"The Hand of Artakha was an ancient organization that dedicated itself to carrying out the Great Spirit's will and protecting the Matoran.[BEU, p. 43]"
The Hand of Artakha was disbanded before the Order of Mata Nui was formed, and the Order of Mata Nui woke up the Toa Mata, which was before Mata Nui was launched.
Were the MU inhabitants aware of Mata Nui prior to his existance, since the Hand of Artakha and Order of Mata Nui served his will, prior to Mata Nui being awakened for the first time? Also, how did they serve him before he existed?