Tag Archives: Nguthungulli

The Cicada Dreaming – Tweed Caldera – Australia

Cicada Dreaming - Yoocum Yoocum

The Wollumbin Caldera has many significant Feathered Serpent Starlore, Marriage Lore, Creation Lore, Increase and initiation ritual sites from the Dreamtime Sky Ancestors…..

 “I want to share with you a sacred creation Lore from the Dreamtime” ….

“We call our lore Bootheram…….  This Bootheram is about one of our most important ancestral djurebil……. an increase site, located near Coowarragum, the Pinnacle, where all the old tribal clans of the northern Yoocum Yoocum moiety would gather for trade, ceremony, initiation, corrobboree, marriages, and star ceremonies” ….

Pinnacle 4
Coowarragum – Pinnacle Hill

“Bul” is our generic word for Tree….all of the clans of the northern Yoocum-Yoocum have their own totemic tree with ‘ bul’ as the suffix of each Clan….. Githa-bul, Ngarak-bul, Ginda-bul, Whaili-bul, etc… to identify Skinlore Kinship connections and obligations” ……

“All Bird Tribe Bootheram lore is ‘written’ across the vault of the Milkyway, Wayal Balun, and can be read like a book by the initiated… On the terrestrial plain it is mirrored as a ‘complex’ of connected Djurebil, scattered throughout the landscape, aligned with star cycles…. ever since the Dreaming” ….

 “Men and Women share the same sky when teaching Lore, and so the same creation spirits, or Sky Ancestors, appear again and again throughout the Bootheram’s….but all appear in the sky together…making all Bootheram lore accessible to everyone, and totally uncorruptible…...as no-one can change the stars”….

“ In  Mebbin, or Eagle Forest, down  below Coowarragum, the Pinnacle,  near one of the ‘gates’ of  the Wollumbin Caldera Terra-Henge  is a place is a we call Yerehng’[y-irrhrr-ing]…. one of the most significant ritual sites associated with the Rainbow Serpent, Warrazum, of the Women’s Water Lore ….and it was ‘sung’ by my Great Aunty Julia Charles of the Ngarakbul and Githabul Clans……Cicada - Julia Charles and space

 This djurebil is sacred to our people for increasing one of our most important food sources…. This lore story is called a “Boodharam gawari”, which means story ‘run’, or Songline, with all of the associated djurebil, sacred sites, connected across the landscape and in the heavens”…..

“Flowing through the women’s water lore sites of Hanging Rock Falls, Lillian Rock, Blue Knob and down through  the Nimbin Gap…following the trail of an ancient glacier which carved the ‘gate’ of the Tweed River…..then submerging and remerging at the furthest headwaters of the Tweed River, in Back Creek, under the Pinnacle…….all  reflecting the Milkyway ‘river’ Wayal Balun  in the sky”…..

 “All of our creation Bootheram is told in metaphor…so what seems like a simple little story is loaded with metaphors of profound earth events…geological upheaval, hydrological creation, evolutionary explosion, or extinction,  atmospheric, galactic and glacial events”…..

“I would like to share my Great Aunt Julia Charles’ Bootheram with you…..She was born in 1890 at the Aboriginal Station in Woodenbong… the eldest child  of Doc Williams of the Githabul and  Lizzie McBride [Whailibul Clan ] who had married in traditional Skinlore custom ………………..Julia married Billy Charles, who was born at Baryulgil in 1883….Julia Charles is the kinship sister of Euston Williams, my Great Grandfather, and in skinlore kinship she is actually not my great Aunt but my Great Grandmother , tribal way”….

“This is a Bootheram my Grandfather Stan Williams was also taught as a child….when the boys are jahdham’s they too learn the basics of the Women’s Lore …this same lore has been passed down in my family since the beginning of the Dreamtime”….

