Friday, July 8, 2016

Scientific Guidance aligns with Ancient Wisdom

A few words of inspiration from an acclaimed scientist!

“Look deep into nature and there you will understand everything better.”

                          Albert Einstein

Is this not how the Custodial peoples on this Earth lived and learned and gained their wisdom?

Friday, July 1, 2016

Good News Story

The Earth Trust is currently offering support for a pilot program where investors can join with custodial people to grow a business while caring for their country, and handing on custodial ways of working with land and native plants.

The Aboriginal community, the investors and those interested in the wider world can all benefit, while protecting, respecting and caring for the natural environment. Remnant rainforest will be preserved while reforesting where rainforest once was… It is an innovative venture and is being developed in partnership with the Gumbaynggirr people and Galnyamba Ventures.

There will be more of this story to share as it unfolds.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Creating Change

As 2015 draws to a close I have pondered a way to address the tension that lies beneath all the conflict we experience at present on the Earth.

Today we have insight into a way of living in harmony through the ways of those custodial people who see all life as being their ‘relations’. Aunty Elaine would say ‘we are all one’, or as His Holiness the Dalai Lama recognises ‘the interdependence between the living beings and nature’.

With the awareness that ‘we will not find solutions with the same thinking that created the problems’, our future, if there is to be one, requires some change in our collective perception, thinking, values and actions.

The question is: How do we create a sustainable future that is healthy for all life on Earth? 

One fundamental thread in the tapestry that is the solution is (I believe), that we begin to value the wisdom of the custodial peoples of the Earth. If we share our first world knowledge and resources gained through our successes (and our mistakes) with these first peoples and they share their wisdom and knowledge of how to live sustainably with us, we just might find a way forward to a healthy future on planet Earth.

The next question is: How might we begin to do this?

Fundamental to whatever we come up with is ‘Respect’. Respect for the Earth. Respect for all life. Respect for the different ways of relating and of living. With deep respect in our minds and hearts and bodies we may begin to listen and learn how to begin living in relationship with all life, with land and waters of country.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Elder’s Vision for the Future

One of Aunty Elaine’s visions for the future was to hold a global gathering of Custodial Elders, in her country. The intention of such a gathering being to provide a platform where they can share their dreams for a healthy planet as a step towards strengthening them to provide advice to a world in need of their wisdom on caring for Mother Earth.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Experiencing land and culture with Custodial Elders

During 2014, Aunty Elaine together with her niece Aunty Shaa, continued to share their cultural ways of relating to the natural environment through Gumbaynggirr Dreaming. This program was first created and presented in January 2012. Participants again felt what it is to be in relationship with country. They find themselves feeling uplifted and exhilarated and totally committed to being diligent in their caring for country, as they step back into their everyday lives.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Earth Trust Can Make a Difference

Recently I have been exploring how the Earth Trust can make a difference right now, in our world. I have revisited the fundamental principles of the Trust while looking at what our world needs today.

In essence the Earth Trust is about healing our connection, our relationship with the Earth, with each other and with our own spirit. One old Aboriginal woman from the desert speaks of “healing ourselves, healing country”.

There is a way that we can live with respect and sustainably. It includes leading edge technology, the careful use of natural resources and good governance. However at the core of all that we do to live sustainably is the way we human beings live in relationship with all life, with the Earth herself.

Today we hear about the crisis with our bee populations around the world.

Bryan Walsh wrote 9 August 2013

“The plight of the bees illustrates our outsized influence on the this planet as we reshape it—consciously and not—to meet our immediate needs. But just because we have this power doesn’t mean we fully understand it, or our impact on our own world. We are a species that increasingly has omnipotence without omniscience. That’s a dangerous combination for the animals and plants that share this planet with us.  And eventually, it will be dangerous for us, too.”  
Bryan Walsh Senior Editor of TIME Magazine.  

Researchers are concerned with what they find. We know that if our bee populations fail to thrive we very quickly lose our capacity to produce food. The Earth Trust is concerned with the natural environment which is being threatened by those farming practices which use pesticides and fertilisers which compromise the health of our natural resources.  

