"Where there's smoke . .!"
Here's a ceremony frequently practised at the opening of buildings, sports events, to welcome dignitaries and generally bless the earth we share.
For the Australian Coori people, the land has a spiritual connection; it’s their mother. The human spirit is born from the land and returns to it upon death. The land supplies them with everything that they needed for living.
Land has become increasingly harder to access for Aboriginal people. In urban areas, its appearance and use have been changed. Aboriginal people are concerned for the land and wish to be part of the healing process. This can be done by being actively involved in land management or by conducting ceremonies, or even by a combination of both.
The Smoking Ceremony is an example. Green leaves from plants used by the group that conducts it are placed on a small fire. The smoke is used to cover the participants’ bodies, ridding them of what is not needed. It also cleanses the area. The group feels that it is leaving behind troubles and beginning something new. Reasons for holding the rite are then discussed. The ceremony ends with entertainment, such as dancing and singing.This ceremony is also an historic step in recognising the desecration of spiritual, practical and cultural bonds with the land that occurred during invasion.