Author(s): Peter Alsop
Pearls of wisdom contained in proverbs - whakatauk-I - have been gifted from generation to generation as an intrinsic part of the M-aori world. As powerful metaphors, they combine analogy and cultural history in the most economical of words. Short and insightful, they surprise, engendering reflection, learning and personal growth. Mauri Ora links whakatauk-I to key personal virtues idealised across cultures and generations. The virtues - wisdom, courage, compassion, integrity, self-mastery and belief - stem from the science of positive psychology; the study of how to live a better life. Illustrated throughout with wonderful photographs from an old world, this book draws on traditional wisdom to provide a recipe for personal effectiveness and leadership, and a rewarding connection of M-aori knowledge to contemporary thinking about personal happiness and fulfilment.
PETER ALSOP grew up in Rotorua with a curiosity about te ao Maori, the Maori world. His work in Wellington, across the public and private sectors, included meeting his Ng-aati Porou wife, Airihi Mahuika, daughter of Poihipi/Bussy (1925-2004). Being married by Bussy's younger brother Api (1934-2015), in Tikitiki's St Mary's Church (itself a tribute to Apirana Ngata) was a very special event. Hearing Api's beautiful public oratory also built life-changing memories and a spirited call for a meaningful contribution to the greater good. With four young kids and a senior executive role, Peter somehow finds time as a night-time author to pursue his creative dreams. This is his sixth book celebrating important cultural legacies of Aotearoa/New Zealand. Peter also exhibited a collection of whakatauk- I/proverb paintings in 2006.
TE RAUMAWHITU KUPENGA, Te Rau, belongs to Ng- ati Porou, from the East Coast of Aotearoa/New Zealand. Te Rau received a privileged upbringing by his mother and his mother's kin, who fostered in him a lifelong passion for tribal cultural knowledge. Having enjoyed a career in the law, as well as holding senior positions in the private and public sectors, Te Rau's key focus these days is on tribal development. His favourite pastime is spending time with his three children and fostering in them a love of their cultural heritage.