Matariki- Questions & Answers What is matariki? Matariki is a star constellation in the sky, that symbolises the Maori new year. People celebrate every year around the world. But in different countries they don’t see it the same time as we do, they se it months after. Who celebrates matariki? The Maori people of Aotearoa, and other people in different countries, like Japan, Hawaii, Mexico, and Greece. When can matariki be seen? June is the best time for people to see it in New Zealand. What does matariki signify? Stars in the sky, which in the old days was the Maori new year, and the season to plant crops, and the navigation to food, and things like that.
What else have I learned about Matariki? What I have learnt about Matariki is that, Matariki is known in different countries with by several different names. In New Zealand it is known as matariki, the seven sisters, the eyes of god, or tiny eyes. Matariki was the Maori new year to the maori’s of Aotearoa. They used the stars to navigate their way to land, and to food. It also meant time to plant food, because this was the best time for that job, and they knew that the coming season was too hot to plant the crops. When people see Matariki now these days it is a sign of celebration, with your friends and family. Which means a gathering of some sort, a feast, firecrackers, and bonfires, to celebrate the Maori new year. They say that matariki is about 100 million years old, and that it is located in the constellation of Taurus. But most people these days don’t really care about matariki, because it probably doesn’t mean anything to them. There is even song about Matariki, and it has the names of the seven sisters in it.
The timing of Matariki rising and the particular Maori celebration is unique to Aotearoa. However, the Matariki cluster can be seen from many parts of the world where it is known by several other names including Pleiades, Seven Sisters, Subaru and Messier 45. For some iwi, Puanga or of Atlantis. In both ancient Greece and Mexico, several temples were lines up with the rising and setting Rigel is the star that signifies the beginning of the Maori New Year. The time of the rising of the Pleiades has always been a major indicator of seasonal changes throughout the ancient world. Matariki is recognised widely in the pacific where it was an important astronomical sign to sailors both as a navigational aid and as a sign that the weather was safe for long voyages with the stormy season past. Early Greek seamen knew them as the sailing stars and would only sail when the stars were visible at night. In Hawaii, the stars are known as the Makali’I and their appearance in October, November marked the start of the great Makahiki Festival dedicated to the god of rain and agriculture. The Japanese call Matariki Subaru, which has become well known due to its use by the car maker. The meaning of Subaru is generally thought to be united or getting together. Some cultures believed that a great ancient cataclysm occurred when the Pleiades were overhead at midnight, such as the great biblical flood or the sinking of Matariki. Matariki Around the World
By Jewel The best thing about matariki is it brings everyone together for a celebration of any kind, weather its with your friends, or family. And it makes you think of all the other people who celebrate it in the other countries over the world. Matariki last up to about 3 days. Matariki!