Acknowledgement of Country

January 25, 2019

Today we would like to express our deepest respect for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, cultures and land. 

 

We acknowledge the First Australians as the traditional custodians of this land whose cultures are among the oldest living cultures in human history.  We pay respect to the elders of the community and extend our recognition to their descendants who are present.

 

We acknowledge that the 26th of January is a date that for many is a reminder of the hurt caused by the arrival of Europeans to this land.  However, our deep desire is that this country and this day be one of inclusion with greater understanding and reconciliation between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians.  We hope that one day all Australians, regardless of background, race or gender, experience the success and optimism of a modern, tolerant and multicultural nation. 

 

As first-generation Australians, having immigrated here from New Zealand and South Africa, we are proud to now call Australia home.  

 

 

What we could learn for sustainability 

 

We are humbled by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s deep spiritual connection with the land.

 

The health of land and water is central to Aboriginal culture. Land is their mother, and it is steeped in their culture, also giving them them the responsibility to care for it. They "feel the pain of the shapes of life in country as pain to the self". [1] . 

 

Living off the land in an off grid property has made us acutely aware of our dependency on the health of our planet, its weather and the seasons, as well as the impact that humans have had on it.  Our ability to live harmoniously within our natural environment is critical to our survival as a species, which we are now more aware of than ever before.   

 

Seeking to understand Aboriginal spirituality, listening to and learning from the culture of these people may well be one of the most urgent needs of our time, and the catalyst to helping us to reverse climate change and start living a more sustainable existence.

 

......................................................................................................................................................................................................

 

Source:

(1) Korff, J 2019, Meaning of land to Aboriginal people, <https://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/land/meaning-of-land-to-aboriginal-people>, retrieved 6 January 2019

 

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