The Maori’s are the indigenous people of New Zealand. My first experience with the Maori’s was in a dream I had when I was in the midst of a major life transformation. My mom had recently transitioned from uterine cancer, and I was living in New York after witnessing the fall of the world trade centers from less than a mile away. I had a successful graphic design business and lived in a cool NY apartment, had some great friends and was living the ultimate city life, however, I felt I had strayed from my spiritual path and fallen away from my connection with nature, and was very much still grieving from the loss of my mom. I decided it was time to get back on track.
I went into many meditations and had been writing a lot about the elements that I wanted the next phase of my life to include. Shortly after, I kept getting signs about New Zealand … I saw ads, books, signs on buses and overheard people speaking about New Zealand. My friends Lorrie and Brad had even brought me back a “New Zealand” tank top from their recent trip. At the time I had know idea about the indigenous culture there, and had never visited the country. I had never even heard the word Maori, let alone did I know how to pronounce it (MAOW-REE). Anyhow, a friend of mine that I met while volunteering at the New Living Expo, told me of an amazing bodyworker/healing facilitator that I HAD to go see. “No more details, just get an appointment with him before he leaves town.” I lined up an appointment, and the evening before, I had this dream:
I dreamt that I was laying on a cloud in the sky and 5 large people that almost looked Hawaiian with dark skin were in a circle around me. they were poking at my body and singing a language I didn’t recognize. I was just laying there floating and feeling as if I were in some sort of psychic surgery, and it also felt like an initiation of what was to come. I wasn’t sure if I had died or what. I felt at peace and surrounded by long lost family. The next day after this dream, I went to my session with the recommended healing facilitator named Kevin, and I wore my New Zealand shirt. He was 6′ 5″ tall with long wavy red hair… Irish – Viking-ish. I proceeded to spend the next 3 hours with him as he completely re-worked my body from the inside out and the outside in. The depth was painful at first, but when I let go and dropped in, it felt amazing. I cried, I laughed and cried more, I laughed more… I felt free like a child and was flowing like a river again. It’s hard to describe the emotional, mental and physical shifts that took place in those 3 hours.
The next week, Kevin decided not to leave New York, and we ended up hanging out a lot as we both lived in the East Village, and had a lot in common with music and our spiritual background. We met everyday at Earth Matters Cafe and talked. He shared some of his healing background with me, and this is when he told me of the Maori’s and their ancient healing bodywork techniques. He said that when he saw my NZ shirt in our session, he knew he was supposed to use some of these techniques with me. After our first East Village hang out, I went home a googled “Maori,” and a man popped up named Papa Joe. This was him! This was the man at the foot of the cloud I was laying on in the dream. The one who was guiding my journey! It turned out that he was going to be teaching a workshop in California, and I decided that no matter what, I was going! I forwarded the link to Kevin, and he called me back asking how I knew about him… this was his teacher! We decided to go together, and when we got there, the others in my dream were there, including Atarangi Muru, who is a dear friend. As soon as I walked in to the workshop, they said… “Well hello! Nice to see you again!” ….What a powerful weekend that was.
Now to make a long story short. I ended up going to New Zealand to live, observe and learn about the ancient Te Oomai Reia Healing Facilitation for about a month in Auckland. That is a whole other exciting blog, which will definitely come later! Since then, I spent 2 1/2 years in relationship and working with Kevin doing Maori inspired body work around the country, and have also hosted the Maori’s a few times when they’ve come to the US. Papa Joe has since transitioned, and is very much missed by many people around the world… yet his presence is felt from time to time, and brings a smile to my face!
If you ever get the chance to experience a Maori session… and you don’t mind some deep tissue, I recommend it! Some of the techniques employed extend back 12,000 years or more and are designed to physically restructure the body-mind through deep tissue energy release…deeper than what is usually understood by the term “deep tissue.” Many have made life shifts within just one session. The sessions include knowledge of astrology and tools from nature (rocks, branches, sticks etc) as well as spiritual insight, music and prayer. They work individually on several people at once… there are usually three sessions happening simultaneously in the same space. The facilitators are psychically connected and work on all levels for this physical/mind/spirit work. The next time we host sessions, I will post it in the events calendar!