(Presumed extinct since 1907)
Essence: Huia opens us to experience how to love someone or something in the entirety of what is presented now, allowing diversity to flourish.
Use: Use for loss and heartbreak occurring through calamitous events. Huia restores connection to the inner, and enables us to find a way through difficult emotional terrain. Huia can be used for the loss of trust and the distortion that occurs through conditional relationships. It also helps to start to perceive a life without abuse (physical, emotional and mental), to perceive beyond narrow and judgmental beliefs.
Description: The story of the huia’s extinction is immeasurably sad. It was considered by Māori to be tapu and was associated with the rangatira, the chiefly people. This association meant that the practice of wearing huia feathers became a sign of mana and was adopted by the European population of New Zealand. As the huia feathers gained in popularity, the incentive to hunt huia, combined with habitat loss through large forest burn-offs, caused a collapse in their populations.
In The Book of the Huia, W J Phillipps describes the huia as breathtaking in beauty. “Their general bodily colour is dark blue merging to black, with an iridescent greenish sheen covering the anterior parts and sometimes extending on to the tail. When fully mature, the wattles measure nearly an inch across and are bright orange.” The huia was the only bird in the world in which the male and the female had beaks of different types, the female bill being significantly longer and curved.
Meaning: The first time I started to work with this remedy I experienced the female with her curved beak leading her way into my body, down through my left side, clearing something out. In this process I experienced strength and gentleness. I also found myself embodying the male and I felt open and stripped away. The experience left me with the impression that nothing could be hidden. I was entirely seen, all aspects that I had shame about. I had been seen and there was no hiding.
This remedy is about love and how to live in the presence of love, how love grows on one another and how as we grow, the love may emanate outwards. Huia provides powerful support for the role of being a woman and the capacity of understanding and responding to community through being a woman. The remedy pertains to sensual love, care, attendance to physical form, sacred acknowledgement of sexuality, and birth and child-raising. It also aids the creation of a pathway to bring back the love, and the power to women and men who have been shamed, broken or feel contaminated through abuse.