Maori, News

Matariki a time for reflection and celebration

Matariki: Te Tau Hou Māori is one of our favourite times of the year and a chance for whanau and friends to reflect on the past, celebrate the present and plan for the future.

HPF’s Maori Health Promotion Strategist Mereana Te Pere said it was great to see how Matariki, which is being celebrated nationwide until July 11, had gained recognition over the past few years.

“More people now recognise the mana and significance of the Māori calendar and how we can better harmonise our lives with the rhythm of nature.

“Increasingly we’re learning that Matariki not only acts as a time marker, but also as an icon for Māori pūrakau, atua, and a tool that connects our physical bodies with the spiritual realm and the changing of seasons and elements,” said Mereana.

Mereana said it was thanks to Māori leaders such as Sir Mason Durie and Prof Rangi Mātāmua, that the move to living a life guided by Māori models and the maramataka had grown traction and were now recognised in many fields as beneficial for health and education in Aotearoa.


Sir Mason introduced Matariki as a guide for health promotion at the World Conference on Health Promotion in Rotorua in 2019. (PICTURED)


“Matariki provides a health promotion agenda for Māori and Indigenous peoples that endorse Indigenous rights, keep our skies clean and fresh, protect our lands, preserve our native forests, enable whānau and families to flourish, support community initiatives, safeguard our rivers and ocean, and restore nature’s balance,” he said.

“The indigenisation of our thinking and systems is shifting and widening the scope of how we can live and tackle challenges,” said Mereana.

CLICK HERE for Matariki celebrations and events.

(Banner photo by Arnaud Mariat on Unsplash)