Karakia / Whakataukī
Karakia are prayers that invoke spiritual guidance and protection. Traditionally, Māori used karakia for everything they did, including planting and harvesting food and building waka/canoe. Māori had several hundred karakia for all aspects of daily living and function.
Today, karakia areused to ensure a favourable outcome to important events such as tangihanga/funerals, hui/meetings and unveilings. Karakia are also used when welcoming the dawn and farewelling the day, ensuring a safe journey, when undertaking tā moko/tattoo or when carving wharenui/meeting houses or waka.
Whakataukī / Whakatauākī
Whakataukī are proverbs and poetic forms of te reo. They often merge historical events or holistic perspectives with underlying messages, which are influential within Māori society.
Whakataukī are sayings that become settled over time, through constant repetition from the time they were was first exclaimed right up to the present day. The word whakataukī can be split into whaka (to cause), tau (to be settled) and kī (a saying). Whakataukī are used in a range of contexts in Māori such as whaikōrero to support the speaker in making a point and aligning the present with the wisdom of tīpuna/tūpuna.
A whakatauākī is a proverb where the original speaker is known.