1 The Waitaha People – a Chinese colony that settled in New Zealand 2000 years ago.

The Waitaha People – a Chinese colony that settled in New Zealand 2000 years ago.

The Waitaha nation goes back 2000 years.  Two hundred tribes of the Waitaha nation settled in New Zealand and were then decimated by the warlike Maori who invaded the island some 800 years ago as an eerie precursor of the Maori massacre of the Moriori in the Chatham Islands.

There is a Maori legend that tells of the Waitaha being the descendents of Chinese porters and stone cutters.

Bary Brailsford, author of ‘Tattooed Land’, ‘Greenstone Trails’, ‘Song of Waitaha’ has said simply:
“ten years ago when I was called to write the story of Waitaha I was told by the elders that I would be challenged by Maori who did not want the story revealed, by Pakeha in the academic world who would not believe it, and by others who would wlak with their own agendas”.

The “Song of Waitaha” was a release to the world of secret traditions, geneology, and history, as told to the author by Waitaha elders, asserts Barry Brailsford.

Brailsford says he had to earn the right. Before beginning work on the book he had to lead a selected team of people across the Southern Alps to reopen old Waitaha greenstone trails closed for 130 years.

“Until now we have hidden our beginnings, and all that followed, in the shadows. In this way we protected our knowledge in the silence of the Whare Wananga, the School of Learning of Waitaha.”

“For it has been decided it is time for our treasures to be brought into the light.”

“We do this for the children, and their children, and all who call this land home.”

“We are of Tane Matua, and we follow Rongo Marae Roa, the God of Peace.”

“In the wisdom and aroha (love) of those words, we say: `Let the sacred kete (basket containing sacred knowledge) be opened for the ancestors to speak again. Let the ancient karakia and waiata be heard throughout the land. Welcome to the trails of the peoples of the Nation of Waitaha. May you journey far in peace and understanding.”

The Waitaha comprised three different peoples: The Moriori, or Maeroero, who at the time were giants, over l.8m and superb gardeners, able to grow the kumara 1000 km further south than in its South American homeland.

Herries Beattie describes them in Nga Waka Press Release I,
“… among the first, if not the very first, residents in the South Island. They were here before Maui sailed round from Bruce Bay to Kaikoura between the years 400-450 AD … they were a kindly people, not bloodthirsty or pugnacious, and timidly fled to the wilds before the advance of later arrivals. They were musical and could play flutes and sing, and the smoke of their fires marked their presence in out-of-the-way spots.”
The flute was an instrument invented by the Chinese and thence brought to South America where their traditonal panflutes still represent a strong part of their cultural heritage.

Then there were the Urukehu, a fair-skinned people also known as the Starwalkers who were skilled at reading the geometry of the stars and were the navigators guiding the people to this land; and the Kiritea or Stone people, who came from Asian lands and who carried the greenstone over mountain passes.

The Waitaha, claiming that they pre-empt the Maori of course challenge the Waitangi Tribunal. Waitaha leader Rangimarie Te Maiharoa says the settlement will “extinguish customary rights and aboriginal title of our people”.

Particularly tantalising is a buried Waitaha village in the Kaipara dunes – it first made an appearance several years ago when a fierce storm temporarily shifted sand. Only to return and cover it up again.

Information obtained from: http://www.zealand.org.nz/new_zealand.htm

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