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Da:Wajil: a western desert aboriginal rainmaking ritual 1972

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DA:WAJIL: A WESTERN DESERT ABORIGINAL RAIMAKING RITUAL by ROBERT TONKINSON M.A., University of Western A u s t r a l i a , 1966 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY i n the Department of Anthropology and Sociology We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA March, 1 9 7 2 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , I a g r e e t h a t t h e L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and s t u d y . I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d by the Head o f my Department o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l not be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Depa rtment The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C olumbia Vancouver 8, Canada Abstract Much of A u s t r a l i a i s a r i d and droughts are common i n many- areas. The Aboriginal inhabitants, a semi-nomadic hunting and gathering people, nevertheless occupied the entire continent. Given the highly developed cosmology and magico-religious sys- tem of the Aborigines, i t i s not surp r i s i n g that rainmaking r i t - uals were an important part of t h e i r r e l i g i o u s l i f e , p a r t i c u l a r - l y i n the dry i n t e r i o r regions. Available l i t e r a t u r e concerning Australian Aboriginal soc- i e t y contains frequent references to rainmaking practices i n widely d i f f e r i n g areas of the continent, yet detailed descrip- tions are lacking, and i n most of Aboriginal A u s t r a l i a today the t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o u s l i f e has a l l but ceased to e x i s t . In the r e l a t i v e l y i s o l a t e d Western Desert area, however, there are s t i l l communities of l a r g e l y t r a d i t i o n - o r i e n t e d Aborigines who contin- ue to perform r i t u a l s . At Jigalong, a Western Desert community that i s the se t t i n g f o r t h i s study, a rainmaking r i t u a l c a l l e d the Darwajil has come to assume major importance i n the l i f e of the l o c a l Aborigines, despite i t s r e l a t i v e l y recent introduction. An important concern of thi s study i s to present a detailed eth- nographic d e s c r i p t i o n of the Darwajil. Two chapters and 5) are devoted to a f u l l account of the background to the r i t u a l , including the circumstances of i t s introduction to Jigalong, and i t s performance. Chapters l and 2 describe the s e t t i n g of the study and outline b r i e f l y the r e l i g i o u s l i f e of Jigalong's Aborigines; they provide the Darwajil with i t s s o c i a l and r e l i g i o u s con- text as a Western Desert r i t u a l . These chapters introduce the ethnographic account of the r i t u a l . In addition to i t s ethnographic aim, t h i s thesis also ex- plores c e r t a i n broader problems. Its central concern i s to ex- p l a i n why the fla:wajil has assumed such importance i n a s i t u a t - ion where the s u r v i v a l of the Aboriginal community i s no longer dependent upon r a i n f a l l i n g i n a p a r t i c u l a r l o c a l i t y . Part of the answer to t h i s question l i e s i n the nature of the r i t u a l i t - s e l f . I t i s cl e a r from a survey of available l i t e r a t u r e on Abo- r i g i n a l rainmaking that the rja.wajil i s i n several ways unique. T r a d i t i o n a l l y , most rainmaking magic was performed by s p e c i a l - i s t s or small groups of men; thus few accounts of large-scale performances ex i s t , and these lack d e t a i l . No known rainmaking r i t u a l s approach the I3a:wajil i n scale or organizational compl- exity, and no other r i t u a l performed at Jigalong r i v a l s i t i n these respects. One basic reason f o r the enthusiastic adoption of the r i t - ual by Jigalong Aborigines i s that, i n t h e i r view, i t works; that i s , i t brings r a i n . But i t also has many other a t t r a c t i o n s . The impressive scale of i t s performance i s one of them. Some but not a l l the m u l t i f o l d functions i t f u l f i l s are shared with other r i t u a l s performed at Jigalong, and f o r t h i s reason the Da:wajil i s compared and contrasted with these others (see Chap- t e r 6). In view of i t s status as a large and unique r i t u a l , i t i n v i t e s analysis as such, so i n the same chapter i t i s examined I i i . i n terms of some of i t s symbolic aspects, as well as i t s r e l - evance to the question of i n t e r n a l dynamism i n Aboriginal r i t u a l , p a r t i c u l a r l y the i n t e r r e l a t i o n of myth, songline and r i t u a l . Symbolic analysis of the Da:wajil, however, does not y i e l d the kind of information necessary to answer the question posed i n the second part of the thesis, though i t i s valuable f o r an appreciation of the nature of Aboriginal r e l i g i o u s thought. Keeping i n mind the status of the Da:wajil as an imported r i t - u a l , and the f a c t that i t s annual performance at Jigalong i n - volves Aborigines from at least two d i f f e r e n t Western Desert areas, analysis leads i n e v i t a b l y into the f i e l d of intercommun- i t y r e l a t i o n s . I t i s through an examination of t h i s f i e l d , un- dertaken i n Chapter 7, that the reasons f o r the r i s e to promin- ence of the Ba:wajil are revealed. The Da:wajil i s of great importance to the Jigalong people l a r g e l y because of t h e i r f e l t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r i t s contin- uance, which r e s u l t s from the conjunction of two sets of p o l i t - i c a l pressures emanating from neighbouring Aboriginal groups. At a more abstract l e v e l , the prominence of the Da:wajil can also be a t t r i b u t e d to i t s role as a symbolic statement of p o l i t - i c a l r e l a t i o n s and aspirations. The r i t u a l , with i t s unique status hierarchy and highly organized d i v i s i o n of labour, serves as an appropriate-symbolic model f o r any future p o l i t i c a l org- anization capable of dealing more e f f i c i e n t l y with the accultur- at i v e pressures that are constantly being exerted by the wider society. i v . Table of Contents Abstract i Table of Contents i v L i s t of Tables v i i i Preface i x Introduction x i i i CHAPTER 1 . THE SETTING 1 A. Climate 1 B. The Settlement 2 C. Demography 3 D. S o c i a l Structure 6 E. Employment and Leisure-time A c t i v i t i e s 12 F. Administration 15 CHAPTER 2. THE RELIGIOUS LIFE 17 A. The Dreamtime and Mythology 19 B. Totemism 27 Conception Totemism 29 Ancestral Totemism 31 C. Magic and Sorcery 3^ D. R i t u a l 36 R i t u a l Statuses 38 R i t u a l Types 4-0 R i t u a l Paraphernalia k-9 E. Intercommunity Contacts and Cultural Transmission 53 F. European Culture and the T r a d i t i o n a l Religion 60 v . CHAPTER 3. RAINMAKING IN ABORIGINAL AUSTRALIA 64 A. Mythological References 6 6 B. General Features of Aboriginal Rainmaking 6 7 C. Rainmaking Increase Rites 7 6 D. The Uniqueness of the Da:wajil 82 CHAPTER 4. THE E)A;WAJIL BACKGROUND 85 A. Area of O r i g i n 8 5 B. Mythological Background to the Ritual 8 7 C. Rainmaking Beings 9 5 Jadangal 9 6 Raji 9 8 Ganjdirjada 9 9 Gidirba and Wijurba (Badjiwiriwiri) 9 9 D. Weather Phenomena 101 Rain 101 Clouds 1 0 3 Lightning 104 Thunder 1 0 5 H a i l 106 Rainbows 1 0 7 Dew and Frost 108 E. How Rain i s Made 108 Individual Rainmaking 1 1 1 F. Control of Rain 112 Rationales f o r the Non-Arrival of Rain 114 Tabus 116 V I . G. The R i t u a l and i t s Introduction to Jigalong 117 The 13a:wajil i n Djaramara Country 117 * The Westward Movement of the Da:wajil 119 Introduction of the Darwajil to Jigalong 121 CHAPTER 5. THE flA:WAJIL: RITUAL ACTIVITIES 128 A. P r i n c i p l e s of Dual Organization 129 The Generation Level D i v i s i o n 129 The Sexual D i v i s i o n 132 B. The Ritu a l Status Hierarchy 133 Madinjarju 133 J i r g i l i w i n d i 134 Walumalinj 135 Malgarara 136 The Status of Women 138 C. Da:wajil Ceremonial Grounds 139 The FJuralarjandji and Ninjingarju 139 The Baljbara 140 D. 13a:wajil Paraphernalia 141 Components of the Rainmaking P i l e s 141 Individual Paraphernalia 145 Paraphernalia at the Camp Grounds 1*1-7 E. Ritual A c t i v i t i e s 147 1. General Preparations 148 The Opening of the Baljbara 148 Cleaning of the Camp Grounds 150 Despatch of Messengers 150 v i i . Purchase of Foodstuffs 151 'Loading' the Young Men 152 The Practice Welcome 153 The Welcome 153 2 . The Opening Session of the K)a:wajil 15^ 3 . The F i r s t Day 156 4 . The Second Day 159 The Assembly 159 D i v i s i o n of Food 160 Selection of New Female Cooks 160 A c t i v i t i e s at the Baljbara 161 A c t i v i t i e s at the Camp Grounds 167 Night Session of the Darwajil 169 5 . The Third Day 170 Breakfast at the Boughshed 170 The Assembly 171 A c t i v i t i e s at the Baljbara 171 A c t i v i t i e s at the Camp Grounds 179 6. The Fourth Day 180 Breakfast at the Boughshed 180 7. The F i f t h Day 180 At the Boughshed 180 The Assembly 181 A c t i v i t i e s at the Baljbara 181 A c t i v i t i e s at the Camp Grounds 188 8 . The Sixth Day 189 The Master's Hunt 189 Wanaburga Feast 190 9 . The Seventh Day 192 Ceremonial Blanket Exchange 192 Presentation of Shells 1 9 2 Jurjga: the 'Loading 1 of the V i s i t i n g Novicesl93 10. Two Weeks Later 1 9 5 Further Presentations of Da:wajil Objects 1 9 5 CHAPTER 6 . THE DA:WAJIL: ANALYSIS 198 A. The Da:wajil Compared to Other Rituals 1 9 9 B. The Da:wajil Contrasted with Other Rituals 211 C. Symbolic Aspects of the Da:wajil 216 D. Interr e l a t i o n s h i p of Myth, R i t u a l and Songline i n the Da:wajil 2 3 4 CHAPTER 7. THE DA:WAJIL AND INTERCOMMUNITY RELATIONS 2 5 2 A. The Northern Neighbours 2 5 2 B. The Southern Neighbours 26l C. S o c i o p o l i t i c a l Pressures 266 D. Aboriginal Law as Defence 2 7 0 CHAPTER 8. CONCLUSION 2 7 6 A. The Da:wajil as Increase Rite 2 7 6 B. Symbolism i n the Darwajil 279 C. Internal Dynamism 281 D. The Persistence of the Da:wajil 290 Appendix A Da:wajil Songs 309 Appendix B Glossary of Aboriginal Words 3 1 6 Bibliography 3 0 0 L i s t of Tables Table 1 Jigalong Population ( 1 9 4 7 - 1 9 7 0 ) Table 2 Symbolic Elements of the Da:wajil i x . Preface This thesis i s based on a t o t a l of approximately sixteen months' fieldwork, c a r r i e d out i n s i x t r i p s ranging i n duration from two weeks to s i x months, between A p r i l 1963 and February 1970, at Jigalong settlement i n Western A u s t r a l i a . In addition, between 1963 and 1969 I made f i v e b r i e f t r i p s into the Western Desert area, as an interpreter-advisor f o r the Native Welfare Department, and one t r i p as a technical advisor f o r a Commonwealth Film unit crew. During these expeditions, which amounted to a further s i x months i n the f i e l d , I was able to gather anthropological material i n the course of my work. Early fieldwork at Jigalong ( I 9 6 3 - 6 ) was c a r r i e d out while I was a graduate student at the University of Western A u s t r a l i a , and i t formed the basis f o r my Master of Arts thesis ( 1 9 6 6 ) , which was a study of s o c i a l structure and accultura- t i o n among the Aborigines of Jigalong. The fieldwork i n 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 , financed by a grant from the Australian I n s t i t u t e of Aboriginal Studies, was undertaken while I was a Graduate Fellow of the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Canada, and i t s s p e c i f i c focus was the rainmaking r i t u a l that forms the subject of t h i s t h e s i s . I witnessed performances of the r i t u a l during a l l three v i s i t s to Jigalong between 1963 and 1965 and c o l l e c t e d a considerable amount of material on the r i t u a l during these early v i s i t s . I t was mentioned b r i e f l y i n my M.A. thesis (Tonkinson, 1 9 6 6 : 2 2 7 - 2 2 9 ) In the f i e l d , information was gathered using standard ethno- graphic methods; observation and interviews, genealogy c o l l e c t i o n some pa r t i c i p a n t observation, the e l i c i t i n g of crayon drawing?, the gathering of census information, and so on. Tape recorders were used to c o l l e c t songs and language material, as well as accounts of c e r t a i n a c t i v i t i e s such as public meetings, f i g h t s and informal discussions with small groups of informants. Most interviews and conversations were c a r r i e d out i n the l o c a l language a f t e r the f i r s t period of fieldwork. In addition, I took approximately 1100 colour s l i d e s , 2000 black and white photographs, and 4000 feet of eight millimetre colour movie f i l m . Unfortunately, I was un- able to f i l m secret-sacred sections of the I3a:wajil r i t u a l during the 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 fieldwork period, because the Jigalong men were nervous about the possible reactions of t h e i r Aboriginal v i s i t o r s to my doing so, and also because some of the objects and dances involved are now considered too 'dangerous' or sacred to be filmed. In t h i s t h e s is, I name secret-sacred objects by Aboriginal name, and I describe i n d e t a i l c e r t a i n r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s that the Aborigines consider to be highly sacred. I do t h i s with t h e i r knowledge and approval. Their objection i s not to the printed word, but to the pub l i c a t i o n of photographs of such objects and a c t i v i t i e s i n newspapers, magazines, etc. that may be seen by t h e i r womenfolk and children. Kinship Notation and Orthography. When c i t i n g kinship terms, I use standard abbreviations, with the symbol Z representing ' s i s t e r ' and S, 'son 1; e.g. FZS i s 'father's s i s t e r ' s son'. C l a s s i f i c a t o r y relationships are distinguished from actual relationships by the use of ' 1 to enclose them, thus: 'FZ'. To transcribe Aboriginal words used i n t h i s thesis, I follow x i . the practice adopted i n e a r l i e r works (Tonkinson, 1 9 6 5 ; 1 9 6 6 ; 1 9 7 0 ) . There are seventeen consonant phonemes (sublineal dots indicate retroflexed sounds): b, do, d, g, m, n j , n, n, rj, l j , 1, l , r , r, w, j '.(pronounced y): • • • • three short vowels: a, i , u; three lengthened vowels: a:, i : , u:. For a f u l l d e s cription of the phonemic system, see Douglas ( 1 9 5 8 ) . Acknowledgments.. In the eight years since beginning research at Jigalong, I have been indebted to many people and several organ- izations whose assistance I have greatly appreciated. F i n a n c i a l assistance from the University of Western A u s t r a l i a , Australian U n i v e r s i t i e s Commission, Australian I n s t i t u t e of Aboriginal Studies and the University of B r i t i s h Columbia helped imake the various f i e l d t r i p s possible. Administrators and s t a f f of the Native Wel- fare Department i n Western A u s t r a l i a cooperated w i l l i n g l y at a l l stages of my work and enabled me to accompany several desert pat- r o l s . During the early fieldwork periods and the writing of my M.A. I received much valuable assistance from members of the Anthropology Department at the University of Western A u s t r a l i a , p a r t i c u l a r l y from PrSfessor R.M. Berndt, Dr. CH. Berndt, Dr. D.J. Ryan and Mrs. T. Robertson. Discussions with Dr. Richard A. Gould, Dr. M.A. Jaspan, Mr.C.F. Makin, Mr. P.H, Lucich and Mrs. S. Woenne.proved hel p f u l to me. x i i . F©r t h e i r guidance and advice i n the f i n a l preparation of th i s t h esis, I thank members of the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, namely my supervisor Dr. K.O.L. Burridge, and committee members: Professor C.S. Belshaw, Dr. M. Egan, Dr. M. Kew, and Dr. P. Maranda. I am e s p e c i a l l y grateful to Mrs. Peggy Campbell, who typed t h i s thesis, but much more than that, has been a great friend. Thanks too, to my wife Myrna, fo r putting up with me during the writing of t h i s , e s p e c i a l l y on the bad days I To Trevor and Peggy Levien, and David and G l o r i a Goold ( a l l formerly of Jigalong), I extend my gra t e f u l thanks f o r t h e i r hos- p i t a l i t y and friendship, and my thanks also to Joe Criddle of Walgun Station and Charlie S n e l l , now of Mount Newman, f o r t h e i r cold beer and good conversation. F i n a l l y , I would l i k e to thank the people whose friendship and cooperation made the research possible at Jigalong - the Aborigines, who accepted my presence with patience and good humour, and kindly allowed me to witness many secret-sacred objects and r i t u a l per- formances normally closed to outsiders. I t i s perhaps unfair to singl e out individuals when so many people gave me information, but I must mention those who taught me the most:. Gogara, D j i l j i l j a l , Malinja, Madimadi, Bindja, Njinu, Njangabidi, Djawaru, Djangar, Rowley, Joshua and Colin; and the women Kimi, Minawa, Jessie, Nandu, Njurjgula, Najabi, Lois, Dada, Dadabuga and Majabi. x i i i . Introduction My choice of the Jigalong area f o r f i e l d research was prompted by two major considerations: a p r i o r lack of s c i e n t i f i c research i n t h i s part of the Western Desert; the p o s i t i o n of Jigalong as the centre f o r a large community of t r a d i t i o n - o r i e n t e d Aborigines whose r i t u a l l i f e and kinship organization are s t i l l functioning strongly, and whose contact with the wider Australian society has been comparatively s l i g h t . I decided to concentrate on the I3a:wajil f o r t h i s study because i t i s the most complex r i t u a l of the many performed each year at Jigalong, involving as i t does the entire community (fjlus Aborigines from neighbouring areas) at some time or other during i t s performance, i n a wide range of a c t i v i t i e s that i n sum represent almost the entire range of r i t u a l behaviour occurring at the settlement. T r a d i t i o n a l l y , the Da:wajil was not the property of the Aborigines who now l i v e at Jigalong, Yet today, approximately a decade a f t e r i t s f i r s t performance there, i t i s f i r m l y entrenched and i s considered by the l o c a l Aborigines to be one of the major r i t u a l s performed there. To understand the reasons f o r the present prominence of the 13a:wajil, i t w i l l be necessary to discuss several things, namely: the place of the r i t u a l i n the r e l i g i o u s l i f e of the Aborigines at Jigalong; the many functions that the I3a:wajil and other r i t u a l s appear to f u l f i l f o r the Aborigines, and the structure of i n t e r - community c u l t u r a l transmission and the tenor of intercommunity r e l a t i o n s , to see why i t i s that the Jigalong people f e e l responsible fo r the continuance of the I3a:wajil and the bringing of r a i n every summer. x i v By a b r i e f consideration of the facts of c u l t u r a l transmission throughout the Western Desert c u l t u r a l bloc, i t w i l l be shown that the acceptance of the IDarwajil by "the Aborigines of Jigalong i s normal and expected behaviour on t h e i r part. Although increase r i t e s do not normally enter into this transmission chain, i t i s suggested that the 13a:wajil has done so because of the overriding importance of r a i n i n a desert environment. The r i t u a l has retained i t s importance i n a contact s i t u a t i o n because the Aborigines s t i l l consider r a i n , or i t s symbolic values, to be the v i t a l prerequisite f o r continued existence. Examination of the relations between Jigalong and i t s northern neighbours who are the acknowledged owners of this r i t u a l reveals the underlying importance of p o l i t i c a l f actors. The Aborigines of Jigalong consider that the northerners are abandoning t h e i r t r a d i - t i o n a l observances and practices to the detriment of the d i s t i n c t i v e set of b e l i e f s , attitudes, behaviours and ethos that the Aborigines c a l l 'the Law'. P a r t i a l l y protected by t h e i r greater i s o l a t i o n , J i galong 1s Aborigines have remained much more tr a d i t i o n - o r i e n t e d and r e s i s t a n t to changes i n t h e i r core values than have the more acculturated northerners. From t h e i r viewpoint, the f a i l u r e of the northerners to observe the proper behaviours, e s p e c i a l l y i n t h e i r r i t u a l l i f e , makes them no longer r e l i a b l e as guardians of the Law. These i d e o l o g i c a l differences between Aborigines of the two areas constitute a major underlying influence on the current status of the Da:wajil at Jigalong. Another important f a c t o r that XV i s discussed concerns the place of Jigalong as the main Da.wajil centre f o r the i n i t i a t i o n of interested Aborigines from areas to the south, since the northern headmen have forbidden the construc- t i o n of Da:wajil ceremonial grounds anywhere south of Jigalong. Because Jigalong and Law centres to the south are active i n the exchange of v i s i t s and i n general c u l t u r a l transmission, the Aborigines of Jigalong must perform the Da:wajil regularly to i n i t i a t e t h e i r southern v i s i t o r s further into the r i t u a l . I t w i l l be shown i n thi s study that the Da:wajil f u l f i l s many other functions besides i t s immediate stated aim of bringing sum- mer rain , and that many of these functions are shared with other r i t u a l s performed at the settlement. Besides feelings of s a t i s - f a c t i o n generated among Da.wajil participants by the successful bringing of r a i n , the r i t u a l i t s e l f gives r i s e to greater excite- ment and enjoyment than any other performed by the Jigalong Aborigines, and f o r t h i s reason alone i s exceedingly popular. Because i t involves everybody at some time, the Da.wajil c l e a r l y serves as a focus of community sentiment and promotes in-group s o l i d a r i t y while at the same time strengthening the bonds between Aborigines of other p a r t i c i p a t i n g Law centres and the Jigalong people. In addition, the r i t u a l has both protective and curative aspects which are made e x p l i c i t ' d u r i n g the course of associated r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s . The I 3 a:wajil also has a s i g n i f i c a n t i n i t i a t o r y - educational aspect, since an i n t e g r a l part of i t i s the induction of new members and t h e i r gradual elevation to higher r i t u a l status. x v i . Associated with t h i s are s o c i a l control aspects, both i n the general sense that c o n f l i c t i s not permitted during r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s , and s p e c i f i c a l l y i n that during the course of the r i t u a l known troublemakers among the young men are subject to considerable verbal abuse. Also, higher r i t u a l status i s with- held from any man who causes trouble of any kind or does not perform s a t i s f a c t o r i l y his a l l o t t e d r i t u a l tasks. Seen i n a wider perspective, however, the many and varying functions l i s t e d above are less s i g n i f i c a n t than the p o l i t i c a l implications of the r i t u a l . The Aborigines of Jigalong f e e l obliged to continue performing the Da:wajil i n large part be- cause of pressures, a l b e i t of very d i f f e r e n t kinds, exerted by both t h e i r southern and northern neighbours. Less d i r e c t l y , t h e i r determination to maintain t h e i r r e l i g i o u s l i f e i s i n part a response to increasing acculturational pressures brought to bear by agents of the wider society. The sig n i f i c a n c e of these d i f f e r e n t pressures i s discussed below. In the course of examining the place of the Darwajil at Jigalong, I w i l l touch upon several issues of broader theoret- i c a l importance that a r i s e from consideration of the r i t u a l complex, namely: (a) i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of c e r t a i n symbolic aspects (b) elements of i n t e r n a l dynamism i n the t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o u s l i f e , including consideration of the nature of the r e l a t i o n - ship between myth, songline and r i t u a l x v i i . (c) the role of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e i n general as a defence against c u l t u r a l d i s i n t e g r a t i o n i n the face of accultura- t i o n a l pressures exerted by the wider society, and also by c e r t a i n more sophisticated Aborigines i n neighbouring areas (d) the p o l i t i c a l implications of the 13a:wajil f o r the Ab- : :origines of Jigalong. Prom a b r i e f analysis of the more obvious symbolic aspects of the Datwajil (Chapter 6 ) , i t i s concluded that the Jigalong data accord, i f only i n very general terms, with Turner's assertion that major Ndembu r i t u a l symbols tend to c l u s t e r around two d i s - t i n c t poles of meaning, what he c a l l s the sensory and the normative. I t i s also suggested that the fla:wajil could be seen as a f e r t i l i t y r i t e , i f the outside observer i s permitted to make some of hi® own interpretations of what appear to be dominant symbols i n t h i s r i t u a l . Elsewhere i n Aboriginal A u s t r a l i a , watersnake ancestral beings have strong connotations of f e r t i l i t y i n general, i n ad- d i t i o n to t h e i r rainbringing powers. I t i s surmised that the Da:wajil has not developed into a f e r t i l i t y r i t e i n this area of the Western Desert because, f o r the Aborigines to acknowledge the ro l e of semen i n the explanation of rainmaking, they would have to run counter to strongly entrenched dogma denying that semen i s relevant to physiological paternity, i n favour of s p i r i t - c h i l d b e l i e f s . x v i i i . The presence of several elements of in t e r n a l dynamism, a l l i n evidence i n the t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o u s l i f e at Jigalong, i s given considerable emphasis i n t h i s study, because there has been a tendency i n the l i t e r a t u r e on Aboriginal culture to concur with e a r l i e r writers who held that the r e l i g i o n was s t a t i c i n nature, and to at t r i b u t e whatever changes have occurred to acculturational pressures. I t i s suggested that the t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o n i s capable of a greater degree of adaptation ( i n i t s pre-contact form) than has been a t t r i b u t e d to i t , e s p e c i a l l y i n desert areas where c u l t u r a l transmission was a v i t a l part of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e and new elements were constantly being incorporated and old ones discarded. Besides the well-docurnented fact of c u l t u r a l trans- mission, two other less well-known