Kia whakatōmuri te haere whakamua: ‘I walk backwards into the future with my eyes fixed on my past’
Rameka, L. (2017). Kia whakatōmuri te haere whakamua: ‘I walk backwards into the future with my eyes fixed on my past’. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, 17(4), 387–398. https://doi.org/10.1177/1463949116677923
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/11120
This whakataukī or ‘proverb’ speaks to Māori perspectives of time, where the past, the present and the future are viewed as intertwined, and life as a continuous cosmic process. Within this continuous cosmic movement, time has no restrictions – it is both past and present. The past is central to and shapes both present and future identity. From this perspective, the individual carries their past into the future. The strength of carrying one’s past into the future is that ancestors are ever present, existing both within the spiritual realm and in the physical, alongside the living as well as within the living. This article explores Māori perspectives of the past and the models and inspiration they offer. In this way, it provides a critique of the practices in early childhood education, highlighting the importance of cultural concepts and practices, and discusses implications for both teaching and academic practice.
© 2016 The Author.
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