This is the summer solstice... the time when the sun turns back toward winter. It's the opposite of Matariki and the sun has travelled as far south as it can... now it will slowly turn back and begin it's journey north to complete the cycle that started at Matariki. All cultures that live to the beat of the suns’ drum understand the importance of the equinox and solstice.
They are the four seasonal markers... the four currents of energy... the four winds of evolution... and the four strands of life. 3 moon cycles per season... and 12 moon cycles per year. The journey from summer to winter (and back) is a well worn path and our ancestors knew each nook and each cranny intimately... they gave them names... gave them tikanga... and gave them powerful purpose. There are 2 solstices (summer and winter) and both serve as significant celebrations in modern Maori life. The summer solstice is Christmas... and the winter solstice is around Matariki.
Solstice is about how long the day is and how long the night. In the summer solstice the days are at there longest and the nights are at their shortest. In the winter solstice the days are at there shortest and the nights are at their longest. The sun travels backwards and forwards between these two points. Around midway between them is the spring and autumn equinox. The equinox means the days and nights are about equal... so effectively smack bang in the middle of the 2 solstice. The spring equinox is about the end of September... the autumn equinox is around about March.
There are 2 solstices per year...Te Hikumata-o-Raumati... and Te Hikumata-o-Takurua. There are 2 equinoxes... Te Ineine-o-Koanga... and Te Ineine-o-Ngahuru. They are part and parcel of the cycle of life... the ebb and flow of the tides... the to and fro of the winds... the pulse and heartbeat of the seasons. Our ancestors knew all this... It wasn’t rocket science... it was observation... MAURIORA
WARREN POHATU CREATIVE: ONLINE IWI 2013