Glossary of Maori words and phrases.
Subject: Maoris (Terminology)
Pub Date: 03/01/2005
Publication: Name: New Zealand Journal of Psychology Publisher: New Zealand Psychological Society Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Psychology and mental health Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2005 New Zealand Psychological Society ISSN: 0112-109X
Issue: Date: March, 2005 Source Volume: 34 Source Issue: 1
Geographic: Geographic Scope: New Zealand Geographic Code: 8NEWZ New Zealand
Accession Number: 132677471
Full Text: Note: Explanations for the Maori word, and phrases that appear in this issue were derived from the authors' definitions, therefore more than one understanding may be provided. Maori dictionaries were consulted for any not provided by the author.


atua--spiritual essence


he rnana te matauranga--knowledge is power

hei mutunga--in closing

hopo--a form of psychological withdrawal

i te kore, kite po, ki te ao marama--from nothing, into the darkness, into the world of light

io matua kore--the original essence, when nothing else existed

iwi--tribe; people

kaho--horizontal battens or purlins, spiritual dividers of knowledge


kanohi ki te kanohi--face to face

karakia--incantation, prayer, chant

kauwae runga--kauwae raro--accessible knowledge--sacred knowledge

kawa--local protocols


kopaiti, ihonui, kauwhanga--spatial dividers of groups



mana whenua--family members of sub-tribe genealogically connected to a particular geographical area

manaakitanga--ability/process of caring for others and/or something of worth. Help and support for each other.

mana whenua--the name given to members of the family of sub-tribe who are genealogically connected to a particular geographical area.

matauranga--knowledge (in this context 'Maori knowledge')


mauri tu, mauri ora, mauri hobo, mauri mate--a saying about vitality and lifeforce, when we stand up and strive the desire to live is strong, when we give up or sit down we are more prone to sickness and death

mokopuna grandchildren

Ngai Tabu--descendents of Tabu Potiki, tribe traditionally located in the South Island


paepae--beam at the front of the whare, threshold between sacred from profane

puhi-kuia--young girl--old woman

pukenga atawhai--Maori mental health worker


rangi-tu-haha--heavenly realms

rehutai and rukatai--symbols of knowledge and wisdom


taha Maori--things Maori; Maori 'side'

tahuhu--ridgepole, representing the passage from darkness to the world of light


tangata whaiora--Maori people/patients seeking wellness

tangata whenua--Maori; indigenous people

tangata whenua-manuhiri--people of the land--visitors

tapu--sacred; restricted


te ao Hou--uture hopes and aspirations

te ao Hurihuri--the modern world

te ao Maori--the Maori world

te ao Tawhito--traditions, mythology; the ancient world

te hangaitanga--introduction, background

te kete Aronui--the natural world that lies before us, perceived by normal sense perception

te kete Tuatea--the world that lies beyond space and time

te kete Tuauri--a world of psychic and cosmic energy that operates behind the natural world

te korekore--the absolute nothingness

te korekore te rawea--absolute nothingness that could not be wrapped up

te korekore te tamaua--absolute nothingness that could not be fastened

te korekore te whiwhia--absolute nothingness that could not be bound

te po i pepeke--the loftiest night

te po i tuturi--the lowest night

te po tangotango--the night to be felt

te po uriuri--the thick night

te reo Maori--the Maori language

Te robe o Ngai Tahu--tribal area of Ngai Tabu

Te Tai Rawhiti--The East coast of the North Island

Te Wai Pounamu--The South Island

tihi-o-manono--highest realm

tino rangatiratanga--self determination.

tuakana- teina--elder-younger relationship (in this context implicates mentoring)

tikanga--principles which govern correct action; Maori values and processes

tupuna/tipuna--ancestor or ancestors

tupuna rangatira--esteemed ancestors waiata--song



wairuatanga--practices pertaining to maintenance within the spiritual dimension


waka wairua--vehicle containing spiritual essence


whakapapa--Maori genealogy or ancestry

whakama--may be associated with shyness, embarrassment or a sense of shame

whakawhanaungatanga--process of strengthening relationships and extended family relationships

whanau--extended family, sometimes used in a metaphorical sense

whanaungatanga--relationship, interconnection

whare runanga--carved meeting house; also known as whare whakairo or whare tipuna

whare wananga--house of learning

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