elements of in t e r n a l dynamism are discussed i n d e t a i l : dream-spirit 'journeys, which may re s u l t i n the creation of entire new r i t u a l s , and the discovery of secret- sacred objects (revealed by the ancestral beings through the mediation of s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n ) , which extends available knowledge of ancestral exploits and the routes they followed, and i n some cases leads to the i n c l u s i o n of new information into already e x i s t i n g mythological accounts. Such incorporation of new information into the mythology oc- curs i n the case of the Da:wajil and serves to illuminate some in t e r e s t i n g aspects of the nature of the i n t e r r e l a t i o n s h i p of myth, songline and r i t u a l , which are the es s e n t i a l components of any Aboriginal r i t u a l complex. Using the Da:wajil as example, i t xix. i s c l e a r that one cannot argue f o r the primacy of any one of these elements, but rather f o r a necessary degree of autonomy between them, since t h i s allows f o r the incorporation of new r e l i g i o u s knowledge as i t comes to hand, either through c u l t u r a l transmission (which i n the case of the Da:wajil, as an imported r i t u a l , i s sure to take place) or by r e v e l a t i o n emanating."from the ancestral beings that are the ultimate source Qf a l l knowledge. Depending on the c r i t e r i a of d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n being used, the verbal elements of the Da:wajil (myth and songline) are demonstrably more c l o s e l y r e l a t e d than either of them i s to r i t u a l ; or a l t e r n a t i v e l y , i t can be posited that the p l a s t i c i t y of myth makes i t the most suitable avsnue f o r the addition of new knowledge, because the p u b l i c l y transmitted r i t u a l and songline elements are far:-less variable i n content and are therefore less amenable to modification than i s mythology, most of which i s i n d i v i d u a l l y transmitted. On t h i s basis, songline and r i t u a l are more c l o s e l y r e l a t e d than eit h e r of them i s to mythology. Whatever c r i t e r i o n of d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n i s used, however, a degree of autonomy does exist between the three elements and t h i s fact has important implications for the existence of a strong i n t e r n a l dynamism i n t r a d i t i o n a l Aboriginal r e l i g i o n . In t h i s thesis (Chapter 7) I return to a theme suggested i n an e a r l i e r work (Tonkinson, 1 9 6 6 ) : that the r e l i g i o u s l i f e , as a v i t a l part of the ethos of the Jigalong Aborigines, constitutes a force that maintains and strengthens Aboriginal group s o l i d a r i t y and c u l t u r a l i d e n t i t y i n the face of externally-originated pres- XX. sures towards change. Rit u a l a c t i v i t y gives participants the f e e l i n g that they control t h e i r own i n t e r n a l a f f a i r s , and i t re- inforces the s e l f - p r i d e on which t h e i r s u r v i v a l as a viable c u l t u r a l minority depends. The Da:wajil, as a rainmaking r i t u a l , generates considerable feelings of power among i t s par t i c i p a n t s , f o r the Aborigines believe that they alone are capable of bringing summer r a i n , so that the white :man i s ultimately dependent on them f o r his future s u r v i v a l . To j u s t i f y t h i s theme of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e as defence mechanism i t i s necessary to demonstrate the central importance of r i t u a l i n the l i v e s of the Aborigines of Jigalong, and t h i s i s an important subsidiary aim of t h i s study. I t i s p r i n c i p a l l y through the medium of r i t u a l that Aborigines can enter the realm of the Dreamtime and communicate with the great powers that are believed to emanate from there. The Aborigines attempt to activate the li n k s of r e c i p r o c i t y that bind them and the ancestral creative beings to- gether within the same cosmic order. Such r e c i p r o c i t y i s a n t i c i - pated because the ancestral beings are regarded as kinsmen, with a l l the obligations and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s that t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p e n t a i l s . Thus the Darwajil succeeds because the rainmaking beings, i t i s asserted, f e e l obliged to repay the Aborigines f o r a l l the attention and nourishment that they have received during the per- formance of the r i t u a l . Through the media of r i t u a l and dream- s p i r i t journeys Aborigines ;may enter b r i e f l y into the realm of the s p i r i t u a l , the ultimate source of a l l power. For the community, x x i . r i t u a l i s a powerful unifying force which demands peace f o r i t s e f f e c t i v e working, and transcends many p o t e n t i a l l y disruptive d i v i s i o n s that e x i s t i n a community of t h i s nature. For the i n d i v i d u a l , the r i t u a l experience i s one that involves learning, t r a n s i t i o n , an increased self-awareness' and improved self-under- standing. These less obvious aspects of r i t u a l , e s p e c i a l l y i t s un i t i v e functions, are discussed i n t h i s ;study f o r the l i g h t they throw on the overriding importance of t h e i r r e l i g i o u s l i f e to the Jigalong Aborigines. In the f i n a l analysis, i t i s the p o l i t i c a l implications of the Da:wajil that assure i t s continuance at Jigalong, given the nature of intercommunity relations and the l i k e l i h o o d of ever increasing acculturative pressures being brought to bear on these Aborigines. The efficaciousness of the r i t u a l w i l l not be c a l l e d into.- question, since the r a i n i n v a r i a b l y f a l l s somewhere i n the north west area a f t e r the performance of the Dajwajil. As long as the Aborigines of Jigalong continue to have contact with others i n neighbouring areas, they w i l l f e e l heavily committed to the continued perfor- mance of the r i t u a l , because, on the one hand, -"/the-., northerners are f o r f e i t i n g t h e i r p o s i t i o n of prime r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the annual holding of the r i t u a l , leaving the Jigalong people as the caretakers, by default, while on the other hand, t h e i r neighbours to the south, unable to set up the r i t u a l i n t h e i r own t e r r i t o r i e s r e l y on the Jigalong Aborigines to perform i t f o r them whenever they v i s i t the settlement at the time of periodic 'big meetings' (discussed i n Chapter 2). The very nature of the Qa:wajil as a complex r i t u a l also has implications f o r the future s u r v i v a l of the Jigalong Aborigines. With t h i s r i t u a l , the Aborigines have f o r the f i r s t time a r e l a t i v e l y complex r i t u a l status hierarchy, hitherto absent i n t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e , both i n i t s secular and r e l i g i o u s spheres. I t i s suggested that t h i s status hierarchy could e a s i l y serve as a symbolic model fo r the kind of h i e r a r c h i c a l ordering and d i v i s i o n of labour that w i l l probably be best suited to dealing with the wider society, whose bureaucracy i t s e l f functions on a b a s i c a l l y s i m i l a r h i e r - a r c h i c a l model. I f the Aborigines do eventaully see a need f o r the development of some kind of h i e r a r c h i c a l organization as the best way to deal with the whites, i t i s anticipated that they w i l l turn to t h e i r r e l i g i o u s l i f e f o r a suitable working model, since i t i s t h i s sphere that l i n k s them to the source of a l l t h e i r power and provides them with the sense of r a c i a l pride on which t h e i r future as a viable c u l t u r a l minority depends. In t h e i r predominantly e g a l i t a r i a n society, where h i e r a r c h i c a l ordering i s minimal and interpersonal relationships are ordered by the kinship system, the Aborigines have nowhere else to look f o r such home-made models other than i n t h e i r r e l i g i o u s l i f e , and there, i t i s the Da:wajil that provides them with the most appropriate blueprint f o r action. Chapter 1 . The Setting. Jigalong i s a r e l a t i v e l y i s o l a t e d settlement on the western fringe of the Gibson Desert i n Western A u s t r a l i a (see Figure l ) i Begun i n 1907 as a maintenance depot for the Vermin Control Board, i t attracted Aborigines from surrounding areas, and from about the 1930s onwards, increasingly large numbers of desert Aborigines from the east* When the depot closed i n 19^5, i t was handed over to the Apostolic Church of A u s t r a l i a , which established a mission to minister to the hundred or so desert Aborigines then l i v i n g nearby% i The missionaries ran Jigalong as a pastoral concern, employed as many indigent Aborigines as possible, issued food rations, put the school-age childr e n into dormitories and concentrated t h e i r evangelical e f f o r t s on the children, having l a r g e l y given up the adults as being beyond redemption. Hampered throughout i t s h i s t o r y by s t a f f shortages, lack of properly trained personnel and a high s t a f f turnover rate, the mission f i n a l l y ceased operation i n 1969 a f t e r winning only one f u l l convert to the f a i t h i n twenty-four years. The settlement i s now the Jigalong Aborigines Project, which i s run by State Government employees aided by l o c a l Aborigines. ki Climate The Jigalong area has a semi-desert plant regime, but i s desert i n terms of i t s temperature and r a i n f a l l character- i s t i c s . Daily and seasonal temperature variations are con- siderable; Shade temperatures i n summer range from 80°F - 125°F., and i n winter from below 30°F to about 80°F. R a i n f a l l NORTH CENTRAL AREA OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA Sca/e in miles 2. i s extremely e r r a t i c , so the average annual figure of s i x inches means l i t t l e ; the t o t a l f o r several years may account to only a few inches, then i n one cyclonic storm more than ten inches may f a l l i n a matter of hours. I f r a i n f a l l s , i t i s mostly i n summer and i s associated with vi o l e n t thunderstorm a c t i v i t y , high winds, threatening skies, duststorms, but very l i t t l e e f f e c t i v e p r e c i p i t a t i o n , since most r a i n evaporates before reaching the ground. Water supply i s consequently a frequent problem, since the l o c a l windmills tap r e l a t i v e l y small reservoirs, many of which may turn saline i f ground-water supplies are not p e r i o d i c a l l y replenished by r a i n f a l l . A f t e r heavy r a i n has f a l l e n and the creeks flow f o r a b r i e f period, the Aborigines can obtain water from creekbed soaks for some months following. At least half an inch of r a i n concentrated i n the h i l l y catchment area a few miles from the settlement i s needed. f o r the creeks to flow. B. The Settlement. The built-up area of Jigalong consists of two clusters of buildings along a central " s t r e e t 1 , with a Government school near the central area. The dormitories were abandoned i n 1 9 6 9 , and the school-age childr e n now sleep i n the Camp. There i s a kitchen dining-room, where bread i s baked d a i l y f o r sale and where, formerly, meals were prepared f o r school- c h i l d r e n and Pensioners. 1 A government-run store s e l l s food- 1 About f i f t y Aborigines receive Old Age or In v a l i d Pensions, or Wife's Allowances, and many:parents receive small C h i l d Endowment payments, from the Government. Since 1967 Pensioners have been given larger lump-sum payments and they buy t h e i r own food and provisions. 3 . s t u f f s , fresh f r u i t and vegetables and a wide range of material goods that are i n demand l o c a l l y . The small hos- p i t a l now operates l a r g e l y as a c l i n i c , since sick people are flown to Port Hedland. There i s a garage-workshop, at which settlement vehicles are maintained,and a d i e s e l generator. The Aboriginal Gamp i s a motley c o l l e c t i o n of abodes, mostly p r i m i t i v e structures of iron, canvas, bushes and poles, which are e a s i l y re-aligned to adapt to p r e v a i l i n g weather conditions (the p r e v a i l i n g wind i s easterly, but there i s great v a r i a b i l i t y i n wind direction) and r e a d i l y moved when the immediate area becomes too d i r t y , or a f t e r a death has occurred. The main camping area i s along the western side of the bed of Jigalong Creek, about 200 yards west of the settlement buildings. The general impression i s one of ugly disorder (see Meggitt's de s c r i p t i o n of a Walbiri camp; 1962:75), with hordes of underfed dogs scavenging everywhere. There are broad s p a t i a l d i v i s i o n s of camping areas according to l i n g u i s t i c group and area of o r i g i n : thus groups recreate the or i e n t a t i o n v i s - a - v i s one another that they had i n the desert; Gadudjara camp to the west and south of Mandjildjara and other groups from further north. Some intermingling of camps does occur, however, because of a long history of intergroup marriage between those Gadudjara and Mandjildjara who have been friends f o r several decades. C. Demography. Table 1 (below) reveals a s t e a d i l y increasing population over the years and considerable f l u c t u a t i o n i n numbers within a given year. Around a r e l a t i v e l y stable core of schoolchildren, Pensioners, working women and whites, there are seasonal variations caused mainly by the movement of able-bodied men (some of whom take t h e i r families) who go away to work on pastoral stations f o r varying periods. In the mid-summer slack season f o r employment, most Aborigines return to the settlement', and each year at t h i s time they hold what they c a l l 'big meetings', attended by Aborigines from d i f f e r e n t areas who congregate f o r r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s at an agreed-upon venue. When such a gathering occurs at Jigalong, the popula- t i o n reaches i t s annual peak, but i t soon decreases as v i s i t o r s leave and men once more return to work. In 1 9 7 0 , 75*6% of the Aboriginal adults ( a l l those over 15 years of age) at Jigalong had been born i n the desert, whereas only 6 . 4 $ of the chi l d r e n were desert-born. Thus the majority of adults spent much of t h e i r early l i f e i n the desert away from any d i r e c t contact with whites, but most children were born and raised i n a contact s i t u a t i o n , and a l l c hildren over the age of s i x attend school. Between 1963 and 1 9 6 6 , f i v e groups of Aborigines, comprising i n a l l 45 adults and 3^ children, a r r i v e d from desert areas to the north east and east to s e t t l e at Jigalong. In terms of l i n g u i s t i c group of o r i g i n , the Mandjildjara speakers are the numerically dominant sector of the Jigalong population (M-7.5%); the second largest group i s the Gadudjara, ^In this thesis I use the terms 'whites', 'aliens', and 'Europeans', interchangeably to r e f e r to non-Aborigines, while admitting that none of these terms i s e n t i r e l y s a t i s - factory. The Aborigines generally use the term 'whitefella' to r e f e r to non-Aborigines i n English. 5 . with 3 6 . 0 $ , and a l l others comprise 16.5% of the t o t a l (November 1 9 6 9 ) . This residual category comprises members of at least ten d i f f e r e n t l i n g u i s t i c groups, most of whom i d e n t i f y with either of the two main groups. The two main d i a l e c t s are mutually i n t e l l i g i b l e and there i s an increasing tendency, e s p e c i a l l y among younger people, to speak a composite d i a l e c t , with the addition of some English words. TABLE 1 Jigalong Population (1947-1970) Adult Ab.. Males Adult Ab. Females Ab. School- chn Ab. Preschl- chn Whites T 1947 31 38 35 ? 104 June 1963 26 38 40 13 15 132 Sept 1963 36 51 5^ 23 20 184 Dec 1963 59 76 69 38 20 262 June 1964 51 69 71 32 20 243 Sept 1964 37 62 65 29 23 216 Dec 1964 109 101 78 52 17 357 Mar 1966 79 78 59 25 17 258 July 1966 52 66 44 45 15 222 Aug 1967 48 77 61 37 18 241 July 1969 128 185 13 326 Nov 1969 113 112 55 77 12 369 Dec 1969 170 157 81 101 6 515 Jan... -1970 .-,108 . . • 105 50 78 ... .7 - 348 In the Camp environment, very l i t t l e English i s spoken and only c e r t a i n of the older school-children and young adults have more than a l i m i t e d command of i t . 6, D. S o c i a l Structured 2 Most Western Desert- Aborigines now s e t t l e d around i t s periphery are emigrants from t h e i r o r i g i n a l home t e r r i t o r i e s (see Figure 2 ) . The area has been of l i t t l e i n t e r e s t to the whites, so for a long time a f t e r the more f e r t i l e regions of the continent had been exploited and t h e i r Aboriginal i n - habitants decimated, the only v i s i t o r s to the desert were a few explorers and prospectors i n the l a t e I8 x00s and early 1 9 0 0 s . The contact s i t u a t i o n i n the area i s thus a t y p i c a l i n that i n i t i a l l y , at l e a s t , the Aborigines had the choice of either seeking or avoiding contact with the a l i e n s . According to informants, i t was t h e i r c u r i o s i t y about the newcomers that i n i t i a l l y prompted some of them to v i s i t the fringe settlements (pastoral stations, mining towns, missions) that were established along c e r t a i n parts of the desert periphery. A combination of severe droughts and an increasing desire f o r tea, sugar and other European goods l e d most to become even- t u a l l y permanent residents of these settlements. For a d e t a i l e d account of the s o c i a l structure, see Tonkinson ( 1 9 6 6 : 7 6 - 1 2 9 ) 2 The term Western Desert connotes both a geographical e n t i t y and a c u l t u r a l bloc. Over a m i l l i o n square miles i n area, i t exhibits s i m i l a r physiographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and c l i m a t i c conditions throughout ( G e n t i l l i , 1 9 4 7 ) . Its Aboriginal inhabitants share a common language with d i a l e c t a l variations (Wurm, 1 9 6 3 : 1 3 3 ; W. Douglas, 1 9 5 8 : i - i i ) , and a common basic s o c i a l organization, r e l a t i o n s h i p to the natural environment, mythology, r e l i g i o n and forms of aesthetic expression. (See B.Berndt, 1959, 1 9 6 3 : 3 9 3 - 3 9 ^ ; B. and C. Berndt, 19^5; C. Berndt, I960; Meggitt, 1 9 6 2 , 1966; Long, 1 9 6 4 ; Munn, 1 9 6 5 , 1970; T. Strehlow, 1965;121-145; Gould, 1 9 6 9 a , 1 9 6 9 b , 1 9 7 0 ) . FIGURE 2 THE WESTERN DESERT AREA OF AUSTRALIA KEY A Pastoral Station — — Interstate Boundary Main Road -~- Transcontinental Railway 1 Ito Scale in miles S3fi NOTE • The dotted lines indicate the approximate boundaries of the Western Desert cultural bloc (the shaded area). Tne arrows indicate the directions of Aboriginal migration in the Western Desert area. 7. The common features of these fringe settlements include: (a) the aggregation of Aborigines, who are members of several d i f f e r e n t t r i b a l or l i n g u i s t i c groups at settlements within Native Reserves (entry to which i s i l l e g a l f o r a l l but authorized a l i e n s ) ; (b) a r i s i n g rate of natural population increase; (c) basic economic changes that have l e d to increased dependence on al i e n s ; (d) increased l i t e r a c y , but, (e) i n s u f f i c i e n t employment opportunities to bring about e f f e c t i v e u t i l i z a t i o n of Aboriginal labour; (f) the i n a b i l i t y (owing to loss of t r a d i t i o n a l s k i l l s ) and d i s i n c l i n a t i o n of Aborigines to return to t h e i r former desert l i f e ; (g) regular contact with Aborigines at neighbouring settlements; (h) i n t e r c u l t u r a l communication d i f f i c u l t i e s between Aborigines and alien s ; ( i ) ready acceptance of a l i e n material culture, and (J) the retention of Aboriginal languages, and i n varying degrees,of t r a d i t i o n a l non-material c u l t u r a l forms. (Tonkinson, 1966:3*0 In thesie settlements, the Aborigines' shared kinship system, r e l i g i o u s l i f e and general c u l t u r a l background are important integrative forces that serve to maintain wider group cohesion, and as a r e s u l t new feelings of unity have emerged. The Aborigines now i d e n t i f y strongly with t h e i r settlement, and i d e n t i f y themselves to outsiders accordingly. The l a b e l that the Jigalong Aborigines give themselves ('Jigalong mob') connotes t h i s new wider ent i t y and indicates t h e i r f e e l i n g of common i d e n t i t y when contrasting themselves with outsiders. The Aborigines are s t i l l l a r g e l y t r a d i tion-oriented i n t h e i r basic ethos, but thi s heritage i s i n many aspects of t h e i r l i f e being constantly modified and redefined i n response to pressures from the wider society. 8. The t y p i c a l family unit at Jigalong i s of a nuclear or composite type, consisting of a man, his wife or wives 1, t h e i r unmarried daughters and u n i n i t i a t e d sons, with the possible addition of other r e l a t i v e s , such as a married daughter and her childre n whose husband i s away, an e l d e r l y 'wife' whom the man at times looks a f t e r , and perhaps his aged mother i f she has chosen not to camp with several other widows. Although constantly impinged upon by the wider kin- ship system and the communal: atmosphere of the Camp, the family i s s t i l l the basic kinship and s o c i a l unit at Ji g a - long. Infant betrothal i s s t i l l the ideal and i s commonly practised, but fewer g i r l s now marry the men to whom they were o r i g i n a l l y betrothed. Whereas the great majority of g i r l s are married before they are nineteen, no boys ever marry so young, because there are strong pressures on them to complete a substantial part of t h e i r i n i t i a t i o n process before even considering marriage. Although the practice of young men marrying i n t h e i r mid-twenties, before they have completed f u l l i n i t i a t i o n , i s common, there are no cases of unsubincised Jigalong men marrying. This practice i s known Polygyny i s practised by about 2 3 . 0 $ of Jigalong men, who have either two or three wives (November 1 9 6 9 ) . When absentee Jigalong people are also included, the percentage of polygynists drops to about 1 3 . 0 $ . 9 . to sometimes occur i n other Law1 centres, however, such as Wiluna. The kinship system-type that most nearly approximates that found at Jigalong i s the Kariera (see Eadcliffe-Brown 1 9 3 0 - 3 1 ; E l k i n , 1938-40, 195*0, which i s based on a rule of preferred marriage with either MBD or FZD. The system i s a t y p i c a l - c l a s s i f i c a t o r y one, i . e . i t s terms are an elaboration and extension of the relationships that obtain within the family. Among the 500 or so people who i d e n t i f y as members of the Jigalong community, only three 'wrong' marriages ( i . e . that between two people not related to each other as •spouse') are known. Every Aborigine at Jigalong i s related to a l l others and generally adheres to the behaviour patterns and associated norms of o b l i g a t i o n and r e c i p r o c i t y that accompany these r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Kin behavioural patterns range from complete avoidance at one extreme to Joking relationships at the other. Although i n a l l cases there are variations i n the degree of conformity to the behavioural norm, there appear to have been very few changes i n the t r a d i t i o n a l patterns. In general, r e l a t i o n - xFollowing J.Wilson (1961) and K.Wilson ( 1 9 6 1 , 1 9 7 0 ) , I use the c a p i t a l i z e d word Law to r e f e r to the Aboriginal concept, which i s a body of j u r a l rules and moral evaluations of customary and s o c i a l l y sanctioned behaviour patterns, allegedly o r i g i n a t i n g from the creative period. The Aborigines use the English word at least as often as i t s d i a l e c t equivalent, j u l u b i d i . I use the term 'law' to r e f e r to European law. In making a conceptual equation, the Aborigines emphasize the use of rules, formal behaviour and s o c i a l control i n the two systems. 10 . ships between women tend to be les s restrained than'.those between men. Restraint relationships characterize i n t e r a c t i o n between a man and most of his adult consanguineal k i n . Kin di s t i n c t i o n s are l a r g e l y i r r e l e v a n t to s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n among children, who may also behave unrestrainedly towards adults, regardless of the kinship categories involved. Most Aborigines now at Jigalong come from areas that t r a d i t i o n a l l y possessed a four-section system! The diagram below shows the arrangement of the sections at Jigalong: , >- BANAGA s=s GARIMARA - « — — B U R U D U sas MILAI3GA - * — The symbol = connects intermarrying sections, and the arrows connect the sections of mother and c h i l d . Section names do not indicate sex d i s t i n c t i o n s . Nor does the section system of i t s e l f regulate marriage, since i n an ego's intermarrying section there are always females not c l a s s i f i e d as wife (e.g. his PM, 'PM', DD and -DD'). Rules expressed i n terms of kinship categories regulate marriage, while sections serve to categorize people into groups and are u t i l i z e d mostly as convenient reference terms. 1Some l o c a l Mandjildjara people are also acquainted with subsection terminology almost i d e n t i c a l to that of the Walbiri (vide Meggitt, 1 9 6 2 : 1 6 5 ) , which was apparently spread- ing south and west into t h e i r home areas. But the Aborigines at Jigalong are not conversant ivith Kimberley subsection terms such as those reported by Kaberry ( 1 9 3 9 : ^ 6 ) and C. Berndt ( 1 9 5 0 : 1 9 ) which suggests the existence t r a d i t i o n a l l y of. a c u l - t u r a l b a r r i e r between the Kimberley area and desert areas to the south. 