24 June 2020

Tapu, Rapa Nui’s ancestral philosophy that has been key to eradicating Covid-19

Despite being in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and more than 2,000 km away from the nearest inhabited land, the coronavirus managed to enter the remote Easter Island. In March, the first active cases of Covid-19 were detected on this land in Chilean Polynesia, but Rapa Nui’s ancestral philosophy has been key to eradicating the virus from their territory.

The “Tapu” is a Polynesian concept of self-care and shelter, a strict regime of protection of the people against any adversity. In this case, against the pandemic. For this reason, the mayor of Rapa Nui, Pedro Edmunds Paoa, invoked the “tapu” among the inhabitants of the island, where today live more than 7,000 people. The ancestral measure has become an example of responsibility based on respect for the community, as it was explained by Mr. Edmunds in the video below.

According to the mayor, the “tapu” is a way to protect the elderly and their wisdom, which is the cultural, philosophical and historical sustenance of the Rapa Nui people. This measure consisted of strict confinement, especially for the elderly, and was widely respected by the population. Therefore, this corner of the Polynesia managed to eradicate the coronavirus from its territory. If at peak time they had 7 active cases of Covid-19, currently this number has decreased to zero. Now that the island is free of the virus, a new ancestral concept has been applied since the beginning of June: “Umanga”.

PEDRO EDMUNDS PAOA / ALCALDE DE RAPA NUIThe Rapanui are one of the 9 recognized indigenous peoples of Chile, whose wisdom and ancient traditions are passed down from generation to generation and enrich our culture. We are talking about the Aymara, Quechua, Atacameño, Colla, Diaguita, Mapuche, Yagán, Kaweskar and Rapa Nui. Every year on June 24, Chile celebrates the National Day of Indigenous People, a date that refers to the renewal of nature and a new cycle of life after the winter solstice, and recognizes the value of indigenous heritage in our history.


Learn more >

Chile’s enormous potential for developing green hydrogen

 Production of what is being called the “fuel of the future” will be key to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

Richness and diversity in traditional Chilean architecture

The first Monday in October is World Architecture Day, created by the International Union of Architects (UIA) to highlight the responsibility of architects in the development of cities.

6 playlists to celebrate Chilean Music Day

Chile comes across loud and clear through its music and that’s why every October 5th we celebrate “Chilean Music and Musicians Day”. Today we invite you to mark this date with a selection of Chile’s best songs and performers. 

Chile, a foreign investment hub for technology

Despite being located at the far end of the planet, Chile has developed numerous ways of staying connected with the world. Perhaps this is due to that spirit of exploration that inspired Magellan on his epic journey, kick-starting globalization through our territory 500 years ago; a spirit that today beats in us stronger than ever.

La Cueca: A Reflection of Our Great Cultural Diversity

With its multicultural and diverse origins, the cueca became Chile’s national dance on September 18, 1979 because it was the dance that had the greatest national presence and historical meaning.  Cueca is danced in different corners of the country, and each geographic area has its own choreographic and musical variations and adaptations. Our cultural wealth and diversity is expressed in the different types of cueca that exist throughout Chile.

In a mining country like Chile, become a Mining Engineer

With the richness of our subsoil, the large investment in mining projects and universities of academic excellence, Chile is the perfect place to study majors related to mining.

International Day Of Clean Air: Electromobility takes to the streets of Santiago

At present, Chile has a bigger fleet of electric buses than any other American or European city.

Chile’s booming video game industry

Not even the pandemic has been able to halt the progress of video games in Chile, a creative industry that is gaining more fans every year both at home and abroad.