If only every wedding would have have a haka

Make sure your speakers are turned on for this (but be mindful of the volume...)

If I were still a classroom teacher, I would have played this for every. single. one of my classes. And every time I see it, it NEVER. GETS. OLD. It is one of the most awe inspiring things I have ever seen because of the miracle that is the shared economy via the internet. 

I actually was a wedding photographer for a part of my career and for a good part of that, I exclusively photographed Jewish Orthodox weddings in the DC/Baltimore Metro area. (Nothing against Western traditions (meaning: US weddings), but non-Western weddings are way more incredible to behold than Western ones.

A little more context for understanding the Haka

Full disclosure: I honestly don't know very much about the tradition of the haka and I only discovered it because of the aforementioned viral video (that is better explained HERE).  As soon as I saw it though, I very quickly came to the realization of how meaningful, sacred, and ancient it still is today. As I have revisited it again and again, I have come to revere it even more because of the cultural relevance that I feel like it ought to have especially in our current times. 

It makes me think about the settlers of the United States of America and how easily their assumptions of the "savage" nature probably came to them when they were met with the folks who were already here in the US. Hearing battle cries (similar enough to what is showcased in the video) must have scared them out of their wits. This is probably why the colonial settlers likely thought of them in the narrow and corrosively demeaning ways they did. 

A Haka is not simply battle cry

From a world culture perspective, life milestones and events (births, deaths, weddings, anniversaries, etc.) are considered to be sacred and, thus, they are naturally and densely woven with true  personal investment of time, energy and most definitely deep emotion of the moment at-hand.

Can you imagine the emotion that one would be  overtaken by on the day of betrothing yourself to the one you love? And that marriage vow that you are making to the other soul you feel you were meant to find, that promise you make in front of your family and declare your life to be promised to be expanded exponentially — surely, you can see a “battle cry” (a haka) more than appropriate to punctuate that occasion. 

Or even when you get to see the life of a child come into it's body when it breathes air for the first time with it's chest swollen of the air that it is now sharing with you. And realizing that you helped bring the child into it's own life - that's haka worthy, isn't it?

I mean... seriously.

Here is the same video (that started this blog post) but this one is subtitled to translate what is being said in Maori.

These  sorts of things would surely warrant a "battle cry" of some sort if that were you, right? We should all consider that that’s exactly the point of a Haka.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks so much for your comment. If you would like to connect more directly with me, you can do so by emailing me:

d e e r e s t d a h l i n g [at] g m a i l [dot] com

(note: remove the spacing /formatting for the address to work - thanks!)