1 1 , Inherent i n any section system are three further grouping- p o s s i b i l i t i e s : p a t r i l i n e a l and m a t r i l i n e a l moieties, and alternate generation l e v e l s . Neither of the f i r s t two groupings operates at Jigalong and there i s no evidence that they functioned t r a d i t i o n - a l l y as corporate groups or s o c i a l e n t i t i e s of any kind. Alternate generation l e v e l groupings, however, are found at the settlement. An ego refers to a l l members of his or her own generation l e v e l ( i . e . r e a l and c l a s s i f i c a t o r y B,Z, MM, MP, FM, FF, BW, ZH, MBS, MBD, FZS, FZD, etc.) as marira and those of the alternate generation l e v e l (F, M, S, D, MB, FZ, ZS, ZD, BS, BD, FB, MZ,) as ji n a r a . Thus, fo r example, a Banaga ego would r e f e r to a l l other Banaga and Garimara as marira. and to a l l Burunu - Milarjga as jinara, where' as a Bururju ego would c a l l a l l other Bururju and Milarjga marira, and a l l Banaga-Garimara .jinara. This type of grouping i s not important i n mundane a f f a i r s but i s a feature of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e . For many types of r i t u a l , seating arrangements are made on the basis of this kind of dual organization, and the proceedings invar i a b l y include the frequent expression of r i t u a l opposition between the two groups so formed. The Da:wajil i s a good example of t h i s kind of d i v i s i o n of the participants i n r i t u a l . The t r a d i t i o n a l form of l o c a l group organization no longer exists among the Aborigines of Jigalong; i t l o s t i t s raison-dietre once the Aborigines gave up t h e i r semi-nomadic hunting and gathering existence and l e f t t h e i r o r i g i n a l l o c a l group t e r r i - t o r i e s and associated sacred,.! s i t e s f o r good. Local groups appear to have been l a b i l e i n composition, with a 12. p a t r i l i n e a l core, but varying frequently i n siz e and i n some of t h e i r membership. For most of the year, the l o c a l group was small, consisting of between one and three fam i l i e s , generally r e l a t e d a g n a t i c a l l y through the male heads, with various other members who could at times include a f f i n e s , and young single men being taken by t h e i r elders on extensive travels that entailed the tracing of mythological routes followed by the ancestral beings of the creative period. The wider l i n g u i s t i c unit i s more e a s i l y defined, since i t i s named by the d i a l e c t i t s members speak, and i t was com- pr i s e d t r a d i t i o n a l l y of a number of contiguous l o c a l groups who normally occupied a s p e c i f i c s t r e t c h of t e r r i t o r y and who came together once or twice a year, i n combination with members of neighbouring l i n g u i s t i c groups, to hold i n i t i a t i o n and other r e l i g i o u s r i t u a l s , s e t t l e c o n f l i c t s , give women i n marriage, plan future meetings, and so on. Today, l i n g u i s t i c group membership i s r e f l e c t e d at Jigalong i n the camping arrangements of the l o c a l people, and shared l o c a l group membership i n desert time i s indicated by close t i e s of kin - ship and friendship that bind' people so a f f i l i a t e d together, even a f t e r decades of l i v i n g at Jigalong. The complete disappearance of t r a d i t i o n a l l o c a l group organization i s the most obvious change that has taken place among these people since contact with Europeans began. E. Employment and Leisure-time A c t i v i t i e s . Most able-bodied men are away f o r most of the year, work- ing as stockmen on pastoral stations within a 500 mile radius 1 3 . of Jigalong. Most are hired on a seasonal basis and are re- leased when the work i n hand i s completed. Between jobs they either go to towns such as Meekatharra and Wiluna to spend t h e i r money, or else return to Jigalong f o r a holiday. In the towns, drinking and gambling are favoured pastimes of the Aborigines, and during the annual horse-racing meetings that are held i n towns throughout the area, large numbers of Aborigines and l o c a l whites assemble fo r the f e s t i v i t i e s . At these times the Aborigines may hold r i t u a l s i f i n Wiluna, but only sing-songs i f i n Meekatharra, where a breakdown i n the t r a d i t i o n a l Law i s more evident. Other than i n stockwork, very l i t t l e employment i s ava i l a b l e i n the area f o r Aborigines, and since the end of 1968 when minimum wage regulations became applicable •to Aboriginal, s t a t i o n worker?,Job openings on stations appear to have declined i n number! Most middle-aged and older men at the settlement have neither the necessary s k i l l s f o r pastoral work nor s u f f i c i e n t command of English, so they spend most of t h e i r time at Jigalong. During the mission period, many of them, and large numbers of women, were employed at menial tasks i n return f o r food rations and clothing. Since the c l o s i n g of the dormitories and the Government take-over most people have l o s t t h e i r jobs and heavier reliance has been placed on income from Social Service - payments. A few Jigalong men worked f o r a time as labourers at the township and giant iron-ore mining operation at Mount Newman, about 100 miles west of Jigalong, but Aborigines are no longer employed there. The town has featured as a popular destination f o r groups of Jigalong Aborigines who drive there to v i s i t r e l a t i v e s i n the Camp near Newman, and can drink while there. (Tonkinson, 1970a: 5). 14. Most adults supplement purchased food supplies by hunting and, to a much les s e r extent, gathering a c t i v i t i e s , which give them a break from the routine of settlement l i f e and help s a t i s f y t h e i r considerable hunger f o r bush meats, such as kangaroo, emu and l i z a r d . They hunt with dogs and r i f l e s mostly, either i n v e h i c l e s 1 or on foot, and most t r i p s are of less than a day's duration. The hunting of game to f u l f i l r i t u a l require- ments i s common and important, e s p e c i a l l y during big meetings. Families sometimes go for weekend camping t r i p s to hunt and gather bush foods, and during the winter months some older people make longer t r i p s (up to a month i n duration) into the desert east of Jigalong. Settlement Aborigines now engage i n few other t r a d i t i o n a l economic pursuits. There i s a considerable amount of weapon- making, mostly f o r personal use, since non-Aboriginal weapons are tabu during c o n f l i c t s . Most other male c r a f t a c t i v i t i e s , such as the carving of sacred wooden boards, are more c l o s e l y connected to r i t u a l and secret-sacred a f f a i r s than to the secular l i f e . Local Aborigines have much l e i s u r e time. Household tasks such as wood-gathering, cooking, modifications or re- locations of campsites, and so on, occupy r e l a t i v e l y l i t t l e time, thus freeing people to do as they l i k e f o r most of the day. V i s i t i n g and gossiping are favoured pastimes of members An increasing number of Jigalong Aborigines (about twenty i n January 1970) own t h e i r own vehicles and sometimes use them to make t r i p s to neighbouring stations and towns i n the area. 1 5 . of both sexes. For some, card-playing i s a major form of recreation which, as gambling, ensures the c i r c u l a t i o n of a c e r t a i n amount of money and clothing. I n i t i a t e d men spend a great deal of time i n a c t i v i t i e s r elated to the r e l i g i o u s l i f e , (discussed i n the following chapter); women are also involved, but to a markedly l e s s e r extent. F. Administration. During the mission period, the superintendent was held responsible f o r the welfare of l o c a l Aborigines and the day- to-day running of the settlement as a mission and; pastoral concern, but he had to answer to his Church superiors i n Melbourne, and to l o c a l representatives of the Native Welfare Department who made periodic v i s i t s of inspection. Local Aborigines had no representation on any advisory or super- visory body, but there was a 'boss' f o r each of the two main l i n g u i s t i c groups i n the Camp. These men acted as spokesmen i n most dealings with the whites, but were not necessarily consulted by either mission or Government administrators on matters a f f e c t i n g l o c a l Aboriginal welfare. In 1969 the Native Welfare Department held meetings with the Aborigines and a representative council was organized f o r the Camp, with elected members. Since t h i s involved innova- tions such as voting, the Aborigines were wary and the council apparently never functioned as such. The Aborigines prefer t h e i r own council, an informal gathering of whatever i n i t i a t e d men are present at the settlement. Since the Government takeover on December 3 1 s t , 1 9 6 9 , the 16. Native Welfare Department continues to administer the s e t t l e - ment, from Port Hedland and the d i s t r i c t agency of Marble Bar (about 210 miles north), whose Welfare O f f i c e r was at that time scheduled to v i s i t Jigalong about once a month. Law enforcement i s s t i l l operative fromxthe small settlement of Nullagine, 140 miles north; the policeman there makes period i c t r i p s to pick up offenders from the settlement, f o r t r i a l and possible imprisonment at Nullagine. I t appears that the new administration w i l l continue with a p o l i c y of minimum interference i n the inter n a l p o l i t i c s of the Aboriginal community and i n the r i t u a l l i f e , which has always been kept secret from v i r t u a l l y a l l outsiders. The dominant concern of l o c a l Aboriginal men i s that they remain free to i n i t i a t e t h e i r youths into the t r a d i t i o n a l Law and to carry on t h e i r r e l i g i o u s a c t i v i t i e s without interference from outsiders. They have adapted the timing of t h e i r big meetings to f i t i n with the seasonal demands of s t a t i o n a c t i v i t i e s , but so f a r they have not had to contend with attempts by whites (myself excepted) to observe secret- sacred r i t u a l performances held i n the bush. 17. Chapter 2. The Religious L i f e In the previous chapter i t was suggested that the a c t i v i t i e s at Jigalong which have been l e a s t affected by a l i e n c u l t u r a l influences are"those concerned with the r e l i g i o u s l i f e . Its underlying ideology, especially, remains inta c t from precontact times. Local whites have generally known l i t t l e of the cosmology and r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s of the Aborigines, and have understood.less. Those who wanted to put an end to i t ; i . e . the missionaries, lacked the com- municative s k i l l s necessary to erode the foundations of the b e l i e f system and f a i l e d to present t h e i r version of Chr i s t i a n - i t y as a pl a u s i b l e a l t e r n a t i v e . C h r i s t i a n i t y has therefore meant very l i t t l e to the Aborigines, who never considered i t as a possible replacement f o r t r a d i t i o n a l b e l i e f s ; and no re l i g i o u s syncretism has taken place.- The Aborigines quickly perceived the discrepancy between what the missionaries preached and what they and other l o c a l whites practised, and this r e a l i z a t i o n reinforced t h e i r already negative a t t i t u d e to- wards C h r i s t i a n i t y . Their antagonism was strengthened by many aspects of the missionaries' behaviour, i n p a r t i c u l a r t h e i r attempts to turn the schoolchildren against t h e i r parents. Basic t r a d i t i o n a l values remained l a r g e l y unassailable i n a s i t u a t i o n marked by a r e l a t i v e paucity of contact with whites and poor i n t e r c u l t u r a l communication. While they had l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y i n accepting a wide range of material goods that were obviously useful and d i d not appear to be threatening 18. t h e i r Law, the Aborigines were able to ignore or r e j e c t nonmaterial European c u l t u r a l elements and s o c i a l forms that c o n f l i c t e d with t h e i r own. Thus the Aborigines have remained markedly tr a d i t i o n - o r i e n t e d i n the operation of t h e i r kinship system and r e l i g i o u s l i f e . The missionaries inadvertently aided i n the maintenance of these t r a d i t i o n a l forms by en- abling such a large community of once disparate groups to l i v e together on a permanent basis, with s u f f i c i e n t autonomy and l e i s u r e time to engage i n a c t i v i t i e s that supported the values of t h e i r former semi-nomadic l i f e . When i t migrated to the settlement, each desert group brought with i t a body of mythology, songlines 1 r i t u a l s and r e l i g i o u s knowledge that was i n some of i t s content unique. This f a c t of v a r i a t i o n despite o v e r a l l homogeneity i n b e l i e f systems i s basic to Western Desert r e l i g i o n , since each l o c a l group knew i n greatest d e t a i l . t h e exploits and routes of those ancestral beings who wandered within and through i t s own s t r e t c h of t e r r i t o r y , but was less c e r t a i n of ancestral tracks and a c t i v i t i e s i n areas further from i t s own. The divergent areas of o r i g i n and d i f f e r i n g t r i b a l a f f i l i a t i o n s of the Aborigines now at Jigalong provided the i n d i v i d u a l with considerable scope f o r widening his r e l i g i o u s knowledge. XA songline i s a series of short songs pertaining to the travels and exploits of ancestral beings during the Dream- time. These songs are usually sung i n association with r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , p a r t i c u l a r l y dancing. The Aborigines use the English word ' l i n e ' frequently, to r e f e r to a r i t u a l complex as well as to a song s e r i e s . 1 9 . There was now the time and the opportunity to compare notes and l i n k up the various ancestral tracks that are shared by most groups. I t appears that the cosmology was too loosely integrated and variable to lead to any major clashes of b e l i e f as a r e s u l t of the new s i t u a t i o n , e s p e c i a l l y since there was a common denominator i n t h e i r conception of t h e i r cosmic order and, within i t , of the same major ancestral routes and associated songlines that c r i s s c r o s s the entire Western Desert area. Jigalong Aborigines now have contact with members of groups congregated i n other communities, hundreds of miles from the settlement, and interarea c u l t u r a l transmission (discussed l a t e r i n thi s chapter) also serves to increase the breadth of r e l i g i o u s knowledge among Aborigines who p a r t i c i p a t e i n the annual big meetings that are held at the various Law centres. A. The Dreamtime and Mythology The concept of the Dreamtime (cf. Stanner, 1 9 5 8 : 5 1 3 - 5 2 3 ; E l k i n , 1954:148 , 199; R. and G. Berndt, 1964:187-188) i s basic to Aboriginal cosmology. The term refers to the creative period, an indefinable past era when A u s t r a l i a was sai d to be inhabited only by l a r g e l y benevolent ancestral heroes and often malevolent s p i r i t s (malbu). Most of the ancestral beings roamed about the continent, creating natural features as they went by means of t h e i r superhuman magical powers, but sometimes behaving i n ways that were a l l too human: quarr e l l i n g , k i l l i n g , copulating with many d i f f e r e n t 20. women, disobeying laws, and so on. In contrast to these more reprehensible excesses, the ancestral beings also l a i d the foundations f o r the rules and way of l i f e that man was to follow a f t e r they placed him on earth. At Jigalong, the name f o r the creative period and i t s beings i s marjun(ba) or djugudani. or the term more widely known to scholars of Aboriginal culture, d.iugur(ba) (cf. E l k i n , 195^:199; H. and C. Berndt, 1 9 6 4 : 1 8 7 ; Munn, 1965:14). At the completion of their adventures during the Dreamtime most djugudani beings turned to stone or other natural features or else flew into the sky to become stars and other heavenly bodies, where they are sai d to l i v e on, f o r the k i l l i n g s and •deaths' that abounded i n the creative period were never f i n a l and a l l the heroes ;remained immortal. In t h i s sense the creative period i s timeless, and i s relevant to the pre- sent, since the heroes maintain t h e i r i n t e r e s t i n the a f f a i r s of man, as long as he follows t h e i r d i r e c t i v e s i n the prescribed manner and perpetuates t h e i r founding design. The ancestors and t h e i r associated s p i r i t s are s t i l l i n control of plant, animal and human f e r t i l i t y , and t h e i r ways must be followed i f t h i s f e r t i l i t y i s to be maintained. Thus the Aborigines c l i n g to t h e i r Law i n the b e l i e f that t h e i r continued well- being and t h e i r very existence depend on the performance of r i t u a l s and the maintenance of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e . Despite t h e i r increased involvement i n the a l i e n culture i n some areas of l i f e , notably economic, the people at Jigalong 2 1 . repeatedly stress the necessity to 'hold onto 1 the Law and the dangers of anyone attempting to 'throw i t away1. Much of t h e i r current conformity to the Law rests on t h i s set of assumptions about i t s v a l i d a t i o n by the events of the Dream- time. Some writers (Radcliffe-Brown, 1 9 5 2 : 1 6 6 ; R. and C. Berndt, 1964:188) have commented on the u n s u i t a b i l i t y of the term 'ancestral' to describe the creative beings, since they are not bound to present-day Aborigines by actual genealogical l i n k s . But, as the Berndts point out, Dreamtime beings are ancestral i n the sense that some have produced, from t h e i r own bodies or through t h e i r own e f f o r t s , the progenitors of the present Aborigines. Furthermore, i n a sense that i s c r u c i a l to any proper understanding of totemism among l o c a l Aborigines, the beings are conceived of as genealogically linked ancestors, a l b e i t putatively. Aborigines r e f e r to the various ancestors by kinship term; e.g. "Kangaroo (Malu) i s my gaga ('MB'); Crow (Ga:nga) i s djamu ('FF' or 'MF')". Furthermore, the kinship terms used always r e f e r to an ascendant generation (parent or grandparent l e v e l ) , implying that a measure Cof respect and deference i s the behavioural concomitant of the re l a t i o n s h i p . Most of the trave l s and exploits of the ancestral beings are embodied i n thousands of songs and a large corpus of myths known to the Aborigines at Jigalong. Every Aborigine- man, woman and child, - knows at lea s t some songs and some 22. myths, but the greatest knowledge i s concentrated i n the hands of i n i t i a t e d men. , Since coming into the settlement, almost a l l l o c a l Aborigines have learned new myths and songlines, some as part of the normal processes of c u l t u r a l transmission, and some i n c i d e n t a l l y . What a l l the Aborigines seem to share i n common i s the complete acceptance, at face value, of the events and drama depicted i n the myths and songs. I have never heard an Aborigine question the motives of an ancestral being i n speaking or acting as he does i n a song or myth, and nor do the Aborigines philosophise about the characters or events so depicted. They do not stand apart and question any of t h e i r r e l i g i o n , and they are apparently d i s i n t e r e s t e d i n why the ancestral beings acted as they did, i f thi s i s not clear from the context. As I have noted elsewhere (Tonkinson, 1966:204), "Basic assumptions are not questioned, and although some v a r i a t i o n and a l t e r a t i o n i s inevitable during the process of o r a l transmission of the Law, the emphasis remains on continuity." The association of a host of natural objects with the beings who created them indicates that f o r the Aborigine, the physical environment and the heavens are concrete proofs of the absolute truths embodied i n t h e i r myths and songlines. In addition to natural features, there are the many sacred objects that the creative, beings l e f t behind as repositories of l i f e - f o r c e and as further, proofs that the events of the Dreamtime most c e r t a i n l y did occur. Prom the viewpoint of 2 3 . the i n d i v i d u a l , the myths and songs he knows best are those that involve s i t e s i n his home t e r r i t o r y , and the creative exploits of ancestral beings i n that area. For his homeland, 4he knows i n d e t a i l who did what and with which and to whom and where, and he can point out a l l the natural features that were so created during the Dreamtime.period. For the major ancestral beings who may have t r a v e l l e d through his country as one part of t h e i r long journey :that took them a l l over the Western Desert, he w i l l know best that part of t h e i r wanderings that took place i n his home area. Since these major l i n e s are shared by most people, variations i n the content of the descriptive myth are inev i t a b l e , but no one quarrels over the discrepancies that e x i s t . Nobody claims a more correct version than anybody else. Generally, any given group of men w i l l concur about the main events i n myths that are narrative versions of songlines, but there w i l l be variations i n t h e i r accounts of events not covered by the songs. When several men are together narrating a myth of t h i s kind, they generally reach common agreennspt as to d e t a i l s through discussion, since some men are acknowledged as having a greater knowledge of the mythology than others. The others usually accede to the version given.by: a man i n whose home area the p a r t i c u l a r set of events related took place. I t i s cle a r that the Aborigines conceive of the Western Desert as an area that was crisscrossed by what i s to an out- 24. sider a seemingly bewildering amount of Dreamtime t r a f f i c . Supposedly the f i r s t men of the Dreamtime, and the most important and widely t r a v e l l e d creative beings, known a l l over the desert, were the Two Men, Wadi Gudjara, who created l i f e and natural features and by t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s l a i d the foundations for much of the Law. Also of great importance over a wide area was the ancestral kangaroo-man, Malu, • who i n s t i t u t e d the practices of circumcision and subincision, among many 'other creative e x p l o i t s . Many of the ancestors t r a v e l l e d i n large groups rather than i n ones or ;twos: the Minijiburu women, who were pursued eastwards by the rapacious Njiru; the Njanaji, bird-men who were on a 1 f e a t h e r f e e t 1 r i t u a l k i l l i n g expedition; Wajuda, the possum people and Girjgilba the native cat mob, who t r a v e l l e d extensively and form the core of the Dirjari t r a d i t i o n , and a host of others (see Tindale, 1936; Mountford, 1937; B. and C. Berndt, 1 9 4 5 , 1 9 6 4 ; Gould, 1 9 6 9 a ; Tonkinson, 1 9 6 6 : 2 1 6 - 2 2 7 ; Mountford and Tonkinson, 1 9 6 9 : 3 7 1 - 3 9 0 ; B. Berndt, 1970:216-247; for descriptions of Western Desert mythological beings). The Aborigines are aware that the Western Desert area, despite i t s great s i z e , has many ove r a l l c u l t u r a l s i m i l a r i t i e s . They a t t r i b u t e this homogeneity to the fac t that the ancestral beings t r a v e l l e d widely, and d i f f e r e n t groups of heroes often came into contact with one another. During these meet- ings, they exchanged both sacred and non-sacred objects,songs, 2 5 . r i t u a l s , decorations and so on, thus spreading these c u l t u r a l elements to the extremes of the desert area, and often beyond. But c u l t u r a l variations, too, are often explained i n terms of the mythology which validates the differences; thus the coastal peoples, such as the Dala, north west of Jigalong, did not p r a c t i s e circumcision because Wadi Gudjara t r i e d to do so during the Dreamtime but found that t h e i r foreskins were too tough to cut. Besides sharing the attributes of great magical powers., and the a b i l i t y to assume t h e i r animal totemic form at w i l l , a l l ancestral beings ca r r i e d with them on t h e i r travels a great deal of paraphernalia, including carved wooden boards and other highly sacred objects. These they l e f t behind i n the various places that they v i s i t e d , f o r man to discover, contemplate and draw strength and a sense of certainty from. The creative heroes also wore elaborate body decorations, and i n s t i t u t e d d i f f e r e n t songs and r i t u a l s as they went, usually at some s i g n i f i c a n t spots, such as waterholes and prominent h i l l s . , There they also created storehouses of sacred boards, just as man must do at s i m i l a r sacred s i t e s . An examination of the myths c o l l e c t e d at Jigalong sug- gests that i t i s possible to divide them into two main types: the more common and apparently more important kind i s the descriptive narrative, which t e l l s of the travels of an ancestor or group of ancestors throughout the countryside, 26. and i s replete with place names and b r i e f accounts, at times, of the formation by the ancestors concerned of major physiographic features. Generally these myths are long, and are associated with major ancestral beings whose ex- p l o i t s are also encapsulated i n songlines associated with important r i t u a l s . This kind of myth fleshes out the skele- ton provided by the songs, which are very short and at best are c r y p t i c and oblique references to c e r t a i n events that occur during the ancestor's t r a v e l s . Even i f the songs are i n the l o c a l d i a l e c t s , i t i s impossible from the t r a n s l a t i o n of the words alone to make coherent sense of them, without some kind of explanation. When the observer asks f o r interpretations, the myth may be t o l d i n explanation of the songs. The myths are not related as part of the r i t u a l and w i l l probably not be mentioned at a l l during i t s performance. 1 Explanation 1 of r i t u a l i nvariably consists of a few b r i e f comments and the r e i t e r a t i o n of the secret- sacred names f o r associated objects and a c t i v i t i e s , but never the r e c i t a t i o n of the associated myth, i f one e x i s t s . This i s p a r t i c u l a r l y true of the Da:wajil. The other type of myth recorded at Jigalong could be termed a s i t u a t i o n a l one, i n which the s i t e of the myth i s either not given or i s not important to the events depicted. The emphasis i s on s i t u a t i o n and character in t e r a c t i o n , and t h i s kind of myth often validates a p a r t i c u l a r p ractice, or more often, a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of some va r i e t y of fauna; e.g. why the emu cannot f l y , or how the crow came to be black. 