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Mana

mana whenua

There's an idea I've been growing for a while which I'm getting ready to write about, and in part of that writing I want to use the word mana. I'm attracted to it for a couple of reasons - it's a term used to talk about the power one draws on to cast spells in games such as Magic: The Gathering or Diablo. Also mana is a word that's an important concept in New Zealand, and here is the challenge.

It seems like the word was appropriated from polynesian culture into fantasy in 1969, see:

I want to understand better what the original Maori word means, because a quick looks suggests the english usage is pretty shallow compared to roots and living use of the concept in New Zealand culture. I think there's a lot I can learn and it feels important and right to learn what's come before me.
It could be there's a way it's appropriate for me to borrow or reference the concept without just perpetuating collonisation (I don't know yet), or it could be that I learn a lot and it's ultimately more right for me to use another word like "Magic points" or "Magicka".

This is a living journal / thread, where I'm going to collect notes from my learning journey. If you've got any pointers or would like to join me on this quest, you're most welcome. If you're not sure if your addition is a different quest or not, just ask!

@mix %oOcGPs7dLlHBiTHmBmxgqXM9WxBi0WVlZuMx+YmzeWw=.sha256

ok here's a start from https://maoridictionary.co.nz :

  • mana
    1. (noun) prestige, authority, control, power, influence, status, spiritual power, charisma - mana is a supernatural force in a person, place or object. Mana goes hand in hand with tapu, one affecting the other. The more prestigious the event, person or object, the more it is surrounded by tapu and mana. Mana is the enduring, indestructible power of the atua and is inherited at birth, the more senior the descent, the greater the mana. The authority of mana and tapu is inherited and delegated through the senior line from the atua as their human agent to act on revealed will. Since authority is a spiritual gift delegated by the atua, man remains the agent, never the source of mana. This divine choice is confirmed by the elders, initiated by the tohunga under traditional consecratory rites (tohi). Mana gives a person the authority to lead, organise and regulate communal expeditions and activities, to make decisions regarding social and political matters. A person or tribe's mana can increase from successful ventures or decrease through the lack of success. The tribe give mana to their chief and empower him/her and in turn the mana of an ariki or rangatira spreads to his/her people and their land, water and resources. Almost every activity has a link with the maintenance and enhancement of mana and tapu. Animate and inanimate objects can also have mana as they also derive from the atua and because of their own association with people imbued with mana or because they are used in significant events. There is also an element of stewardship, or kaitiakitanga, associated with the term when it is used in relation to resources, including land and water.
      source
  • mana tangata
    1. (noun) power and status accrued through one's leadership talents, human rights, mana of people.
      source
  • mana whakatipu
    1. (noun) aquired leadership - power and status accrued through one's leadership talents, mana resulting from strength of character and force of will, and the means a leader has to enforce those wishes. Also known as mana tangata.
      source
@mix %O33/1NV4RzFSaBoPqHci0A+6nGfTyyxDP2VSoIUxbkE=.sha256

https://www.nzgeo.com/stories/the-meaning-of-mana/

oof. This article took me a lot deeper, I think I'm going to have to read it again. These excerpts are just tasters to encourage other explorers to read this article. I can't summarise it yet

Taipahau it was who blasted and withered the healthy leaves of a ti-tree before the disbelieving eyes of Bishop Selwyn. That was just a little show of the mana of his gods. In death, Taipahau sealed himself in the rock wall face you see just as you turn off the main highway into Waihi. Pakeha using earthmoving machines tried to smash down that face to lay the road there. Not surprisingly, it wouldn’t budge

It doesn’t matter that you may have been born in a dirt-floored shanty and been uneducated, as koro was. Mana comes through hands-on commitment to your own people.

Its tests are your own actions.

Its testers, the people around you.

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@mix %iNrv8pQgNZ1aslDjhzh4H5D3M1W1yWtGaZWfQk5aIQY=.sha256

if you were reading the word @iRobert it was likely becuase a missionary chose to write it down, which means the meaning was probably their approximation of the living word (at a guess)

