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Reclaiming Our Intelligence
Marilyn Robb

November 11 & 12

Knowing our

December 2 & 3

“We Are Living on Stolen Land”

The following was written after an Australia Day gather-in, led by Louisa Flander, in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia:

We need to tell our stories. When did you first hear about where you came from? How old were you? We have to reach for the child. It’s not the actual story we need to tell. It’s how we felt when we were told about how our families came here. Who told us? What was the situation? The version we got as young ones was not the complete picture, and it was full of feelings.

We come from a history of border wars, invasions, colonisation, and violence. Our ancestors brought all this to Australia. They had no chance to discharge, so what had happened to them, and their ancestors, was carried on [continued] here. When we do not get a chance to discharge, the feelings get attached to material things and the land. Without a lot of discharge, we humans don’t want to give those things up. We don’t want to talk about how we got here and how we got the land we’re on. The silence comes from our people who didn’t want to face how they got the land.

Our parents were trying to protect us. They loved us and wanted us to have a good life. But we need to face that somebody was here when our families moved here.

The history of humans on our planet is mass migrations. We don’t stop to consider that we took things and killed people. We are living on stolen land. We benefit from genocide. It is happening now all over the world. We don’t feel like we care because we’re “lucky.” We have to face what our ancestors did and discharge. We can discharge on what it means to us to give it back.

For me, being Australian has meant growing up with a very loud silence about how we came to be here and have this land. It is a big contradiction to the history of denial to discharge about how I received the stories of my people as a young one, and on the direction to give it back.

Victoria Kemp

Thornbury, Melbourne, Australia

Reprinted from the newsletter of the
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, RC Community

Last modified: 2019-05-02 14:41:35+00