Torres Strait Islander culture and lore is at the heart of the Tagai Management Consultants brand and business values. The word "Tagai" refers to the star constellation of Tagai which sits in the southern skies of the Milky Way, which tells a myth of a great fisherman, Tagai. The Tagai constellation provides guidance for sea navigation, changing seasons and daily life.
Like the constellation, Tagai Management Consultants is focused on working together with our customers facilitating their journey towards where they want to be with their business, community and/or organisation.
The following is the story of Tagai and the significance of the Tagai constellation....
Tagai the great fisherman
Tagai was a great fisherman. One day he and his crew of 12 were fishing from their outrigger canoe. They were unable to catch any fish, so Tagai left the canoe and went onto the nearby reef to look for fish there.
As the day grew hotter and hotter, the waiting crew of Zugubals (beings who took on human form when they visited Earth) grew impatient and frustrated. Their thirst grew, but the only drinking water in the canoe belonged to Tagai. Their patience ran out and they drank Tagai’s water.
When Tagai returned, he was furious that the Zugubals had consumed all of his water for the voyage. In his rage he killed all 12 of his crew. He returned them to the sky and placed them in two groups: six men in Usal (the Pleiades star cluster) and the other six Utimal (Orion). He told his crew to stay in the northern sky and to keep away from him.
Tagai can be seen in the southern skies, standing in a canoe in the Milky Way. His left hand is the Southern Cross holding a spear. His right hand is a group of stars in the constellation Corvus holding a fruit called Eugina. He is standing on his canoe, formed by the stars of Scorpius.
Torres Strait Islanders today still consider Tagai and astronomy to be an important aspect of daily life. Tagai is important for navigation, as the Southern Cross (his left hand) points in the direction of south.
The stars tell Islanders when to plant their gardens, when to hunt turtle and dugong, when the monsoon season arrives, when the winds change, and many other important aspects of daily life.
For example, when Tagai’s left hand (the Southern Cross) dips into the sea, Islanders know the wet season (Kuki) is about to begin. The rising of Usal and Utimal (Pleiades and Orion) in mid-November tells Islanders that turtle and dugong are mating and that it’s time to plant their gardens in anticipation of the coming Kuki season.