2 7 . In the kind of int e r a c t i o n that takes place i n such myths, kinship relationships are almost always sp e c i f i e d , so that the i d e a l associated k i n behavioural patterns can be discern- ed, though i n pra c t i c e characters do not act as they should towards t h e i r kin, and the story often e n t a i l s some form of t r i c k e r y . The two main kinds of myth are never mutually exclusive since narrative myths often mention practices that validate, or are c i t e d to validate, present-day Law. In addition, the narrative myths sometimes contain sections that dwell on character i n t e r a c t i o n , but generally at a given s i t e . The mythology that i s associated with the 13a:wajil r i t u a l and is described i n a l a t e r chapter (see pages 89 - 93). w i l l be seen to belong to the f i r s t type, the narrative exposition, with an emphasis on the route that i s taken by the rainmaking ancestor and the objects he leaves behind, rather than on character development. B. Totemism A l l Jigalong Aborigines share what can be c a l l e d a totem- i s t i c philosophy. Almost a l l the major ancestral beings are conceived of by the Aborigines as being both human and animal i n form and behaviour, sometimes simultaneously. They tr a v e l predominantly i n one form, but can change to the other at w i l l , i n keeping with t h e i r superhuman magical a b i l i t i e s . Generally, when people are recounting myths they.may not bother to make thi s d i s t i n c t i o n unless or u n t i l i t becomes 2 8 . c r u c i a l to the development of the p l o t . So although most of the ancestral heroes bear the names of natural species and exhibit t h e i r species c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s at times, they are also e s s e n t i a l l y human i n / t h e i r propensities. Thus Wadi Gudjara, the Two Men, were also two v a r i e t i e s of l i z a r d , Malu was a kangaroo-man, Gurugandi was an owl-man, the N j i : n j i were a mob of zebra-finch people, and so on. Even the ancestral beings with non-species names are usually associated with a p a r t i c u l a r variety of fauna; thus Winba the rainmaker was also a snake. In a few cases, though, a story may specify a character as a human, with presumably no animal or b i r d association. The Aborigines conceptualize a single, u n i f i e d cosmic order i n which man and the natural species, man and ancestral beings, s p i r i t s and other conceived e n t i t i e s are on an equal footing and are a l l i n t e r r e l a t e d on a genealogical and pseudo- genealogical basis, with some form of communication possible among a l l of them. Thus the Aborigines assign t h e i r dogs to sections and r e f e r to them frequently by kinship terms, as they do to ancestral beings. Most people are aware of the section membership of the fauna with which they are f a m i l i a r , and therefore know t h e i r kinship connection with each kind of fauna. Aboriginal man does not ta l k to the trees, but, depending on his p a r t i c u l a r totemic connection and t e r r i t o r i a l a f f i l i a t i o n , he can communicate with spirit,, beings who are believed to be responsible f o r the continued 2 9 . growth and f e r t i l i t y of f l o r a and fauna, emanating from c e r t a i n s p e c i f i c s i t e s , or increase centres (d.jabi.ja.) He i s bound to his totemic ancestors and s p i r i t s by 'descent' and genealogy and can therefore expect r e c i p r o c i t y from them i n return f o r his r i t u a l services, just as he expects i t from the r e l a t i v e s to whom he i s linked by t i e s of obl i g a t i o n and r e c i p r o c i t y . At increase centres, when he and his agnatic r e l a t i v e s talk to the s p i r i t s , they discuss t h e i r needs nor- mally and r a t i o n a l l y , as between humans ( i d e a l l y ) , since i n essence they do not appear to conceive of the s p i r i t world as being on a d i f f e r e n t l e v e l of r e a l i t y from the physical world. In the following paragraphs I w i l l describe only the two major types of totemic b e l i e f found at Jigalong, since a deta i l e d account of totemism i n t h i s area has been given elsewhere (Tonkinson, 1966:209-214), and, more importantly, since totemic a f f i l i a t i o n s are not s i g n i f i c a n t variables i n the actual carrying out of the Da:wajil r i t u a l . Conception Totemism. Every Aborigine at Jigalong has a conception totem (njuga, or d.jarinba), and a few possess two. The totem may be a plant, animal, insect, secretion or mineral, and i n many cases, a person bears i t s name with the r e s u l t that his or her totem i s known to a l l other l o c a l Aborigines. A l l but a handful of the younger people have been t o l d by t h e i r parents what t h e i r totem i s , and th i s i s the most common form occurring at the settlement. A person does not generally f e e l any special r e l a t i o n s h i p of a f f e c t i o n or an emotional bond with his njuga, he adopts 3 0 . no sp e c i a l r i t u a l a t titude towards i t , and he may k i l l or eat i t whenever he so desires. The conception totem i s a manifestation of s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n (d.jid.jigargal), who are said to have inhabited cer- t a i n h i l l y areas and large trees since the Dreamtime, but tra v e l f a r a f i e l d at times i n search of th e i r mothers, and are thought to be quite mischievous. But neither the conception s i t e nor the home of the s p i r i t - c h i l d i s relevant to the discerning of a chi l d ' s n.juga. I t i s most commonly i d e n t i f i e d when a woman feels i l l or vomits a f t e r eating a c e r t a i n food. Some p e c u l i a r i t y i n the appearance or taste of the food, or i t s overabundance at one p a r t i c u l a r spot, suggests to the woman or her husband that i t was a c t u a l l y a s p i r i t - c h i l d , which has found and entered i t s mother, who i s always of the correct kinship category f o r i t . When the c h i l d i s born, i t s r e l a t i v e s look f o r further signs - birthmarks, blemishes, etc. - that w i l l v e r i f y i t s conception totem. Many people bear 'digging'stick 1 or 'spear' marks on t h e i r bodies, and believe that these were i n f l i c t e d by t h e i r mother or father while they were s t i l l i n plant or animal form, as s p i r i t - c hildren. Despite variations i n ind i v i d u a l conceptions of the s p i r i t - c h i l d and i t s a c t i v i t i e s , i t i s clea r that, t r a d i t i o n a l l y , the s p i r i t u a l dimension of parenthood was strongly emphasized, at the expense of whatever knowledge Aborigines may have had of physi o l o g i c a l aspects of pater- n i t y . This i s s t i l l true today, regardless of whatever i n - 3 1 . formation to the contrary many Aborigines have gained from whites. Ancestral Totemism. This i s analogous to 'cult* totemism, but the l a t t e r term i s unsatisfactory as a l a b e l f o r what obtains i n the Jigalong s i t u a t i o n . I mentioned e a r l i e r that the ancestral heroes are said to have c a r r i e d with them a l l manner of r i t u a l and mundane paraphernalia as they t r a v e l l e d about. At spots a l l along t h e i r route, they l e f t behind various objects, such as weapons, h a i r s t r i n g , sacred boards and stones and bu l l r o a r e r s , and everywhere they shed eaglehawk-down from t h e i r decorations. A l l these things were animated with a kind of l i f e - f o r c e or power and l a t e r turned into a l l kinds of plants, animals, birds and so on, which i n many cases embody s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n , who l i v e together i n groups and bide t h e i r time u n t i l they have an opportunity to enter t h e i r mothers and be born as human Aborigines., This i s the es s e n t i a l connection between ancestral and conception totemism, both of which owe t h e i r existence to the l i f e - force that was part of the ancestral beings and a l l that they possessed. Any c h i l d who was conceived or born i n the v i c i n i t y of the route of a p a r t i c u l a r ancestral being or group of beings i s therefore a t t r i b u t e d with them as his ancestral totem. The way to ask a person's ancestral totem at Jigalong i s "Danalunda garju djunu Janu?", "Who c a r r i e d you, l e f t you and 3 2 . went on?" Most adults were born i n the same t e r r i t o r y as t h e i r fathers but t h e i r ancestral totem need not coincide with that of t h e i r fathers since any given area may have several ancestral tracks crossing i t . Despite these shared ancestral totems, people so connected do not indicate any special bond i n t h e i r s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n with one another, and are i n no way committed to action on t h i s basis. That i s , there are no totemic 'cults' as such, and there i s no evidence to indicate that such groups were operative i n pre- contact days. Hence my avoidance of the term 'cult' or 'lodge' to describe t h i s form of totemic b e l i e f , since i t i s not used as a focus of in-group sentiment at Jigalong. During r i t u a l s that concern major ancestral beings, the a l l o c a t i o n of roles to singers and dancers, when t h i s occurs, i s not based on totemic a f f i l i a - t i o n . Nor does possession of a p a r t i c u l a r totem usually give the person concerned any special p r i v i l e g e or r e s p o n s i b i l i t y during the performance of a r i t u a l that involves his totem. However, 'descendants' of rainmaking ancestor, Winba, to be discussed l a t e r , are credited with sp e c i a l a b i l i t i e s as a r e s u l t of t h e i r totemic a f f i l i a t i o n . The men who lead the singing during c e r t a i n r i t u a l s do so because they have the longest acquaintance with the l i n e , or because they have t r a v e l l e d i n .the area of o r i g i n of the songline and have learned i t i n greater d e t a i l as a r e s u l t . This applies e s p e c i a l l y to some of the younger men, i n t h e i r knowledge of the Malu Kangaroo l i n e , c a l l e d 33. Milgu or Njungunj; they have spent time i n the southern areas most c l o s e l y associated with the l i n e , and know i t best. I t thus appears that the major r i t u a l s and songlines, which have t r a v e l l e d to a l l parts of the Western Desert, v i a normal channels of c u l t u r a l transmission that characterize the area, have long since ceased to be the property of any one group. Instead they are held i n common and performed by responsible elders and i n i t i a t e d men, regardless of ancestral or other kinds of totemic a f f i l i a t i o n . At the l o c a l group l e v e l , the annual performance of increase ceremonies at sp e c i f i e d s i t e s was apparently the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of groups of men united by ownership of s i t e s i n the area whether or not they a l l possessed the species concerned as t h e i r totem. This fa®t., plus the overriding importance of c u l t u r a l transmission of r e l i g i o u s lore i n the t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e of the Western Desert Aborigines, helps to account f o r the lack of cu l t totemism i n thi s area. I f i t were important f o r the formation of c u l t 'lodges', one would expect the l o c a l Aborigines to make e f f o r t s to have sons i n h e r i t the ancestral totem of t h e i r father, to guarantee the continuance of such groups i n the contact s i t u a t i o n , f a r from t h e i r home ter - r i t o r i e s . But this has not been the case. People appear less interested i n t h e i r ancestral totem than i n t h e i r con- ception totem, but neither provides them with much i n the way of conversation topics, or occupies t h e i r frequent atten- t i o n . An observer who attempted to use totemism as a h e u r i s t i c t o o l ' f o r the explanation of cu l t a c t i v i t i e s , role a l l o c a t i o n , 34. and so on would make very l i t t l e headway. I agree with Stanner ( 1 9 6 5 : 2 3 6 - 2 3 7 ) who concludes his perceptive paper on totemism with the observation that the 'totemic idiom' i s not i n i t s e l f of any great r e l i g i o u s i n t e r e s t , since i t i s a somewhat obvious means of symbolizing aspects of the great events of the creative period by or through f a m i l i a r elements i n the environment of the Aborigines. C. Magic and Sorcery. My intention i n t h i s section i s merely to outline the main c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of l o c a l b e l i e f s i n magic and sorcery, since a more de t a i l e d treatment of magical practices that impinge on the Ea:wajil w i l l be given i n Chapter 6 . The heading above i s not meant to imply that magical practices and sorcery can be defined or discussed i n i s o l a t i o n from more general magico-religious phenomena, since a cle a r d i s t i n c t i o n i s a n a l y t i c a l l y unsound. As i n a l l Aboriginal s o c i e t i e s , there are at Jigalong a number of men (approximately f i f t e e n i n a l l ) who are credited with possession of a maban, the magical object or objects kept within t h e i r bodies, usually t h e i r stomachs, and capable of both curative and destructive powers. These are the native doctors, c a l l e d maban, almost a l l of whom have inhe r i t e d t h e i r powers from t h e i r fathers and can use them, allegedly, to see inside other people, i n order to diagnose and treat the cause of i l l n e s s . They are presumed to be capable also of the exercise of t h e i r special powers to do 35. injury to others, but t h i s aspect of t h e i r capacities; i . e . sorcery, i s not s o c i a l l y sanctioned and i s thus denied by almost a l l of them. Native doctors have important functions to perform as leaders and guides on t r i p s that l o c a l people believe they take during t h e i r dreams. Most of these dream-spirit journeys are said to be undertaken i n large groups, f o r safety's sake, since they t r a v e l widely i n the desert areas and sometimes v i s i t sacred and other s i t e s , encountering s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n , malevolent s p i r i t s and other beings that could cause si c k - ness i f the native doctors were not present to .ward o f f these e v i l s . The r e a l i t y of these journeys i s unquestioned by the Aborigines and they play an important part (see pages 41-43,47,109-111) i n the r e l i g i o u s l i f e of the l o c a l people. R e l a t i v e l y few deaths are att r i b u t e d to natural causes, so the p r a c t i c e of sorcery i s believed by Jigalong people to be widespread and common to a l l Aboriginal groups. Accusations are sometimes exchanged by members of the s e t t l e - ment community. There i s some basic d i s t r u s t between the Mandjildjara and Gadudjara which at times surfaces i n private conversations when people voice t h e i r suspicions about who i s responsible f o r a given death. " A great many deaths are at t r i b u t e d instead to acts of sorcery by dreaded •featherfeet' k i l l e r s ( d j i n a g a r b i l ) . These are allegedly men, not s p i r i t s , who come from 'far away' and l i e i n wait for t h e i r victims whom they ambush, ' k i l l ' then revive and 36. send them back to camp, where they remember nothing of the attack but die within days. Since sorcery accusations and counter-accusations occur both within and between Aboriginal communities, they have considerable d i v i s i v e and c o n f l i c t - inducing p o t e n t i a l . This i s why, at the time of the big meetings each year, the assembled communities attempt to s e t t l e a l l outstanding disputes and encourage the a i r i n g of sorcery accusations and rebuttals so that subsequent r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s are not interrupted or spoiled by c o n f l i c t . D. R i t u a l R i t u a l a c t i v i t y i s the most important concern of the people at Jigalong, both from an insider's and an outsider's viewpoint, but e s p e c i a l l y when we consider what the Aborigines hold to be most s i g n i f i c a n t and c r u c i a l to t h e i r continued well-being; i . e . the f a i t h f u l following of the design f o r l i f e that i s t h e i r heritage from the Dreamtime, and i n par- t i c u l a r , i t s acting out i n the form of r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s that are f o c i f o r t h e i r feelings of se c u r i t y and belonging. The Law, e s p e c i a l l y i n i t s r i t u a l aspects, remains the t r a d i t i o n a l force that maintains and reinforces the Aborigines' c u l t u r a l i d e n t i t y and group s o l i d a r i t y and continues to give them a considerable f e e l i n g of being able to control t h e i r own i n t e r n a l a f f a i r s . a n d t h e i r own ultimate destiny. Their r i t u a l s and t h e i r esoteric r e l i g i o u s knowledge are t h e i r big secret, t h e i r uniquely Aboriginal power that aliens cannot comprehend or usurp. But i f the r i t u a l s should be l o s t , and they abandon the Law, i t w i l l mean the end of them, according 3 7 . to those who are the current guardians of the r e l i g i o u s l i f e . Thus, to the Aborigines, they have no choice but to continue to perform t h e i r r i t u a l s and engage i n interarea c u l t u r a l transmission i f they are to survive as.whole people. They frequently allude to the consequences of 'throwing the Law away', f o r they have seen them - i n the town areas where some of the more European-oriented Aborigines have forsaken the Law and are now i n e x t r i c a b l y caught i n the bind of l i q u o r , gambling, f i g h t i n g and f r e - quent imprisonment. These town-dwellers serve as the models fo r what happens to those who turn t h e i r backs on t h e i r c u l t u r a l heritage, but by t h i s I am not i n f e r r i n g that Jigalong Aborigines remain aloof from such a c t i v i t i e s when they are v i s i t i n g town. Many of the l o c a l men do drink and get into trouble with others and with the p o l i c e when i n town, but i n retrospect they can talk about the effects of grog and gambling on the Law. They remain adamant i n t h e i r opposition to l i q u o r being brought onto the settlement, and about card-playing during periods of r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , a transgression that does at times occur at Jigalong. When they are at the settlement, f u l l y i n i t i a t e d men devote a considerable amount of time to a c t i v i t i e s associated with t h e i r r e l i g i o n . R i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s are at t h e i r peak during the midsummer big meetings, but at any time of the year some kind of r e l i g i o u s business i s being planned, 38. c a r r i e d out or analyzed i n retrospect. Discussions and meetings, of either formal or informal kinds, are almost d a i l y a f f a i r s and involve anything from a handful of men to v i r t u a l l y the entire adult i n i t i a t e d male population. Groups of men, generally elders, make periodic t r i p s into the bush where the most important sacred objects are hidden, to check on them and keep them cleaned and i n good condition. Older men who have r i t u a l status as custodians of the sacred board storehouses v i s i t the area from time to time to inspect i t , and others go i n groups p e r i o d i c a l l y to work on the cuttin g and carving of sacred boards, i d e a l l y an a c t i v i t y that continues year-round. Ri t u a l performances are organized by the 'bosses' concerned at any time during the year, but the Aborigines say that i n winter i t i s often too cold and there are i n s u f f i c i e n t men availa b l e to stage any long and elaborate r i t u a l s . At such times, r i t u a l s that can be performed i n the Camp area seem to be preferred. /Women's r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , on the other hand, i s more l i k e l y to be concentrated i n the big meeting period, unless groups of women learn new r i t u a l s i n neighbouring Law centres at other times; e.g. during Race Meetings i n Wiluna. Ri t u a l Statuses. As would be expected i n a society as e g a l i t a r i a n as that of the Austr a l i a n Aborigines, few well- defined named and ranked statuses of any kind ex i s t f o r the community as a whole,though as w i l l be shown l a t e r , the Da:wajil r i t u a l i s notable f o r the presence of c l e a r l y 3 9 . l a b e l l e d and ranked statuses. The major d i v i s i o n i s be- tween subincised and unsubincised men, since within the i n i t i a t i o n process there are a number of named intermediate stages through which a novice must pass before being con- sidered f u l l y i n i t i a t e d and e l i g i b l e to marry. Among f u l l y i n i t i a t e d men, there i s a broad d i v i s i o n into the older men who have attained the p o s i t i o n of cooks for the midajidi feasts that are held p e r i o d i c a l l y , (mostly i n association with r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s held at the storehouse), and those middle-aged and younger men who are the hunters. The l a t t e r supply the fresh meat that i s eaten i n association with the dampers 1 cooked by the midajidi elders, and i s a general kind of payment rendered to those who are i n s t r u c t i n g t h e i r juniors i n the Law. E l e c t i o n of new cooks i s i n the hands of the midajidi men ( c a l l e d gadada, or madjugadja which translates as the 'big ones'), who base t h e i r choice on an assessment of the appointees' performance over a long period as upholders of the Law. Several elders are also charged with the custodianship 0 f the sacred storehouses. Their main tasks are to clean and prepare the storehouse area f o r r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s while the cooks are at work elsewhere ( i n the main creekbed, closer to Camp) and to keep the sacred boards o i l e d and clean. A kind of cake bread made of f l o u r , baking powder, water, and cooked i n hot ashes. T r a d i t i o n a l l y i t was made from grass-seed f l o u r . 40. For every r i t u a l there are c e r t a i n elders who are acknowledged as i t s 1 head bosses 1 and are charged with the organization and d i r e c t i o n of the; performances. There i s no special term f o r such a status, and the incumbents vary according to the r i t u a l being staged. The men who were i n i t i a t e d e a r l i e s t and most often into a p a r t i c u l a r r i t u a l , and best know i t s content are the heads, i n most cases regardless of whatever totemic a f f i l i a t i o n s are involved. Just as native doctors tend to hand on th e i r powers and techniques to t h e i r sons, r i t u a l heads^usually endeavour to do the same with t h e i r esoteric knowledge. There i s a broad d i v i s i o n of the adult women, too, into mida.jidi cooks and others. Female cooks are chosen by the male mida.jidi heads, and do the mixing and kneading of the dampers, while the men do the actual f i r e - t e n d i n g and cooking.• Younger women are sometimes co-opted by the men and made to do the bulk of the heavy mixing and kneading work, as punishment f o r having made some kind of trouble. The same i s sometimes done to a man who has caused trouble, and he i s made to tend f i r e . The remarks made above about male r i t u a l heads apply also to the females, although the headship of r i t u a l s appears to be concentrated i n the hands of r e l a t i v e l y fewer women than men. Rit u a l Types . For purposes of c l a r i f i c a t i o n , the many d i f f e r e n t kinds of r i t u a l that are performed at Jigalong may be conveniently divided into three main categories; the f i r s t , which i s recognized by the people themselves, i s ac- 43,^ c o r d i n g t o t h e a l l e g e d o r i g i n o f t h e r i t u a l ; t h e s e cond i s a c c o r d i n g t o t h e p e r s o n n e l i n v o l v e d , and t h e t h i r d i s i n te rms o f i t s a p p a r e n t o v e r a l l p u r p o s e . 1 . O r i g i n . R i t u a l s may be d i s t i n g u i s h e d as e i t h e r a a q u n d j a n u . ' f r o m t h e c r e a t i v e p e r i o d ' , o r badund.1 a r i d . i a n u . • f rom t h e d r e a m - s p i r i t 1 . The g r e a t m a j o r i t y o f t h e r i t u a l s p e r f o r m e d a t t h e s e t t l e m e n t a r e s a i d t o b e l o n g t o t he f i r s t t y p e , t h a t i s , t o have been composed d u r i n g t h e Dreamtime and t o have been handed on v i a c o u n t l e s s g e n e r a t i o n s o f A b o r i g i n e s down t t o t h e p r e s e n t . L e s s common, bu t n e v e r t h e l e s s i m p o r t a n t I n t h e l o c a l r e l i g i o u s l i f e , a r e t h o s e o f t he s e cond t y p e , composed by l o c a l men who were ' g i v e n ' them by s p i r i t - b e i n g s d u r i n g t r a v e l s t h e y u n d e r t a k e , o r b e l i e v e t h a t t h e y u n d e r t a k e , d u r i n g t h e i r d r eams . One o f t h e s e r i t u a l s i s u s u a l l y composed e v e r y few y e a r s and i s sung and p e r f o r m e d p e r i o d i c a l l y u n t i l a n ew l y composed s u c c e s s o r t a k e s o v e r . Meanwh i l e t h e o l d e r one has g e n e r a l l y been handed on t o g roups f r om o t h e r Law c e n t r e s and b e g i n s i t s j o u r n e y a r o u n d t h e d e s e r t v i a t h e no rma l c h a n n e l s o f i n t e r - c o m m u n i t y c u l t u r a l t r a n s m i s s i o n . Two o f t h e t h r e e badund. iar ld.1anu r i t u a l s w i t n e s s e d d u r i n g f i e l d w o r k were i n t r o d u c e d f r om p l a c e s n o r t h o f J i g a l o n g . A l o c a l l y o r i g i n a t e d r i t u a l o f t h e se cond t y p e was composed i n 1962 by t e n men o f m i x ed t r i b a l a f f i l i a t i o n . I t c o n s i s t s o f abou t one hund red and twen t y v e r s e s and has as i t s c e n t r a l theme wea the r phenomena - r a i n , c l o u d s , l i g h t n i n g and t h u n d e r - and a s s o c i a t e d b e i n g s . I t i s c a l l e d Winba 4 2 . or? D j a r a m a r a , f r om t h e names o f t h e ma j o r r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r . I t d e a l s w i t h t h e same themes and b e i n g s as does t h e D a : w a j i l , t hough i t i s n o t c l o s e l y l i n k e d t o any o f t h e m a j o r D a : w a j i l s i t e s ; most p l a c e s men t i oned i n t h e W i n b a ( r i t u a l a r e muoli c l o s e r t o J i g a l o n g t h a n a r e t h e m a j o r i t y o f t h e D a t w a j l l s i t e s . Su ch r i t u a l s come i n t o b e i n g t h r o u g h i n f o r m a l " d i s c u s s i o n s among men, g e n e r a l l y n a t i v e d o c t o r s , who d u r i n g d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s have s ong s , dances and a s s o c i a t e d s a c r e d o b j e c t s ( g e n e r a l l y o f t h e t h r e a d - c r o s s , w a n i g i . v a r i e t y ) r e v e a l e d t o t h e m . 