I acknowledge the traditional custodians of this land, the Wiradjuri people. This column is dedicated to those who have gone before us, to those present and to those who will follow us.
Yindyamarra is one Wiradjuri word that means so much. Yindyamarra means respect; learn slowly and respect yourself and those about you. Ngadhi babiin-bu gunhi-bu (my father and mother) have taught me to respect myself, my family and those about me.
Ngadhi babiin-bu gunhi-bu (my father and mother) are not mayiny (people) who yarra (talk) much about themselves or ngaligin-gu murru (their journey). But if you get the chance to wudhagarbinya (listen) to them and other mayiny (people) in our community you will begin to understand a little more about what it is to be Wiradjuri and what it means to us.
This week I went to Sydney to attend meetings and business to do with Aboriginal training and employment. I do this as part of my role as an NCAP (New Careers Aboriginal People) advisor – a role that I do with pride and passion.
It is very important to make sure that we as Aboriginal mayiny (people) educate ourselves as well as others about our culture, language and heritage. Education is the key to being able to move forward in life. But education is not always about learning in a classroom or office. It is about being involved in connection to ngurambang (country) it is being involved in your dabaa malang (mob) your family and mudyi (friends).
Another part of what I try to do in my life is to impart knowledge, language and cultural awareness to people who are prepared to mabinya (stop), wudhagarbinya (listen), and yalbilinya (learn) about what Wiradjuri mayiny (people). We as Wiradjuri mayiny (people) have always been very open to sharing what we know and have learnt from our mudyigaang (elders) bearing mind what we can and can’t share.
As I write this column tonight from my motel room in Gadigal Ngurambang (country) in Sydney, I’m looking out my window, I’m watching the hurry and scurry of madhu mayiny (many people) going about their daily routines of work and living. Dhalang (today) I saw and listened to many conversations of madhu mayiny (many people) discussing business, future transactions and politics of what may happen tomorrow or next year in our nation.
All these conversations have taken place before over thousands of years by Wiradjuri mayiny (people) we have looked after ngurambang (country) and mayiny (people) in a caring and protecting way. As I wibiyanha (sit) tonight and watched my new world interact I just hope that we can all last another 60,000 years.