What is the Australian Aborigines spirituality and its relation to dreams?

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Answered by: Dianna, An Expert in the Creeds and Religious Beliefs Category
What is the Australian Aborigines spirituality and how does that influence their view on dreams is a question that opens up a fascinating field of study. The basic core teachings of the Australian Aborigines teach that there is in fact not two worlds, the awake and separately the dreaming, but rather a single world that can be experienced in a multitude of different ways.

According to the Aboriginal teachings there is the waking/The Dreaming world. It is through The Dreaming world that an individual has access to the archetypal molds. This access is so fully complete that they indeed become the archetype, merging awake individual and Dreaming individual to the point that there is no distinction between individual and archetype. Only while they are in this state of conformation to the archetypal hero do they feel they are truly alive, and in fact are essentially truly immortal.

Unlike most cultures, within Australian Aborigines spirituality community means everyone is a participant in same spiritual path. Their day-to-day life is completely through the experience of the waking and The Dreaming. The community is the path and the path is the community.  As Houston Smith says in his world renown book The World’s Religions “Aboriginal religion turns not on worship but on identification, a “participation in,” and acting out of archetypal paradigms.”

The challenges that can be experienced in this spiritual path for the individual are that it is one that does not migrate away from the community well. It is a path that is ingrained deeply in the people, the culture and the location; an individual removing themselves from the community would find that they are removed from the collective archetypal energy.  

When one compares the Aborigines spiritual path to the majority of the rest of the world’s practices, the entirety of it is indeed unique. Australia, as a continent, did not undergo the same experiences as the rest of the continents starting about 10,000BC that entailed the invention of farming and technically advanced stone implements. This allows the Aborigines to claim rights to staying unchanged more so than any other peoples. This creates a very unique culture and thereby spiritual path.

There is of course a potential negative side to this view. For example, the potential shadow side would be seen if an individual uses the idea of The Dreaming as a way to justify something negative that they have done. In other words they try to give up personal responsibility by giving it over to archetypal emergence.

There is so much positive that exploring and sharing this view can bring to the world. Most importantly it can be seen that this path brings to the world at large the chance to see their experience of personal dreams as a more collective experience of The Dreaming. This view means that rather than feelings that dreams happen to someone one is gifted with being able to see that dreams are as real and influential as the waking world. What this does is to empower the individual to be a more active participant in every aspect of their life and their community.

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