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Talking Circle: John Allan

18 May 2003

Streams of images and insights as this man of great wisdom shares observations with us at the Talking Circle. Notes by Willem.

How now the process of performativity
Waking sleeping dreaming
Tell sound it sing it shape it
Move it dress it make it
Perform it repeat it
Make it travel along lines of exchange
Into different language spaces

Guest off sitting on the earth discussing culture
Culture maker skills of peace and poetry making things better for future generations
Circle is yours
Eldership in 21st century
Play didj sing ohmanipadra
Custodian of rainbow serpent dreaming
Djalu lightning tongue hiadaki
Empty space in centre
Everything comes out of

The jewel of true nature in lotus of heart
Philosophers stone
Not affected by all stories taking on to be who we are
Theme eldership
Standing for something clear and solid comes out of having somewhere to stand
Mudra touching the earth
Teaching confidence trust in oneself generate respect and devotion to life
Sense of eldership
Why are you here
Reflection attracted repulsed
Extreme differences in communities

Deepen understanding personal journey service
Humans learn morals exampes of others
Time to be an example
Do less achieve more stop running round chicken without a head
Shadowside fear of day of incapacity
Example for peace

Exploration application of fundamentals how we function together as together
Intergenerational no bouncing around
New ground always

Eldership range being and walking amongst people
Role giving taking culture
Provide to society carrying stories stability experimentation grow understand the world
Understanding must be expanding understanding
Ritualise the support of elders
Will come more
Elders/Olders: what's the difference
What you wanna be old

Selves? What does it al mean
Past present future
Harsh world around older people
Right or privilege young people
Conscious of example make too conscious

Respect elders old for what ever
Old people treatment
Caution rigidifying authority structure not open to question
Being conscious
Leading on continued learning

Continuously choice where we stand and moving with that
Otherwise no natural authority dignity
Elder commits to lifelong journey
Initiation education learning to everybody
Hold the stories
Oral traditions
Law dharma understandings about reality multifaceted
Youth introduced to symbols of bodies of knowledge
Open secrets
Forty gray hair when knees give out senior elder
Centre of community sacred space commune with
Represented in different ways
Kids young elders outside senior elder
Manual ceremony
Joining in support role not just witnessing
Is painting no decoration don't need it
Living embodiment of important for culture
Whole community joining in participatory exstacy instancy larger entity entry through art
$ way Imman way
major impetus Greece delphy
diverse not monistic major cut sites
take to heart so little in nature is ours
songlines distribution system
dreamtime dreaming
compound literal dream
vision of eternal in big dreams
abiding eternal that which manifests out of eternal essence
already there abiding places events
time is outside reference point not in past present future layers reality enfolded no distinction between matter and consciousness
dwelling abode place that's where it manifest
tracks of culture beings creators
being is there no explanation where it came from
something exists activity occurs mark is made inherently there already
manifests exists a mark
custodian of something for everybody
pathways transforming beings
essence throughout permeates between points
7 sisters covers whole country
network sharing new people can learn song knowledge
reason for it being to become aware and go along
all gets down to kinship relationship
undifferentiated whole diversity awakening reality community
dynamic balance and harmony
self and others learn who to relate

elder has a sense of who they are
faith confidence can have respect for others
engaging with diversity
encourage not threaten
redeem values engage
distorted by dominating culture
not giving in and saying who you are stand for your position speak passionately for it disrespect not to speak your belief
power domination
everyone encouraged to participate

two way sharing
will we meet
meeting rarely occurred
place of sacred space where we can meet to see what can emerge out ouf eternal essence
how could we be midwifes
last g
job of the elder to go deeply into things
asps of embodied knowledge
profound engagement with reality
noble friendship recognising oneself in the other
be beautiful
stand up alive
and be committed.
Reflect on veneration good medicine


John has walked the Buddhist path for 30 years. Community artist, psychotherapist, organiser of Standing Up Alive men's gatherings. First non-Koori custodian of the Rainbow Serpent, Witdij dreaming by elders of the Galpu clan of eastern Arnhem Land.

Contact Details
Willem Brugman
Ph:  +612 4754 5081
Fax: +612 4754 3835

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