Story: Māori creation traditions

Interior of a meeting house

Interior of a meeting house

Like all traditional Māori meeting houses, Te Tumu Herenga Waka at Victoria University of Wellington contains the central images of creation. The roof represents Ranginui (the sky) and the floor Papatūānuku (the earth). The supporting posts represent those used by the god Tāne to separate earth and sky during the creation of the world. The act of entering the house is interpreted as symbolically drawing close to the ancestors.

Using this item

Te Tumu Herenga Waka Marae, Victoria University of Wellington

All rights to images of this marae are held by Te Tumu Herenga Waka Marae, Victoria University of Wellington

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How to cite this page:

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Māori creation traditions - Creation and the Māori world view', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/2446/interior-of-a-meeting-house (accessed 15 October 2019)

Story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, published 8 Feb 2005