1 When s e v e r a l men r e p o r t s i m i l a r k i n d s o f e x p e r i e n c e , t h e y c a n t h e n e s t a b l i s h a theme. As more men ' f i n d ' s ong s , e t c . , t h e s e a r e added t o t h e l i n e , w h i c h i s l a t e r l e a r n e d by mem- b e r s o f b o t h s e x e s . Bach r i t u a l has i t s d i s t i n c t i v e t u n e , dance s t e p s , body d e c o r a t i o n s and s a c r e d o b j e c t s , bu t t h e c o v e r - a l l f o rm and p r o c e d u r e s o f t h e badund.1arld.1anu r i t u a l s a r e s i m i l a r . These have been d e s c r i b e d i n d e t a i l e l s ewhe r e ( T o n k i n s o n , 1966:229-239; 1970b; 1970c; M o u n t f o r d and T o n k i n s o n , 1969: 371-37 * 0 . A f u l l s e s s i o n o f t h e Winba r i t u a l would l a s t abou t t e n t o t w e l v e n i g h t s i f p e r f o r m e d i n i t s e n t i r e t y . Most o f t e n t h e r i t u a l i s p e r f o r m e d f o r o n l y a f ew n i g h t s a t a t i m e . D u r i n g t h e 1969-70 m e e t i n g s , f o u r n i g h t s o f i t were p e r f o r m e d as a g i f t t o t h e v i s i t o r s f r om t h e s o u t h , who were g i v e n o f f i c i a l s a n c t i o n t o s t a g e t h a t much o f t h e r i t u a l back i n t h e i r home c e n t r e s . The l o c a l p e o p l e t o l d them t h a t i f t h e y •'•See H o w i t t , 1904:397; B. B e r n d t , 1951*72; P en t ony , 1961 :146 C o a t e , 1966:99; B . and P. Waterman, 1970:107 -108 , f o r t h e r o l e o f dreams i n t h e r e v e l a t i o n o f new know l edge . *3. r e t u r n e d f o r some f u t u r e m e e t i n g s , t h e y wou ld be g i v e n t h e r e m a i n d e r o f t h e r i t u a l . The r e seemed t o be d i s a g r e emen t among t h e A b o r i g i n e s a s t o t h e r a i n m a k i n g p o t e n t i a l o f t h e Winba l i n e . Some men f e l t t h a t t h e s i n g i n g o f t h e l i n e c o u l d b r i n g r a i n , bu t t he m a j o r i t y I q u e s t i o n e d m a i n t a i n e d t h a t t h e D a : w a j i l i s t h e o n l y s t r o n g r a i n m a k i n g l i n e . A l t h o u g h t h e badund j a r i d j a nu l i n e s a r e r e l a t i v e l y s h o r t l i v e d w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e i r a c t u a l s pan o f p e r f o rmance s a t any one s e t t l e m e n t , and a l m o s t a l l t h e i r songs c a n be sung by b o t h s e x e s , t h i s i s n o t t o s a y t h a t t h e A b o r i g i n e s c o n s i d e r them t o be any l e s s v a l i d o r s i g n i f i - c a n t t h a n t h e maound.lanu l i n e s . Mos t o f t h e l a t t e r p r o b a b l y o r i g i n a t e d i n much t h e same way, and o n l y l a t e r became r e - ga r ded as b e i n g Dreamt ime c r e a t i o n s , as t h e y were p a s s e d on f r om g roup t o g roup a c r o s s t h e d e s e r t . The number and v a r i e t y o f manundjanu r i t u a l s known t o a n d / o r p e r f o r m e d by t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f J i g a l o n g i s s u ch t h a t a n adequa te d e s c r i p t i o n o f them i s beyond t h e s cope o f t h i s t h e s i s . D u r i n g t h e t h r e e month p e r i o d o v e r C h r i s t m a s 1969-70, t h e r e were more t h a n s e v e n t y p e r f o rmance s o f a t l e a s t t h i r t e e n d i f f e r e n t r i t u a l s , s e v e r a l o f w h i c h were o f r e c e n t i n t r o - d u c t i o n , and s e v e r a l ma j o r r i t u a l s were n o t p e r f o r m e d because o f t i m e l i m i t a t i o n s and c o m p e t i t i o n f r om so many o t h e r l i n e s . The m a i n r i t u a l s have been d e s c r i b e d i n more d e t a i l e l s ewhe r e ( T o n k i n s o n , 1966:220-229), b u t l a t e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r , b r i e f m e n t i o n w i l l be made o f some o f them. 44. 2 . P e r s o n n e l I n v o l v e d . The t e rm ' s e c r e t - s a c r e d * r e f e r s t o r i t u a l s h e l d i n t h e bush ou t o f s i g h t o f Camp and i n v o l v i n g f u l l y i n i t i a t e d members o f t h e same s e x o n l y , w i t h t h e com- p l e t e e x c l u s i o n o f b o t h t h e u n i n i t i a t e d and members o f t h e o p p o s i t e s e x . U n d e r s t a n d a b l y , I c o u l d g a t h e r v e r y l i t t l e i n f o r m a t i o n abou t women-only s e c r e t - s a c r e d r i t u a l s , bu t I a t t e n d e d s e v e r a l p e r f o rmance s o f p a r t o f t h e G u n a j a n b a l i n j d j i l i n e a t w h i c h men were p r e s e n t and s ang t h e s o n g s , bu t were n o t p e r m i t t e d t o wa t ch most o f t h e d a n c i n g . Mos t o f t h e o b j e c t s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h s e c r e t - s a c r e d r i t u a l s a r e t e rmed • s a c r e d ' i n t h a t t h e y a r e c o n s i d e r e d t o be v e r y dangerous t o any b u t t h e f u l l y i n i t i a t e d and c a n be s een o n l y by them. I n r i t u a l s I have c a l l e d ' s a c r e d 1 , some i n i t i a t e d mem- b e r s o f b o t h s exe s may be i n v o l v e d a t t h e same t i m e , and p e r 4 haps a t t h e same p l a c e , t o t h e e x c l u s i o n o f a l l u n i n i t i a t e d . F o r i n s t a n c e , i n some c a s e s most men a r e away i n t h e bush c a r r y i n g ou t s e c r e t - s a c r e d r i t u a l s , w h i l e n e a r Camp a g roup composed o f ma le and f ema l e m i d a j i d i cooks p r e p a r e s dampers f o r a l a t e r r i t u a l f e a s t t o be e a t e n by t h e men when t h e y r e t u r n . The s e c t i o n o f t h e G u n a j a n b a l i n j d j i l i n e men t i oned above wou l d be c l a s s e d as ' s a c r e d ' i n t h a t men and women a r e t o g e t h e r and a l l u n i n i t i a t e d p e o p l e a r e e x c l u d e d f r om b o t h w i t n e s s i n g and; p a r t i c i p a t i n g . R i t u a l s t h a t a r e c l a s s e d as ' g e n e r a l - s a c r e d ' i n v o l v e t h e p r e s e n c e o f b o t h men and women and u n i n i t i a t e d y ou t h s and c h i l d r e n a s s emb l ed i n t h e same p l a c e a t t h e same t i m e , g e n e r a l l y i n o r c l o s e t o t h e ma in camp. I n some o f t h e s e t h e women c a n * 5 . s i n g a n d / o r dance and i n some c h i l d r e n may a l s o p a r t i c i p a t e . I f any r i t u a l ends w i t h dances i n w h i c h s a c r e d o b j e c t s a r e d i s p l a y e d , women and c h i l d r e n must h i d e t h e i r heads unde r b l a n k e t s . I t w i l l be c l e a r , f r om a l a t e r d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e D a : w a j i l ( C h a p t e r 5) t h a t most r i t u a l s c o n t a i n s e c t i o n s t h a t c o r r e s p o n d t o e a c h o f t h e t h r e e b r o a d c a t e g o r i e s l i s t e d above , b u t a l l s u c h r i t u a l segments c l e a r l y b e l o n g i n one o r o t h e r o f t h e s e c a t e g o r i e s . 3. Pu rpo se* When r i t u a l s a r e c l a s s i f i e d a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r pu r po se o r i n t e n t , c l e a r d i v i s i o n s a r e n o t s o e a s i l y made, s i n c e any g i v e n r i t u a l c a n be i n t e r p r e t e d as f u l f i l l i n g s e v e r a l d i f f e r e n t b u t comp lementa ry f u n c t i o n s , m a n i f e s t and l a t e n t , i n A b o r i g i n a l s o c i e t y . F o r examp le , i t c o u l d s a f e l y be s a i d t h a t a l l r i t u a l s f u n c t i o n as i n t e g r a t o r y e l emen t s and p romote f e e l i n g s o f i n - g r o u p s o l i d a r i t y v i s - a - v i s n o n - A b o r i g i n e s and a sense o f s e c u r i t y and c e r t a i n t y among t h o s e who s u b s c r i b e t o t h e s o c i e t y ' s b a s i c v a l u e s . A l l t h i s n o t - w i t h s t a n d i n g , a b r o a d d i v i s i o n i s p o s s i b l e a c c o r d i n g t o a r i t u a l ' s m a i n u n d e r l y i n g p u r p o s e , as f o l l o w s : ( a ) I n i t i a t i o n . Two r i t u a l s a r e s p e c i f i c a l l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h o t h e e a r l y p a r t o f t h e i n i t i a t i o n p r o c e s s , w h i c h a t J i g a l o n g b e g i n s w i t h c i r c u m c i s i o n when a boy i s abou t s e v e n t e e n y e a r s o l d and p r o c eed s t h r o u g h s u b i n c i s i o n ( s i x t o t w e l v e months l a t e r ) and s e v e r a l o t h e r named s t a g e s w h i c h , i d e a l l y , s h o u l d 46. p r e c e d e m a r r i a g e ; t h i s l o n g p r o c e s s i s d e t a i l e d e l s ewhe r e ( T o n k i n s o n , 1966:182-19*0. The most i m p o r t a n t r i t u a l i s t h e N j u n j u n j ( o r M l l g u ) , a manund.ianu l i n e e n t i r e l y s e c r e t - s a c r e d t o i n i t i a t e d men, p e r f o r m e d f a r f r om t h e Camp and c e n t e r i n g m a i n l y on t h e e x p l o i t s o f M a l u , t h e a n c e s t r a l kanga roo -man . The N j u n j u n j , w h i c h appea r s t o be t h e most w i d e l y known Wes t e r n D e s e r t r i t u a l , c o n s i s t s o f hundreds o f v e r s e s and a g r e a t many d a n c e s . I t i s sung b e f o r e , d u r i n g and a f t e r b o t h p h y s i c a l o p e r a t i o n s , m a i n l y d u r i n g d a y l i g h t h o u r s . Dances a r e p e r f o r m e d l a t e i n t h e a f t e r n o o n a f t e r s e v e r a l hou r s o f s p i r i t e d s i n g i n g , a s t h e men f o l l o w i n song t h e r o u t e o f Ma ju and a s s o c i a t e d a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s . D u r i n g b i g mee t i n g s t h i s r i t u a l i s o f t e n h e l d a t t h e same t i m e as g e n e r a l - s a c r e d r i t u a l s so t h a t a t n i g h t women and c h i l d r e n c a n a t t e n d t h e l a t t e r i n o r n e a r ( lamp,and t h u s do n o t f e e l l e f t ou t o f t h e a c t i o n . The s e cond r i t u a l c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h i n i t i a t i o n , bu t h e l d much l e s s o f t e n , i s t h e Wa lawa lanu o r D j i n d j u n , w h i c h c o n c e r n s t h e t r a v e l s and a d v e n t u r e s o f Wadi G u d j a r a , t h e Two Men. T h i s l i n e , a l s o s e c r e t - s a c r e d t o i n i t i a t e d men, i s f i r s t begun i n t h e p o s t - c i r c u m c i s i o n n o v i c e ' s camp, when h i s p e n i s i s a l m o s t h e a l e d , and a l s o a t t h e b i n m a l s t o r e h o u s e s d u r i n g t h e M i d a j i d i r i t u a l when s a c r e d boa rds a r e f i r s t r e v e a l e d t o n o v i c e s . The m a i n Wa lawa lanu p e r f o rmance i s a n a l l - n i g h t a f f a i r , t o mark t h e b o y ' s r e t u r n t o ' l i f e ' and t o t h e Camp. I n c o n t r a s t t o t h e N j u n g u n j , few dances a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h i s r i t u a l . 47. (b) Ancestral-Instructive. The majority of r i t u a l s performed at Jigalong belong to thi s category, i n that they concern the acting out of what Stanner ( 1 9 6 5 : 2 1 3-214) c a l l s the 'founding dramas', or 'marvels' of the Dreamtime,, that are embodied i n myths, songs and dances. Like the two i n i t i a t i o n r i t u a l s mentioned above, these performances always have an i n s t r u c t i v e aspect, because i n v a r i a b l y there are novices present and some explanations, however c r y p t i c , are given by elders who know the r i t u a l well. Formal i n s t r u c t i o n as such i s generally minimal, since the emphasis i s on the naming and i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of objects and associated ancestral beings; the elders impress upon the novices the secret-sacred and dangerous character of the names and information imparted during the r i t u a l . I t i s through repeated attendance at the same r i t u a l , that younger men get some cl e a r e r idea of what the. mythological background i s a l l about. (c) Commemorative-Recreational. Included i n this category would be the dream-spirit r i t u a l s , which can be regarded as acting out and commemorating of verses, dances, etc. revealed during alleged journeys made by men i n dream-spirit form. Because women and ch i l d r e n can attend and witness most of the r i t u a l a c t i v i t y they function as recreational forms i n a more general way than do most of the other kinds of r i t u a l which concern smaller segments of the settlement population most of the time. Nevertheless, the great enjoyment that Aborigines derive from a l l t h e i r r i t u a l s and associated pur- suits i s immediately obvious to an outside observer. 4 8 . (&) I n c r e a s e . The p h y s i c a l s e p a r a t i o n o f t h e J i g a l o n g A b o r i g i n e s f r om t h e i r o r i g i n a l home t e r r i t o r i e s and t h e i n - c r e a s e s i t e s l o c a t e d t h e r e i n means t h a t i t i s no l o n g e r p o s s i b l e f o r A b o r i g i n e s t o p e r f o r m t h e s m a l l s e a s o n a l r i t e s t r a d i t i o n a l l y h e l d a t t h e s i t e s ( d j a b i j a ) . The c e r emon i e s were u s u a l l y s i m p l e , and p e r f o r m e d by a few male e l d e r s o f a p a r t i c u l a r l o c a l g r oup , who v i s i t e d t h e i r s i t e , c l e a n e d a r ound i t , p e r haps p o l i s h e d and a n o i n t e d i t w i t h a r m b l o o d , t h e n t a l k e d t o t h e s p i r i t s o f t h e p a r t i c u l a r s p e c i e s b e l i e v e d t o be l i v i n g w i t h i n and a s k e d f o r them t o come up and be p l e n t i f u l a c r o s s t h e l a n d . One v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g p o s t - m i g r a t i o n deve lopment a t J i g a l o n g , d i s c u s s e d i n d e t a i l i n a r e e e n t p a p e r ( T o n k i n s o n , 1970b:277-291) i s t h e l o c a l A b o r i g i n e s ' u s e o f d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s t o r e t u r n p e r i o d i c a l l y t o t h e i r o l d home a r e a s and v i s i t t h e i n c r e a s e c e n t r e s f o r t h e pu rpose o f ' b r i n g i n g u p * 1 t h e s p e c i e s c o n c e r n e d . Tha t i s , t h e A b o r i g i n e s , o r c e r t a i n e l d e r s and n a t i v e d o c t o r s among them, b e l i e v e t h a t t h e y do r e v i s i t t h e i n c r e a s e s i t e s and c an s t i l l e n s u r e t h e c o n t i n u a t i o n o f t h e a s s o c i a t e d s p e c i e s , w i t h o u t a c t u a l l y h a v i n g t o t r e k a c r o s s t h e d e s e r t t o t h e s e p l a c e s . They s a y t h a t t h e y had t h e power o f f l i g h t l o n g b e f o r e t h e w h i t e man go t i t , and t h a t s u c h j o u r n e y s , t hough f r a u g h t a t t i m e s w i t h dange r s f r om m a l e v o l e n t b e i n g s , a r e r e l a t i v e l y e f f o r t l e s s . I t t hu s a ppea r s t h a t d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s have come t o assume ^ h i s e x p r e s s i o n i s commonly u s e d by t h e A b o r i g i n e s t o r e f e r t o t h e e f f e c t o f t h e i r i n c r e a s e r i t u a l s , t h u s t h e D a : w a j i l 'brings up' r a i n . 49. increased s i g n i f i c a n c e as the only avenue of contact u t i l i z e d by the Aborigines between Jigalong and t h e i r homelands, and the means by which they can continue to maintain v i t a l and l i f e - sustaining l i n k s with the desert proper. Despite that f a c t that i t i s a f a r more complex and com- p l i c a t e d r i t u a l than were any of the other t r a d i t i o n a l increase r i t e s , the I3a:wajil belongs i n the general category of increase r i t u a l because i t does have a central and s p e c i f i c purpose, which i s to bring up r a i n during the midsummer season. In a more general sense, a l l r i t u a l s have, f o r the Aborigines, an increase function since i t i s only by the continuing performance of the various r i t u a l s that Aboriginal man and the natural species are assured of continued existence and f e r t i l i t y . Some r i t u a l s are said to promote the increase of the animals, r e p t i l e s , birds, etc. whose exploits are reenacted i n song and dance. Thus the Njungunj l i n e w i l l bring up both plains and h i l l kangaroos and the other natural species that are included i n this r i t u a l complex. Ri t u a l Paraphernalia. The most obvious d i s t i n c t i o n with regard to r i t u a l paraphernalia i s that between objects that can be seen by members of the opposite sex and the u n i n i t i a t e d , and objects that can never be seen by anyone other than i n i t i a t e d members of the same sex, (and perhaps also by novices undergoing i n i t i a t i o n into p a r t i c u l a r r i t u a l s ) . Para- 50. p h e r n a l i a b e l o n g i n g t o t h e f i r s t c a t e g o r y , w h i c h c o u l d be te rmed g e n e r a l - s a c r e d , i n c l u d e t h e w o o l l e n and h a i r s t r i n g bands t h a t a r e worn by men on t h e i r f o r e h e a d s , n e ck s and uppe r a rms , w h i t e f o r e h e a d bands , p e a r l s h e l l n e c k l e t s (worn by mem- b e r s o f b o t h s e x e s ) , u p p e r arm ornaments and p u b i c pendan t s (worn o n l y b y men; a r e u s u a l l y o f eng r aved p e a r l s h e l l ) h a i r - b e l t s (men o n l y wear t h e s e ) , b u n d l e s o f wood - shav i ngs worn m o s t l y i n armbands and a c r o s s t h e f o r e h e a d , by men, and bunches o f g r e e n l e a v e s h e l d i n t h e hands and shaken d u r i n g d a n c e s , by members o f b o t h s e x e s . P a t , r e d och re and b l o o d a r e u s e d by t h e men on t h e i r b o d i e s , u s u a l l y i n a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h body d e s i g n s o f v a r i o u s k i n d s . Women do n o t u se b l o o d on t h e i r b o d i e s . I n most c a s e s , t h e s e d e c o r a t i o n s c a n be seen by o p p o s i t e s e x members and t h e u n i n i t i a t e d , bu t c e r t a i n o f t h e ^ p a t t e r n s a r e s e c r e t - s a c r e d and must be c a r e f u l l y r ubbed o f f t h e i r b o d i e s b e f o r e t h e y r e t u r n t o Camp. The women have some s e c r e t - s a c r e d o b j e c t s bu t I know n o t h i n g i n d e t a i l abou t t h e s e . The men, o f c o u r s e , have many. I n some r i t u a l s t h e r e a r e ^ e l a b o r a t e h e a d d r e s s e s , f a c e p i e c e s o r t a i l s , c o n s t r u c t e d f r om g r a s s wrapped i n o l d r a g s , and u s e d o n l y \in the bush. Lengths of. red ochre and fat-covered t w i n e , c a l l e d J u l j d j a . a r e t h e m a i n d e c o r a t i o n i n c e r t a i n o f t h e more r e c e n t l y i n t r o d u c e d s o u t h e r n l i n e s . The re a r e a g r e a t many d i f f e r e n t v a r i e t i e s o f o b j e c t s t h a t a r e worn o r c a r r i e d d u r i n g d a n c e s , a n d a r e lumped unde r t h e g e n e r i c t e rm w a n i g i . These a r e a l l v a r i a n t s on t h e t h r e a d - c r o s s and s h a r e 51. t h e p r o p e r t y t h a t t h e y c a n o n l y be u s e d once , and t h e n must be d i s m a n t l e d and r e t h r e a d e d f o r f u t u r e u s e . These r ange i n s i z e f r om t h e l i t t l e r a b a . o r kanga roo ' e a r s ' , t o t h i r t y f o o t f e n c e - l i k e c o n s t r u c t i o n s made by j o i n i n g s a c r e d boa rds and s p e a r s t o g e t h e r t o f o rm a f ramework on w h i c h woo l i s t h r e a d e d . A l t h o u g h w a n i g i may t a k e a team o f men a h a l f - d a y o r more t o c o n s t r u c t , t h e y a r e u s e d i n dances t h a t l a s t r a r e l y more t h a n f o u r o r f i v e m i n u t e s . S e c r e t - s a c r e d c a r v e d wooden boa rd s f o rm a c a t e g o r y o f t h e i r own. These b o a r d s , r a n g i n g i n s i z e f r om a few i n c h e s t o n e a r l y t w e n t y f e e t , a r e man-made r e p l i c a s o f t h e boa rds t h a t a l l a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s a r e s a i d t o have c a r r i e d w i t h them and t o have l e f t b e h i n d a t a l l i m p o r t a n t s i t e s t h r o u g h o u t t h e c o u n t r y . The c u t t i n g and c a r v i n g o f a s a c r e d b o a r d i s t h e i m p o r t a n t f i n a l s t e p o f a young man ' s i n i t i a t i o n p p r o c e s s . T y p i c a l l y , t h e c a r v e d p a t t e r n on a b o a r d i s a s t y l i z e d r e p r e s e n t - a t i o n o f a s t r e t c h o f c o u n t r y and an a s s o c i a t e d a n c e s t r a l b e i n g o r b e i n g s , g e n e r a l l y l i n k e d t o t h e c a r v e r t o t e m i c a l l y , b u t n o t n e c e s s a r i l y s o . Men a r e e x p e c t e d t o c o n t i n u e c u t t i n g and c a r v i n g boa rds t h r oughou t t h e i r l i f e , u n t i l t h e i r hands become t o o u n s t e a d y t o do t he f i n e c h i s e l wo rk . Mos t boa rds a r e c o n s i d e r e d t o be t h e p r o p e r t y o f t h e c o l l e c t i v i t y , r e g a r d - l e s s o f c a r v e r , bu t some o f t h e s m a l l e r b o a r d s , p a r t i c u l a r l y t h o s e o f t h e b u l l - r o a r e r t y p e , a r e i n d i v i d u a l l y owned and a r e k e p t i n s a d d l e - b a g s o r o t h e r c o n t a i n e r s c l o s e t o Camp. A l l b oa r d s have p o t e n t i a l u t i l i t y f o r t h e p r a c t i c e o f s o r c e r y ( o f t h e ' p o i n t i n g and f i r i n g ' t y p e ) and a r e h i g h l y dangerous t o t h e u n i n i t i a t e d , so t h e y a r e k e p t w e l l h i d d e n a t a l l t i m e s . 5 2 . T r a d i t i o n a l l y , f o r a woman o r u n i n i t i a t e d p e r s o n t o have s een t h e s e boa rds wou l d have meant d e a t h , o r a t t h e v e r y l e a s t , b l i n d n e s s . The l a s t c a t e g o r y o f o b j e c t s i s t o t h e i n i t i a t e d A b o r i g i n a l men t h e most i m p o r t a n t * These a r e t h e s e c r e t - s a c r e d p o l i s h e d s t o n e s t h a t c a n be s e en o n l y by t h e m i d d l e - aged and o l d e r men and a r e r e g a r d e d as t h e most s a c r e d ob - j e c t s , because o f t h e i r a l l e g e d l y d i r e c t l i n k w i t h t h e a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s , who e i t h e r l e f t them b e h i n d o r e l s e m e t a - morphosed i n t o them. A few a r e c a r v e d (cfw t h e A r anda t . i u r unga : T . S t r e h l o w , 1947 :84) and many a r e shaped and p o l i s h e d , b u t t h e c a r v i n g and s h a p i n g a r e f i r m l y b e l i e v e d t o be t h e work o f Dreamt ime b e i n g s , n o t man* Most a r e o f u n - u s u a l c o l o u r and t e x t u r e , w h i c h l e n d s c r e den ce t o t h e i r a l l e g e d Dreamt ime o r i g i n , and a l t h o u g h most o f them have no p a r t i c u l a r r i t u a l u s a g e , o t h e r t h a n b e i n g t o u c h e d , r ubbed and c o n t e m p l a t e d upon , t h e y a r e b e l i e v e d t o be ma j o r r e p o s i t o r i e s o f a n u n l i m i t e d amount o f g r e a t power . T h e i r l o c a t i o n i s u s u a l l y r e v e a l e d t o A b o r i g i n e s by s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n ( d j i d j l g a r g a l ) e i t h e r d u r i n g dreams o r i n w a k i n g l i f e , and t h e i r shape , p l u s t h e A b o r i g i n e s ' knowledge o f w h i c h a n c e s t r a l p a t h s p a s s e d t h r o u g h w h i c h a r e a s , l e a d s t o t h e i r i d e n t i f i c a t i o n i n most c a s e s . I f t h e r e i s d oub t , n a t i v e d o c t o r s a t t h e s e t t l e m e n t a r e c o n s u l t e d , and t h e y and t h e e l d e r s i d e n t i f y t h e a n c e s t r a l a s s o c i a t i o n s o f t h e s t o n e s . 