"Tjukurpa has been translated as 'Dreaming' or 'Dreamtime'. This is inadequate, as Tjukurpa does not refer to dreaming in a conventional western sense; it is not unreal or imaginary. Tjukurpa is the traditional Law that explains existence and guides daily life. Tjukurpa is existence itself, in the past, present and future."
"Information sheet prepared by Anangu, the traditional owners of Uluru, Uluru - Kata Tjuta National Park, Australia" You are allowed to quote small passages in quotation marks if you add the credit lines.
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The Dreaming; this is the more correct term for what most white Australians and
Europeans refer to as "The Dreamtime".
The term refers to the concept which totally envelopes the important
cultural aspects of Aboriginal Society. Everything from creation,
history, ancestry, folklore, laws, rituals, ceremonies, culture and philosophy
is covered in the dreaming, and stories have been passed from
generation to generation to explain these many concepts.
The aborigines used dance, song, drawings, rituals and storytelling to
pass on their myths and legends. These stories go back to explain how
the spiritual forces caused their ancestors to form, how the journeys of
these ancestors formed geological formations. The ancestors formed
pathways and riverbeds where they walked, they formed trees by plunging
sticks into the ground, and hills were formed where they died and their
bodies fell. Different tribes had different stories about their
existence. They had explanations of how constellations were formed, and what
these star patterns represent.
The Dreaming also tells about the sacred sites that are still important
today to certain tribes. Different areas are sacred to different
tribes, and sometimes for very different reasons. For example, Uluru is
considered a sacred site by all the tribes who live or pass through the area
on their spiritual treks. To one tribe, the whole rock is sacred, while
to another, it is only a small landmark on the rock which holds
significance in the Dreaming.
Stories of the Dreaming often gave examples of how the people of a
tribe were expected to behave as a community, and in their responsibility
towards each other. It gave them their laws and punishments. In some
ways this can be equated to the many stories of "The Bible".
The dreaming even affected the diets of some tribes. If, for example a
tribe believed that the spirit of their ancestors resided in the
goanna, those members of the tribe were not permitted to eat goanna.
In Aboriginal Politics, the Dreaming was used as a way of establishing
Native Title to land. Claims were made based on the stories of the
ancestors and showed the tribe's connection to the land. Dreaming stories
could only be passed on to those in a tribe who had a right to be
The Dreaming brings together the past and the present, and yet it also
blurs the distinction between the two. The Dreaming is more than myth
and legend, it is a whole encompassing philosophy of existence for the