Mebbini forest below wiangaree forest - border ranges“It is a very old Bootheram….. about one of the sacred Lore Tree’s of Nguthungulli, God…The Eucalyptus Gum… This Bootheram’s name is “Yirrimbahm Boodjeram Gawari” , which translates as the Cicada Dreaming….. it goes like this”

“There was once an old woman named Dirrangun…..She is was ‘mindalnahgan’, an old clever-woman, a Wiyangan, a witch from the Dreamtime”……

Dirrangun lived with the Bird Tribes – deep in the great primordial forest amongst the ancient Eucalyptus… Gum Tree’s”….

“When the tribe went out hunting and gathering food they would leave the jahdham’s, the young children, with the old ‘Wiyangan’, until they returned”…

“One day, when the adults left the camp the children began to misbehave ‘garbalahy’….and then they began to bahmgudha, poke fun at and ridicule the old woman…this made Dirrangun very cross”…….

“So while the adults were away, Dirrangun began to dig….. a big deep hole, ‘guluy’, inside the camp”……

Mt WarningCaldera - Yar Birrain
Wollumbin Caldera

“Every day the tribe would leave Dirrangan in charge of the children…and every day the children became more and more disrespectful…those children didn’t respect that Dirrangan was a powerful Wiyangan” ……

Dirrangan  didn’t chase the naughty children…… instead she would just dig that guluy, hole…….deeper and deeper…..secretly, singing her magic song, ‘jingan’  into that ‘guluy’  while the mothers and fathers of all the jahdham were out hunting”…..

“One day, at the end of summer, that guluy, hole, was ready…. The old ‘Wiyangan’ waited till all the mothers and fathers were gone…….then that old Dirrangan’ pushed the disobedient children down into the jagun,……Jagun means earth”…..

“‘Dirrangun jundah jahdham guluy jagun’, means the old witch pushed the children into a hole in the earth”…….

“When the Dirrangun had pushed all the children down in the hole, she got the bark ‘dangeh’ and grass ‘wudhung’, from her own bed, and she covered over the ‘guluy jagun’…..Locking the children into sunless darkness inside the cold earth…..then she sat on top of her bedding,  and continued her magic song”…..

“When the tribe came home they saw no children playing around the camp”…..

“But ‘Dirrangun’ was there….and she was sitting on top of that hole…..hiding it from the tribe”…….

“The mothers and the fathers asked the old Wiyangan woman “ where are the children, why are they not here?”…..

“Ah”, said Dirrangun…., “I don’t know where they have gone……..  Maybe they have wandered somewhere out of the camp.” ……..

“Old Dirrangun was pretending to cry for them – ’nyungduhwena’ ..She told the tribe she had been looking for the jahdham’s, but couldn’t find them…then the tribe became angry at the old woman so they sent her away to the west”..

caldera space children weeping“The children could hear the adults and they started screaming to be saved, but the Wiyangan’s magic song, ‘jingan’, and the bark and grasses had sealed the hole tight, so no matter how loud the children screamed the tribe could not hear them”……

“The youngest children, the jahdham’s, began to weep……they were cold and hungry…..they began to freeze”….

“The oldest children started digging a passage….they were trying to get out….but the darkness of the earth and Wiyangan’s powerful song  caused their legs and bodies to shrivel, their fore arms to grow into long digging claws and their heads to sink into their shoulders”….

“Old Dirrangan’s  jingan’ had bewitched the children …… they had become ’duragal’- bug nymphs that ‘birihyn’ burrow in the ground ”…

“Transformed, the children dug and dug…making more and more passages…they were desperate to come out into the warmth of the sunlight”…

“For seven years they burrowed ….lost in the Jagun, ….the earth….with only milk from the roots of the Gum Trees for their food”…..“Many of the little children did not survive and died in the Jagun”…….

