Monday, October 03, 2005

Bishop Brain Tamaki - A Maori Prophet?

I was talking to an insightful freind a couple of weeks ago about Pai Marire and Maori Prophetic Movements. These movements took parts of christianity and married it with Maori tradition as an expression of Maori Autonomy. On the east coast the North Island, members of the Pai Marire fought against the settler government as the settler government attempted to destroy Maori movement of autonomy so that they could move towards racial amalgamation of the Maori people.

The Pai Marire movement was seen as a perversion of christianity, becuase it picked and chose the traditions of christianity it would accept, while keeping traditions that christians either saw as sinful or accessive. Thier religion was seen as excessive and at times immoral. Pai Marire was misunderstood by the missionary William Williams who saw it as a Denunciation of traditional anglican tradition and as anti-christian.

I don't believe this is so. Many of these leaders were sincere christians. Te Whiti took on christian teachings of pacifism in his movement, while fighting for looking after for both the material and spiritual needs of the people of Pariaka. Before the settlement at Parihaka was destroyed it was the largest and most prosperous Maori township in the Country. But becuase it resembled a threat to Pakeha Culture and the Settler Government, it was destroyed.

So is our friend Pope Brian Tamaki a Maori Prophet. That is an question to be answered. He fulfills some of the criteria. He is a political and spiritual leader, who is aiming to service both the spiritual and economic and social needs of the Maori people for his movement. The Destiny Church and Party are supportive of the Treaty of Waitangi. The excessiveness of the leader of the church has been seen as immoral and his personal involvment in politics has been criticised. I also beleive he is a sincere christian with sincere convictions, who wants to see the best for this.Are we again seeing a Maori Prophet who is missunderstood by the Pakeha people conservative and liberal christians. 'Pious' christianity has tried to seperate christianity from the state, is this really right? Should we stop seeing religion through our cultural paradigm, and see what people are trying to acheive for the good of New Zealand and the good of their people.


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Samuel said...

The last Maori Prophet is Alexander Phillips. He already passed this year after completing all the tasks of the 12 prophets.
Brain Tamaki has never been included in the Maori prophecies in any way and has no connection with the 12 prophets as far as I know.
If you are interested in finding out more about the true Maori prophets you can travel to Mana Ariki and spend time on the Marae. I was just there this weekend and it was a pretty amazing learning experience. Or check out thier website...
Now is the time of change and for mankind as a whole to truly embrace the concept of Unity.


Nathanael Baker said...

Thanks, Samuel. I don't ever said he was in the line of Maori prophets. In the blog post I was suggesting that Tamaki has been feeding off the legacy of Maori prophets and he has used this to his advantage both for good and for ill. Thanks for the resource I will have to look at it, it is an area of interest to me.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Nathanael,
Your blog is aewsome reading.
I have done research of my own. Brian Tamaki is not 1 of the prophets but 1 of profit. Sadly many of the prophets followers are also people of profit these days.