Hongongoi..Te po o Tirea

Ko Matariki tera ka rewa I te pae, Nau mai Haere mai te tohu o te tau hou!

Nga mihi mahana ki a koutou katoa!

This is our first weekly subscription, coming to you straight off Te Tau Hou, the Maori new years!

Many of you would of spent your recent early mornings, star gazing, watching for the rise of Matariki. I always say some of our best star gazers are our menfolk. They are the ones that go outside for a mimi in the night and gaze up at the stars while they are doing their business!   Unfortunately our city cousins skies are mostly sparked in gold from the city lights blinding the eyes of Matariki and nightly pops outside are frowned on by nosey neighbours!

I remember one evening I was woken by our Papa Te Kai Makiha and told to go outside. I stood facing northwards, peering into the night sky, watching for a sign, a shooting star pea? Something amazing to see! Instead, I saw millions of stars just looking at me. From there I came to the realisation that I could never understand the meaning of everything, so why sweat it in my constant pursuit for knowledge and meaning! The enormity of the universe humbles me to believe I know actually nothing!

We celebrate our New Year on the first new moon (Whiro) after the appearance of Matariki. So last night we had a hot, lovingly prepared, hearty kai at Motatau marae with our Kohanga Reo Tamariki and community.

Rueben has been working building the earthern Te Hononga centre in Kawakawa and only in the past week has the winter rains come. Are we noticing the impact of Climate change? Yes, the rain is coming later and we can progress our builds further into the colder months. The lack of certainty of sequence of natural progression is indeed a worry, however constantly observing the environment as our tupuna did, gives some comfort that we will be aware of any potential disasters to come, if we are watching.

It was fitting to come together for some whanau cheer at the marae, many have commented that they have felt this winter particularly taimaha (heavy).    Music, mirimiri and making the most of every ray of sunshine when it beams (even if I’m indoors, I step in the ray and charge it up!)   We must be particularly mindful during winter to keep our wairua up!

So if we’re reclaiming our definitions of time, space and energy through maramataka, it makes sense that we are also realigning with the seasons.   For so long this country has followed the colonisers Northern calendar, which flips us on our head, turning our winter celebrations into a summer event and spring festivities into a celebration of the dead (Halloween). During the next 12 months we will share with you how to use maramataka effectively to create abundance, to greater align and become aware of the movements of not only the environment, but its affect on you and your close ones. Rueben and I will offer a balanced perspective from te taha tane me te taha wahine, yes well take turns writing and provide practical examples of how to use maramataka to enhance your lives! This is a taonga gifted to us from our tupuna, it is here to benefit us all!
So as nature is sleeping, I hope you too are resting, reflecting, and celebrating our survival through winter (gifts, treats, treats) and using the marker of Matariki to ponder your past and understand theres a time to rest and theres a time to mahi!

c)Heeni Hoterene