Friday, June 25, 2010

Daily Practice 176/365

Title: "Union and Separation"
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According to the Maori creation myth, Rangi and Papa are the primordial parents, the sky father and earth mother who lie locked in a tight embrace. Their male children live in the cramped darkness between them. The children eventually discuss what it would be like to live in the light, and decide to push Rangi and Papa apart, suggesting that Rangi be a stranger to them in the sky and Papa remain below to nurture them. In spite of the efforts of three of the children, Rongo (the god of cultivated food), Tangaroa (the god of the sea) and Haumia-tiketike (the god of wold food), Rangi and Papa remain close together in their loving embrace. After many attempts Tāne, god of forests and birds, forces his parents apart. Instead of standing upright and pushing with his hands as his brothers have done, he lies on his back and pushes with his strong legs. Stretching every sinew Tāne pushes and pushes until, with cries of grief and surprise, Ranginui and Papatuanuku were pried apart.