A radical life changing story of how a woman walks away from her 'norm' seeking ancient knowledge first from the Aboriginal Australians and then finding her path being steered towards Tibetan Buddhism.
People come to your front door.
Now guests and visitors usually follow respectful protocol and knock or ring the door bell before they come in. They sit politely in a chair you indicate to and have a nice conversation. You might offer them a drink or a cuppa or perhaps some light snacks.
When someone comes to your house you expect that they respect your privacy and way of living.
You would probably ask someone to leave your house if they started to rearrange your furniture, tell you how to raise your children, mock your beliefs and way of living.
That’s considered rude.
However, many white folk have walked onto Indigenous land without paying attention to the respectful protocol that is related to that culture.
They don’t ring the door bell – They don’t wait to be invited into the tribal territory.
What am I trying to say?
There two different mindsets:
1. When you go into a different culture than your own wanting to FIX or HELP you seem to be blinded to the differences in culture. You have a preconceived idea in your mind about how to FIX the people according to your own beliefs and culture. You ACT on this as a foundational basis and this in turn blinds you from really seeing what’s going on in their culture. And hence, you become an invader of their home.
2. When you go into a different culture with an open mind to learn their ways. You consciously choose to put aside your thoughts and beliefs and listen – really listen – to the people.
The Indigenous people are very aware of the differences between these mindsets because they’ve seen many fair skinned people come into their community and culture trying to “fix” them without really taking their culture and ways of doing things into consideration. As you can imagine this does not work. There are many government initiatives trying to help the Indigenous people, but these initiatives do not have the full perspective and understanding from the people themselves. This does not work.
I was speaking with a dear friend (Indigenous Australian Elder) on the phone the other day and he commented how the doctors in a community in the NT immediately prescribe medication to suppress the symptoms (as Western doctors usually do)… whereas in the community the cultural way is a system of support for that person so they can heal in body and spirit.
In summary, there is a constant invasion of people who are trying to fix or help Indigenous people. They can’t seem to switch into a mindset of learning about culture and the land.
There is so much knowledge in the Aboriginal Australian culture including bush medicines and healing, bush tucker, working together, feeling a deep sense of belonging, and so on.
I think it’s time to switch over to really listening to this ancient culture and so I invite you to be a respectful visitor – and not an invader. Watch your mindset.
Indigenous Australians. The Originals.