Taken from the saying of King Taawhiao in the late 1800's:
"He toi tupu, he toi ora, he toi i ahu mai i Hawaiki"
And according to Te Kaapo Tuwhakea:
"Tupu te toi, ora te toi, whanake te toi. Te toi i ahu mai i Hawaiki"
Either variation has the same loose translation:
"Growth of the treasure, sustenance of the treasure, development of the treasure, the treasure that stems from Hawaiki".
Originally, this saying was a plea to King Taawhiao's people to never forget our humble origins, while at the same time, encouraging the people to grow, develop and sustain the principles of Kingitanga, which include, but are not limited to:
- Whakaiti – Humility
- Mahi tahi – Collaboration
- Whakakite – Vision
The 'Toi' translated above, 'treasure', is also appropriate to translate as 'opportunity' and/or 'foundation'! In this light, the saying brings the idea of expanding the foundation-base, and opportunities to provide a more stable platform for going forward into development-mode. Expansion is a fundamental notion within this 'tongi'.
The five research entities - the University of Waikato, the New Zealand Council for Educational Research, CORE Education, Cognition Education and the Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development – come together to tackle the pertinent issues that comprise the contract as a whole.
The various research strands are tied together in this saying, as the overall goal related to the growth, sustenance, and prosperity of the people is paramount. This tongi also offers a spiritual dimension, as it features in the Paimarire karakia. The spiritual factor is another very important aspect in the Māori world view.