Maori Esoteric Knowledge: Te Kura Huna a Rua

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This work investigates through lexical analysis an ancient Māori method of esoteric knowledge concealment called “Te Kura Huna a Rua.” It appears to have been a system which functioned to condition initiates into a way of seeing and being in the world. It was the equivalent of the Māori university or institution for higher learning and was imparted orally. Kura huna or “hidden school” as the name implies, maintained the status quo by confining essential and powerful knowledge to a select group or class of people. The prefix Rua designated a body of knowledge made explicit by the root word which followed it and was evident in the areas of knowledge acquisition. The characterisation of a body of knowledge as kura huna meant that it was valued highly, to the extent that it was circumscribed with ritual to maintain its privileged and tapu or sacred status.


Keywords: Maori Esoteric Epistemology, Concealed Knowledge
Stream: First Nations and Indigenous Peoples
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Hidden School of Rua, The


Monte Himone Aranga

Senior Lecturer, School of Maori and Indigenous Indigenous Studies, Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi
Whakatane, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand

Lecturing ten years at indigenous tribal university in schools of Education, Environmental Science and Maori Studies. Interests include Buddhist philosophy and Vipassana practice.

Ref: H08P0626