Maramataka Maori is the rise and fall of the Maori lunar cycle. Our tupuna (ancestors) were keen observers of their environment, they needed to survive! It was simply a waste of time to go fishing and not catch anything!
Our tupuna spent 1000’s of years observing the Taiao (environment) and passing on their knowledge of it to each successive generation.
This is perhaps the first generation that maramataka has not been practiced. Our mission is to revive this practice to ensure our whanau are aware and connected.
The environment is constantly moving within a natural cycle – whetu (stars), Moana (sea) tides, fish, Whenua (land) birds, fruiting of trees and production of seeds. (show symbols from calendar, nga tohu key)
The moon is a easily identifiable indicator of this natural cycle. (show moon symbol)
If the marama has a effect on our natural world and can move the tides, does it then have a effect on us as humans? Of course it does pataihia ki nga wahine (ask any women!)
Are you living in sync with the natural environment, seasons and marama?
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He maramataka tenei na Ihaka Poata
He tohunga a Ihaka Poata no Nga Puhi. He tohunga ia mo te whakapapa me te karakia.
We use our grandfather Ihaka Poata’s maramataka. It is an ancient maramataka from Hawaiiki. Ihaka was a tohunga from Nga Puhi, an expert on whakapapa and karakia. He was born in Whangaroa lived in Ahipara from the age of 19 and observed the maramataka from his kainga at Tauroa and Nga Karoro.
Our whanau have never ceased practicing maramataka through the mahi – work of gardening and fishing. We still garden on our whenua, held for 22 generations. We have over a 100 years of whanau records on maramataka from Ihaka, his son Herepete Porter (Herbie Porter) and now grandson Rueben Taipari.
Listen to Ihaka Poata recite his whakapapa from Hina (Moon goddess) to Nukutawhiti (captain of the Ngatokimatawhaorua waka)
Other recordings of Ihaka Poata held in Nga Taonga Korero (link) https://www.ngataonga.org.nz/
include korero on the whakapapa of Tawhaki, the history of the names of Ahipara, karakia for Ngatokimatawhaorua waka and Ihaka welcoming the Maori battalion A company to Kaikohe 1946.
Annual maramataka wall planners
In a effort to share and inspire our whanau, we hold annual gatherings at Roma marae, Ahipara sharing free wall calendars from the bank and plot out our year with Ruebens guidance using highlighter pens!
In the last 6 years we have stepped it up a bit and produce a annual maramataka that comes out in time for Te Tau Hou o te Maori (Maori new year).
In 2017 we distributed over 2000 maramataka both nationally and international! Due to the increase in size and costs we now charge to help cover printing costs and to support this matauranga to benefit our communities!
But the Maramataka is in Te Reo Maori!
Ae marika, Yes! and the matauranga (knowledge) is within our Te Reo!
As part of our commitment to Te Reo we print a 100% Te Reo Maori maramataka!
By the use of the colour code system and our explanations on how to use the maramataka wall planner , you can still use this maramataka to plan your time, space and energy!
It is not an art piece, it is a tool to get the mahi done and achieve. Write on it and put it on display!
Statement – Whaia te pae tawhito kia tata, whaia te pae tata, kia maua kia tina.
Heading – Pehea te whakatakoto kaupapa kei mua I a ahau? How do I use the Maramataka wall planner?
The Maori new year starts in Pipiri (June). This is the first heading in black and white. You can count across the year, learning the Maori words for each month from Pipiri to Haratua (May the following year)
The names for each season is colour coded and divided into 4 sections. Akona! Learn the names!
A Maori whakatauaki or proverb accompanies each season and the type of action we should be fulfilling or we should of completed. Whakatauki give us so many examples of lessons from our natural environment! Whakarongo!
“Te wahie ka waia mo te Takurua, te kai ka mahia mo te tau”
The firewood you have prepped for the cooler months, will sustain you into the year.
Meaning – If you have done the hard work and are prepared for winter, you will come out well enough to survive for the coming year!
“Pipiwharauroa, kaweawea, te tangi o te Mahuru, whiti mai, whiti mai”
The shining cuckoo is calling, heralding the beginning of spring
Meaning – The Pipiwharauroa is alive and calling (so to does nature start to move happy to be in spring!)
There symbols on the left of the seasons, give us a clue as to what is happening with our natural environment during certain months and seasons.
Start to observe your own environment and list what is happening. Do you know when the Tuna run in your area? Do you know when the Mullet are moving? The fish are spawning? What stars are moving through the sky? What berries are ripe to eat? What seeds are ready for collection? We have provided a few examples, but it’s up to you to discover or pataihia (ask!)
On the far left is a column describing each moon phase, starting with Whiro, the new moon, or when the sky is so dark you can see all of the starts or the type of night you get up and can’t see your hand in front of you! It is very special, it is the beginning of the moon cycle.
