sorry ritual for calling home the dispossessed.

A few years ago, when Wilderness was campaigning vigorously for recognition of the needs of endangered species, I was studying literature at university, and we looked at Aboriginal poetry and song.  Profoundly striking were the corroborree songs for the wild animals that were their food.  The scene was set, the place described in a few vivid images, and instantly you were carried to the scene, the vital habitat of the animal. Then the magic started:

There are paw-prints on the sand, the smell of the animal running, running are the animals, the grasslands are replete with their running…” Didj, dance, chant and the clapping of digging sticks… “…warm is their fur, strong their instincts, they forage for seeds, abundant is their food…”

What was happening in this poem was enchantment, the casting of a spell, a spell of fecundity, abundance and health.  The land and the animals, the dreaming, long conditioned by such singing, lies open to it, waiting for it, ready always to respond.  The Aborigines have always urged us to understand that the land needs this.  It feeds upon it.  It is a primary function of humanity to ‘talk up the land’.

So has it just stopped now that few aborigines are able to keep doing it now?  Christian missionaries forbade it, and strict punishments were dealt to anyone caught sneaking off and doing it secretly.  Does that mean the land listens in vain?

Aboriginal tribal elders from the western desert tell us that we have to ‘talk up the land’, retrieve that vitalising enchantment, and actively will the spirit animals to come back and reinvest in their species on earth. Some of them have gone, and their animals seem doomed to die out, but they can be called back through ritual magic and their species saved from extinction. The aborigines, still culture-shocked and spiritually devastated, need our help to do this. This is Wyeuro’s best effort. (Wyeuro is our goat-farm.)

The circle is cast and consecrated, peace to the quarters and the ceremony is opened in the usual, OZ-OBODic way

CORROBOREE

All play on digging sticks harmoniously humming for a few moments to attune. If there is a didjeridu, so much the better, but it must be live or recorded especially for this ritual, as recordings made for other purposes may not be appropriate.

(Note: N, V and J are two druids and a witch. Because the witch was a guest we had a ritual of welcoming and attunement first.)

V.: We have come together for ritual and corroboree, for the calling home of the native mammals which have left or are leaving this area or are finding it hard to stay.

N.: We ask for the blessing and help of the Aborigine people and spirits whose land this once was, who are still here, our neighbours and friends in the worlds invisible to us, to perform this ceremony, part Celtic ritual, part corroboree, for the healing of our lands, for the building of bridges between our worlds, and for the calling back of the animals that have left or are leaving the mallee.

J.: We acknowledge the authority of the Crow. We acknowledge that we are in land sacred to the Goanna Dreaming, guardian of the law, and we honour the authority of the Goanna Spirit Man. For the love and respect and reverence we feel, we call upon the Moonah tree Spirit Woman, wise elder and kindly guide and guardian, to bless and guide us in this ceremony of healing.

ALL:  (Invocation: sung as a round 3X, with sticks)

Moonah, Moonah, Moonah, Moonah,

We call to you, we call to you, we call to you, we call to you

Call you to our sacred circle, call you to our sacred circle.

N and J:  Continue playing on digging sticks while V dances Moonah in and takes her to her sitting place in the circle.

N and J (when she is sitting down):  Welcome, Moonah, welcome!

V returns to her place.

(Brief meditation of attunement)

*******************

N.: We are now going to call the koala home to the river.

ALL : (with digging sticks)

Koala, Koala, Koala, Koala,

We call to you, we call to you, we call to you, we call to you

Call you to our sacred circle, call you to our sacred circle.

V & N: (play on sticks while J dances, bringing Koala to sitting place)

V & N: (when Koala is sitting) Welcome, Koala, welcome!

J. returns to her place: The koala was once very widespread, but ecological shock, relentless hunting for fur, and disease have brought them too close for comfort to the brink of extinction. Now they are returning to reserves and protected wilderness,  responding to our pleas and our children’s pleas for them to return. Their health and abundance on our planet is inextricably linked to the health and vitality of all koala dreaming people world wide of all races, and all koala dreaming activities as well.

ALL: (play on sticks and sing in chorus, ending with chant)

Sad we are, sad we are, sad we are, Koala,

Hear us now from your place in the stars,

Hear us calling you, hear us pleading,

Please don’t leave us, sad we are!

Please come back we are sorry we are sorry,

Please come back to the river banks,

Please come back O koala woman!

Please come back O koala man!

See the sheep leaving, see the land recovering

Food is plentiful here for you

Safety too in the returning woodlands

Come back, Koala, come back do!

