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MUHAMMAD ALI V USA AUG 23RD 1966

Tenakoe Muhammad Ali…this is the plaque we’d like to put on your Pou Whenua (Marking Post) at our Tapu Te Ranga Marae in Wellington New Zealand.

Muhammad Ali v USA Aug 23rd1966 rounds/one…time/ 5 yrs.

Punched way above his weight…impossible odds…the fight transcended boxing/sport… into mythology…fought same Monster who enslaved his Old People…also destroyed First Nation peoples of his birth/choice/country.

“...if I pass this test I’ll come out stronger than ever”

His weapon of choice was justice… “I am free to be who I want to be…”

“…no Vietcong ever called me nigger”

Won/points decision 8 /0. A new Heavyweight champion for Peace.

Heroes Path…so we who follow behind can find the way.

SCHARIE'S DAY - 4TH NOVEMBER 2006

It is 4am in the morning…our whanau have been preparing for my mokopunas…Sharie's 21st tomorrow.

It’s a biggie…the whanau are pulling out all the stops…it’s busy busy and busier…they all have their jobs…they’re better than the proverbial ‘well oiled machine’ this one runs on whanau tanga and shrieks of laughter (even at 4am)

Central to it all is my lovely…mother of four…daughter General MayBelle…she sees the whole picture…and at 6pm when our Sharie unknowingly arrives and the doors are flung open…she will be hit by that very special ‘Wow Factor’…no commercial hotel could compete.

Up front it’s our Beautiful Grand daughters 21st birthday…the creating of it creates us.

27TH OCTOBER 2006…MORE ON NUKUNUKU OR NUNUKU AS HIS OWN CALL HIM…

Inter-tribal warring took an enormous toll on Moriori and fearing total annihilation, Nunuku ordered all disputes leading to fighting were to be restricted to using sticks no thicker than a thumb and no longer than an arm. At the first sign of blood- all fighting was to stop.

The impact of this on Moriori was to change their culture radically from that of their mainland cousins, the Maori. Hunting became the order of the day in proving strength and manhood.
Their connection to the land and to their ancestors is remarkable, perhaps in comparison to the most sacred of people groups in the world.
They were invaded by pakeha sealers who raped and pillaged…an even more damaging migration of some 500 displaced maori from Taranaki arrived exhausted…they were welcomed and fed…in return these new invaders…"walked the land". This meant walking and taking whatever they wanted…anyone who disagreed was killed.

They suffered huge losses…they were enslaved and eaten while the New Zealand Government ‘watched’…eventually they ‘turned to the wall’…became extinct.

The spirit of Nunuku is not extinct…it has invaded their invaders…it touched down in our whare these few days.

25TH OCTOBER 2006

3.30 am

Right now…I feel the presence of all those young ones who worked many long hours to put this Whare here…they are here in these walls…fixtures.

There is an Ope (visitors) here now from Rekohu (Chatham Islands) to me they bring the spirit of their Great Nukunuku …Rangatira, high priest, extreme pacifist.
Right now…while our Ope sleep…Nukunuku and these young ones of ours mingle…for that’s what he was on about…our children.

My job is easy…I’m just the gate keeper…

LETTER TO MUHAMMAD ALI'S FAMILY

Tenakoutou ki Te Whanau o Te Rangatira Kaiparahuarahi Muhammad Ali…

(greetings to the family of the great Trailblazer Muhammad Ali)

I’m Bruce Stewart our web site is www.taputeranga.maori.nz. We are going to host a hui (conference) at our Marae commencing on the 23rd November 2006 for our Somali people…They choose our Marae because we have compatible issues…we are not really free to live our culture our spiritual beliefs in our country.
They are mainly Black…they are refugees…Muslims. They have had some difficulties adjusting to a White Christian well-off majority who unlike USA have had time to get to having ‘adjust’ to the Black part of their family.

They are very few…it is not so much what is said but what the body language says day after day…

Muhammed Ali has always been a hero of mine not so much for his boxing…for his self belief…for his fearlessness in punching way way above his weight…we need those positive out front trailblazers to mark out a trail so we who follow behind can find the way.

