For Mary now

Mō Maria aianei
o tatou wa-i-a-ta.
Kia kaha rā tātou,
kia “nwi” te aroha

Tēnā hoki ngā ahere
e whakahonore ana
ki te ratou rehina
ki a Maria anō rā

Aroha ki te Atua
aroha ki a Maria
i te rangi
te whenua
āke tonu, āke tonu
our songs.

For Mary now
Let us be strong,
let there be great love

There also the angels
giving honour
to their queen
to Mary,

Love God,
love Mary
in heaven
and on earth
for ever and ever.




Dr. Rangimarie Turiki Rose Pere (2013, February 23). The Right To Be Me (Dr. Rangimarie Turuki Rose Pere Elder, healer and leader in the Maori community) [Video file]. Retrieved from

Love, C. M., Pere, R. R., & Open Polytechnic of New Zealand (2004). Extensions on Te Wheke. Lower Hutt [N.Z.: Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.

Lyonel Grant (n.d.). Lyonel Grant – Profile. Retrieved from

Story of Creation

The story of Papatuanuku and Ranginui is the story known to Maori as the creation story. This story is very different from the Bible’s interpretation of creation where it took seven days for God to create the Earth.

Through the story of Ranginui and Papatuanuku we learn about their sad love story as they were sadly separated by their own children. Some of their children did not want to be separated however the majority vote was for Rangi and Papa to be separated. Ranginui then became the sky father and Papatuanuku became Mother Nature.
By reading more about the story of Rangi and Papa I was able to learn more about the yearning of the two to be together as one. It is said as the rain falls from the sky they are known to be Rangi’s tears to show how much he misses and loves Papa. As Papa twists and turns it reflects her attempts to reunite with Rangi. Papa’s strains to be with Rangi are known to us as humans to be earthquakes, and as mist rises from the forests it is her sighs as she yearns to be with her other half again.

Learning more about the Maori myths and legends has taught me a greater understanding and appreciation of our Maori culture and are stories which deserves to be passed down through many generations.


My goals to achieve in Understanding Te Ao Maori


As a Maori I would like to gain a deeper knowledge on my cultural background as a sense of both cultural and self-identity. Through understanding a greater knowledge of the Maori culture it will strengthen me as a person to know more not only about who I am, but also where I stand as a Maori living in New Zealand and to show people that I do know what my culture reflects, who my ancestors are, and that people can long longer consider me as a ‘plastic Maori.’ I have a passion to prove to people that although it is considered the Maori culture is fading that everyone still has an opportunity to embrace their culture and that we can still pass on our cultures through the next generation.


I would like to learn more about Maori Tikangaand how I can incorporate these values into my future career. Through learning more about our Tikanga Maori it will give me a sense of cultural identity and pride and a deeper understanding.


I would like to learn more about the traditional Maori values. Two particular Maori values which interests me to learn more about in depth is,

Whanaugtanga- A sense of belonging

Manakitanga- A measurement of people’s ability to extend aroha

Through these two values I would like to learn more about how these values are incorporated into everyday life.


Through Understanding Te Ao Maori, it will help me to learn how to incorporate my cultural background into my course. One of my greatest passions is to be able to incorporate my cultural background into my future career.


There are so many places we can learn more about Te Ao Maori once completing this course. I have been given a Maori scholarship through Unitec called Whai Ake who can help to learn more about my Maori culture. There is also aspect of going back through to my ancestral roots and visiting my iwis both Ngati Tuwharetoa and Ngai Tahu where I will be given the opportunity to experience my Maori culture. There are also the whaeas here at Maia within Unitec who I would feel comfortable in talking to in regards to Te Ao  as well as research online, online books and going through the libraries to learn more about an understanding of Te Ao Maori. 


The theme I have selected is ‘Female Maori goddesses.’ I would like to learn about the Maori goddesses and create a greater understanding about what their roles were within Maori society and how they were respected by the male gods. One of the reasons why I have chosen the theme of female Maori goddesses is because they are rarely mentioned within Maori mythology stories and I would like to know more about Maori women.