We will give you power and freedom

Power for your dreaming too,

We will give you light and life force

Come back Koala, come back do!

(chant) Come back come back come back come back

Come back come back come back do!

(brief meditation)

*******************

N.:  We are now going to call the Numbat home to the mallee.

ALL : (with digging sticks)

Numbat, Numbat, Numbat, Numbat

We call to you, we call to you, we call to you, we call to you

Call you to our sacred circle, call you to our sacred circle.

V & J: (play on sticks while N. dances, bringing Numbat to sitting place)

V & J: (when Koala is sitting)  Welcome, Numbat, welcome!

N. returns to her place.

N.: Striped anteaters or Numbats are diurnal and feed exclusively on termites. They shelter in hollow logs and nest in leaf litter. They grow up to 28cm long, with the females a bit smaller than the males. 200 years ago, they were widespread and numerous across Australia. Now they’re found only in a small area of forest in southwestern Western Australia where they are endangered. Their health and abundance on our planet is inextricably linked to the health and vitality of all numbat dreaming people of all races worldwide, and all numbat dreaming activities as well.

ALL: (play on sticks and sing in chorus, ending with chant)

Sad we are, sad we are, sad we are, Numbat,

Hear us now from your place in the stars,

Hear us calling you, hear us pleading,

Please don’t leave us, sad we are!

Please come back we are sorry we are sorry,

Please come back to the mallee lands,

Please come back O Numbat woman!

Please come back O Numbat man!

See the sheep leaving, see the land recovering

Food is plentiful here for you

Safety too in the returning undergrowth

Come back, Numbat, come back do!

We will give you power and freedom

Power for your dreaming too,

We will give you light and life force

Come back Numbat, come back do!

(chant) Come back come back come back come back

Come back come back come back do!

(brief meditation)

*******************

N.:  We are now going to call the Woylie home to the mallee.

ALL : (with digging sticks)

Woylie, Woylie, Woylie, Woylie,

We call to you, we call to you, we call to you, we call to you

Call you to our sacred circle, call you to our sacred circle.

N & J: (play on sticks while V. dances, bringing Woylie to sitting place)

N & J: (when W is sitting)  Welcome, Woylie, welcome!

V. returns to her place: The woylie was an endangered species until recently, but is beginning to show signs of recovery. It is the tiniest and rarest kangaroo, less than 1 inch long. They forage at night for underground fungi, bulbs, seeds, tubers, insects and resin. Woylies spend the day in an elaborate domed nest made of grass or bark which they carry to the nest in the curled tip of the tail. Their health and abundance on our planet is vitally linked to the health and vitality of all numbat dreaming people of all races worldwide, and all numbat dreaming activities as well.

ALL: (play on sticks and sing in chorus, ending with chant)

Sad we are, sad we are, sad we are, Woylie,

Hear us now from your place in the stars,

Hear us calling you, hear us pleading,

Please don’t leave us, sad we are!

Please come back we are sorry we are sorry,

Please come back to the mallee lands,

Please come back O Woylie woman!

Please come back O Woylie man!

See the sheep leaving, see the land recovering

Food is plentiful here for you

Safety too in the returning undergrowth

Come back, Woylie, come back do!

We will give you power and freedom

Power for your dreaming too,

We will give you light and life force

Come back, Woylie, come back do!

(chant) Come back come back come back come back

Come back come back come back do!

(brief meditation)

*******************

N.:  We give thanks to the Koala, to the Numbat, and to the Woylie, for coming and listening to us, and to the Aborigine spirit people and ghosts for their blessings and help with inspiration, insight and magic. Thanks also to our OBOD guides and helpers, and all participants. May the blessing and empowering love of this ritual stay with you to help and heal you and your Dreaming.

PAUSE

J.: We give thanks and respectfulness to the kindly Moonah, for her blessings and authority to do this ritual magic for the healing of the land, the building of bridges of friendship and cooperation between the worlds, and the calling home of the animals, and to the Crow and the Goanna for their kindly guidance and goodwill. May the blessing and empowering love of this ritual stay with you to help and heal you and your Dreaming.

PAUSE

V.: May the power and spirit of this coroboree be carried out into the worlds; may it reach to the divine spirits of the animals themselves, their devas, their dreamings, and may its intentions be understood and empowered for the good of all beings.  May the blessing and empowering love of this ritual stay with us all to help and heal us in relation to our Dreaming.

All: 3  awens.

Close Ceremony in the normal way.

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