Earth Mother & Sky Father
Maori are known as tangata whenua – people of the land. Their affinity to the landscape of Aotearoa and the orgins of Maori society are based in Maori myth and legend. The central creation myth is that of Ranginui, the sky father, and Papatuanuku, the earth mother. They bore 70 sons who were gods, but their embrace kept the world in eternal darkness until one of their sons, Tane mahuta, god of man and forest, led his brothers to break them apart and finally let in Te Ao Marama, the world of light.
How the Kiwi lost its wings
Tane Mahuta, god of the forest, was worried about his children, the trees, as bugs and birds ate away at them. He consulted his brother Tane Hokahoka, god of the birds, who asked his children to come down from the forest roof and live on the floor. But only the Kiwi agreed to sacrifice his beautiful wings and feathers to live on the dark, damp forest floor. As a reward, Tane Hokahoka made him the most well-known and best-loved bird of all.