But when seven years had passed, the children came up and out of the earth…into the warmth of the sunlight, they had turned into yirrimbahm, Cicadas….and they began to scream loudly for their parents”…….cicada-exoskeletons

“When the Wuyans, the clever-men of the tribe, found out what had happened they decided they would punish the old Wiyangan, Dirrangun”……

“The Wuyan [Whi-ann] found that old Dirrangun sitting by her fire, trying to keep her cold old bones warm”……

“It was you who killed those Jarhjam’s the Wuyan cried….”You hid them for seven years from their family…you must die for your crime”…..

“No said Dirrangun…..those children broke lore , they  were disrespectful to me ….I am  ‘mindalnahgan’, a Wiyangan…you cannot kill me”…..

mercury and children

 

“She is right, agreed the Wuyan, but you must pay a penalty for the parents suffering…….so they talked to the djurevil, where the yirrimbahm, Cicadas, had emerged from the earth,……. “Now, punish this old woman as she punished you.  Chase her away” said the Wuyan and they began to sing and corroboree, dragging that old woman to her feet to spin her quickly around the fire until the  yirrimbahm djurevil spirit grabbed Dirrangan, and spun her around and around, then cast that old Wiyangan up into the sky where she became a wandering star”…….

“The djurevil, the spirit-place of the cicadas is at Back Creek, under the Tweed Range …we call that place ‘Yerehng’[y-irrhrr-ing] it mean’s scream…there is a great hole there…. with ’waguy’, vines, growing in it…Nguthungulli, God, made that great hole in the Alcheringa, in the beginning of the Dreamtime” …….womens pathway , tweed valley - encircling Yar-birrain

“When the old people want a lot of cicadas to eat, they go to this djurebil and pull the vines to wake up that old ‘Dirrangan’,and they call out, “Bunjarrbar yirrimbahmo” – this means cover this place all over with cicadas….Bunjarrbar means “in abundance”…..

That Old Dirrangan’s star is still spinning quickly across the sky, trying to stay warm near the sun as she is watching all the jahdham’s …… sometimes we see  in the morning and sometimes in the evening…..throughout the year ….And every seven years she stops at her sky Djurebil  to signal the moiety that the yirrimbahm clutches will soon be emerging”….

“ October to January is when the Cicada’s clutches come out, screaming loudly for their parents, suckling guruhmbil, milk, from the Eucalyptus, emerging in great abundance, reminding us of our sacred lore’s and obligations to one another….. and that wandering star?……It is the planet Mercury…… she’s that old ‘Wiyangan ……her presence reminds children everywhere to never be disrespectful of Elder’s”…….

This illustrates how Boodharam gawari links people to country, and metaphorically relates complex scientific evolutionary processes…this wealth of living cultural knowledge survived invasion and was maintained through proper Skinlore Marriage given to us by our Sky Ancestors…because we followed the natural lore our ancestral ties remain unbroken right across Australia”

“That’s the creation Lore my Great Aunt Julie Charles taught the Ngarakbul and Githabul women and children about “Yirrimbahm Boodjeram Gawari”……..

-Allan Euston Williams-

https://wollumbintours.wordpress.com/

All Cultural and Intellectual Copyright [Moral Rights] remains the property of the Ngarakbal Githabul Custodial Trust 2018

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Yar Birrain – Mount Warning & Wollumbin

warning-frontal-RGBYar Birrain is the most significant sacred site of the Ngarakbul people…the Ngarakbul are the marriage clan of the Githabul 

“I want to share with you a creation Bootheram about Mount Warning which the Ngarakbul call Yar Birrain ….this sacred mountain was made by Nguthungulli, our name for God…  This Bootheram Lore was related by my Great Grandmother Charlotte Williams to Roland Robinson who was a poet, writer and collector of Australian Aboriginal myths.” 

