As I enter my 40th year I am about to journey to Australia for the first time to speak about rites of passage and to research and write on the subject for a book I am working on. Here is more info about it including ways to support either through research, being a interview subject, or financial support.
I hope to have something that will enable this discussion much further in 2013. I'd like it on audio book format as well as ebook and print media. A film maker and I are also in discussion.
Hoping I haven't missed your visit Sobey - would love to meet and talk and share inspiration if you come to Darwin. Have a spare room on the edge of town if you need accommodation. ph 0408 674 157 if you want contacts in Yeppoon, Brisbane, Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne or any advice about travelling here. Take good care and keep in touch.
Cedar Running Deer
Darwin is tropical and hot most of the time, wet season currently but no monsoon yet. It is the main city in the Northern Territory and one of the great places in Oz to get to experience Aboriginal culture and modern times as well as history and wilderness. Hope you choose to come here. Cedar
I don't know how well you journey into my land, or when, (I presume you are already back home by now), but will be well capable of communicating of my own limited understanding of the story as it stands now today, here in Australia.
My story is of having grown up in the white mainstream without acknowledgement of the indigenous heritage of our family ancestry, but then having become welcome at a traditional indigenous Corroboree at January 26th 1988, the exact 200th anniversary of invasion, and at the exact location. There I became recognised, yet it will be many years, until, in 2003, I could begin to openly identify who I am.
Thereafter life only became harder of course, but in 2003, already I had a good story I could teach with. But meanwhile, in the years between 1988 and 2003, a lot was happening I did not know about, and it took me most of the past 10 years, to catch up with everybody, and that they could by now have caught up with my own thinking also.
We live in a state of internal community disagreements about the nature of rites of passage. So this is really a hot topic here in Australia. I hope your journey to our lands went well nevertheless. Of course what is most important, is that we have unchanged rites of passage in remote locations.
I come back to this commenting, thinking of course it could be contentious to state, that what is most important is how there is an unbroken tradition in our land, because it is also a need for cultural renewal, and adaptations in rites of passage to be becoming enabled. This topic is exactly what I know something significant about, and am able to communicate well enough. I would love to provide my own evidence for your work.
The contentious thinking spaces I inhabit within our indigenous culture, needs my story told, to comprehend. I became betrothed during the Corroboree I mentioned above, to a fellow who had sadly already become far more fallen, than his mother, or my mother, had any idea of. My parents know himself in the Dreaming, and I once got a job via his older brother putting in a good word for me, however, he and I both avoided one another, for some twenty years before our meeting. Then, when we met, argued openly about the modern context of rites of passage, and his many involvements with practices that were common in the prisons, and which caused criminalisation of Aboriginal men, and his assertions to myself that such practices were inclusive a legitimate rite of passage. Sodomy will never be that, and no amount of criminalising our people could have caused that to become the story. So my dispute with him, was absolute, and neither he or I, would change our points of view. His, being that I don't know anything because I have pale skin, and many European ancestors. Mine, being that if he valued me as wife, he could have prevented me from speaking up about my disagreements with him. I could only surmise he wishes to bring recriminations upon himself for his having perverted the modern social context of attempts to renew our traditional acculturative practices.
Let me know if you would like to get to the bottom of this matter with empirical evidence I have.
Hi Rebekah, thank you for sharing your story and I am indeed interested. I will contact you privately.
It'll require you add me as a friend for me to message you Rebekah. Sent a friend request.