During the years following our Ouija board experience we became more and more involved with spirit and it was about twenty years later that spiritual writings and knowledge began to filter into the shops. At the time we began, there were absolutely nothing about contacting spirit or anything remotely connected with spirit or psychic phenomena like there is today, but being Maori we knew all about tohunga (medicine men) who knew about these things and ghosts, everyone talking about ghosts and we loved listening. We also knew about the powers of tohunga and their ability to look into the future. Ghosts were quite prevalent especially when someone in the whanau received visitations from the wairua (spirit) before or at the time of death. Sometimes they appeared in ghostly forms that were either seen or heard. I have never seen a true ghost but members of our whanau have day or night, it does not matter. I do think if I ever saw a fair dinkum ghost or apparition I reckon I would faint clean away.
When it came to talking to spirit this was definitely a no! no!, people were scared of it and no one talked about it, most looked on it as colluding with the devil especially the ones who were steeped in religion, be it Catholic, Anglican, Christians etc. I believe now that our whanau was the exception to the rule. Our grandmother as there was no grandfather explained anything and everything we wanted to know about spirits and spirituality. Because our mother and father to a certain degree saw spirit, there was no opposition to all that was discussed and often provided cultural interpretations of different happenings that had taken place, or warned us about protocol and what to expect when tikanga (proper procedure) and tapu (sacredness) were violated. I am so glad that we were of the Ratana faith during this era as there was no opposition to working and healing with spirit and protection was given through the certain prayers, so we were fortunate to have no blocks during our young life and all spiritual things that came our way became normal and was accepted as such.
Sunday mornings we would all gather in the family kitchen including our elders and during these gatherings many topics were dissected and debated at length and so it was at some point and none of us could pin point this we had agreed to disagree. We all had different points of view and were not backward in coming forward, at times there were huge quantities of verbal rantings laced with dashes of feudalistic determination that in order to remain rather than walking off in a huff, the compromise was agreeing to disagree.
Now, at this time in my life, some sixty years down the track and the knowledge of higher beings, I now know and believe that when you work with spirit … sky’s the limit!