“My Great Grandfather,  Euston William’s was the husband of Charlotte Brown…..Charlotte is my Ngarakbul Great Grandmother  from the Tweed Volcano where Yar Birrain is the centrepiece of the Ngarakbul ancestral estate……Charlotte was the daughter of Mary,  which is common name for a full blood woman,  and Mary’s djurebil is Biorgini – that’s Blue Knob – near Nimbin.”….. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“Euston and Charlotte had nineteen children …Their eldest Son was Stan Williams , and Stan is my Grandfather. His tribal name was Duroom which means “Custodian of Knowledge and Lore” ……

“Charlotte Brown inherited the custodianship of Yar Birrain Lore from her Grandfather King Brown of Wollumbin who was the keeper of the first Origine’ Lore of this continent – the Skinlore, Kinship and Starlore  Bootheram’s of the Rainbow Serpent and Nguthungulli, our Father – God,  who gave  us the ancient Origine’ Lore……and Charlotte had six Ngarakbul siblings…….three sisters and three brothers who are also inheritors of the Lore “……..

“We are the Bird Tribes ….we didn’t come here , we were made here, by Nguthungulli – he is the creator” 

“Stan was my Grandfather and Charlotte, his mother, taught him this important Ngarakbul Bootheram Lore for the preservation of the custodial knowledge of our Origine’ people  ….Millie Boyd was also one of the children of Charlotte and Euston and protected the waterlore of the Ngarakbul Githabul….. The same lore has been faithfully passed down in my family since the beginning of the dreamtime …This is how my grandparents taught us to protect our Lore……. ” 

“Stan was given gave custodial obligation of our peoples Feathered Serpent Bootheram Lore – this same lore has been faithfully passed down in my family since the beginning of the dreamtime …and he taught me our Lore about Yar-Birrain our tribal ancestors”…. 

“Way back in the Dreamtime the birds  had flown from Mount Brown on the Richmond Range in Githabul country to claim the prehistorical landscape from the ancient beings…..the birds gave us our language, songlines, territories and pathways…Parrot flew down to Evans Head, that’s how there came to be a Bandjalang tribe”…..

view to mt brown
View to Mount Brown – on the Richmond Range

 “Mount Brown is where all the birds got together and spoke their language….  They was talking Gullyval, Muli, Gidabal,  and this giant prehistoric bird came up and frightened them…….Parrot flew down there to Evans Head, that’s how there came to be the Bandjalang tribe……  And the wounded parrot flew back near Lismore and then out to Casino….. you can see a gully there, and they reckon the waters blood red, where he settled…….. And Turkey flew here, to Yar-Birrain wounded”……

“Turkey flew east from Mount Brown to Mount Warning and he stood right on the point and he was wounded on the head with a spear…That’s why Yar -Birran has that crooked bend in his neck……and Turkey claimed the territory for the Ngarakbul“……

story line across australiaThat Roland Robinson was a good friend of my Great Grandparents, Charlotte and Euston,  and he was instrumental in assisting our people with the civil rights movement of the 1950’s and 60’s….he published our Ngarakbul and Githabul Bootheram in many of his books 

Charlotte sang her lore for Roland Robinson,  the Ngarakbul ‘portion’ of the transcontinental song line of Australia…She sang the creation lore of her inherited ancestral country and it’s central significant/sacred Mountain – Yar Birrain because of the civil rights campaign of the 1950 and 60’s  ……  it is our most sacred lore.  It is called the Fairy Emu Dreaming and it goes like this”………

julian and julia rocks

…”….A big rock stands in the sea six miles from Byron Bay

A man named Nguthungulli made that rock. Nguthungulli is our Father. He’s the Father of the whole world. He’s the man we’ve got to be afraid of. No matter what we do wrong, or where we do it, He’ll know. And no man has seen Him…”……

“….Nguthungulli had a cave in the rock.  After he made the rock, he told the four fairy woman, ‘gilarmavell’, to stay there…”.

“….Then he went away from there and walked inland from the coast.  He traveled over the mountains with his dog Korung.  He had a walking stick, and when he put the stick into the ground He left behind a stone like a basin..”…..

Mt WarningCaldera - Yar Birrain
Wollumbin Caldera

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…”As he traveled He left the bean-trees, and He named the different places on His journey.  He named Woodenbong [where we are now], Nguthumbung.”

