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Tuning Into the Land with Diana James & Lee Brady

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“Indigenous people have a powerful remembering for us, because they pull us right back to the land, out of our disembodied heads. They make us sit on the ground, get our feet dirty again, dance in time to the rhythm of the Earth. We need to take this back to our own world. Our task is not to grab knowledge like some kind of trophy, but to bring wisdom back into our hearts and minds and our own lives.” These are the words of Diana James, an Australian anthropologist who has become integrated into the aboriginal family structure of Nganyinytja. James speaks with Leah and Lee Brady, members of the Pitjantjatjara Tribe of Australia. Leah is a daughter of the tribal matriarch, and Lee is currently a community-aid worker in the aboriginal community in Amata. They inform us of the struggles between lawmakers and native Australians, their hopes for resolution, and how we can all become active custodians of the land we live on in a way that recreates the aliveness of the land and the people who dwell there.

Topics Explored in this Dialogue:

  • How to develop a personal relationship with the land
  • The challenges aboriginal people are facing in Australia today
  • How the Spirit of the Land Foundation is deepening cross-cultural understanding
  • The relevance of the indigenous culture of Australia to Westerners
  • How aborigines and Westerners differ in their feelings of ownership to land
  • Journeys of Desert Tracks, a touring company owned by aborigines
  • Aboriginal ideas regarding sustainability
  • The right to roam the Earth
  • How the spiritual hunger in the West can result in consuming other cultures

Program Number: 2745                Host: Michael Toms              Interview Date: 10/2/1998

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