Today Te Wharekura o Rakaumangamanga student Hana Rawhiti Maipi-Clarke launches her new book at her school in Huntly.
The book, Maahina, encourages rangatahi to take an interest in the stars and the moon to heal themselves.
“I wanted rangatahi Māori to become more aware of the environment and how it can help us physically mentally and emotionally and help us with the everyday things we do in life like studying and NCEA.”
The 17-year-old created Maahina about seven months ago.
“It was a little scary just because there are 400 different variations of maramataka within each iwi so I had to make sure I was doing it properly and then I brought the kaupapa into my school and they helped me support me and here I am today with my book.”
Maahina / Source: File
Part of her journey started when she attended a lecture where Māori astronomer Professor Rangi Matamua, the captain of the oceangoing waka Haunui, Hoturoa Barclay-Kerr, and Māori astrologer Rereata Makiha spoke about the Matariki star constellation, ocean navigation and maramataka Māori.
“I was looking around the room and there were not many rangatahi there, and I was like ‘If our generation was to know about this I feel we’d become more in tune and it would help us with our overall wellbeing and health’.”
Maipi-Clarke says the book covers three different phases about the maramataka (calendar).
“There’s a low, high and medium, just like the natural waves of life, and it’s just applying little things to those elements.”
During a low phase she focuses her time on studying and on the high phase, she asks her teacher if the due date for an assignment can be moved there.
“Eventually I want this out there for all my generation because we are the millennial generation, the ones who have all the technology these days so it would be so good if we could all learn a little something now that this is available to us.”
Maipi-Clarke says would like to continue studying the maramataka once she starts university. For now, she is looking for a way to sell her new book online.