“He went over the range to the head of the Condamine.  When he knelt down at the river to drink, He left his handprints there in the stone…”…….

Mega Fold - Z Fold - Willmott
the ‘breaking’ of the east coast mountain range , in the Dreamtime – arrow showing location of Condamine

“….Nguthungulli went away out into the desert, towards the sunset.  In our language we say that Nguthungulli is away out in the Borrgorr now,  that means the sea.…”…..

“…The old people knew that the sea was out there.  They knew that whichever way the butheram, the story of Nguthungalli went, it was towards the sea, Borrgorr.  You can hear the sound of the sea in that word.  They had seen then that we were on an island.”……….

“….Nguthungulli has big rocks in the Borrgorr,  the sea, where he lives today.  Out in the caves in those rocks in the sea, Nguthungulli has four daughters and one son.  And his son is called Yar Birrain…”….

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….”There were two brothers called Wao and Jarring. When Jarring died, Wao came over to the place called Korrelya in these mountains.  Wao went after those two emus which were the ‘barnyunbee‘, the spirit of Jarring.”….Mount warning - national park map with wollumbin mountain

“But the emu’s kept moving away.  Wao kept on going after those emus day after day.  When the emu’s had a rest, he would have a rest.  When the emu’s would get up and go on, Wao would go after them.”……

“He had no time to make tea or anything….He had to keep going day after day and rest at night until he got to where Nguthungulli was in the rocks in the “borrgorr‘, the sea, in the sunset .”….

emu n his chicks1Wao had been chasing those emu’s for months. He wanted them for his own barnyunbee, his property, his totem.  When the emu’s came to the sea, they lay down on the beach.  When Wao came up close to those emu’s, a fairy  fairy man called Tjoolorr came out of the sea and asked Wao, “what are you after?”……

” Wao said, I’m after them, pointing to those emu’s.”…..

Tjoolorr said, “You can’t take them.  They belong to Nguthungulli“…”…….

Tjoolorr asked Wao what he wanted to do and Wao said he wanted to stay three days,  “Borrorr yabborr“.  That means ‘two and one’ – three days.

And when Wao had stayed there three days, the fairy man ‘Yar Birrain‘ came and took Wao out to the rocks in the sea.  But Wao couldn’t see Yar Birrain…….. Yar Birrain took Wao out to the rocks in the sea where Nguthungulli is…….  Wao stayed three days inside that rock……. And the fairy women told him, “you cant see Nthung, Father.  You can hear him talking, but you can’t see him.”….Yar Birrain told Wao too,  “You can’t see Father, though you can hear him when he talks.”….emu dragonfly milkyway

Wao stayed there only three days and then left that place.  Wao couldnt open the door by himself, not Wao, he couldn’t. Yar Birrain opened the door and told him not to look back when he put his foot down on the path over the sea, but to go straight for land.”…..

“When Wao landed back on the beach, he was back with Tjoolorr.  He had come to Tjoolorr.  When Wao came to the beach where Tjoolorr was, Nguthungulli made a song about Wao…He said “I can’t give you those emu’s, but i will give you this song”…emu n his chicks3

“Then Nguthungulli sang this song to Wao:…….”…..

“Ah, Wao, why were you walking after those two fairy emu’s?”.

Wao, that was your brothers spirit, those fairy emu’s.”

“Those emu’s are Mine.  I own them again.”

“Those emu’s your brothers spirit, have come back to Me…”….

“Then Wao travelled back to this country and brought the song back with him.”…….  

That’s the Lore my Grandfather and Great Grandmother Charlotte taught me…it is our most sacred Bootheram – it is the lore of the creation of our sacred land ….this continent  “……

Allan Euston Williams 

allan logo triangle DRAFT3

 All Cultural and Intellectual Copyright [Moral Rights] remains the property of the Ngarakbal Githabul Custodial Trust 2018

wollumbin sunset