Among the Aboriginals of Australia in the Dieri country the sky is understood to be a vast plain inhabited by wild tribes that are the prototype of the Aboriginals themselves. When a drought threatens the people on earth they call upon their supernatural relatives in the sky to make rain happen to save the peoples on earth.
The Southeastern tribes of Australia believe in supernatural Sky Beings called “All-Fathers” or “Sky Beings.” The Father of them all is Nurrundere who made all things on the earth, bestowed weapons of war and hunting onto the humans and also instituted all rites and ceremonies. The sky is his homeland.
One connects with the sky god through ceremony as for example if the tribe kills a wallaby and the wallaby is cooked, the hunters chant as the fire, kindled by women, raises smoke to the sky. As the smoke ascends the hunters rush in and lift their weapons and branches towards heaven.
A second tribe, the Wiimbaio, believe the Nurelli made the trees, animals and land and after giving laws to the humans, he went up to the sky and is now one of the constellations.
Other tribes call the Supreme Being who once lived on the earth as a Great Man but eventually ascended to the sky “Our Father” or “Father of All of Us.” The son of God is Binbeal, the rainbow, who teaches the Kulin people the arts of life and social institutions and who ascended to the sky land from where he oversees the tribe.
Interestingly, among the Aboriginals, there is a special encounter with the “Father” whose voice resembles that of the distant thunder during puberty rites of boys becoming men. When a person dies, this Supreme Being meets and cares for his spirit. Thus the spirit, like smoke from the fire, ascends into the heavens and returns to the ancestors there. The ancestors are the stars. These stories of celestial supreme beings antecede any presence of western missionaries among the ancient tribes of Australia.
Adapted from Matthew Fox, The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine, pp. 4f.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: Milky Way star map by Bill Yidumduma Harney, Senior Wardaman Elder. Bill Yidumduma Harney, CC BY
Queries for Contemplation
What instructs you among these ancient teachings of Father Sky among the ancient tribes of Australia? Notice the connection between ceremonies and drawing in the power of Father Sky. And between death and our return to Father Sky.
The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine
To awaken what Fox calls “the sacred masculine,” he unearths ten metaphors, or archetypes, ranging from the Green Man, an ancient pagan symbol of our fundamental relationship with nature, to the Spiritual Warrior….These timeless archetypes can inspire men to pursue their higher calling to connect to their deepest selves and to reinvent the world.
“Every man on this planet should read this book — not to mention every woman who wants to understand the struggles, often unconscious, that shape the men they know.” — Rabbi Michael Lerner, author of The Left Hand of God