raven song

March 10, 2010

What is new dreaming?

Maybe all of us could do with a new dreaming, individuals, communities, governments, globally. But it starts with me and you, if you like ‘being the change you wish the world to be’. If I cant do it, then I cant expect it of others or my community. The old Yoga saying ‘If you know it and cannot do it, then you don’t know it’, often taps me on the shoulder.

So what is ‘New Dreaming’ for me.For starters it is a new way of being in the world. New song lines for the journey. If the ways that we have been doing things has not worked (struggles for indigenous people, global warming, resource shortages etc) what makes us thing that doing more of those ways will make it any better. Obviously it wont. So we need new ways, new storeys.

Sitting back, reflecting, climbing the mountain, going to our deep wells of knowing. Becoming fully aware of all that is present in our visible world and trying to connect with what is not visible. Acknowledging the universe has more to it than we can see and many, many layers. Can I try to connect with all of that, and If I listen deeply what will come to me and you about new dreaming.

Years ago the Australian Author, George Johnson, talked about his decision to become a writer as ‘getting off the tram to pick the daisies’. When you get to the daisies you will see other wonderful things ahead and you will start to wander along this new path, a new journey. Where will I be? What will I see? what an exciting journey that can be.

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February 25, 2010

New Dreaming

Sitting in a train reading a book ‘bad dreaming’ by Louis Nowra. Background reading for my role as a facilitator (2008) in an indigenous men’s summit in the MacDonnell ranges in central Australia at Ross river, home of the Arrente people. I was to facilitate workshops on family violence and Louis Nowra’s book told some of the stories around that, sober reading signs of a culture in trouble, a deep wounding.

I sitting on one of two parallel benches facing each other with a big floor space in between. Reading away, therainbow serpent train stopped and an Aboriginal man got on carrying a twelve foot carved wooden Rainbow Serpent. He lay down on the floor between us. The Rainbow Serpent is one of the most important totems in Indigenous mythology. A  creation being inhabiting water holes shaping and creating new landscapes, creator and destroyer.

We chatted for awhile till he got off with his carving. What was that about I thought, pure coincidence or  Jungian Synchronicity – best to let that intriguing question sit for awhile.

What wisdom or insights could I bring to this indigenous gathering? – From my own experience and this new reading, emerged a complex and deeply troubled story. I had no preconceived ideas/solutions to bring, it would be arrogant to do so. I resolved to bring an empty mind, compassion and wisdom, and just listen.

In thinking again of the Rainbow Serpent, a strong message came ‘we need new dreaming’. Dreaming is the story, vision and practice that guides the lives of Indigenous people. It comes from the parallel spirit world and applies to all people in relevant tribal groupings. It is law, custom, song and dance. It has serious power and is part of the soul story and essence of meaning. If existing dreaming was struggling with current troubles maybe a new dreaming was needed. What that  was or who would bring it I did not know. I did know that the words of politicians and ‘experts’ and new laws were not the answer. We are given an  energetic clue to this from the music of, Gurrumul Yunupingu released in the same year, 2008. The CD titled ‘Gurrumul’ for me holds the power of song dreaming gurrumul with mikeespecially the first song ‘Wiyathul’. Gurrumul won the world music aria award in 2008. Listen to Gurrumul in itunes better still buy his cd. Lots on youtube as well.

So maybe there is a new dreaming on its way, Gurrumul singing it into being. Maybe their is a new dreaming on its way for all of us in Australia,  a new song emerging from deep down. More in later postings.

Note:This is just my story. I imply no particular knowledge of Indigenous culture, or presume to be giving advice. New dreaming I realise, two years after these events, applies to all of us. Maybe a gift from the ancient elders for all.

Hello Don

Raven Song – Paddy Murray

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