Hapuutanga can be translated as 'the way of pregnancy'.
My people always understood that it was not just the woman that was pregnant. One of the foundations I try to instil in all couples, is the concept of 'we' are pregnant, not 'she' is pregnant. When a man says to his friends and family 'she is pregnant', he is creating separation. 'We are pregnant' is a commitment you make as a couple, to allow this eternal being to translate from that other place, into the world of light, that we live in.
As well as these esoteric though very important concepts, Hapuutanga covers topics such as massage, communicating and comforting and reassuring through touch, the emerging spirit. Also oriori, the ancient art of conveying energy, information and once again reassurance through tone and vibration orally.
A major component of the wananga hapuutange (Maori birthing workshops) is directed straight at us taane (men). Because it is us men who have been sidelined and marginalised within the pregnancy and birthing process. In ancient Tuuhoe tradition it was the husband, father or even brother who was the main kai mahi hapuu (birthing doula). We as men need to re-assert ourselves in supporting, encouraging and empowering our wives through bringing into this world the spirits who have chosen us to be their guardians.
These are traditions that have been practiced by my people for thousands of years. These traditions are also extremely healing for us men. Many of us have been damaged. I can think of no better gift a man can give the emerging child than to be the first human touch upon entry into the world of light. The bond that is created between ourselves as 'Taane' (men) and our child is everlasting; not just for this world, but forever.
To receive ongoing information concerning these traditional birthing practices, and forthcoming Hapuutanga events...