Songlines

The passing on of cultural knowledge.

"Song-lines travelled from Kaurna country through-out South Australia up into the Northern Territory. The Seven Sisters Dreaming travelled through Alice Springs and right up north and over to Western Australia. Song-lines are everywhere, they're like a spiritual pathway that has linkages to different countries and ceremonies. Song-lines are about the connectedness of Aboriginal space and our part in it and how it connects us to our country and to other song-lines. When Aboriginal people are travelling in a song-line, they believe they’re following a journey through the environment, and the song lines tell you where the stories will lead. It's like an invisible line that tells you where to travel and the land talks to you about where that story is. So we have connection to the land through the spirit."
Pat Waria-Read

"Our stories are not just dreamtime stories, they're real living instructions for teaching our younger generation about how you live together in families and in their community, and if they go against those instructions the consequences will have a drastic effect on them and their families. Every dreaming story is about rules for living and the consequences if these rules are not followed. I can tell you a general dreaming story, you will hear the top layer story, but underneath there's another layer and another layer. So why did we tell the stories? Because there could be lots of other different meanings underneath each of those stories."
Pat Waria-Read

"The Aboriginal people, being true antipodeans, navigated by the Southern Cross. Consequently, unlike the newcomers who navigated by the Pole Star, they were in the habit of viewing their country from the north to the south. When viewed on a map, the striking likeness of the Lefevre Peninsula to a hooked and flattened nose [Mudla is 'nose' hence Mudlangga is place of the nose] is a tribute to the Kaurna powers of observation."
(Manning Index of South Australian History)

"The Port was always called the ‘Sleeping Place’ (Yerta Bulti) based on a story that told of the great number of fish that died naturally in the mangroves. Apparently, it was related to the natural occurring gases in the water killing the fish. Other places were given names because of their physical features but the natural landscape has changed so much through urbanisation. Kaurna stories were very accurate about geology and geography particularly about the Lefevre Peninsula."
Kaurna Cultural Heritage Survey - interview with Lewis O'Brien

"The Medinda people had their sacred bird, the emu, killed by Kulultuwi, the nephew of Tjilbruke. In turn, the Medinda people killed the nephew. Tjilbruke, a great ancestor of the Kaurna people and someone to be feared, picked up his nephew and carried him crying all the way down the coast making rocks and water holes wherever he stopped to mourn ending in the caves down at Cape Jervis."
Kaurna Cultural Heritage Survey