53. The d i s c o v e r y o f t h e s e o b j e c t s and t h e i r subsequen t i n c o r p o r a - t i o n i n t o t h e r e l i g i o u s l i f e have i m p o r t a n t i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r t h e q u e s t i o n o f i n t e r n a l dynamism i n t r a d i t i o n a l A b o r i g i n a l r e l i g i o n , w h i c h i s d i s c u s s e d i n d e t a i l l a t e r i n t h i s s t u d y , ( s ee pages 281-283). Many o f t h e s e h i g h l y s e c r e t - s a c r e d s t o n e s e v e n t u a l l y e n t e r t h e i n t e r c o m m u n i t y t r a n s m i s s i o n c i r c u i t and a r e handed o n , amid g r e a t p r e c a u t i o n s , f r om Law c e n t r e t o n e i g h b o u r i n g Law c e n t r e , f o r f u r t h e r c o n t e m p l a t i o n and d i s c u s s i o n * They may o r may n o t t r a v e l i n a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h a^papMeu l t a r r i t u a l * I n J a n u a r y , 1970, t h e J i g a l o n g e l d e r s gave t h e i r s o u t h e r n v i s i t o r s n i n e s u ch s t o n e s , a s s o c i a t e d w i t h Two Men, Emu and Eag l ehawk , t o t a k e back t o t h e L a v e r t o n a r e a w i t h t hem. Two tff t h e Wadi G u d j a r a s t o n e s were shaped e x a c t l y l i k e a mea t - choppe r and a r e v o l v e r - d e f i n i t e p r o o f , t h e men i n f o r m e d me, t h a t t h e Two Men had t h e s e o b j e c t s l o n g b e f o r e w h i t e s * The s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h i s c a t e g o r y o f s e c r e t - s a c r e d o b j e c t s i s a k i n t o t h a t o f s i m i l a r k i n d s o f o b j e c t s r e p o r t e d by t h e B e r n d t s (1945:134 -140) a t Oo l dea i n S o u t h A u s t r a l i a , a n a r e a t h a t i s a l s o w i t h i n t h e Wes t e r n D e s e r t c u l t u r a l b l o c * E. I n t e r c o m m u n i t y C o n t a c t s and C u l t u r a l T r a n s m i s s i o n . The r e l i g i o u s l i f e o f t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f J i g a l o n g canno t be p r o p e r l y c o n s i d e r e d w i t h o u t r e f e r e n c e t o t h e w i d e r soci©4 c u l t u r a l b l o c o f w h i c h t h e l o c a l community i s a n i n t e g r a l p a r t * The m a i n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t h i s b l o c have a l r e a d y been 5*. o u t l i n e d , bu t more must 5 b e s a i d abou t t h e Wes t e rn D e s e r t p e o p l e ' s l a c k o f c u l t u r a l ^ c o n s e i w a t i s m compared t o most o t h e r A b o r i g i n a l p e o p l e s . I n d i v i d u a l s and g roups u n d o u b t e d l y f e l t a c l o s e e m o t i o n a l a t t a c hmen t t o t h e i r l o c a l g roup a r e a s and s a c r e d s i t e s , cemented by t h e comp lex r e l i g i o u s and t o t e m i c l i n k s t h a t eve rywhe re e x i s t e d . Bu t i n a n a r e a o f s u c h i r - r e g u l a r r a i n f a l l and r e c u r r e n t d r o u g h t s , many g roups wou ld have had t o t r a v e l l o n g d i s t a n c e s a t s u ch t i m e s , t o l e s * ' a f f e c t e d , b e t t e r w a t e r e d r e g i o n s . The r e a s o n why t h e y wou l d be w e l l r e c e i v e d by l o c a l g roups i n t h e s e b e t t e r a r e a s , and were a s s u r e d on h o s p i t a l i t y , l a y i n t h e e x i s t e n c e o f i n t e r - l i n k i n g r e l i g i o u s t i e s . The m a j o r a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s c r i s s - c r o s s e d t h e d e s e r t f o r hundreds o f m i l e s , t r a v e l l i n g t h r o u g h t h e t e r r i t o r i e s o f many d i f f e r e n t l o c a l and l i n g u i s t i c g r o u p s , t h u s c r e a t i n g r e l i g i o u s and s o c i a l t i e s among t h e p e o p l e s t h r o u g h whose home a r e a s t h e y wande red . The a n n u a l b i g mee t i n g s a l s o s e r v e d t o b r i n g t o g e t h e r g roups f r om f a r - r e a c h i n g a r e a s f o r t h e communal p e r f o rmance o f r i t u a l s , and t h u s f u r t h e r s t r e n g t h e n e d i n t e r a r e a t i e s . As T . S t r e h l o w (1965:131) n o t e s : "Unh i nde r ed by t h e r i g i d i t y o f o u t l o o k t h a t r e s u l t s f r om c e n t u r i e s o f r e s i d e n c e w i t h i n s a f e h u n t i n g g r ound s , t h e Wes t e r n D e s e r t p e o p l e bo r rowed r e l i g i o u s c o n c e p t s , s o c i a l no rms , and a r t i s t i c p r a c t i c e s f r e e l y . * . " I n some a r e a s t h e s e b o r r o w i n g s f u r t h e r d i f f u s e d i n t o t h e c o a s t a l p e r i p h e r y o u t s i d e t h e d e s e r t bloc|.V P i n k (1960:272) has n o t e d t h a t t h o s e A b o r i g i n e s on t h e c o a s t a l s i d e o f J i g a l o n g who have r e - 55. t a i n e d an i n t e r e s t i n t h e t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e l o o k t o t h e d e s e r t p e o p l e f o r i n s p i r a t i o n . C e r t a i n o f t h e young men f r om su ch a r e a s c o n t i n u e t o v i s i t W i l u n a and J i g a l o n g t o unde rgo i n i t i a t o r y p h y s i c a l o p e r a t i o n s so t h a t t h e y c a n 'become m e n ' , and i t appea r s t h a t t h i s t r e n d i s i n c r e a s i n g , as c o a s t a l A b o r i g i n e s l o s e more and more o f t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l r i t u a l l i f e . The v a r i o u s g roups o f A b o r i g i n e s who c o n g r e g a t e f o r s e v e r a l weeks each y e a r a t one o r a n o t h e r Law c e n t r e , p r i m a r i l y t o engage i n r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , c o n s t i t u t e t h e w i d e s t a cknow ledged s o c i a l w h o l e , t h e r e l i g i o u s u n i t . D e s p i t e v a r i a t i o n i n t h e number and c o m p o s i t i o n o f t h e g roups so c o n g r e g a t e d , and t h e t r a n s i e n t n a t u r e o f t h e community so f o rmed , i t c a n be c o n - s i d e r e d as a ' s o c i e t y ' <6fide^Rf, B e r n d t , 1959:99) s i n c e i t i n v o l v e s b o t h sexes i n f a i r l y r e g u l a r i z e d i n t e r a c t i o n , w i t h a common b a s i s f o r a c t i o n and t h e s h a r i n g o f a common c u l t u r e . The m a j o r i t y o f v i s i t o r s a t any g i v e n m e e t i n g g e n e r a l l y come f r om c o n t i g u o u s Law c e n t r e s , bu t t h e s i z e and c o m p o s i t i o n o f t h e g a t h e r i n g a r e dependent on f a c t o r s s u ch a s t h e l o c a t i o n and t i m i n g o f t he m e e t i n g , wea the r c o n d i t i o n s , a v a i l a b i l i t y o f t r a n s p o r t and t h e c u r r e n t e m o t i o n a l s t a t e o f i n t e r c o m m u n i t y r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Improved commun i ca t i ons and t h e s e a s o n a l n a t u r e o f s t a t i o n employment have c o n t r i b u t e d t o t h e m a i n t e n - ance o f t h e w i d e r r e l i g i o u s u n i t , w h i c h now somet imes i n c l u d e s g roups t h a t wou l d have been t o o f a r a p a r t t r a d i t i o n a l l y t o combine f o r b i g m e e t i n g s . Good examples o f t h i s a r e v i s i t s r e c e n t l y exchanged by g roups f r om L a Grange and J i g a l o n g 5 6 , ( s ee F i g u r e 1 ) , and t h e 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 v i s i t t o J i g a l o n g by p e o p l e f r om L a v e r t o n and t h e Wa rbu r t on Ranges - b o t h u n p r e c e d e n t e d o c c u r r e n c e s , w h i c h c o n s t i t u t e e v i d e n c e i n s u p p o r t o f a f u r - t h e r w i d e n i n g o f t h e b o u n d a r i e s o f t h e r e l i g i o u s u n i t . The Law c e n t r e s c o n t i g u o u s t o J i g a l o n g , w i t h whose mem- b e r s t h e l o c a l p e o p l e oombine most o f t e n f o r b i g m e e t i n g s , a r e W i l u n a , N u l l a g i n e , and M a r b l e B a r - M o o l y e l l a , as w e l l as some o f t h e r e m a i n i n g N J i j a b a l i p e o p l e f r om s t a t i o n a r e a s west o f J i g a l o n g and f r om Mount Newman. To d a t e , a p a r t f r om s m a l l g roups o f men who somet imes t a k e p r e - c i r c u m c i s i o n n o v i c e s on l o n g t o u r s , and a f ew i s o l a t e d i n d i v i d u a l s , J i g a l o n g p e o p l e r a r e l y go f u r t h e r s o u t h t h a n W i l u n a o r f u r t h e r n o r t h t h a n M o o l y e l l a . L i k e w i s e , most W i l u n a p e o p l e r a r e l y move beyond L a v e r t o n i n t h e s o u t h tyT N u l l a g i n e i n t h e n o r t h , and so on a r ound t h e d e s e r t , so t h a t e a ch Law c e n t r e ' s sphere o f i n t e r a c t i o n o v e r l a p s w i t h , bu t i s d i f f e r e n t f r o m , c o n t i g u o u s Law c e n t r e s . S o n g l i n e s , d an c e s , s a c r e d o b j e c t s and o t h e r e l emen t s o f r e l i g i o u s l o r e a r e p a s s e d on f r om group t o g r oup and many end up t r a v e l l i n g l i t e r a l l y t housands o f m i l e s f r om t h e i r p o i n t o f o r i g i n , i n some c a s e s g e t t i n g back some o f t h e i r own r i t u a l s t h a t have gone t h e f u l l c i r c l e . I n c e n t r a l A u s t r a l i a I saw p e a r l s h e l l s , and s a c r e d boa rds b e - l o n g i n g t o t h e Gu r ana r a l i n e , a l l of w h i c h o r i g i n a t e d i n n o r t h w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a and had t r a v e l l e d i n a n a n t i c l o c k w i s e d i r e c t i o n a r ound t h e d e s e r t f r i n g e and i n t o t he i n t e r i o r . A t 57. J i g a l o n g i n 1963 I r e c o r d e d songs a l m o s t i d e n t i c a l t o t h o s e r e c o r d e d t w e n t y two y e a r s e a r l i e r and 950 m i l e s away t o t h e s o u t h e a s t by R* and C. B e r nd t ( s ee T o n k i n s o n , 1966:162), w h i c h i s I n d i c a t i v e o f b o t h t h e e x t e n t and e f f e c t i v e n e s s o f i n t e r a r e a c u l t u r a l t r a n s m i s s i o n i n t h e Wes t e r n D e s e r t . Many p e o p l e f r om J i g a l o n g and c o n t i g u o u s Law c e n t r e s s u c h as W i l u n a and N u l l a g i n e a r e r e l a t e d by c o n s a n g u i n e a l and a f f i n a l t i e s , and J i g a l o n g A b o r i g i n e s have r e l a t i v e s as f a r away as L a Grange , t h e s o u t h K i m b e r l e y s , and Wa rbu r t on M i s s i o n . T h i s i s because some g roups d e c i d e d t o l e a v e t h e d e s e r t v i a d i f f e r e n t avenues : i f t h e y went n o r t h a l o n g t h e S t o c k Route t h e y emerged i n t h e s o u t h K i m b e r l e y s , i f t h e y headed wes t n e a r t h e n o r t h end t h e y ended up i n t h e L a Grange a r e a , i f t h e y went s o u t h , t h e y emerged a t W i l u n a , and so o n . On t h e w e s t e r n s i d e o f t h e d e s e r t , J i g a l o n g a p - p e a r s t o a t t r a c t t h e l a r g e s t c o n g r e g a t i o n s o f A b o r i g i n e s a t b i g m e e t i n g t i m e s , p r o b a b l y because i t i s t h e most c e n t r a l l y l o c a t e d Law c e n t r e . S i n c e a l l p e o p l e i n a t t e n d a n c e speak d i a l e c t s o f t h e same b a s i c l a n g u a g e , t h e r e i s no p r o b l e m w i t h commun i ca t i ons B e s i d e s , t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s a l s o s h a r e i n most r e s p e c t s t h e same Law. The s o c i o - c u l t u r a l s i m i l a r i t i e s t h a t a r e so marked be tween J i g a l o n g and o t h e r Law c e n t r e s i n t h e d e s e r t a r e a a r e f u r t h e r e v i d e n c e o f a l o n g h i s t o r y o f c u l t u r a l t r a n s m i s s i o n . B i g mee t i n g s a r e a l w a y s , t o some e x t e n t , p r e - a r r a n g e d . E a ch y e a r , most c e n t r e s choose s e v e r a l men t o make t r i p s t o 58; n e i g h b o u r i n g c e n t r e s f o r mee t i n g s t o g a t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n abou t new r i t u a l s , s o n g l i n e s , e t c * and t o a r r a n g e t h e venue f o r f o r t h c o m i n g b i g meet ings." Messenge r s s en t s p e c i a l l y t o sum- mon A b o r i g i n e s f r om o t h e r c e n t r e s c a r r y w i t h them h a i r b e l t s and s m a l l s a c r e d o b j e c t s (and somet imes a p r e - c i r c u m c i s i o n n o v i c e ) w h i c h a r e supposed t o b i n d t h e o t h e r s t o a c c e p t a n c e o f t h e i n v i t a t i o n . D u r i n g t h e a c t u a l b i g m e e t i n g s , p a r t i c i - p a n t s engage i n t h e exchange o f weapons, o c h r e , p e a r l s h e l l s , s a c r e d boa r d s and o t h e r s a c r e d o b j e c t s , w h i c h s e r v e t o m a i n - t a i n f r i e n d s h i p and c o r e l i g i o n i s t l i n k s among p a r t i c i p a t i n g g r o u p s . The g e n e r a l f o r m a t o f t h e b i g mee t i n g s i s s i m i l a r * The v i s i t o r s a s semb l e o u t s i d e t h e s e t t l e m e n t and d e c o r a t e ; t h e l o c a l s , meanwh i l e , have been g e t t i n g r e a d y f o r days and an a i r o f g r e a t e x c i t e m e n t p r e v a i l s as t h e y d e c o r a t e and as semb le en masse . The v i s i t o r s e n t e r t h e s e t t l e m e n t , s i t a t one s p o t and a r e e n t e r t a i n e d by a massed dance done by t h e l o c a l s . The v i s i t o r s r e c i p r o c a t e , t h e n as soon as p o s s i b l e a f t e r w a r d s , t h e r e i s a s e t t l e m e n t o f a l l o u t s t a n d i n g d i s p u t e s be tween members o f t h e v a r i o u s g roups p r e s e n t , i n r i t u a l f a s h i o n * T h i s must be done e a r l y so t h a t subsequen t r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , w h i c h must t a k e p l a c e i n an a tmosphere o f c o o p e r a t i o n and a m i t y , w i l l n o t be ma r r ed by c o n f l i c t s . I f t h e v i s i t o r s have been summoned t o a t t e n d an i n i t i a t i o n ( g e n e r a l l y t h e r e a r e s e v e r a l n o v i c e s t o be p u t t h r o u g h a t each b i g m e e t i n g ) , t h i s w i l l u s u a l l y be t h e f i r s t o r d e r o f b u s i n e s s * I f , however , t h e y a r e 59* i n v i t e d t o be i n i t i a t e d i n t o a p a r t i c u l a r r i t u a l , t h i s w i l l be t h e f i r s t e ven t s t a g e d . The r e i s some i n i t i a t o r y a c t i v i t y i n v o l v i n g c i r c u m c i s i o n and s u b i n c i s i o n a t v i r t u a l l y e v e r y b i g m e e t i n g , because v i s i t o r s a r e p r e f e r r e d f o r t h e r o l e s o f o p e r a t o r s * A boy c anno t be o p e r a t e d upon by a c l o s e l y r e - l a t e d k insman,and"the subsequent r e l a t i o n s h i p i s one c h a r a c t e r i z e d by embarrassment and a v o i d a n c e , so i t i s p r e f e r a b l e t o choose men f r om o t h e r c ommun i t i e s t o do t h e j o b . Mos t mee t i ng s l a s t a t l e a s t two o r t h r e e weeks , a f t e r w h i c h t h e v i s i t o r s d e p a r t and l o c a l men b e g i n t o r e t u r n t o t h e i r work on s t a t i o n s . A t W i l u n a and M a r b l e B a r , and pe rhaps s t i l l a t P o r t Hed- l a n d , t h e r e i s u s u a l l y some r i t u a l a c t i v i t y h e l d a t Bace M e e t i n g t i m e , and t h e r e a r e g e n e r a l l y mee t i n g s o f men f r om t h e v a r i o u s a r e a s t o p l a n f o r f u t u r e b i g m e e t i n g s . W i t h t h e s t e a d y i n c r e a s e i n b o t h t h e number and r o a d - w o r t h i n e s s o f A b o r i g i n a l - o w n e d v e h i c l e s , i n t e r a r e a commun i ca t i ons a r e i m - p r o v i n g , and A b o r i g i n e s a l s o make f r e q u e n t u se o f r a d i o - t e l e g r a p h t o i n f o r m o t h e r c e n t r e s abou t t h e i r movements and r e q u e s t t r a n s p o r t a s s i s t a n c e . Fo r ; a l l t h i s , b i g mee t i ng s r a r e l y b e g i n on s c h e d u l e , and t r a v e l l i n g g roups i n v a r i a b l y spend much l o n g e r on t h e r o a d t h a n i n t e n d e d , what w i t h b r e a k - downs and d e l a y s a t ' w a t e r i n g - p l a c e s ' en r o u t e , where t h i r s t s a r e n o t e a s i l y s l a k e d and t h e b e e r i s i c e - c o l d . N e v e r t h e l e s s , i t appea r s t h a t news o f impend i ng mee t i ng s i s s p r e a d i n g f u r - t h e r now, and g roups o f A b o r i g i n e s a r e mov i ng f u r t h e r f r om 60* t h e i r home c e n t r e s t h a n e v e r b e f o r e t o a t t e n d them. No r does t h e r e seem t o be a diminution <• i n t h e amount o f r i t u a l m a t e r i a l b e i n g t r a n s m i t t e d be tween most centres•* I n f a c t i t appea red d u r i n g t h e 1969-70 b i g m e e t i n g a t J i g a l o n g t h a t t h e r e was a s u r f e i t o f p o s s i b l e r i t u a l s and t h e men were h a v i n g d i f f i c u l t i e s i n d e c i d i n g w h i c h t o pe r f o rm . ' P. Eu ropean C u l t u r e and t h e T r a d i t i o n a l B e l i g l o n * Because l o c a l w h i t e s were n o t i n t e r e s t e d and t h e m i s s i o n - a r i e s were f r i g h t e n e d t o i n t e r f e r e a c t i v e l y i n r i t u a l a c t i v - i t i e s , J i g a l o n g ' s A b o r i g i n e s have had no d i f f i c u l t y i n s h i e l d i n g t h e i r r e l i g i o n f r om d i r e c t a l i e n i n f l u e n c e s * A f t e r l e a v i n g t h e d o r m i t o r i e s , v i r t u a l l y a l l t e en - age c h i l d r e n q u i c k l y s l o u g h e d o f f what l i t t l e A p o s t o l i c C h r i s t i a n i t y may have seeped t h r o u g h and i n g e n e r a l t h e y p r o c e e d e d t o follow the c u l t u r a l d i c t a t e s o f t h e i r e l d e r s . As young a d u l t s t h e i r b e - l i e f i n t h e r e a l i t y and t r u t h o f t h e Dreamt ime appea r s t o r e - m a i n s t r o n g , and t h e y emu l a t e t h e r e s t 6T t h e communi ty i n f o l l o w i n g most o f t h e d i c t a t e s o f t h e Law* As y e t , t h e r e have been few t h r e a t s p o s e d w i t h r e g a r d t o t h e p o s s i b l e a l i e n a t i o n o f t h e young , and c h i l d r e n c o n t i n u e t o j o i n t h e l o c a l communi ty a f t e r l e a v i n g e l e m e n t a r y s c h o o l , r a t h e r t h a n c o n t i n u e t h e i r e d u c a t i o n out s i d e t h e a r e a * T r u e , t h e r e a r e e v e r - p r e s e n t i n t e r g e n e r a t i o n a l t e n s i o n s , c au sed m a i n l y by a m u t u a l ^ d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n abou t b e h a v i o u r : t h e e l d e r s f e e l t h a t t o o many o f t h e younger p e o p l e a r e i n t e r e s t e d o n l y i n s e x , n o t i n t h e Law, w h i l e on t h e o t h e r hand , t h e 6 1 . young men c o m p l a i n t h a t t h e e l d e r s a r e l e t h a r g i c abou t g e t t i n g r i t u a l s o r g a n i z e d and p e r f o r m e d , s i n c e t h e y a l l e g e d l y spend most o f t h e i r t i m e engaged i n e n d l e s s d i s c u s s i o n and a rgumen t . T h i s t r i e s t h e p a t i e n c e o f t h e young men, who s a y t h a t t h e y have r e t u r n e d t o t h e s e t t l e m e n t t o be p u t t h r o u g h r i t u a l s , n o t t o hang a r ound w a i t i n g f o r t h e e l d e r s t o a c t . Bu t so f a r t h e r e have been no m a j o r c o n f l i c t s p i t t i n g t h e younger i n i t - i a t e d men a g a i n s t t h e i r e l d e r s , and b o t h g roups c o n t i n u e t o s h a r e s u b s t a n t i a l l y s i m i l a r v a l u e - o r i e n t a t i o n s . D e s p i t e t h e i r a d o p t i o n o f many o f t h e t r a p p i n g s o f a ' cowboy c u l t u r e ' , t h e young men a r e n o t r e a l l y more i n v o l v e d i n t h e a l i e n c u l t u r e and most s ee f o r t h e m s e l v e s a f u t u r e t h a t i s much t h e same as t h a t o f t h e i r e l d e r st Young n e w l y i n i t i a t e d men show much e n t h u s i a s m f o r r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s * I t i s some o f t h e o l d e r m i d d l e - a g e d men, n o t them, who a r e a d d i c t e d t o c a r d - p l a y i n g , w h i c h a t t i m e s c o n s t i - t u t e s a n i n d i r e c t t h r e a t t o t h e r e l i g i o u s l i f e . I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o a s s e s s whe the r o r n o t c a r d - p l a y i n g i s on t h e i n c r e a s e , s i n c e i t i s a f a v o u r i t e s p a r e - t i m e and s t a t i o n a c t i v i t y , b u t a t t i m e s i t i s a s t r o n g enough c o u n t e r a t t r a c t i o n t o s t o p some o f i t s a d d i c t s f r o n r a p a r t i e i p a t i n g i n r i t u a l s , and f o r t h i s r e a s o n has been s t r o n g l y a t t a c k e d by o t h e r A b o r i g i n e s * C u r r e n t l y , A b o r i g i n e s a r e n o t supposed t o p l a y c a r d s a t any t i m e d u r i n g r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , a c c o r d i n g t o a r u l e p r o m u l g a t e d by t h e men 's c o u n c i l , b u t t r a n s g r e s s i o n s n e v e r t h e l e s s some- t i m e s o c cu r* So f a r , t h e y have i n v o l v e d a s m a l l m i n o r i t y o f 62* men* and have had no adverse effect on the r i t u a l l i f e . There has been some incorporation of European material elements into eertain aspects of the religious l i f e , where their presence and use are not viewed as contravening any ancestral directives. Thus wool and cloth binding-strips are used extensively i n the making of thread-crosses, because the highly coloured wool improves their appearances. Male dancers often wear cotton shorts, and many women now wear brassieres i n addition to skirts when they dance. Axes, chisels and so on are used for the cutting and carving of sacred objects, since by using these the men are able to carve with more accuracy and care than with stone tools. Vehicles are used frequently for hunting, and for carting food, water and firewood i n connection with r i t u a l feasts* At these feasts, European foods have replaced traditional vegetable foods, and canned meats supplement the meat supplied by hunting* But the local men have not followed the./, practice 6f Aborigines i n some other areas who use steel knives and razor blades as circumcision instruments; at Jigalong stone knives are s t i l l used i n the operation, since this i s the Law. The Jigalong people are very well aware of what i s happening to the traditional religion among Aborigines i n most town areas, and during their v i s i t s to these places can clearly see the effects of grog and gambling on ifehe Law there. But they do not vizualize any similar breakdown occurring at the settlement, because they are aware of their relative iso- 63. l a t i o n a t J i g a l o n g and o f t h e p r o t e c t i v e b e n e f i t s t h a t t h i s e n t a i l s . 64* C h a p t e r 3* Ra i nmak i ng i n A b o r i g i n a l A u s t r a l i a T h i s c h a p t e r p r e s e n t s a s u r v e y o f a v a i l a b l e l i t e r a t u r e on r a i n m a k i n g i n A b o r i g i n a l A u s t r a l i a , w i t h t h e a im o f d i s - c e r n i n g t h e m a i n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s common t o most a r e a s r e p o r t e d upon , and t h r o u g h t h i s s u r v e y , t o d raw a t t e n t i o n t o t h e many u n i q u e f e a t u r e s o f t h e D a : w a j i l r i t u a l a s p e r f o r m e d a t J i g a l o n g * A l t h o u g h many books abou t A b o r i g i n e s m e n t i o n r a i n m a k i n g p r a c t i c e s , u s u a l l y unde r t h e r u b r i c o f b e n e f i c e n t m a g i c , t h e r e f e r e n c e s so made a r e i n v a r i a b l y b r i e f and s k e t c h y , and nowhere does a d e t a i l e d and c o h e r e n t a c c oun t o f r a i n m a k i n g emerge i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e . The r e a s o n s f o r t h i s r e l a t i v e p a u c i t y o f i n f o r m a t i o n a r e n o t c l e a r . P e r hap s i t i s because v e r y few r a i n m a k i n g c e r e m o n i e s , w h i c h a r e g e n e r a l l y h e l d i n s e c r e t away f r om camps, have e v e r a c t u a l l y been w i t n e s s e d , so most e x i s t i n g a c c o u n t s were r e c e i v e d se cond -hand f r om A b o r i g i n a l i n f o r m a n t s . A n o t h e r p o s s i b l e r e a s o n i s t h a t i n d i v i d u a l r a i n m a k i n g , o r t h a t i n v o l v i n g a s m a l l g roup o f e l d e r s , appea r s t o be t h e dominan t f o rm o f r a i n m a k i n g as r e v e a l e d by t h e l i t e r a t u r e , and i n r e l a t i v e l y f ew a r e a s a r e l a r g e r c o l l e c t i v e r i t e s known t o have been p r a c t i s e d . I f o u n d l e s s t h a n a h a l f a d o z e n a c c o u n t s , i n any d e t a i l a t a l l , o f c o l l e c t i v e r i t e s b e i n g p e r f o r m e d , and w i l l r e f e r t o them l a t e r i n t h i s c h a p t e r . I t may w e l l b e , however , t h a t c o l l e c t i v e r a i n m a k i n g r i t e s were f a r more common and w i d e s p r e a d i n p r e - c o n t a c t t i m e s , bu t 6 5 . i n the areas of greatest influence by whites these and other facets of the r i t u a l l i f e were among the f i r s t to be abandoned. This i s suggested by the fact that the c o l l e c t i v e r i t e s that have been recorded occurred i n widely scattered parts of the continent, although a l l of them inland and i n r e l a t i v e l y a r i d areas. There i s i n s u f f i c i e n t information to posit any close c o r r e l a t i o n between a r i d areas and rainmaking and well-watered areas and a lack of such practices, so t h i s w i l l not be attempted. R. and C. Berndt (1945:180-181) report that at Ooldea i n the Great V i c t o r i a Desert, which i s part of the Western Desert c u l t u r a l bloc, rainmaking i s less important than expected, and they contrast t h i s region with the more a r i d D i e r i t r i b a l area where water shortages are a r e a l pro- blem and rainmaking has been developed into a f i n e a r t , with both i n d i v i d u a l and c o l l e c t i v e rainmaking r i t e s performed under the d i r e c t i o n of native doctors. Unfortunately, we have no .detailed information about the D i e r i , apart from Gason's b r i e f description of a c o l l e c t i v e D i e r i r i t e (Taplin, 1879: 7 6 - 7 7 ) , which w i l l be referred to l a t e r (page 7 7 ) . Spencer and G i l l e n ( 1 8 9 9 : 1 8 9 - 1 9 3 ) , who give a reasonably d e t a i l e d ac- count of a rainmaking increase r i t e , also mention i n passing that some ceremonies connected with the making of r a i n take the form of ordinary dancing f e s t i v a l s which any member of the Aranda t r i b e , man or woman, of whatever class or totem, can see, but again, nowhere do they give an account of one of these f e s t i v a l s . However, the totemic increase r i t e that they do describe bears some resemblances to parts of the !3a:wajil 66 . and t h e s e w i l l be a l l u d e d t o l a t e r . A . M y t h o l o g i c a l R e f e r e n c e s S i n c e a l l a n c e s t r a l c r e a t i v e b e i n g s a r e b e l i e v e d t o have been endowed w i t h g r e a t m a g i c a l powe r s , i t c a n be e x p e c t e d t h a t among t h e i r many a c t i v i t i e s some o f them wou l d engage i n r a i n m a k i n g d u r i n g t h e i r t r a v e l s . Thus t h e r e a r e many a c c o u n t s o f myths i n w h i c h r a i n m a k i n g o c c u r s ( v i d e S p e n c e r and G i l l e n , 1899:109, 1904:294, 31^, 393-39^, 1912 :21 -22 ; R. B e r n d t , 19^7 : 359 -364 ; Hs and C. B e r n d t , 19^5:180; M o u n t f o r d , 1956: 208 , 210 , 218; M e g g i t t , 1 9 6 6 : 5 - 2 2 ) , e i t h e r as a n i n c i d e n t a l f e a t u r e o f a l o n g my th , as i n M e g g i t t ' s d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t o f t h e wande r i ng s o f t h e Mamandabar i men, o r as a d i s c r e t e a c - c oun t i n i t s e l f ; As an example o f t h e l a t t e r , S p e n c e r and G i l l e n ( 1912 :21 -22 ) g i v e an a c c o u n t o f an A r abana myth c o n - c e r n i n g U l a r a k a , a Dreamt ime man, who had.r.plenty o f gypsum, a s u b s t a n c e o f t e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h r a i n men because i t i s w h i t e l i k e c l o u d s * U l a r a k a g round some gypsum t h e n t h r e w i t i n t o t h e s k y , where i t became c l o u d s t h e n came back t o e a r t h i n t h e f o rm o f r a i nmen and women. As c l o u d s , t h e ; ; r a i n - b e i n g s r e p e a t e d l y r o s e and r a i n f e l l , f i l l i n g c r e e k s and c l a y p a n s . L a t e r , U l a r a k a went t r a v e l l i n g w i t h a l l t h e p e o p l e he had made r i d i n g on h i s b a c k . The r a i n s p i r i t s he l e f t b e h i n d l a t e r t u r n e d i n t o A b o r i g i n a l men and women o f t h e r a i n t o t e m . I n some c a s e s t h e r e a r e myths c o n c e r n i n g r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s t h a t a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h p a r t i c u l a r l o c a l i t i e s t h a t a r e i n - 67. crease centres for rain. Spencer and Gillen (1904:294-296), i n describing a Kaitish (Northern Territory tribe) increase r i t e , say that i t i s performed at a place called Anira, where i n the Dreamtime two old men sat down and drew water from their whiskers,the latter now represented by stones from which the rainbow arose. Many of these myths that mention rainmaking by Dream- time heroes generally refer to the use of certain objects and substances that ape considered to be essential to the rain- making endeavours of man: blood, human hair, bird feathers, gypsum or quartz crystals, pearlshells and water. These are the most common and widespread media through which the Aborigines hope to bring up rain. They use sympathetic magi- cal practices expecting that the ancestral beings w i l l cooperate and send rain(which i s requested by means of r i t u a l manipula- tion of these various*objects). Both elements, the objects and the expectation of cooperation by the associated ances- t r a l beings, appear to be common features of Australian Aboriginal rainmaking beliefs and practices. B; GeneraI->:Features of Aboriginal Balnmaking. The following summary outlines the main characteristics of rainmaking that are common to most areas of Aboriginal Australia'; Rainmaking r i t e s , of whatever type, are held only during certain seasons of the year, at times when rain can be reason- ably expected to f a l l (Roth, 1897:168; Warner, 1937/64:208; Abbie, 1969:155). Generally i t i s unthinkable that Aborigines 68. wou l d a t t emp t t o make r a i n o t h e r t h a n d u r i n g t h e r i g h t s e a s o n . M o u n t f o r d (1956 :218) r e p o r t s t h a t t h e A b o r i g i n e s a t O e n p e l l i i n N o r t h E a s t Arnhem Land made a d e m o n s t r a t i o n r a i n - p o l e f o r t h e i r w h i t e v i s i t o r s , bu t r e f u s e d t o s i n g t h e a s s o c i a t e d songs u n t i l t h e p o l e was h e a v i l y wrapped i n p a p e r b a r k and t a k e n f a r enough away? t h a t i t c o u l d n o t •hear* t h e s ongs ; o t h e r w i s e , t h e A b o r i g i n e s a v e r r e d , i f t h e r a i # s p i r i t e n t e r e d t h e g round a t t h a t ( t h e wrong) t i m e o f y e a r , heavy r a i n wou l d come and f l o o d them a l l o u t . Mos t a c c o u n t s s a y t h a t t h e r e a r e s p e c i a l i s t s i n t h e a r t o f r a i n m a k i n g ( e . g . C u r r , 1886,1:403,11:144;Spencer and G i l l e n , 1899:189; S p e n c e r , 1928:9; H o w i t t , 1904:398; E l k i n 1933:^79 ,^80) bu t i n a f ew c a s e s ( B o t h , 1897:167; Warner , 1937 /64:208) i t i s s t a t e d t h a t anyone c a n make r a i n . The r a i n m a k e r s and a c t i v e p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h e r i t e s a r e n e a r l y a l - ways m i d d l e - a g e d and o l d e r men, o f t e n n a t i v e d o c t o r s , o r men who by v i r t u e o f t h e i r p o s s e s s i o n f i o f c e r t a i n ra inmakt ing ob - j e c t s a r e s o c i a l l y s a n c t i o n e d t o make r a i n f o r t h e b e n e f i t o f t h e g roup as a w h o l e . Ra i nmak i ng i s g e n e r a l l y p r a c t i s e d a t a s p o t some d i s t a n c e f r om and ou t o f s i g h t o f camp ing a r e a s , away f r o m t h e eyes and e a r s o f women and c h i l d r e n , and o f t e n c l o s e t o some body o f w a t e r ( C u r r , 1 8 8 6 , 1 : 4 8 ; H o w i t t , 1904:397 S p e n c e r and G i l l e n , 1904:313-315; E l k i n , 1933:295,4-97). O f t en t h e b l o w i n g o r s p l a s h i n g o f w a t e r i s an i m p o r t a n t p a r t o f t h e p r o c e e d i n g s ( R o t h , 1897:167; S p e n c e r and G i l l e n , 1904:294-296, 313-314; H o w i t t , 1904:398; Thomas, 1906:236-237; McCa r t hy 1957:1^9-150; Warner , 1937 / 64:209). 