Max Harrison and Ann Thomas (Yuin elders) talk on Gulaga.

(excerpt taken from “Gulaga”, a video narrated by David Arvind Condon and Hiromi Matsuoka. Reprinted here with kind permission from the makers and Lyn Thomas.)

MAX HARRISON, Yuin Elder:

‘At the beginning, before Dharama the Great Spirit created Tunku and Naadi there was only oneness.

ANN THOMAS, Yuin Elder:

‘Our Creation Story on the south coast of Tunku and Naadi coming down from the stars – they came from the stars to this beautiful land. They became this earth, they became part of the stones, the rocks, the clay. They became part of the trees and the mountains themselves…and the oceans. And they developed from the earth.and all our energies and everything else that we are is in those rocks at Gulaga and every other teaching place. And so we became part of the earth. We never profess to own the land, but the land owns us.

MAX:

‘Dharama the Great Spirit, He created everything. Dharama is Creation itself.

ANN:

‘Tunku and Naadi came to this land. There was no-one living here, but there was the environment; there were the fish and the whales, the birds, the animals – they gave them all names.

MAX:

‘The culture is in the trees, in the bush, in the waters, in the animals, the birds. All this oneness, all this Creation around us.

‘Mother Earth, Father Sky, Grandmother Moon and Grandfather Sun. That is so important. Dharama’s Creation is all our relations.

ANN:

‘Tunku and Naadi were looking at the land, looking at the environment, looking at the fish, looking at everything and renaming them. The Aboriginal people believe that they are co-creators, so this is the creation of most things that were happening and developing.

MAX:

‘What we have to do is go back to the One Time, of how it was…and bring that culture back the way it was. It’s the Lore we’re bringing back here: respect. Respect of the Mother Earth: respect to the trees, to the rocks, to the waters – to all sacred and significant sites that we have. That’s the power of this place, to really bring you back.