I’m home now, but I wanted to share my experience of the Northern Territory with you. My first trip to the Northern Territory, about 18 months ago, was guided by experts Mike Kneighly and Kurun Warun Through them, I was introduced to a different Australia. They gave me the thirst to return.
On day 1, I went on a day trip to Arnhem Land. It is a region in the far north of Australia of 97,000 km square. It is home to the traditional landowners, the Yolngu people, and permits are required to visit. I had the opportunity to visit Injalak Hill, an ancient rock art site with two Yolngu people who grew up in the area. Their home was in the middle of the Arnhem land. They both grew up running around Injalak Hill. Before we climbed her to see the paintings, one of our guides called out to the spirit of his grandfather to let him know we were coming. His spirit resides in that place.
While I was at Injalak Kill, it was apparent how people had used that place to gather and live for eons. Under the rock shelters, you could see all around, and it was cool. They showed us many rock arts, some of which we could take pictures of, and some they asked us not to because they were of evil spirits.
At one outcrop, there was a ledge where we were invited to lie down and take photographs of the art. Instead, I lay down and connected with the land there. I felt a bolt of connectivity run through me, similar to what I experience at places of high energy. My mind expanded over the open and vast area. I felt a deep peace and gratitude.
Thank you to all elders, past, present and future, who allowed me to have that experience on their land. I am forever grateful.