Updated: Jul 31, 2020
The following is my own observation of kūmarahou. It's what I call a sitting. I sit with the intention to get to know the rakau and I may sit with it all day and even over a period of days for as long as it takes. It's my favourite time to be one with the rakau for I know that when I sit with rakau I am sitting with the Creator. And even though I may feel like I know something, I know nothing, because the korero is ongoing. It never stops.
I'm very fortunate to have kūmarahou growing wildly in my backyard and I have created the space for her to expand in all directions.
Observing kūmarahou in November and I am admiring her vibrant leaves. They are just filled with mauri and vibrancy. I can see that all of her energy is going into her leaves. Her seeds are also vibrant as they are very green. They are appearing green but I sense that the seeds are transitioning. They are about to fall away. The are passing through their vibrancy and about to transition into another state. Therefore, the mauri is now pulsating through Kūmarahou leaves. I would say that it would be very good to harvest the leaves now even though she is transitioning probably in another month. So its actually a good time to do a purea on the body using her leaves in a wairakau. Her leaves are pulsating with mauri right now. Her seeds are pulsating but I can sense that they are transitioning.
It’s so beautiful to have her growing in my backyard. Because I can sit with her and korero with her. She has babies growing around her. They are growing behind her. They are very protected and growing in an environmentt where they are protected from harsh elements. They seem to enjoy growing out of clay and on sloping banks so its an ideal environment for her to be growing in. It’s very peaceful in this spot.
When there has been a fire on Papatuanuku or her land has been cleared by fire, kūmarahou is one of the first plants to come through to provide sustenance for Papatūānuku....to heal her and to clothe her, to bathe her in sustenance and nourishment. When I drink her as a wairakau I have grown to absolutely love her flavour, her taste. I have grown to love what she does for my body to my being. As soon as I drink a mouthful or a glass of kūmarahou my body immediately responds by going into some other place of healing and of purging and of detoxing. It vibrates the body because of her bitterness. Her role in the body is to expel mucus and you can feel her doing that. She breaks up the mucus. Mucus is like slime and it is sticky. It sticks to things so you can imagine what it would be doing to our organs like our lungs. When we drink kūmarahou it immediately has properties that go to work by breaking down the mucus. It penetrates and pierces through the mucus so that the mucus can be easily expelled from the body.
When you have a glass of kūmarahou you can immediately sense this happening from a wairua level. My body senses it but on a wairua level it is immediatley taking effect. We are spiritual beings first, we are wairua and so is the plant. The plant is wairua first and then physical. So when we drink the wairakau we are actually drinking in the wairua of the plant into the wairua of us. It has an immediate effect. Being able to see it from that perspective acts a lot quicker than it does physically. And this is absolutely beautiful.
So if kūmarahou is one of the first plants to come through to heal Papatūānuku when she has been cleared by fire, what is she doing?
She is providing sustenance and nourishment to her soil. Nothing can really survive on her soil when it is exposed to the harsh elements. Papa needs to be clothed. The insects and critters and creatures that help sustain Papatūānuku need shade and protection to be able to go about their mahi. When Papa is cleared the kaimahi disappear. The kaimahi are the creatures of the cycle. Humans are part of that cycle also although some of us have forgotten. So the kaimahi disappear but the wairua of the plants know that they have to clothe her fast to keep the cycle of sustenance alive. So the rangatira start to come through, the ones who can thrive in ash and burnt soil. They have to quickly absorb the debris and pull it up and out. The plants are absorbing the debris but changing it into something useable for other plants and creatures to use. This is their mahi. To clothe, sustain and protect Papatūānuku and then us.