69. A l t h o u g h r a i n m a k i n g as b e n e f i c e n t mag i c i s s o c i a l l y s a n c t i o n e d , i n some a r e a s t h e r e i s a b e l i e f t h a t p r o l o n g e d , f l o o d i n g r a i n i s c a u s ed by t h e a c t i o n s o f u n f r i e n d l y A b o r i g i n e s i n o f che r*a reas . J u d g i n g by t h e a v a i l a b l e e v i d e n c e , i t i s c l e a r t h a t A b o r i g i n e s a r e as c on c e r n ed w i t h t e c h n i q u e s f o r s t o p p i n g r a i n as f o r p r o d u c i n g i t , be cause i n n e a r l y a l l p a r t s o f A u s t r a l i a r e p o r t e d on , t h e r e a r e w e l l known methods o f s t o p p i n g r a i n when enough i s deemed t o have f a l l e n ( C u r r , 1 8 8 6 , 1 : 4 8 ; B o t h , 1897:168; How i t t ,1904:396 - 398 ; E l k i n , 1933-^90, 19^5:1^2, M cCa r t h y , 1957:150, Warner , 1937 /64:209; B. and C. B e r n d t , 1970ba43- 1 4 4 . ) The need f o r r a i n i n most p a r t s o f t h e a r i d A u s t r a l i a n c o n t i n e n t a ppea r s t o be so o b v i o u s t h a t few w r i t e r s have t h ough t t o comment on t h e m a n i f e s t pu r po se s o f r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t y . McCa r t hy (1957:1^9), i n h i s g e n e r a l work , r e f e r s t o t h e p r e s e n c e o f one o r more r i t u a l l y s a n c t i o n e d and o f f i c i a l l y r e c o g n i z e d c o n t r o l l e r s o f wea t he r i n most l o c a l g r o u p s , who employ t r a d i t i o n a l methods c r e a t e d i n t h e Dream- t i m e , and make r a i n f o r any o f t h e f o l l o w i n g r e a s o n s : t o end d r o u g h t , t o p u n i s h ; a n o t h e r g roup by s e n d i n g s t o rms t o s p o i l t h e i r h u n t i n g and f i s h i n g , t o o b l i t e r a t e t r a c k s o f r evenge e x p e d i t i o n s , and t o c o o l t h e a tmosphere i n t h e h o t summer mon ths . McCa r t hy p r o b a b l y d e r i v e d most o f t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n f r om B. and C. B e r n d t (1945 :180-181) who a r e t h e o n l y o t h e r w r i t e r s t o have s u g g e s t e d m o t i v e s f o r mak i ng r a i n , d u r i n g t h e i r d i s c u s s i o n o f r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s i n t h e Oo l d ea a r e a o f S o u t h A u s t r a l i a . The B e r n d t s s ugge s t 7 0 . that there, r a i n i§ made less to f i l l waterholes than f o r i t s cooling e f f e c t and i t s use i n helping Aborigines track animals. I f thi s i s the case, the Ooldea people d i f f e r markedly i n t h e i r reasons f o r rainmaking from the Jigalong Aborigines who at t r i b u t e a wider and more important o v e r a l l purpose to t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s i n bringing up r a i n every summer. The singing of c e r t a i n chants or songs seems to be an esse n t i a l part of rainmaking a l l over the continent, but unfortunately few writers have ever recorded the words of the songs, and none appear to have .offered i n t e r l i n e a r translations, so we know nothing of t h e i r subject matter. I t i s thus impossible to compare or contrast any of them to the many songs that are sung at Jigalong during the Da:wajil. In many areas there are c e r t a i n tabus associated with rainmaking practices, mostly involving some r e s t r i c t i o n of contact with women (Curr, 1 8 8 6 , 1 1 : 1 8 3 ; Roth, 1 8 9 7 : 1 6 7 , 1 6 8 ; Howitt, 1 9 0 4 : 3 9 7 ; Spencer and G i l l e n , 1 8 9 9 : 1 8 9 - 1 9 3 ; 1 9 0 4 : 2 9 4 - 2 9 6 ; E l k i n , 1933:480), but i n few cases are there any e x p l i c i t reasons given f o r such tabus or r e s t r i c t i o n s . 1 The only exception I have found i s given by R. and C. Berndt ( 1 9 4 5 : 1 8 2 ) who c i t e an example of the kind of song sung during a rainmaking r i t e at Ooldea: j i l g a r i n a bilararanu j i l g a r i n a b i l a r a no r a i n or clouds/lightning and heavy r a i n / no r a i n and clouds/ l i g h t n i n g and heavy r a i n . 71. On t h e o t h e r hand , among t h e D i e r i ( T a p l i n , 1879:76-77), t h e M i o r l i ( B o t h , 1897:167), t h e G e o r g i n a B i v e r t r i b e s ( B o t h , 1897:168) and t h e A r anda (Spence r and G i l l e n , 1899: 1 9 3 ) , women have a d e f i n i t e p a r t t o p l a y a t some s t a g e d u r i n g t h e r i t u a l p e r f o r m a n c e , e ven t hough i t i s a p e r i - p h e r a l one . T h i s p a r a l l e l s t h e r o l e o f women d u r i n g t h e D a : w a j i l , b u t t h e i r i n v o l v e m e n t i s much more a n i n t e g r a l p a r t o f t h e r i t u a l . The most w i d e s p r e a d r a i n m a k i n g o b j e c t s have a l r e a d y been l i s t e d . The g e n e r a l d i s t r i b u t i o n o f t h e s e r a i n m a k i n g med i a i s p r o b a b l y p a r t l y a r e s u l t o f d i f f u s i o n and p a r t l y due t o f e a t u r e s h e l d i n common w i t h c e r t a i n wea the r phenomena by t h e s e o b j e c t s . Thus b l o o d and human h a i r ( o f t e n f r om t h e b ea r d ) u s u a l l y s e o n n o t e r a i n ; b i r d down, f e a t h e r s , gypsum, c a l c i t e and q u a r t z c r y s t a l s a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h c l o u d s , s h a r i n g t h e common c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f w h i t i s h c o l - o u r a t i o n , Q u a r t z c r y s t a l s and p e a r l s h e l l , because o f t h e i r p r i s m a t i c c o l o u r i n g and i r i d e s c e n c e , a l s o c onno t e t h e r a i n b o w , w h i c h i s eve rywhe re c o n n e c t e d i n some way w i t h r a i n . Some r i t e s i n v o l v e t h e c r u s h i n g o f w h i t e s t o n e s i n t o powder , w h i c h i s t h e n t h r own i n t o w a t e r o r t h e a i r , t o s i m u l a t e and p romote t h e appea rance o f c l o u d s ( B o t h , 1897:168; S pen ce r and G i l l e n , 1904:311; H o w i t t / 1904:397). As McCa r t hy (1957:1^9) n o t e s , most methods i n v o l v i n g s u ch o b j e c t s a r e i m i t a t i v e o f c l o u d s and f a l l i n g r a i n , and l e s s o f t e n , o f t h e movements o f a q u a t i c a n i m a l s ( v i d e (Both. 1897:168). 72. In some areas, the media involved i n bringing rain are quite different f r om those l i s t e d above, and seem to be unique to the particular group. Among the Murngin of Arnhem Land, for instance, (Warner, 1927/64:208) a man makes a human image out of grass and then buries i t . Once i t has noticeably swelled up, rain i s supposed to begin f a l l i n g . Members of one moiety of the T j i n g i l l i tribe of the Northern Territory (Spencer and Gillen, 1904:311) catch a bandicoot, wrap i t i n paperbark and carry i t around i n a dish and sing over i t u n t i l i t becomes thin and weak. I t i s then released, and rain i s supposed to follow. McCarthy (1957:150) reports that among the Barkundji tribe of the Darling River region i n New South Wales, a piece of flesh was cut from a dead man's stomach or the thigh of a dead child, then sun-dried and cut into strips. I t was then distributed among friends of the deceased, some of whom would, i n d r y seasonsj throw a piece into the r i v e r to bring rain. Among the Dieri (Howitt, 1904:396), the severed foreskincof an i n i t i a t e was believed to have great power to produce rain. I t was kept i n feathers and opened out of sight of women, then buried; rain was expected to follow soon after. The natural species most commonly associated with rain and weather phenomena i s the snake, which i n turn connotes the rainbow. Myths and related cults of the Rainbow Serpent 7 3 . or mythical snakes are very widespread, e s p e c i a l l y across northern A u s t r a l i a . Whatever the name and ch a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the serpent, i t i s everywhere linke d c l o s e l y to r a i n and water sources (Badcliffe-Brown, 1 9 2 6 : 1 9 - 2 5 ; 1 9 3 0 : 3 ^ 2 - 3 4 7 ; E l k i n , 1 9 3 0 a : 2 7 9 , 1 9 3 0 b : 3 ^ 9 - 3 5 2 , 1 9 5 ^ : 2 2 0 - 2 2 1 ; Kaberry, 1 9 3 5 : ^ 3 5 , 1 9 3 9 : 1 9 ^ ; Piddington, 1 9 3 0 * 3 5 2 - 3 5 ^ ; H. and C. Berndt, 1 9 6 4 : 2 0 9 ) . In Arnhem Land the mythological serpent, under a variety of names, i s the major ancestral being i n a number of important c u l t s , such as the Kunapipi, Djangawul and Maraian, but i n these the ;maintenance of the r e g u l a r i t y of the wet season appears to be i n c i d e n t a l to the o v e r a l l purpose of these performances, which i s the f e r t i l i t y and well-being of the Aborigines (See Warner, 1937/64 :372-377; E. Berndt, 1 9 5 1 , 1952; R. and C. Berndt, 1 9 6 4 : 2 0 9 , 1970b; E l k i n , 1 9 6 1 : 5 ) . In the Kimberley area of north western A u s t r a l i a , the famous Wandjina cave paintings are believed to be c l o s e l y linked with mythological snakes, clouds and weather phenomena (Elkin, 1 9 3 3 : 4 6 1 ; Lommel, 1 9 4 9 : 1 6 0 ; Hernandez, 1 9 6 1 : 1 1 6 ; Arndt, 1 9 6 4 : 1 6 1 - 1 6 9 ; Crawford, 1 9 6 8 ) . Some Aboriginal be- l i e f s about the Wandjina and associated r a i n and cloud s p i r i t s p a r a l l e l c e r t a i n b e l i e f s held by the people of Jigalong, as w i l l be pointed out i n subsequent chapters, but the name Wandjina i s unknown to them. Among the Warramunga t r i b e of northern central A u s t r a l i a 7*. t h e r e a r e m a j o r c e r emon i e s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h , a m y t h i c a l s n a k e , c a l l e d Wo l l u nqua (Spence r and G i l l e n , 1904:226- 25 6 ) . F u r t h e r s o u t h , t h e P i t j a n d j a r a - s p e a k i n g p e o p l e s s h a r e myths c o n c e r n i n g t h e b i g snake Wonampi, w h i c h i s c o n - n e c t e d c l o s e l y w i t h t h e i n i t i a t i o n o f n a t i v e d o c t o r s and w i t h r a i n and w a t e r s o u r c e s (R . and C. B e r n d t , 1945:160- 164, 182; E l k i n , 19^5:113,115; M o u n t f o r d , 1965:152-15^; G o u l d , 1.969a:210). I n t e r e s t i n g l y , : t h e A b o r i g i n e s a t J i g a - l o n g appea r n o t t o have known t h e word Wonampi, and when r e f e r r i n g t o w a t e r - s n a k e s t h a t l i v e i n t h e r a i n m a k i n g c o u n t r y n o r t h e a s t o f t h e s e t t l e m e n t t h e y u s e t h e s i n g l e g e n e r i c t e r m d . l i l a . No r do t h e y have any c o n s t e l l a t i o n o f b e l i e f s r e l a t i n g t o t h e s w a l l o w i n g and r e g u r g i t a t i n g a c t i v i t i e s o f m y t h i c a l s n a k e s , w h i c h a r e common t o n o r t h e r n A u s t r a l i a and d e s e r t a r e a s w e l l s o u t h e a s t o f J i g a l o n g . B i r d s a r e t h e o n l y o t h e r n a t u r a l s p e c i e s o f t e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h A b o r i g i n a l r a i n m a k i n g b e l i e f s and a c t i v i t i e s ( B o t h , 1897:168; S p e n c e r and G i l l e n , 1899:189-193; 1904: 314093; S p e n c e r , 1928:359; He rnandez , 1961:116).Some myths e x p l i c i t l y m e n t i o n p a r t i c u l a r k i n d s o f b i r d s t h a t a c t e d a s messengers f o r r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s , o r b r ough t up t h e r a i n t h e m s e l v e s . T h i s h e l p s t o e x p l a i n t h e common use o f b i r d down and b i r d f e a t h e r s a s p a r t o f r a i n m a k i n g d e c o r a - t i o n s . I n most c a s e s , t h e b i r d s p e c i e s c on c e r n ed a r e t h o s e e l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h w a t e r h o l e s , l a k e s , e t c . o r w i t h 75. t h u n d e r s t o r m s and r a i n f a l l , wn i oh s u g g e s t s why t h e y were c ho s en i n m y t h o l o g i c a l a c c o u n t s as f r i e n d s , companions o r messengers o f t h e Dreamt ime r a i n m a k e r s . I n s e v e r a l a c - c o u n t s r e c o r d e d , p a r t i c u l a r l y t h o s e c o n c e r n i n g c o l l e c t i v e r a i n m a k i n g r i t e s , t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s must s i n g ou t c e r t a i n b i r d c a l l s a s a n accompaniment t o t h e i r s i n g i n g . T h i s i s what o c c u r s d u r i n g t h e D a : w a j i l a t J i g a l o n g , where each g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l g r o u p i n g i s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h a p a r t i c u l a r r a i n m a k i n g b i r d , and most o f t h e n o n - s e c r e t , s a c r e d d a n c i n g i s i n i m i t a t i o n o f t h e f l i g h t and a c t i v i t i e s o f t h e s e two b i r d s . Mos t d e s c r i p t i o n s o f r a i n m a k i n g r i t e s end w i t h a com- ment t o t h e e f f e c t t h a t r a i n i s e x p e c t e d t o f o l l o w soon a f t e r w a r d s , bu t l a r g e l y a b s e n t f r om t h e l i t e r a t u r e a r e e x p l a n a t i o n s o f f a i l u r e , w h i c h must o c c u r f r om t i m e t o t i m e . M c C a r t h y (1957:150), i n h i s g e n e r a l a c c oun t o f r a i n - m a k i n g , s a y s t h a t f a i l u r e i s e x p l a i n e d by i m p r o p e r p r o c e d u r e , t h e a n g e r o f t h e A b o r i g i n e s : ! " s p i r i t u a l b e n e f a c t o r s , someone 's n e g l e c t t o o b s e r v e a t a b u , o r t h e c o u n t e r - m a g i c o f a n enemy g r o u p . Among t h e D i e r i ( T a p l i n , 1879:77), f a i l u r e o f t h e i r c o l l e c t i v e r i t e i s a t t r i b u t e d t o t h e muramura s p i r i t s b e i n g a n g r y w i t h t h e g r o u p , o r i s b lamed on a n o t h e r l o c a l g roup w h i c h has n u l l i f i e d t h e power o f t h e r a i n - m a k e r s . The l o n g l i s t o f e x p l a n a t i o n s o f f a i l u r e o f t h e D a : w a j i l t o b r i n g r a i n t o J i g a l o n g ( s ee pages 114-116 ) ) 76. s u g g e s t s t h e c a p r i c i o u s n e s s o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g b e i n g s and t h e m i s c h i e v o u s n e s s o f man as p l a u s i b l e r e a s o n s f o r t h e n o n - a r r i v a l o f r a i n . C . R a i nmak i ng I n c r e a s e B i t e s A l l r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s , o f wha t e ve r t y p e , c a n be r e g a r d e d as a f o rm o f i n c r e a s e r i t e , s i n c e t h e i r a im i s eve rywhe re t o p romote t h e f a l l o f r a i n . Bu t some r i t e s a r e more n e a r l y t y p i c a l o f o t h e r i n c r e a s e r i t e s i n t h a t t h e y must be p e r f o r m e d a t a s p e c i f i c s p o t by men who have c l o s e t o t e m i c a s s o c i a t i o n s w i t h t h a t p l a c e , w h i c h i s g e n e r a l l y somewhere where a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s a r e s a i d t o have p e r - f o rmed r a i n m a k i n g mag i c i n t h e D reamt ime ,and i s t h e r e f o r e a r e p o s i t o r y o f r a i n - s p i r i t s o r o f r a i n - m a k i n g l i f e e s s en ce o r powe r . The r i t e s t h a t a r e p e r f o r m e d a t o r n e a r t h e s e s p o t s c a n be e i t h e r i n d i v i d u a l , i n v o l v i n g a t most two o r t h r e e r a i n t o t em men, o r c o l l e c t i v e , w i t h l a r g e numbers o f men p a r t i c i p a t i n g . E l k i n (1933:295, 461) g i v e s some examples o f t h e f o r m e r t y p e o f r i t e : among t h e Yauo r t r i b e o f t h e d r y c o a s t a l r e g i o n n o r t h o f L a Grange i n n o r t h - w e s t e r n Wes t e r n A u s t r a l i a , a member o f t h e l o c a l g roup w h i c h has s p r i n g - w a t e r f o r i t s t o t e m goes t o t h e s p r i n g c o n c e r n e d and d i g s a h o l e n e a r b y , i n w h i c h w a t e r r i s e s . He t h e n makes a heap o f e a r t h , w h i c h i s b l a c k a t t h e bo t t om and w h i t e a t t h e t o p , r e p r e s e n t i n g a c l o u d . I t i s n o t known whe the r o r n o t s i n g i n g t a k e s p l a c e 77. i n accompaniment to the r i t e . Senior rain-totem men of the Ungarinyin t r i b e i n the Kimberley region allegedly bring up r a i n simply by retouching c e r t a i n Wondjina cave paintings i n t h e i r home area. For one p a r t i c u l a r Ungarinyin Wondjina, the headman of the totemic group need only dream that he has v i s i t e d the rock g a l l e r y to usher i n the wet season there. TOhe making of a dream-spirit journey, which i s an i n t e - g r a l part of the Darwajil at Jigalong, i s also part of a rainmaking r i t e reported by R. Berndt (19^7:359-365) f o r the Wuradjeri people of Menindee on the Darling Biver, i n Eastern A u s t r a l i a . The native doctor who decides to do the rainmaking 'sings' the camp's inhabitants to sleep, and sings over a quartz c r y s t a l rainstone and bundle of feathers, then goes i n dream-spirit form into the skyworld from which a l l r a i n emanates. Next morning he puts the objects i n a tree and sings again, to bring up the north wind and storm clouds.Within two or three days, according to the l o c a l Aborigines, r a i n would always come. The best known and most frequently quoted c o l l e c t i v e rainmaking r i t e i s that reported f o r the D i e r i by Gason (Taplin, 1879:76-77): After messengers have assembled the t r i b e , the men d i g a hole over which they b u i l d a conical wooden hut with bough roof. The women are c a l l e d over to look ins i d e , then return to camp about a quarter of a mile away. Two men open t h e i r arm veins and anoint a l l the men who are huddled i n the hut; at the same 78. t i m e , t h e p a i r t h r ow down w h i c h s t i c k s t o t h e men. Two l a r g e s t o n e s , s a i d t o r e p r e s e n t g a t h e r i n g c l o u d s , a r e r e s t i n g i n t h e c e n t r e o f t h e hu t d u r i n g t h e r i t e . The women a r e c a l l e d o v e r a s e cond t i m e t o l o o k i n t h e h u t , t h e n r e t u r n a g a i n t o camp. L a t e r t h e two men e a r r y t h e s t o n e s f a r away and p u t them i n t h e t o p o f t h e h i g h e s t t r e e a b o u t . I n t h e mean- t i m e t h e o t h e r men g a t h e r gypsum and pound i t f i n e , t h e n t h r ow i t i n t o a w a t e r h o l e . The muramura s p i r i t s a r e supposed t o see t h i s and cause c l o u d s t o a p p e a r . F i n a l l y , a l l t h e men s u r r o u n d t h e hu t and b a t t e r i t down w i t h t h e i r heads ; t h i s p i e r c i n g o f t h e h u t w i t h t h e i r heads i s s a i d t o s y m b o l i z e t h e p i e r c i n g o f t h e c l o u d s , and t h e f a l l o f t h e h u t , t h e f a l l i n g o f r a i n . I n t h i s r i t e , t h e u s e o f mes senge r s , t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n o f a wooden h u t , t h e u se o f b l o o d and down, t h e c e n t r a l i m p o r t a n c e o f r a i n s t o n e s and t h e r e l i a n c e p l a c e d on s p i r i t b e i n g s f o r t h e s u c c e s s o f t h e r i t e a r e a l l e l emen t s wh i ch e x i s t a l s o i n t h e D a : w a j i l . I n t h e o t h e r a c c oun t o f r a i n m a k i n g p r a c t i c e s t h a t e x i s t f o r t h e Wes t e r n D e s e r t a r e a , H. and C. B e r n d t (1945: 180-183) d e s c r i b e t h r e e f o rms o f r i t e : ( a ) t h e n a t i v e d o c t o r undoes t h e bund l e a t t a c h e d t o h i s b e a r d ; t h e b a g , c a l l e d w a r a l g a ( a r a i n c l o u d ) , c o n t a i n s s e v e r a l r a i n m a k i n g s t o n e s and a p i e c e o f bone ( B . and C. B e r n d t , 1945:159). T h i s i s a n i n d i v i d u a l r i t e ; (b ) t h e r a i n m a k e r ( u s u a l l y a member o f t h e c u l t l o d g e t h a t has t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r , D j unban , as t o t em) u s e s a s t o n e k n i f e t o s c r a p e some s h a v i n g s o f f a p e a r l s h e l l d i s c , t h e n he chews some g r a s s and s p i t s i t o n t o a f l a t s t o n e ; he tfaen m ixes t h i s w i t h t h e s h e l l scrapings. T h i s may be a n i n d i v i d u a l r i t e , o r s e v e r a l men may be i n v o l v e d ; ( c ) t h e t h i r d f o r m , a n inma ( r i t u a l ) , i s c o l l e c t i v e ; s e v e r a l men wear s h e l l p endan t s and go i n t o t h e bu sh on a warm s t i l l 79. day and c h a n t , t h e n t h a t n i g h t a r i t u a l ' t h a n k s g i v i n g ' i s h e l d , a t w h i c h a l l t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s wear s h e l l pendan t s and h e a d - d r e s s e s r e s e m b l i n g snakes ( s a i d t o be r e p r e s e n t a - t i o n s o f Wonampi ) . J u d g i n g by t h e d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e h e a d - d r e s s e s g i v e n by t h e B e r n d t s , i t i s p r o b a b l e t h a t t h i s i s a men -on l y p e r f o r m a n c e . B o t h (1897:167-168), i n h i s e t h n o l o g y o f t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f n o r t h - w e s t - c e n t r a l Queens l and t e l l s o f t h e M i o r l i r a i n m a k e r s , who t r a v e l t o n e i g h b o u r i n g d i s t r i c t s and p e r f o r m c o l l e c t i v e r a i n m a k i n g r i t e s i n r e s p o n s e t o r e q u e s t s f r om A b o r i g i n e s o f t h e s e o t h e r a r e a s . P a r t o f t h i s r i t e has a c l o s e p a r a l l e l t o t h e o r i g i n a l D a : w a j i l r i t e s p e r f o r m e d a t t h e P e r c i v a l L a ke s i n t h a t t h e men s t a n d i n a w a t e r h o l e and s i n g and dance t h e r e ; t h i s i s t h e o n l y o t h e r r e p o r t o f s u c h an a c t i v i t y . J And as w i t h t h e D a : w a j i l , p a r t o f t h e r i t e i s p e r f o r m e d i n s e c r e t a t t h e w a t e r h o l e , and t h e r e s t ba ck i n t h e camp, w i t h s i n g i n g and d a n c i n g i n t h e p r e s e n c e o f women. B o t h a l s o r e p o r t s a c o l l e c t i v e r i t e p e r f o r m e d a t Boxburgh by t h e G e o r g i n a B i v e r t r i b e s , d u r i n g w h i c h a b e l l - l i k e hu t s i m i l a r t o t h a t o f t h e D i e r i i s c o n s t r u c t e d . ;The men make a s m a l l a r t i f i c i a l w a t e r h o l e n e a r b y and dance and s i n g a r ound t h i s , a l l t h e w h i l e i m i t a t i n g t h e movements and c a l l s o f v a r i o u s a q u a t i c b i r d s and a n i m a l s , s u ch as ducks and f r o g s . ( D u r i n g t h e 13a :wa j i l , women make f r o g c a l l s and t h e men i m i t a t e r a i n m a k i n g b i r d s ' c a l l s . ) The men s u r r o u n d t h e women and t h r ow c r u s h e d w h i t e s t o n e o v e r them i n a s i m u l a t i o n o f r a i n f a l l . I n t h e 0 a : w a j i l , t h e men and women t h r ow w a t e r o v e r one a n o t h e r t o p romote a s i m i l a r f a l l o f 80. r a i n on them. The o n l y o t h e r c o l l e c t i v e i n c r e a s e r i t e f o r r a i n t h a t has been r e p o r t e d i n some d e t a i l i s t h a t o f t h e A r anda w a t e r t o t em men (Spen ce r and G i l l e n , 1899:189-193) o f C e n t r a l A u s t r a l i a , j The q u a t c h a i s t h e r i t e t h a t appea r s t o have most i n common w i t h t h e D a : w a j i l , s o t h e s i m i l a r i t i e s b e - tween t h e two w i l l be p o i n t e d ou t h e r e . I n b o t h , messengers a r e s e n t o u t , t h ough i n t h e A r anda r i t e o n l y members o f t h e w a t e r - t o t e m c a n p a r t i c i p a t e ; o t h e r men may a t t e n d , bu t as s p e c t a t o r s o n l y . The A r anda messengers c a r r y a human h a i r g i r d l e , a bund l e o f c o c k a t o o t a i l f e a t h e r s and a h o l l o w nosebone , w i t h w h i c h t o summon t h e o t h e r s ; J i g a l o n g men c a r r y h a i r s t r i n g and f e a t h e r - b u n d l e s a s p a r t o f t h e i r t r a v e l l e r s ' g e a r . B o t h r i t e s e n t a i l secret-sacred a c t i v i t i e s i n t h e bu sh , and o t h e r a c t i v i t i e s c l o s e t o t h e ma i n camp, where a boughshed i s t h e l o c u s o f t h i s