The names for each moon are ancient and the teachings wise. In this modern day world we not everyone is dependent to survive off the land and sea, perhaps that is why we are not taking as good as care of it as we should.
We have researched Ihaka Poatas definitions for each marama, and added a modern context and positive affirmation for whanau to still be connected with actioning the right activity at the right time. As you continue your living by the Maori moon journey, you will start to feel more in tune and in control of your lifes destiny!
The magic of maramataka
As we observe and contemplate the moon and our relationship with it, things may start to make sense ‘kua marama” I understand! Is that why I feel a bit tired today! The moons in Tamatea! For some of us, this realisation is revolutionary! However, to fully pay tribute to our Matauranga Maori, we must challenge ourselves even further and actually plan forward using maramataka maori.
Often we get asked if maramataka maori has a effect on peoples mental health and is there a correlation between suicides? Our answer is, every day is a good day! There is nothing wrong with the marama! It is not bad and more are people! Ka mate, ka ora, ka mate ka ora
If we consider the coroner reports and midwives birthing records we can relate these findings to certain moons. However the real mahi that we promote, is encouraging whanau to take control of their own time, space and energy, through maramataka, to realign and be in sync with the environment and each other, in order to not to unnaturally “descend”
Instead of massive highs followed by intense lows, use the maramataka to gently navigate the energy phases and most importantly PLAN for it! Be ahead, acknowledge and prepare!
What is your purpose? I ahu mai koe I hea?
During our wananga we teach you how to set a high vision (whai whakaaro) strategise (whakatakoto kaupapa) and put it into action – mahi a ringa the mahi that needs to be done to achive.
Kaua e whakaaro kei te Rangi Tuhaha noa – Do not leave your thoughts and ideas in the sky.
To achieve, the work needs to be done on the ground. Mahia te Mahi!
Within our wananga we advise how best to use the maramataka to forecast ahead and plan.
Ranginui raua ko Papatuanuku.
Ranginui, Sky Father (Tane, Male, Space, Philsophy, Whai whakaaro, Kauae Runga, Higher learning and purpose, kakano, potential)
Papatuanuku, Earth Mother (Wahine, Female, Earth, Whenua, Practical, Whakatakoto kaupapa, Kauae raro, grounding and rhythm, nurturer)
Maramataka is good for
- Providing a guideline for the right activities at the right time
- Practicing the ancient knowledge and wisdom of our ancestors
- Greater consideration for behaviour especially tamariki (children)
- Appreciation of whanaungatanga and relationships – we are all connected!
- Greater kaitiakitanga and protection of our environment –
- Affirmation of decision making
- Bringing whanau together – Setting whanau activities (reunions, working bees, tamariki programs)
- Giving ourselves a “break”. Self valuing.
- Respect for our elderly – appreciation of kaumatuatanga phase
- Respect for wahine as natural time keepers – Womens leadership!
- Partnership balance
- Harvesting kai – Rongoa, processing meat
Over 2000 copies of our maramataka were distributed nationally and internationally in 2017.
We have provided wananga to the Department of Conservation, Toi Tangata national conference, North Tec Matariki wananga, Nga wananga o Nga Puhi, Healthy Families national, Far North Healthy Families, Far North REAP, Te Kapehu Whetu, Fight Fitness, Kaikohe Intermediate, Te Kura reo rua O Motatau, Ranginui Te Whare Akoranga Reo, Ngati Kahu Runanga a Iwi, Mauri, Ahi talks the Quarry, Kikopiri Marae and more.
Can I use this Maramataka for my own project?
If you would like to use information or duplicate this maramataka please seek permission. We are seeing whanau researching their own maramataka, which is awesome! However this maramataka contains years of mahi, please respect. By adapting our colour code system and changing the colours does cause confusion! Mahia kia tika.
Marama – to be clear, to understand, clarity. Taka – to fall
“Kia puta nga hua” Let the fruits come forth!
Maramataka is about doing the right action at the right time, the right way – to create productivity, balance and abundance.
Time – there never seems to be enough! Whanau are feeling stressed and out of alignment
Our mission is to reclaim our time, space and energy through Maramataka Maori.
He hua rahi roa tenei! In this modern day world we often fall culprit to wanting everything NOW!
The journey towards the greater understanding of matauranga Maori (maori knowledge) and maramataka is within the practice! It is a balance of the philosophical and the practical application. Te Kauae runga me te Kauae raro. It is a long hikoi (walk) based on your own personal experiences, observations and deep analysis. Enjoy, take it easy – Whakarongo, Titiro, Mahia! (Listen, Look, action).
Matauranga Maori is not a right for everyone, it is a priviledge, a taonga (a gift) be respectful and what you get out, put back in!
Mau tou rourou, me toku rourou ka ora ai te Iwi.