The Haka fills me with fierce pride when I see it done, and done well.
It’s not just done at the start of a rugby game by the All Blacks. And there is more than one Haka around.
But, the Haka (Ka mate, Ka mate) performed by the All Blacks is the most iconic, and while boys are often taught it at school the girls will pick up as much as they can from overhearing them being taught or seeing them practice on the playground.
For me, Scottish born and moving here at age 4, it is still a huge part of what I consider my culture and heritage.
Maybe it’s as the Scots and the Maori have many similarities in their culture. I think, however, it is because I have learned the songs and dances at church and at school. Because the All Blacks perform the Haka with such fervor and enthusiasm that it sweeps you up n it.
Because I have grown up in the culture and it has thereby been part of what has shaped me as an individual.
I have been to graduations where family members perform a haka as their “child” walks to receive their certificate and it fills my heart with pride and brings happy tears to my eyes.
Whatever else the haka is to anyone else in the world, the haka to me is part of my life’s blood. It is a part of who I am, and I am glad of it and glad of all of those who have kept it alive.