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Puuraakau Te Whawhai i Te Rangi

Rebellion in Heaven

After Tane had arranged the stars, and had formulated the laws of Tapu, even after he had obtained the sacred Waananga and lost his daughter Hinetitama, he again went up to the heavens. After his departure, the spirits who occupied the lower worlds sought to be revenged on Tane for the part he had taken in driving them thence.

They first caused evil amongst the fish of the sea, and multitudes of them were destroyed. Then they caused evil amongst the birds of the air, and flocks of them perished. And when men were made and had multiplied, they also caused evil amongst them.

It will be remembered that Io Matua, dwelt in the upper worlds with the spirit-hosts. Of these the Kahuianu persisted in their efforts to draw the Kahuitahu and the Kahuitao to evil and rebellion. Io Matua therefore gave the order to expel them, and to Tane the power to cast them out and throw them down from the first heaven, that they might all fall down to the various Po.

Because those flocks continually persisted in doing evil, Io Matua said, " Chase them away, as they will not hearken to teaching, and will not live peaceably."

On their arrival in the Po they did not cause very great evil, but they taught Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa to kill the creatures Tane had made on earth, and thus be revenged for having been thrown down from the heavens. Hinenuitepo joined those flocks, to assist in taking revenge on the creatures made by Tane.

Then was killed one of the offspring of Tikikapakapa. This first one killed was offered to Rehua. There was also killed one of the off spring of Tikitohua, which was also offered to Rehua. Then there was another killing of sacred offerings by Tu and Rongo: these were of the offspring of Pukupukuterangi. The lungs of these offerings were taken and offered to Rehua. Fire was first kindled by Rehua, on which was roasted the korari, the fruit of trees, and fish. Then commenced the art of cooking by fire.

The Taumata of Rehua was called Tetakitaki, and was in the fourth and fifth heavens. Then Tu and Rongo determined to go up into heaven and there make war, and kill the occupants of that region. They went to Taumata, and to Kahuraki, and to Pukenuiohotu, and to Pukenuipapa, and to Pukenuitauranga, and slaughtered the tribes as they went. Then first men began to eat fish and birds.

Another second rebellion was caused by Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa, who gave battle in the heaven, called Pukupukuterangi. There lived spirits who were fostered by Tane, who fled down into this world, and from them sprang the aruhe and many other sorts of food which have been lost to man. This is why the fern-root was used by man as a sacred offering to be given to the gods.

Another third rebellion was fought on the back of Rangi. This battle was called Awarua, also Takutaioteraki. From Awarua arose the angry feelings of Tane to those rebels Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa. Tu was killed by the beings of Tane, and his spirit allowed to go to the Po. Now, before the battle Rongo had counselled the slaughter of all the enemy; therefore, as Tu lay dying he said, “You remember my advice, when you replied, ' Let us allow part to escape by making faint blows at them.' Now you will die, and it will be left for me to obtain revenge for your death in this world." Then Rongo rose to revenge the death of Tu; and this was the war that was waged even up to the high peaks of the hills of heaven. The name of that battle was Teururangi. A great many beings fell; namely, Pukunui, Pukuroa, Pukeiahua, Pukuingakia, Tewhakawhenuaierenotu, and Huatake, and Koeerea, and Kurawaka, and Kuratahia, and Tipia, and Pitorei, and Hutihutimaukuku. And also Tahiuri was killed there; and Tahatea, and Tahama, and Tahapoko, and Tahawhero. But two men escaped and fled into the forest: one was called Tamaherangi, the other was Rakiwhakaka.

Thousands of the rebels were killed —that is, as far as spirits could be killed— in that battle. Tane and Io Matua consulted. Tane persisted in his determination to kill all, but Io Matua referred to a proposal he had made some time previously —that the world should be divided and the heavens separated from the earth, so that these spirits could become human by assuming bodies— but Tane would not agree. Through this misunderstanding these spirits were doomed to stay in darkness.

This was the result of this rebellion. These rebels were driven from the upper heavens, and their unalterable fate was, to live in doubt in this world and. in the worlds of darkness. It is from the Kahuianu that all the evils which now afflict the Maori race came.

But this was the cause of sorrow to Tane, and made him say to those disorderly companies, “I will not allow you to live here. Go ye below." He then threw all that company —that tribe and their chief Rongo— tumbling down to the worlds below; and this party, which had gone up in confidence, returned in confusion, and came to the place Kaihewa, where they lived in dismay and dread.

It is said, when a sudden death occurs, that the Atua Kikokiko is killing the people; and when two or, may be, three deaths occur on one day, incantations are repeated and ceremonies performed to avert death from the tribes. These incantations and ceremonies were repeated and performed to Mihimihitea and also to Tapatapa. It was Rehua who dispersed sadness and gloom from the minds of the weak as well as the strong. He was lord of kindness. His innumerable host reside in the heavens.