The Earth Trust is beginning to work with Landholders to address these issues and redress the imbalance in the natural environment. We are supporting Custodial Elders to offer their wisdom and knowledge to Landholders and support Landholders to explore ways of working with the land differently and viably, which we hope will offer some real solutions to the future of life on Earth. 

This is a solution we are developing right now!

Friday, October 7, 2011

… another way …

One evening, while at a residential conference on education on the east coast of Australia, again in Gumbaynggirr country, I retired late. Tired as I was, I was more restless than sleepy. The crashing of waves on the shore just metres from where we were cabined, seemed to be calling me. Not being one to take myself off in the dead of night, alone, I decided that I would venture to the beach at first light. As the first light of dawn became visible I walked to the beach.

It was a grey morning, there were lots of clouds and even as the sun rose behind them the day felt ‘grey’. I walked along the beach feeling for this place and this day. I saw something way out to sea, but could not make it out. I thought ‘whales’ but dismissed this as fanciful. I felt that the sunrise was a bit of a non-event, yet I still stayed on the beach. I was alone for what seemed like an hour when an elderly gentleman approached. We greeted each other and I asked if he could see what was out there. He looked a while and then replied with dry Aussie humour, ‘if it’s a boat it’s in trouble!’

I continued to walk up the beach. I was contemplating the sleepless night, the sense of being called and the uneventful morning when I hear the old man cry out ‘It leapt!’ … I had missed it! The old man left the beach very joyful … and I felt happy for him.

I then focused on a space in the clouds, which I suspected would allow the sun to shine through. As the sun hit the sea, in the very spot it did this, there it was! The tail of the whale shining in all its glory! This glow, this shape, this light filled connection, truly ‘lit me up’. It moved me to a vibrantly alive place.

This image, since I do not have a photo of what I saw, gives a sense of the glowing tail of a Humpback Whale, reflecting the sunlight.

My experience was one where to me, the glow emanated out from the tail as if the droplets of water that were swung outwards from the tail itself, picked up the light. The shape was only defined in light. In a dark sea and sky this shape shone ever so brightly. It illumined the sea and me.

This experience put a smile on my face that did not leave for days. It took me so ‘out of my head’ that I really was not taking in a lot of education business. I felt transported to another place of perceiving the world around me. I was able to see how we in education at this conference were all so busy trying hard to get it right. What I had experienced was so far beyond what we could experience with our ‘teaching’. This was not the first time, but it was a powerful time for me to see ‘learning’ differently.

This was the first of my whale experiences. There are others. All have heightened my awareness of life, feeling and learning in a myriad of ways. Several of these have been at Valla Beach, where just last month, as relationships with time and place would have it, a baby Southern Right Whale was born.

Within a few years of the whale ‘lighting up my life’, the First International Dolphin and Whale Conference was held at this very place. It was also where an Elder and a circle of men of this country sat and welcomed the people who travelled from all parts of the world. It is where scientists, environmentalists and mystics also listened and learnt from these ‘First People’. What was shared at this and subsequent conferences, between people of different places and ways of thinking and knowing, was in a sense a huge relationship building exercise, a building of relationships between people, places and stories.

So in a sense this experience holds within it, my entrance into a world of knowing. I am still on the threshold of this ‘knowing’ of the part the whales play in this awesome interplay of life on this planet. I am not about to express what that all means, nor can I. Instead I will quote an Indigenous Elder of today who speaks of ‘a way’ that is held by the First People.

‘… a way to see and feel the energy of the mother,

the waterways and oceans and the way these whales

hold the place for us all to be connected’. Wirrigan

I tell this story, as it was a time when my way of thinking about how the world works was challenged. It was my ‘entrance’ into a way of knowing about how place and people are all in relationship. I have come to know a little of how this is a fundamental way of seeing, that allows so much to be seen, and if seen with respect, the doors of perception open to the wonders of the universe. Of this I have only glimpsed, the journey continues…