere regret for any harm you may have caused.

Say "thank you," expressing gratitude for the opportunity to learn and grow from the experience.

End with "I love you," offering love and compassion to yourself, others, and the world around you.

Repeat these four phrases as often as you like, continuing to focus your attention on each one and the emotions it evokes.

5 Benefits of practicing Ho'oponopono

1. Improved Self-Awareness

Ho'oponopono emphasizes personal responsibility for one's thoughts, emotions, and actions. This practice can lead to an improved sense of self-awareness as individuals take ownership of their beliefs, values, and emotional patterns. By recognizing the impact that their thoughts and feelings have on themselves and others, individuals can begin to make positive changes in their lives and their relationships with others.

2. Emotional Healing