New Zealand Hei-Tiki Good Luck Charm
The Hei-Tiki is a traditional Maori charm which is worn as an ornamental pendant around the neck (the word Hei in its name means “to wear round the neck”). Often known simply as “tiki” these symbols are said to bring luck to those who wear them.
History Of The Hei-Tiki Good Luck Charm
Since ancient times, the Hei-Tiki symbol has been viewed as a charm to bring good luck. The charm is believed to be connected with the first man, Tiki, as portrayed in Maori legends. These charms have two meanings. They can either be memorials to deceased ancestors or they can represent Hineteiwaiwa, the goddess of childbirth. Hei-Tiki charms were frequently buried when their guardian (or kaitiaki) died. Later, they would be retrieved and taken to a special place where they would be brought out again during times of mourning. They were also frequently given to women if they struggled to conceive.
Why The Hei-Tiki Charm Brings Luck
Believed to represent the human embryo before birth, the Hei-Tiki charm has exceptional significance in Maori culture since this is an especially powerful spirit capable of warding off ill luck.
How To Use The Hei-Tiki Charm
The Hei-Tiki charm is worn around the neck to bring good luck or to promote fertility.
How The Hei-Tiki Charm Is Made
Traditional Hei-Tiki charms are made from pounamu, a material highly esteemed by the Maori for its hardness, toughness and beauty. They may also be carved out of greenstone. Traditionally, the charm is made by rubbing a stone repeatedly until it is smooth before shaping it slowly with water and sticks. The holes are bored out and then the stone is polished before being hung around the neck by a braided cord which is fastened with a toggle and loop.
How To Make The Hei-Tiki Charm At Home
You can make a Hei-Tiki charm in your own home from clay. Simply make a disc out of clay and use a pen to mark on the ribs. Make another smaller disc and press it onto the top of the larger disc to make a head. Use a pen to create the face and add two gemstones to make the eyes. Push a pen through the top of the top disc to create a hole through which you can thread the cord. Take four small sausage-shaped pieces of clay which can be used to make the legs and arms. When the clay is dry, make a plaited cord and thread it through the hole.
Interesting And Fun Facts About The Hei-Tiki Charm
● The Hei-Tiki charm is said to represent the past, the present and the future.
● Traditionally these charms are passed down through the generations.
● The captain of a battlecruiser called the HMS New Zealand wore this charm into battle during World War I and his crew survived without a single casualty.