|Subject: For your Solstice Celebration: the Maori Creation Myth|
posted by SallyMabelle on Thursday, June 4th 2009 @ 12:19 PM
I told this story as part of a Solstice Ritual/ Celebration last year...told in the pitch black and then lit one candle at the part of the story where the light comes to earth and pass that light around to everyone there, each holding his or her own candle...feel free to share it :-)
It is said at the beginning of time there stood Te Kore, the Nothingness.
Then was Te Po, the Night, which was immensely long and immensely dark:
Te Po nui,
Te Po roa,
Te Po uriuri,
Te Po kerekere,
Te Po tiwha,
Te Po te kitea,
Te Po tangotango...
meaning the Great Night, the Long Night, the Dark Night, the Intensely Dark Night, the Gloomy Night, the Night Unseen, the Night to be Felt.
Night piled upon Night there was, the vast illimitable Po. “From the first night of Black Darkness onward to the tenth Night, the hundredth, the thousandth Night,”… Ages of Po, the profound timeless Night before Creation was.
Ranginui, the sky God and Papatuanuku, our earth mother prevented light from reaching the world because of their loving close embrace, and their children lived in a world of darkness and ignorance between the bodies of their parents.
There in that utter profundity of gloom, oppressed by the close embrace of Rangi and Papa, lay confused and cramped the children of the primal parents, the children who were gods; their names represent nature’s various powers.
There were the winds and storms, the ocean and all that dwell in it, the fruits of the Earth, the volcanic powers, the forests and all that live therein, and lastly Man.
These were the children of Heaven and Earth. And these children, rebelling against their æons of imprisonment between the huge, shapeless forms of Heaven and Earth, , worn out with continual darkness, met together to decide what should be done about their parents, that man might arise. .
And they plotted against their parents in order to let light into the world."Shall we kill our parents, shall we slay them, our father and our mother, or shall we separate them?" they asked. And long did they consider in the darkness.
It is said that some of the children decided that their situation could be remedied only if they separated their parents, so that Ranginui would be pushed up to become the sky and Papatuanuku remain as their Earth. They each made vast writhing efforts to part their parents. But none were successful until..
Tane-mahuta, god of the Trees finally stepped forward.
Slowly, slowly as the kauri tree did Tanemahuta rise between the Earth and Sky. At first he strove with his arms to move them, but with no success.
And so he paused, and the pause was an immense period of time. Then he placed his shoulders against the Earth, his mother, and his feet against the Sky.
The parents of the children cried out and asked them, "why are you doing this crime, why do you wish to kill your parents' love?"
Great Tanemahuta thrust with all his strength, which was the strength of growth. Far beneath him he pressed the Earth. Far above he thrust the Sky, and held him there.
Soon, and yet not soon, for the time was vast, the Sky and Earth began to yield. Their longing was strong to keep embracing each other forever but their children’s longing for growth was stronger. Rangi and Papa began to surrender their embrace through Tane’s strength.
By this separation of Rangi and Papa the world of light, of existence, came into being. All of the creatures that were born of their parents love, were free now to move and grow…
They celebrated this first day of light and felt the joy of breathing and moving and having room to stretch out and grow and to feel themselves.
And we too now celebrate this returning of the light..
This winter solstice…this transition moment from the darkness, this darkest night of the year to the returning of the light..as the sun grows stronger and shines longer each day from NOW through til its fullest brightest radiance at the summer solstice this Christmas time.