HAKA FOR FALLEN COMRADES |
August 31, 2012
Name: Sandbox Duty Officer David Stanford
I feel compelled to post this video, along with the introductory text which accompanies it on YouTube:
Haka is used throughout New Zealand by many, not only Maori, to demonstrate their collective thoughts. There is a haka for each of the Services, as well as the Defence Force. Units with the NZ Army have their own haka. This video shows the soldiers of 2/1 RNZIR Battalion performing their Unit haka, powerfully acknowledging the lives and feats of their fallen comrades as they come onto the Unit's parade ground. It is also an emotive farewell, for they will leave via the waharoa (the carved entrace way) for the very last time.
Haka -- sometimes termed a posture dance -- could also be described as a chant with actions. There are various forms of haka; some with weapons, some without. Some have set actions, others may be "free style." Haka is used by Maori (indigenous people of New Zealand) for a myriad of reasons; to challenge or express defiance or contempt, to demonstrate approval or appreciation, to encourage or to discourage, to acknowledge feats or achievements, to welcome, to farewell, as an expression of pride, happiness, or sorrow. There is almost no inappropriate occason for haka; it is an outward display of inner thoughts and emotions. Within the context of an occasion it is abundantly clear which emotion is being expressed.