“Our Sacred Connection To The Whale”
(from the series “Recovering Ancient Wisdom For A More Conscious Future:
Spiritual Stories of Indigenous Australians … in their own words”)
BY JEN CLARKE
DATE: Tuesday 5 July 2022
LOCATION: Hobsons Bay Public Library – Ferguson Street, Williamstown
TICKETS: Please register your attendance as space is limited. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER
ABOUT THE BOOK:
For centuries, indigenous people have maintained a sophisticated knowledge system, embracing natural sciences, humanities and the arts. In indigenous cultures, humans are not considered a ‘superior’ species but more-so, a part of all and connected to all. Many living things are connected through the totem system which has a spiritual and conservation function.
Although the whale is in the water and we live on the land, the significance of it is connectedness and spiritual significance is something special and wonderful – to behold, appreciate and understand.
In their own words “To the coastal tribes, the whale is the all-powerful Rainbow Serpent and is closely associated with the Rainbow Serpent/Snake of the inland. The whale is, as is the serpent elsewhere in the world, associated with fire, earth, energy, wind, water, the sun, the moon and the symbol that links all of these elements – the rainbow.”
The indigenous people who reside on the coasts of Australia have a long association with whales. Rock engravings, stories and sacred totems and emblems tell us grand stories of whales and their strong connection to them. The chosen totem is inherited by the tribe/clan as well as members of a family as their spiritual emblem. Totems are believed to be descendants of the Dreamtime heroes, or totemic beings.
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After two decades of spending most of her time outside of Australia and working with indigenous communities around the world, Jen found herself suddenly locked down in Melbourne (for more than 270 days). By focusing energy in to discovering more at deeper levels, about the indigenous people of Australia, fused with a passion for marine protection, and a personal love of whales, Jen was led to research the coastal nations’ people and their relationship with the annually migrating whales.
“There’s a deep connection and spiritual significance between indigenous Australians and the whales, and their enduring relationship. I wanted to understand more: how were they spiritually relevant to these groups? What significance did whales hold? What are the stories spoken about in the dreamtime? And more …”
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