Aboriginal spirituality

Topics: Indigenous Australians, Indigenous peoples, Soul Pages: 4 (1110 words) Published: September 24, 2013
Aboriginal spirituality
Aboriginal or indigenous culture is one of the oldest recorded cultures in the world. Aboriginal people have common beliefs and traditions that guide them in contemporary society.

The Creation Period - The Dreamtime
Similar to other religions and beliefs, aboriginal people believe in the time when world and was created. This period is referred to as the Creation Period. The Aboriginal people believe that land was formed by ancestral beings during creation period. These ancestral beings emerged onto the earth in different forms. For example, some were settled as animals or birds such as emus, kangaroos or possums; some of them were established as inanimate subjects such as plants and rocks. Ancestral beings also had the ability to transform from inanimate objects to animal to human form. Furthermore, ancestral beings were able to transform into the landscape, such as sources of ochre in Arnhem Land are formed from the blood or fat of ancestral beings. These ancestral beings taught and passed on Aboriginal laws and sacred rituals and ceremonies, which aboriginal people practice today. So the main feature of Aboriginal spirituality is the obligation to look after the land and pass this obligation to future generations (Calma. 2010).

Similarly, many people in Australian society believe in a higher being who created the universe and life and everything that exists within them. The concept of a “God” or “Creator” is consistent with the Aboriginal concept that ancestral beings created land and all that it contains. There are further similarities between Australian and Aboriginal beliefs in the form of laws, rules and moral standards that have been passed down from generation to generation (Davies-Stofka. 2008).

Deep connection to the land
As was discussed above, aboriginal people have significant connection to the land throughout their spirituality. Land for aboriginal people is not just place for living but is a sacred...


References: Aboriginal Religion and Ceremony, viewed 4 April 2012, http://www.aboriginalculture.com.au/religion.shtml
Calma, T 2010, ‘Respect, Tolerance and Reconciliation rather than Opposition and Denial: Indigenous Spirituality, Land and the Future of Religion in Australia’, Pacifica, vol23, no.3, pp 322-336, viewed 3 April 2012, University of Western Sydney database, ISSN: 1030-570X
Davies-Stofka, B 2008, After Life and Salvation, Religion Library: Christianity, viewed 4 April 2012,
< http://www.patheos.com/Library/Christianity/Beliefs/Afterlife-and-Salvation.html>
Ferraro, G 2010, The Cultural Dimension of International Business, 6th ed, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, pp.19-52
Grieves, V 2008, ‘Aboriginal Spirituality: a Baseline for Indigenous Knowledge’s Development in Australia’, The Canadian Journal of Native Studies, vol. 28, no. 2, pp.363-398, viewed 5 April, ProQuest Central Database, ISSN: 07153244
Rigsby, B 1999, "Aboriginal people, spirituality and the traditional ownership of land", International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 26, no. 7/8/9, pp.963 – 976, viewed 5 April, DOI 10.1108/03068299910245741
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