There will be a large range of sources that I would like to use in order to research my theme. I would like to use different sources instead of remaining with one type. I would like to find books within the both the public library and the Unitec library, I would like to research about my theme through the internet and through talking to the Maori teachers here at Unitec.


Each day that I’m at Maia I learn more about my culture through talking to the students who too attend Maia. Through listening to them about their Maori stories and upbringings and how they use their culture and language, they have already enhanced my understanding of my Maori culture which fascinates me to learn more about it.

Through taking notes in class and looking over them each day it will help me to memorise what I am learning and to create a greater understanding on Maori culture.


The Right To Be Me (Dr. Rangimarie Turuki Rose Pere Elder, healer and leader in the Maori community)

Rose Pere is a Maori elder, healer and leader who is significantly recognized throughout the Maori community and is also the writer of Te Wheke which talks about the Maori health models linking between our minds, spirit and our whanau. Pere treats the concept of Te Wheke as an octopus, as the head of the octopus represents whānau, whilst the eyes of the octopus reflects the total wellbeing for the individual and family and each of the eight tentacles reflects:

Wairuatanga – spirituality
Hinengaro – the mind
Taha tinana – physical wellbeing
Whanaungatanga – extended family
Mauri – life force in people and objects
Mana ake – unique identity of individuals and family
Hā a koro ma, a kui ma – breath of life from forbearers
Whatumanawa – the open and healthy expression of emotion

Rose Pere is an inspiration who needs to be acknowledged within a wider context as she is constantly stressing how important it is to be ourselves as it does not matter what others think what matters is what we, ourselves want to become.

Maori pou- Mumu


One particular pou which has intrigued my attention within Ngakau Mahaki is the pou named Mumu.

Not much can be found on this particular pou, however through the talks we have been granted by Papa Hohepa each time he has explained the meaning behind this pou I have learnt more through his understanding.

Mumu is a tukutuku panel (decorated with lattice-work). Mumu is associated with the checkerboard effect through the patterning which is adorned throughout the carvings of this pou. Where the head of the carving is located it is said that part of the pou is the male element and below at the bottom is the female element. When the two unite we receive the fetus of the baby which is reflected to be light and a continuation of life which is very important to Maori as it is essential we continue the future generation of our Maori tamariki.

In a way in which Mumu has a link both to the marae and the carver is through the relationship or connection Ngakau Mahaki has with Lyonel Grant.
“Each work I produce is a synthesis of emotion, lineage to the past masters, a statement of personal expression, and a product of ones supposed mastery over the base material employed.”

Personal overview for Understanding Te Ao Maori

Being a Samoan Maori I have learnt a lot about my Maori ethnicity. Selecting Understanding Te Ao Maori has increased my knowledge on what I already know about our Maori culture. It has been overwhelming being able to learn about the Maori history and myths and legends which lies within the Maori world. Not only have I created a greater understanding for the culture, but in addition I have also been inspired and motivated to learn more about the Maori culture in places where stories have not yet been acknowledged.

One aspect which I have enjoyed most about researching has been Maori women and their involvement within Maori society. It has been intriguing to discover that women do play an important role within the Maori history which leads us to today as they are acknowledged as being tapu. Understanding more about Maori women within society has been inspiring and to learn more about women such as, Rose Pere within this course has encouraged me to find more inspiring Maori women who deserve to be looked up to.

Understanding Te Ao Maori has helped me to recognize who I am as a Maori and what I really interests me within the Maori society. Being given the opportunity to learn about your own culture and where you are from goes beyond words as to how motivating it is to go back through our own whakapapa and recite what we have learnt and will continue to develop. Through what I have learnt within this course I have also gained a greater knowledge into realizing that we are the future generation and it is up to us to create a prosperous future not only for ourselves but in order to create a future where our tamariki are proud and aware of who and where they are from. This course has also granted me exactly what I hoped to learn by the end of this course which was to have stronger sense of cultural identity which I really value. Although we are a diverse class it has been stunning to see others who are not of Maori decent wanting to learn more about the Maori culture and although this course has come to an end, it has inspired me to continue learning about the Maori culture.