A General Outline of the Aborigines View of Life
The Australian Aborigines lived in two times only: there are primeval times, in which all life came into being, and the present. There is no past, no history, and the future barely figures in their thinking. These Aborigines are still living in the Stone Age, and can not count. Their language has numerals for "one, two, and three", but the word for "four" is the same as "very many".
Another version of the creation of the paintings is that little birds named Kujon created them at the Wandjina's request, with blood from their own wounded beaks. No one has ever seen the birds painting, but it is believed to be true. The birds also did the human figures named Bradshaw Paintings on the rocks, but these have no connection with the Wandjina paintings, although they are often found in the same rock shelters.
The oldest man in the hunting group has the task of repainting the Wandjina before every Monsoon. When he is finished the artist fills his mouth with water and blows it over the painting, because in ancient times the Wandjina blew the rain over the land in this way. The Wandjina have no mouths so they make a noise that sounds like thunder. When the Wandjina want the rain to stop they become rainbows so the world will not flood. If a Wandjina fails to make rain the old man returns to the painting and throws stones at it, or defaces the nose.
The Unambal | Page | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |
Watch the Bradshaw Paintings Documentary Film (featuring The Unambal)
Australia Rock Art Archive