It was Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa who caused war and its attendant evils. Rehua, Kahukura, and Tane were great leaders; and besides, there were Rongonuiatau and Wekaiteatinuku. The latter was guardian and sustaining god, who, with the aid of Tuhinapo, conducted Maori over the vast ocean. They are gods of the ocean, and therefore sea-weed is the offering presented and laid before them.

After the battle at Taioruatapu, Uenuku and his son Ruatapu were, and continue to this day to be, the protecting gods of their descendants. If any of their offspring are inclined to evil they correct them, and they are the guardians of those who lead good and untainted lives. Kahukura and Rongonuiatau are the arbiters of life and death in war or peace, and are the gods who care for invalids, and are also the guardian gods of travellers. Prayer must be offered to Kahukura when the body is afflicted by disease, so that the disease may be sent elsewhere. Kapuitapuorangi cannot cure those who are sick; but, though they are unable to heal, submissive prayers must be made to them, and offerings of sea-weed and grass presented to them, so that they be not enraged, but that they may be pleased and act kindly towards man, over whom their power is such that nothing can in any case remove it.

Incantations and ceremonies repeated and performed for life and health are performed and repeated to Io Matua; so also are those that are repeated and performed to guide the spirits of men to the lower worlds, or to conduct them to the heavens of brightness, where they may ramble and live. Tumatauenga is also the god of battle, and to him are incantations repeated and ceremonies performed to obtain bravery and power for an army, that it may overcome its enemies. Io Matua is a good god.

Some of our high priests state it was Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa who first made war and killed men; but the beings killed were not like man as he now is; they were gods.
The men of Tiki were those who first killed each other. Rauriki was the first to kill man in this world. He killed Hotua. Rauriki was envious of Hotua because, the females loved Hotua, and because he was a noble looking and beautiful man. When the news of his death reached his relatives and tribes they sought for satisfaction : they repeated their incantations to Tumatauenga and Rongomaraeroa, and went and dipped the first finger of their left hands in the blood of Hotua and held their hands up to heaven ; then they pointed with their fingers to the thousands below ; then they took some of the clotted blood of Hotua in their left hands, and with them pointed to the sky, and then again pointed below, with each movement repeating their incantations, and naming each god of the heavens and all those below, also the names of all the heroes above and below; then they repeated the incantation of "Life and of the Origin of all Things." Then they repeated the incantation "Incense of Gum," and went in a body and attacked the settlement of Rauriki, and killed him, and cooked and ate his body; then they repeated the grand incantations of the Ikanuiatahua and Temautitia. These last two were repeated in the sacred place. Retiring thence they presented the heart of the slain to the high priest, and not until he had eaten it could the army partake of ordinary food. When war is proclaimed, and men have fallen, the heart of the first one slain is taken out and presented as an offering to the gods. The most delicate part of man is the thigh, which is placed in a bowl made of sea-kelp, and cooked in an umu. The chiefs alone partake of this.

When a party is about to set out on a war expedition, they catch and kill a bird called amatata, carefully saving all the blood, and with incantations and ceremonies offer the body to the gods and then deposit it in the sacred place. The blood alone of the bird is used in the ceremonies when the offering is made. This being done the army return home dancing and singing and chanting incantations to Tumatauenga, and then remain for one or two months, devoting a great portion of their time in throwing the niu. Then a war-party is selected, and the army leaves the settlement, and when some distance on the road they all join in chanting incantations to Tu, so that the power of the enemy may not be able to repel their attack. This was all done when the army to revenge the death of Hotua attacked and took the pa of Rauriki. He himself escaped, but all the people were either slain or taken prisoners.

When the fight was over, they assembled the prisoners, and, after killing the first one captured, they took his heart and presented it to the high priest; this he cooked, and when he had eaten it they killed all the other prisoners, carefully saving all the blood, which they offered with great ceremony as a sacrifice to the gods; and then the bodies of all those slain were cut up and cooked and eaten by the army. This was the commencement of cannibalism in this world, and the practice has been continued down to the present time. Rauriki fled and took shelter with Kuratapa. The army pursued, and, in the attack which followed, Rauriki was slain, and his blood was drunk by the high priest whilst it was warm. His head was cured. His bones were made into needles to sew the garments then used by the people, some into hooks to catch fish, and some into barbs for birds and eel-spears. The hands were dried with the fingers bent in towards the palm, and the wrists were tied to a pole which was stuck into the ground, and baskets containing the remains of a meal were hung up on these fingers.

At this time Kahukura was personified by a figure carved in wood. To this incantations were chanted, and the effigy was held up in the hands of the priests and shaken about to delight the people.

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