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Our story

Kura Matahuna

Unleash Space’s Māori name is Kura Matahuna, gifted by Matua Rereata Makiha, (Ngāti Whakaheke, Te Aupōuri, Te Arawa) and Matua Manuka Henare, (Ngāti Hauā, Te Aupouri, Te Rarawa, Ngāti Kahu).

Rereata Makiha explains:

Māori were a great lover of wisdom and philosophy and it is to these subjects that the term “Kura” applies – vade mecum: Hongi p153

Kura in the old language means precious treasure, sacred wisdom and philosophy. Divine law and natural phenomena. Kura tawhiti was an ancient sacred wisdom tree that grew at the centre of the earth where all known and unknown knowledge was kept. The knowledge was accessed by tohunga through the Kura Wananga. The knowledge tree in the movie Avatar is a perfect image of the Kura Tawhiti.

Matahuna refers to the unseen face or the unknown source. The wind for example is a matahuna. It can’t be seen but it can be detected by its impact on something (Tukāki Waititi: Ngati Hine/Whanau a Apanui). So what we have here is the idea of a group challenging the unknown and the unseen and as yet undeveloped territory. Its like our ancestors who called upon many knowledge sources, stars, animals, fish and bird migrations, to develop a wayfinding system that enabled them to populate 6.5 million square miles of ocean without any instruments. They used a collective knowledge gathered from the Kura Tawhiti.

So Kura Matahuna is the new journey into the future that challenges the “status quo”.

Unleash Space was founded as a partnership between the University of Auckland’s Business School and the Faculty of Engineering. Its creation and continued management has been led by the Business School’s Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Unleash Space was made possible due to the vision and generosity of our Founding Partners, who share our values of instilling an entrepreneurial ethos and skillset into the next generation of New Zealanders. Learn more

 

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