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@dan %TU8vg/6/gi5367LXUkKGJP3LYslFm0pZXtNwUUAxXw8=.sha256
Voted I've never played MTG or other games which use 'mana', so my interpretation
@Christian Bundy %eOwAWSfKtN+PMzabO1Xrw99PaKz3Ic7l4uF3vVR66hU=.sha256
Voted https://www.nzgeo.com/stories/the-meaning-of-mana/ oof. This article took
@Christian Bundy %iOUEjaw1IhhSHkfT751cRYsTGyRwm8z5QMQlIpUWDSw=.sha256
Voted I've never played MTG or other games which use 'mana', so my interpretation
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@mix %mMJm7c83PG2QkRicjfrGPIEnFoUAGznQBYjD9630uPE=.sha256
Voted I've never played MTG or other games which use 'mana', so my interpretation
@mix %0aRg7W7O4pIvq1NyYbCXg3nysXy5c3AnrbsmtQLNU8w=.sha256
Voted Possibly [@mix](@ye+QM09iPcDJD6YvQYjoQc7sLF/IFhmNbEqgdzQo3lQ=.ed25519) Give
@mix %y1H6iRdyuarhTUhGRshsMHy2Vnl64HGwkK9edygUXYI=.sha256

my friend Billy told me a story of a child that was born with more mana than both his parents. This is because they brought together in one person the mana of two powerful lineage.

I think one reason mana is hard to grasp for Pakeha is that we're running a story of individualism, and that we're "self-made". Our whakapapa only means something for particularly exceptional cases, so things like mana tūpuna don't make sense. Having said that Pakeha do have the concept of cultural capital, and at least in education we talk about the impact of the inheritance of cultural capital...

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@dan %uqRO3S24fBCyXIa12mOk7OFWi5zTq9PVE4Xk0UlrJ+4=.sha256

interested to follow along with your learning @mix it's quite related to some of my own similar journies that have been going on about what it means to collaborate with Indigenous folx here in Australia (which I am still making sense of). At some point I'll start writing about it :-D Main thing I have been trying to surface and sense for are embedded extractive scripts I think I might be internally running etc. The main strategy I have been using as antedote to that is very. very slow work and lots of reading in and around the neighbourhood.

@SoapDog %fszwHKPvM8y6uiS8dZRgB/enT3RZ0PapPArJJYcjAPQ=.sha256
Voted # Mana ![mana whenua](&zNd/i+hMzTxIHKMDiABneWsPtoEG3jbs8ESDZCUz81k=.sha256
@SoapDog %W5d/rpRWYH0EhOOqtbPiAdi3YBd6Rv1jnpPssjWZvD0=.sha256

Mana also plays an important role in Hawaiian culture. I remember is being explained to me as something not unlike the original concept for Glory from the Greeks but not necessarily focused on combat and warfare, as in something people look for and try to acquire and is related to the power they have. As in Mana is something one can accumulate or attract or earn through various acts and the more you have, the more you do. It is the intangible sparks of power that imbues the individual with a potentiality for greatness, the more you have it, the greater you will be able to become. I haven't dug as deep as you and I am sure the reality is much more nuanced and deeper than what was explained to me.

@mix %En3tVpZYwaugqfLt1TACd5ru6HrnVuReCe9qF/hgfkk=.sha256
Voted Mana also plays an important role in Hawaiian culture. I remember is being
@mix %XkbWbtgKYKRC99doXMYNhz8n84UckYte7xP5TCJnS00=.sha256
Voted interested to follow along with your learning [@mix](@ye+QM09iPcDJD6YvQYjoQ
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@cel %A4W8EF8FQ9G0nFDBH0gWjT1XvLskcLiCYTIbM4DyPLE=.sha256
Voted I've never played MTG or other games which use 'mana', so my interpretation
@cel %zf8FPIfA6UgPxXC7MzNJAQ9T1muBEhr5Tb7Cdsv+Czo=.sha256
Voted ok here's a start from https://maoridictionary.co.nz : - **mana** > 2. (
@dan %c/lRpw5QlSgg7GUeP1ZSDenPS1TEzwZcePO5qPCRw00=.sha256
Voted I wonder how concepts like Mana imported from another culture might be affe
@cel %BhBiopMNkMMrmagdOr57GgRHnJoPcB8pvndvBOQeFOE=.sha256
Voted Mana also plays an important role in Hawaiian culture. I remember is being
@mix %cwQBpXx1JDv6Xj1U5UF01dSOOOavkUvx0jQihWMZDcg=.sha256

feel like I'm slowly growing more understanding of this concept. I've been talking contracts with @Maui for work with #ahau , and we were reflecting on things in terms of "is this clause something which is mana enhancing from all of us?".

was a really fantastic frame which took us from a deficit framing (how do we ensure commitments and responsibilities are met?) to a more generative framing (how can we arrange ourselves to work such that we're all aligned on building one another up, what would it look like if we weren't doing that?).

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