Celestial Navigation


The Hawaiian star compass is a mental construct to help us internalize and obtain our direction using star rising and setting points of stars.   We use the Hawaiian Star Compass created by Nainoa  Thompson to orient ourselves towards important cardinal directions especially East and West.  Instead of using magnetic North, certain stars are used to orient ourselves towards the North and South Celestial Poles.

The Hawaiian star compass is a modern heuristic device based on traditional knowledge which was passed down by Mau Piailug.  The Micronesian compass used by Mau is oriented using the naked eye.