We would like the blessing of Muhammad Ali to unveil a Pouwhenua (monument) to him on our Marae…it will be a large rock on a mound of earth…on the rock will be a plaque in bronze to him…we will plant a special native tree.

Waiting for your reply.

Arohanui Bruce Stewart.

1ST OCTOBER 2006

Tenakoutou Earthsong people

My name is Bruce Stewart of Tapu Te Ranga Marae our site is www.taputeranga.maori.nz. We have been going since 1974.

In a lot of ways it has been cart before the horse…mainly because ‘they’ were not ready…I couldn’t wait.
So we now have 50 acres of Wellington and about to start our nohokainga (village) incorporating renewable energy. Intended whanau will be mainly Maori or anyone who’d like to live in a Maori way…includes the non ownership of Te Whenua.
The aim is ‘not a place to live as a way to live’ it is my view the biggest task is to revisit and renew the processes in learning to live again together. Enjoyed visiting your site…loved having a glimpse into your processes...valuable stuff.
Love to keep in touch.
Na Bruce Stewart.

28TH SEPTEMBER 2006

It’s been a big day for me…it has been two years since I’ve had a bath…‘due to my legs being heavily wrapped up…I was told at the beginning ‘they may never heal’ but my Community Nurse Ruth never gave up…she always believed they could heal.

At our local pool I was able to walk without my sticks…I could fall over and get up again…by myself.
Nurse Ruth, I’m not sure if you understand what that means to me.

16TH SEPTEMBER 2006

Tenakoe, my dear friend Sir Michael Fowler… it was real good to receive your letter together with the koha of water colors, done by your hand…we will hang them together with your photo in our whare.

It is now a month since I received your letter…I replied to it straight away but didn’t send it as a few words seemed inadequate to pass on my/our respect to you…for over a decade of major support. It led to Sir Robert Muldoon’s visit and in turn second chance education…still in place today.

Our first Whare, Tane Whaiora is named after you…remember it was opened on the same day as The Michael Fowler Centre…what a day for Wellington!
The Editorial of The Evening Post called it; “Wellingtons Day of the decade.” It may be the only Maori Whare named after a pakeha.
'Whaiora’ is a transliteration of Fowler…it also means ‘pursuit of our full potential’…under tikanga I was not quite correct in making a whare after a pakeha and also when the person is still alive…sometimes it is not good not knowing all the rules. Now I know the rules…the name still stands.
Two weeks ago my whangai daughter, Lyn-Anne lay in Tane Whaiora…I together with our family gathered…we slept with her, giving her a good send off.
Arohanui kia koe, me to whanau…Bruce

12TH SEPTEMBER 2006

At present we are having five or six hui a week…this past winter has seen me often sitting by the dinning room fire watching the different Manuhere…especially the Tamariki having fun.
“Koro, would you like a tea?’
“Ae, I’d love one Moko.’”
“Milk and sugar?”
“A little milk please.”
I love being spoilt…I am never lonely.
The insurance policy called ‘respect’ is kicking in.

31ST AUGUST 2006

Yesterday we buried Lynn-Anne…one of our own. Not by toto…one does not have to be toto to be Family…she was always there for us all…never in a loud way.

Was I embarrassed when her box couldn’t fit through the door of any of our whare…or what!!
We decided to put her in The Mahau of Tane Whaiora…sort of half in the open…I asked if my chair-bed be bought up…there we were under the stars with her tane Kingi and their babies…singing and telling stories…I was sort-of-dozing when I heard one of my older moko telling how she went to The Queens tangi and took her son…”coz they’d be looking for a new King.”
It’s quite a feat getting up the steps to The Mahau and it seems I’m not the only one with four legs…plus it’s not about getting up…it’s getting back down…still they came paying their respects and half-carried-half-falling their way back down…driven by love they came.
When I saw the wheel-chair with my whanaunga Queenie…paralyzed with a stroke… eyeing up the steps, I said, “Queenie you’re never make it, stay there!” But I caught a glint of to-the-Tangi-or bust in her eyes…she found a couple of strong Mokos and was three quarter carried, one quarter walked her dead legs up the steps…to pay her respects to our girl.