p a r t o f t h e r i t u a l . J Body d e c o r a t i o n s a r e worn i n b o t h , and h u n t i n g t a k e s p l a c e as an i m p o r t a n t p a r t o f t h e r i t e . I n b o t h , t h e f o l l o w e r s adop t an arms f o l d e d p o s t u r e a t t i m e s , and when mov i ng t h e y do s o i n s i n g l e f i l e . The re i s a n a l l - n i g h t s i n g i n g s e s s i o n i n b o t h r i t e s , and d a n c i n g o c c u r s t o o , bu t i n t h e A r a n d a c a s e , t h i s i s done o n l y by t h e r a i n - t o t em headman, who d i r e c t s a l l a c t i v i t i e s , whereas i n t h e B a : w a j i l t h e r e i s d a n c i n g by most men, and a c t i v i t i e s a r e c o n t r o l l e d and d i r e c t e d by members o f s e v e r a l d i f f e r e n t 81. r i t u a l s t a t u s g r o u p s . A l t h o u g h much s h o r t e r i n d u r a t i o n ( abou t f o r t y e i g h t h o u r s ) t h a n t h e D a : w a j i l , t h e A r anda r i t e i s n e v e r t h e l e s s prolonged I n b o t h r i t e s , t h e men r e - t u r n t o camp t o e a t and d r i n k a t t h e c o n c l u s i o n o f t h e bush a c t i v i t i e s . A t t h e o r d i n a r y dance f e s t i v a l s t h a t a r e h e l d i n a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h t h e A r anda i n c r e a s e r i t e , a l l t h e men t a k e p a r t , a s i n t h e D a : w a j i l , w i t h women as s p e c t a t o r s . I n t h e A r anda c a s e , t h e women may a s s i s t by s i n g i n g , whereas i n t h e D a t w a j i l women n e v e r s i n g t h e s o n g s . Kabe r ry (1939:175,196,207) who worked i n t h e K i m b e r l e y a r e a , w e l l t o t h e n o r t h o f t h e F e r c i v a l L a k e s , bu t w i t h some g roups who were o r i g i n a l l y d e s e r t p e o p l e , makes s e v e r a l r e f e r e n c e s t o what appea r s t o be t h e D a : w a j i l , t hough she does n o t m e n t i o n i t by name. Among t h e Wo lmer i ( c a l l e d Wanmadjar i by t h e J i g a l o n g p e o p l e ) , K a b e r r y r e p o r t s t h e e x i s t e n c e o f a c o l l e c t i v e r a i n m a k i n g r i t e w i t h b o t h s e xe s p a r t i c i p a t i n g , and d i v i s i o n o f t h e g roup i n t o a l t e r n a t e g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l s ( 'endogamous m o i e t i e s ' ) w h i c h a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h b i r d s : g l d o r ( J i g a l o n g : g i d i r ) and w i : r ( w l j u r ) . K a - b e r r y r e f e r s t o t h e s e as m o i e t y t o t e m s , whose s o c i a l r e - l e v a n c e a p p a r e n t l y l i e s i n t he f a c t t h a t t h e y a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e q u a r t e r s f r om w h i c h r a i n comes: g i d o r f r om t h e n o r t h e a s t and w i : r f r om t h e n o r t h w e s t . T h i s i s n o t t h e c a s e a t J i g a l o n g bu t i n b o t h a r e a s t h e b i r d s a r e n o t u s e d as f o o d . I n t h e Wo lmer i r i t e , e a ch g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l g r o u p - i n g has a s p e c i f i c r o l e , and g l d o r men and women s i t on t h e e a s t s i d e o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g p o o l , w l : r on t h e w e s t . Aor 82.1 cording to Kaberry ( 1 9 3 9 : 1 9 6 ) , " I t i s because c e r t a i n totemic ancestors under the d i r e c t i o n of t h e r a i n bow s e r p e n t c a r r i e d ou t the ceremony i n t h e p a s t t h a t a r e p e t i t i o n i n t h e p r e s e n t by w i : r and g i d o r men and women has t h e same p o t e n c y and e f f i c i e n c y . " C e r t a i n s e c t i o n s o f t h e r i t e a r e c a r r i e d ou t by two o l d ;men o f o p p o s i t e g r o u p s ; t h e y c o n - s t r u c t a f i g u r e t o r e p r e s e n t Y e r u w i r i , t h e r a i n bow s e r p e n t , and a l s o a g r a s s c i r c l e t d e c o r a t e d w i t h c o c k a t o o f e a t h e r s t o r e p r e s e n t Tjandera ( t h i s i s o b v i o u s l y t h e d j a n d u r a o f t h e J i g a l o n g r i t e ) , w h i c h K a b e r r y d e s c r i b e s as a n o t h e r i m p o r t a n t t o t e m i c a n c e s t o r ) . A l t h o u g h no o b j e c t a k i n t o t h e Y e r u w i r i i s u s e d i n t h e J i g a l o n g r i t u a l , t h e s m a l l amount o f i n f o r - m a t i o n g i v e n by K a b e r r y i s s u f f i c i e n t t o s ugge s t t h a t t h e r i t u a l .she was t o l d abou t i s t h e D a : w a j i l , and t h a t some o f h e r Wo lmer i i n f o r m a n t s had p r o b a b l y been i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e r i t e b e f o r e t h e y l e f t t h e d e s e r t . D. T h e U n i q u e n e s s o f the D a t w a j i l I n t h i s c h a p t e r I have endeavou red t o draw a t t e n t i o n , whenever p o s s i b l e , t o s i m i l a r i t i e s between r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s e l s e w h e r e i n A u s t r a l i a and t he D a : w a j i l , I t i s c l e a r t h a t i n some o f t h e o b j e c t s j u s e d , and i n t h e i d e a s u n d e r l y i n g t h e b r i n g i n g o f r a i n t h r o u g h r i t u a l a c t i v i t y , p a r a l l e l s c a n be d r awn . Bu t what s t a n d ) o u t a r e t h e many un i q ue f e a t u r e s o f t h e D a : w a j i l , w h i c h appea r s 8 3 . t o be by f a r t h e l o n g e s t and most comp lex o f any r a i n m a k i n g r i t u a l s r e p o r t e d f o r A b o r i g i n a l A u s t r a l i a , and i s v e r y p r o - b a b l y t he o n l y l a r g e - s c a l e c o l l e c t i v e r a i n m a k i n g r i t u a l s t i l l b e i n g p e r f o r m e d . M e g g i t t (1966:66) g i v e s a l i s t o f r i t u a l p e r f o rmance s by t h e W a l b i r i a t Hooker C r e ek , Northern T e r r i t o r y , i n 195^; two o f t h e s e were r i t u a l s c o n - n e c t e d w i t h a r a i n - t o t e m , bu t u n f o r t u n a t e l y no d e t a i l s o f them a r e g i v e n , and j u d g i n g by t h e t o t e m i c c e r emon i e s t h a t a r e r e p o r t e d upon , i t seems v e r y u n l i k e l y t h a t t he r a i n - t o t em pe r f o rmance s wou ld a pp r oa ch t h e D a : w a j i l i n e i t h e r s c a l e o r c o m p l e x i t y . I t wou l d appea r t h e n , t h a t t h e I3a:waj i l i s t h e o n l y A b o r i g i n a l r a i n m a k i n g r i t u a l t o have a c l e a r l y d e f i n e d s t a t u s h i e r a r c h y , a d u r a t i o n s o f s e v e r a l d a y s , a number o f s i m u l t a n e o u s c e r e m o n i a l a c t i v i t i e s e n - a c t e d each day , and e v e n t s w h i c h i n v o l v e a t c e r t a i n t i m e s t h e e n t i r e communi ty , a s w e l l as v i s i t o r s f r om o t h e r and d i s t a n t Law c e n t r e s . Mjpreover, i t a ppea r s t o be t h e o n l y one w h i c h has c e r e m o n i a l ; f e a s t i n g as p a r t o f t h e comp lex , i n c l u d i n g t h e d r i n k i n g o f b l o o d . I t i s u n i q u e i n t h a t t he f i n a l r i t u a l a u t h o r i t i e s a r e n o t l o c a l A b o r i g i n e s , bu t p e o p l e f r om a n o t h e r Law c e n t r e who a r e , i n t h e o r y a t l e a s t , t h e ma in g u a r d i a n s o f t h e r i t u a l . I t i s c l e a r f r om t h e m a j o r i t y o f t h e b i b l i o g r a p h i c a l r e f e r e n c e s l i s t e d t h r o u g h o u t t h i s c h a p t e r t h a t most a c c o u n t s o f r a i n m a k i n g come f r om e a r l y p u b l i c a t i o n s , w h i c h c l e a r l y 8 4 . s u g g e s t s t h a t r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s have l o n g s i n c e been abandoned i n A b o r i g i n a l A u s t r a l i a . The most r e c e n t a c c o u n t o f a c t u a l r a i n m a k i n g r i t e s appea r s t o be t h a t o f t h e B e r n d t s who worked a t Oo l d ea i n 19*H» Much o f t h e r i t u a l l i f e i n A b o r i g i n a l A u s t r a l i a has been l o s t anyway, as a r e s u l t o f a c e u l t u r a t i o n a l p r e s s u r e s , b u t t h e e a r l y abandonment o f r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s i n most a r e a s s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e y c e a s e d t o be c o n s i d e r e d o f i m p o r t a n c e by t he A b o r i g i n e s once t h e y became dependent on t h e w h i t e man and h i s w i n d m i l l s , w e l l s and dams, e t c . Once t h e A b o r i g i n e s abandoned t h e i r s e m i - nomad i c t r a d i t i o n a l l i f e i n f a v o u r o f a s e d e n t a r y e x i s t e n c e a t s e t t l e m e n t s , where most o f t h e i r immed i a t e p h y s i c a l needs were s a t i s f i e d by t h e w h i t e s , r i t u a l s o f t h e i n c r e a s e v a r i e t y a p p a r e n t l y l o s t most o f t h e i r i m p o r t a n c e , e s p e c i a l l y once t h e A b o r i g i n e s were p e r m a n e n t l y s e p a r a t e d f r om t h e i n c r e a s e s i t e s t h e y had f o r m e r l y t e n d e d . T h i s t h e s i s i s , t h e n , t o e x p l a i n t h e i m p o r t a n t p l a c e o f a r a i n m a k i n g r i t u a l comp lex i n a c o n t e x t where a n A b o r i - g i n a l c ommun i t y ' s s u r v i v a l no l o n g e r depends upon r a i n f l a i l i n g i n a p a r t i c u l a r l o c a l i t y . Why i s i t , when r a i n - mak i ng has l o n g s i n c e d i s a p p e a r e d e l s e w h e r e , t h a t t h e D a : w a j i l has r a p i d l y come t o assume g r e a t i m p o r t a n c e t o t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f J i g a l o n g ? The r e m a i n d e r o f t h i s s t u d y a t t e m p t s t o a r r i v e a t some s a t i s f a c t o r y answers t o t h i s b a s i c q u e s t i o n . 85. C h a p t e r 4 . The Da:wa.1 l l : Ba ckg round A . A r e a o f O r i g i n The D a t w a j i l 1 o r i g i n a t e d i n t h e P e r c i v a l L ake s a r e a , w h i c h i s s i t u a t e d i n t h e G r ea t Sandy D e s e r t , abou t t h r e e hund r ed m i l e s n o r t h e a s t o f J i g a l o n g ( see F i g u r e 1 ) . L i t t l e i s known o f t h i s p o o r l y a c c e s s i b l e r e g i o n , b u t t h e P e r c i v a l L a k e s mark t h e l i n e o f a n o l d r i v e r s y s t em t h a t e x i s t e d d u r i n g a more p l u v i a l , p e r i o d , p r o b a b l y P l e i s t o c e n e , b u t h a s - s t e c e become d ismembered i n t o a s e r i e s o f s a l t l a k e s , d r y most o f t h e t ime and s u r r o u n d e d by p a r a l l e l s and r i d g e s 50-100 f e e t h i g h , w i t h l a t e r i t e r i s e s on t h e f l a n k s o f t h e d r a i n a g e s y s t e m . What i s u n u s u a l , and o f g r e a t s i g n i - f i c a n c e f o r l o c a l A b o r i g i n e s , i n s u c h a n e x t r e m e l y a r i d a r e a i s t h e p r e s e n c e o f a r e l a t i v e l y l a r g e number o f good w a t e r s o u r c e s - s p r i n g s , w e l l s and r o c k h o l e s - t h a t o c c u r a r o u n d t h e ma rg i n s o f t h e g e n e r a l l y d r y l a k e ^ s u r f a c e , and i n a t l e a s t one c a s e , J i m i r l , t h e w e l l i s i n t h e m i d d l e o f t h e a c t u a l l a k e b e d . T h i s phenomenon i s a t t r i b u t e d t o t h e p r e s e n c e o f c a l c r e t e r o c k , a t y p e o f l i m e s t o n e t h a t i s J i g a l o n g i n f o r m a n t s s ugge s t t h a t t h e word D a t w a j i l means ' ( w a t e r ) f l o w i n g h e r e ' (Da: c a n mean ' h e r e ' ; w a . l i l a i s t h e v e r b ' t o f l o w ' ) . E l s e w h e r e I n t h i s o h a p t e r see page 9 7 , f o o t n o t e 1 ) , i t i s n o t e d t h a t t h e Waramunga ( a t r i b e i n t h e K i m b e r l e y s ) u se t h e word g n a p a t w a i l i ( ' r a i n l e g * ) t o r e f e r t o t h e r a i n - c u r t a i n t h a t c a n somet imes be s een mov ing a c r o s s t h e ground' durdng .summer ~storms1. I f t h e ' p a ' i s r e - moved f r om t h i s word ( a t J i g a l o n g p a o r ba f u n c t i o n s o n l y as a s u b j e c t i n d i c a t o r when s u f f i x e d " t o nouns , and i s o f t e n o m i t t e d ) , i t becomes ' n a : w a . 1 l l i ' . The o r i g i n a l c o n n o t a t i o n o f ' ' % a : w a j i l ' i n i t s a r e a o f o r i g i n may w e l l be s o m e t h i n g more a k i n t o t h e Waramunga word t h a n i s t h e J i g a l o n g e x p l a n a t i o n o f i t . 8 6 . a v e r y e f f e c t i v e a q u i f e r i n w h i c h t h e w a t e r t a b l e r ema in s q u i t e h i g h , a t a r o u n d ten feet. This^assu re s . Aborigines o f a r e l i a b l e wate r^ supply i n a r e g i o n t h a t wou l d o t h e r - w i s e be v i r t u a l l y u n i n h a b i t a b l e because o f t h e p o r o s i t y o f t h e s a n d h i l l s and t h e v e r y l ow and e r r a t i c r a i n f a l l . A l t h o u g h i t s o r i g i n i s a t t r i b u t e d by A b o r i g i n e s t o t h e Dreamt ime, t h e 13a:wa j i l was p r o b a b l y composed by D j i w a l i n j and Mana l a l i n g u i s t i c g roups who roamed t h e a r e a , and i n whose d i a l e c t s a l l e g e d l y t h e songs a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e r i t u a l a r e s u n g . S e v e r a l M a n d j i l d j a r a p e o p l e now a t J i g a l o n g were b o r n i n t h e P e r c i v a l L a ke s a r e a , bu t t r a d i t i o n a l l y t h e i r t r i b a l t e r r i t o r i e s were much f u r t h e r e a s t . However, g roups o f A b o r i g i n e s f r om w i d e l y d i f f e r i n g a r e a s u s ed t o be i n v i t e d t o a t t e n d p e r f o rmance s o f t h e D a : w a j i l t h a t were h e l d u s u a l l y a t t h e ma i n s i t e and home o f t h e ma j o r r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r , W inba , s i t u a t e d c l o s e t o t h e n o r t h s h o r e o f t h e c e n t r a l l a k e b e d . The y e a r l y p e r f o rmance o f t h e r i t u a l a t t r a c t e d g roups o f v i s i t o r s f r om as f a r s o u t h as t h e Lake D i s a p p o i n t m e n t a r e a ( e a s t o f t h e s e t t l e m e n t ) and some o f t h e o l d e r A b o r i g i n e s now a t J i g a l o n g made t h e j o u r n e y i n p r e - c o n t a c t d a y s . T h i s wou l d have been abou t f o r t y y e a r s ago A I have n e v e r s e e n t h e P e r c i v a l L a k e s , and am i n d e b t e d t o a g e o l o g i s t , D r . P. P l a y f o r d , f o r t h e above i n f o r m a t i o n , and t o M r . T . L ong , o f t h e W.A. N a t i v e W e l f a r e Depar tment , f o r p h o t o s o f t h e a r e a . A b o r i g i n a l i n f o r m a n t s who know t h e a r e a w e l l p r o v i d e d i n f o r m a t i o n abou t t h e s i t e s and l o c a l p h y s i o g r a p h y . V e e v e r s and W e l l s (1961) c o n t a i n s p h o t o s , maps, i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e c l i m a t e , p h y s i o g r a p h y and geomorpho logy o f t h e Cann i ng B a s i n , o f which t h e P e r c i v a l L a ke s a r e a part. 8 7 . a t a t i m e when m i g r a t i o n t owa rds t h e d e s e r t f r i n g e s was a l r e a d y i n p r o g r e s s , so i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o s a y whe the r p e o p l e a s f a r away as t h e G a d u d j a r a wou l d have a t t e n d e d t r a d i t i o n a l l y . Whether o r n o t A b o r i g i n e s i n d i s t a n t a r e a s had a c t u a l l y v i s i t e d t h e Winba a r e a , t h e name Winba was known t o most p e o p l e , a s was t h e r a i n m a k i n g c o n n o t a t i o n o f t h e r i t u a l h e l d t h e r e . B. M y t h o l o g i c a l Ba ckg round t o t h e B i t u a l A c c o r d i n g t o t h e m y t h o l o g y , t h e P e r c i v a l L ake s were n o t c r e a t e d by t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s , bu t by G i r g i (banded p l o v e r ) , a Dreamt ime b i r dman who s e t f i r e t o l a r g e a r e a s o f s c r u b d u r i n g h i s p u r s u i t o f two k a n g a r o o s . The l a k e b e d s , c a l l e d n.junma ( ' b u r n t g r a s s ' ) , were f o rmed f r om t h e b u r n t a r e a s , w h i c h e x p l a i n s t h e i r o f t e n b l a c k i s h c o l o u r a t i o n , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e A b o r i g i n e s . T h e i r f o r m a t i o n i s m e r e l y a n i n c i d e n t a l e p i s o d e i n a myth t h a t i s m a i n l y c on c e r n ed w i t h c o n f l i c t be tween G i r g i and Ga:nga (Crow) o v e r t h e hun t ed k a n g a r o o s . The myth e x p l a i n s how Crow go t h i s b l a c k c o l o u r i n g , why Crow and P l o v e r a r e f r i e n d s t o d a y , and a l s o t h e o r i g i n o f t h e w a t e r h o l e , J i m i r i ( ' r i b ' ) , where Crow l e f t a l l t h e r i b - b o n e s o f t h e kanga roos he had e a t e n t h e r e , on t h e l a k e b e d . The r e i s g e n e r a l agreement abou t t h e ma i n d e t a i l s o f t h e above myth among J i g a l o n g men who a r e f a m i l i a r w i t h i t , b u t i n t h e c a s e o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s and t h e i r a c t i v i - 88. t i e s , there are as many d i f f e r e n t accounts and divergent opinions as there are Aborigines at Jigalong. Given that the myths come from an area f a r from t h e i r own, plus the fa c t that the 13a:wajil r i t u a l i s a r e l a t i v e l y recent innova- t i o n at the settlement, i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g that l o c a l Aborigines d i f f e r greatly i n the extent of t h e i r knowledge about rainmaking myths, t h e i r associated personages and r a i n - making phenomena. A l l those men who have been i n i t i a t e d into the r i t u a l know something of the mythological background; i n general t h e i r knowledge i s fragmentary and skimpy but they are a l l gradually learning more, and i t i s c l e a r , as I s h a l l show l a t e r , that the myth concerning the travels of Winba i s i t s e l f being expanded and fleshed out i n the l i g h t of a continuing a c q u i s i t i o n of new knowledge about the Da:wajil. In the account that follows, which i s f u l l e r than most I recorded, I w i l l indicate, where applicable, any major d i s - crepancies between th i s and other accounts that deal with the exploits of Winba and the other ancestral rainmaking beings, then I w i l l outline the d e t a i l s that appear to be most widely known and agreed upon by the Aboriginal men at Jigalong. This account came from Bilurbunadja, a Gadudjara man i n his f i f t i e s , who v i s i t e d the Winba area as a c h i l d , and holds- a senior rank i n the Da:wajil. 8 9 . Winba, 1 the snake-man, l i v e d and hunted i n the p P e r c i v a l Lakes area with a mob of rainmakers l i k e himself. One day he l e f t his home at Winba waterhole and set off south west taking a Djiwalinj malulu (novice taken into custody some time p r i o r to circumcision)-^ who he l a t e r circumcised and l e f t :behind somewhere en route. He stopped at Galga, a spring east of Mount Newman, where he met a mob of Minjiburu women and mobs of Girjgiljba and Wajuda.^ He hunted for the men, then they cooked seedcakes and they ate a feast (wanaburga). There, Winba l e f t plenty of bunu (li g h t n i n g rods), some of which (large stones, c a l l e d d.jadan) are now at Jigalong. Winba went on south towards the Kalgoorlie area. There at Maljuru rockhole he met Wadi Gudjara (Two Men) and they hunted then ate a wanaburga feast, consisting of a blood-damper which consisted e n t i r e l y of Winba 1s armblood. Wadi Gudjara tgied to make Winba go and hunt but he convinced them of his greater age and s e n i o r i t y so they capitulated and went hunting i n - xWinba, l i k e many other ancestral beings i s said to be autogenous; he had no mother, but hatched himself out of an egg; c f . E l k i n , 1936: 4 8 9 ; Roheim, 1 9 4 5 : 2 2 2 ; Stanner 1 9 6 6 : 9 7 . p The rainmakers were of mixed section membership; most informants say that Winba was a Milarjga, but some claim he was a Bururju. Most of the rainmakers were malgarara, the senior I3a:wajil status, but Winba and some of the other best known ones, l i k e Garbadi and Gudalj, were said to be of walumalinj (hunter-traveller-'working- man') status. -̂ Many accounts make no mention of Winba taking a novice with him. ^This was Winba's l a s t b i g journey. The songline associated with the fla:wajil mainly concerns Winba's hunting exploits i n the Lakes area. Native Cat and Possum mobs, who belong to the Dinari t r a d i t i o n . 9 0 . s t e a d . A t t h a t p l a c e Winba l e f t b e h i n d s a c r e d r a i n m a k i n g o b j e c t s i n h i s camp.* He went on and camped e a s t o f L ake D a r l o t , b u t l e f t n o t h i n g t h e r e . He went on e a s t , camped a t D j i l g a n d j a r a n o r t h e a s t o f C a r n e g i e , t h e n t o G u r a n g u l , t h e n Muna lu ,whe re he camped and l e f t l o t s o f bunu , t h e n t o N j i : g a , where he a l s o l e f t r a i n m a k i n g s t o n e s , t h e n n o r t h west t o M a l i j a d u where he camped, t h e n t o W i g l s v T h i s i s , a n i n c r e a s e c e n t r e f o r two s o r t s o f g r a s s - s e e d , n u : n and j u l g u j u ^ g u . a h a Winba a t e a Wanaburga f e a s t o f t h e s e seeds w i t h t h e mob o f g r a s s - s e e d p e o p l e who l i v e d a t W i g i : , t h e n he went on t o G u l i l u w a g a l , i n M a n d j i l d j a r a c o u n t r y , where he l e f t a snake and a t e a s e e d - c a k e wanaburga (made f r om d j u l u . a w h i t e seed ) by h i m s e l f , b e f o r e g o i n g on t o B i d u , t h e n W j i n j i r i , t h e n L o u l o u , t h e n Gawungawin, t h e n t o W i n g i , t h e n on t o J i n a r u . A t t h i s p l a c e ;he f o u n d h i s a i l i n g MB r a i n m a k e r c a l l e d D j a b u l a , who had c o l l a p s e d unde r t h e w e i g h t o f a l l t h e s a c r e d r a i n - mak i ng o b j e c t s he was c a r r y i n g , so Winba c a r r i e d h im on t o D j a b u l a and l e f t h im t h e r e . A f t e r Winba had gone, D j a b u l a , t h e m a l g a r a r a ( t h e most s e n i o r s t a t u s i n t h e D a t w a j i l ) t r i e d t * t o l e a v e bu t had t o r e t u r n because he was t o o o l d and t i r e d and had t o o much w a t e r i n h i s s tomach and t h e s a c r a were t o o h e a v y . Winba went on n o r t hwa r d s and met Kangaroo (Ma lu ) who was now h e a d i n g back t owards t h e s o u t h . M a l u a s k e d Winba f o r "''It i s i n t h i s r e g i o n t h a t Winba i s s a i d t o have e x p e r i m e n t e d w i t h r a i n m a k i n g , u s i n g t h e f u r o f a s m a l l m a r s u p i a l ..mixed w i t h eag lehawk down and a r m b l o o d , t o make c l o u d ' b e d s ' i n t h e sky* A f t e r many a t t e m p t s he f i n a l l y s u c ceeded i n mak i ng heavy f l o o d i n g r a i n . 9 1 . bunu r o d s 1 a n d h e l d ou t h i s h and , Winba gave h im one bu t i t was t o o s m a l l so M a l u r e f u s e d i t . Winba gave h im a l a r g e r one , p l u s a b i g r a i n m a k i n g s t o n e ( b i d u r b a ) . a l a r g e b u l l - r o a r e r w i t h s t r i n g a t t a c h e d , a s t o n e c i r c u m c i s i o n k n i f e and a D a r w a j i l d a n c e . I n exchange , M a l u gave Winba a l o n g s t o n e k n i f e , a d e c o r a t i o n and a dance , and a pa . i i g a l a ( ' damper ' made e x c l u s i v e l y f r om h i s a r m b l o o d ) , w h i c h t h e y b o t h a t e . They a l s o gave each o t h e r b a r k d i s h e s t o d r i n k t h e n a . j i g a l a f r o m , and b i d i r g a d . i i ( s ha r pened s t i c k s f o r p i e r c i n g t h e u r e t h r a t o make b l o o d f l o w f r om t h e s u b i n c i s e d a r e a ) . They t h e n went on t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e ways . Winba went on , saw t r a c k s o f a mob o f M i n j i b u r u women and f o l l o w e d them. When he f o u n d them he a s k e d them where t h e y were g o i n g and t h e y t o l d h i m , " E a s t " . They l e f t b e - h i n d D j i n j a n g a ( a M a n d j i l d j a r a woman a t t h e s e t t l e m e n t ) i n s p i r i t - c h i l d f o r m . Winba went on and came upon Emu ( G a l a j a ) who was l y i n g a l o n e n e a r a w a t e r h o l e , a f t e r b e i n g b i t t e n by d i n g o e s , wh i c h Winba c o u l d see n e a r b y . Winba t r a v e l l e d on , and became wet w i t h swea t , and he c o u l d s m e l l h i m s e l f . He went on n o r t hwa r d s and saw h i s o l d 'P* M i l d j i d i d i Banaga , ^Ph i s was t h e f i r s t p o i n t a t w h i c h my i n f o r m a n t l i n k e d t h e myth t o a I 3 a :wa j i l s ong , w h i c h i s s a i d t o c o n c e r n M a l u ' s r e q u e s t , a l t h o u g h M a l u ' s name i s n o t m e n t i o n e d . i s v a r i a t i o n as t o e x a c t l y what o b j e c t s were e x changed . 9 2 . a l r e a d y t u r n e d i n t o a w a t e r s n a k e . Then he went on t o J a b i l i n d j a d u , h i s M i l a n g a ' E B ' who had a l s o t u r n e d i n t o a snake and was l i v i n g i n a w a t e r h o l e . Then he went n o r t h t o W i l l : , h i s M i l a n g a • E B 1 , who had a l s o done t h e same t h i n g . 1 T h i s snake was ' c h e e k y ' and t h e r e were c l o u d s a l l a r ound t h e p o o l . From t h e r e , Winba t u r n e d s o u t h , t o see D j a b i n g a , h i s Banaga »F' who had a l r e a d y become a snake and was l i v i n g i n h i s home w a t e r h o l e . He went on t o G a r b a d i , M s . , M i l a n g a j a l b u r u ( a g e - m a t e ) , who had n o t y e t t u r n e d i n t o a s n a k e . Winba went h u n t i n g and caugh t a m a r s u p i a l ( m a l a ) . G a r b a d i cooked i t , p l u s a s eedcake damper, and t h e y a t e a . vfonaburga f e a s t , w h i c h t h e y f e d each o t h e r . They g o t up and l e f t , bu t b o t h c o m p l a i n e d o f t i r e d - n e s s , so G a r b a d i made h i m s e l f a w i n db r e ak t h e n l a y down, a t G a r b a d i w a t e r h o l e , where he s t i l l l i v e s , a s a s n a k e . Winba went on n o r t hwa r d s and saw s h e e t l i g h t n i n g t o t h e n o r t h , and r a i n f a l l i n g . He was l o o k i n g f o r h i s ' F ' , b u t he was t o o l a t e because a l l were a l r e a d y t u r n e d t o s n a k e s . He wept f o r them, t h e n went on wes t , saw l i g h t n i n g a t Maduwara, where t h e r e were two Banaga m u d i l . l a ( u n c i r c u m c i s e d boy s ) and a b i g r a i n f a l l i n g f r om t h e c l o u d s above t h a t w a t e r h o l e . The two boys were s i t t i n g on t o p o f t h e c l o u d s , w i t h f o u r s n a k e s . 1 The sequence o f W i nba ' s movements i n t h i s a r e a v a r i e s f r o m - i n f o r m a n t t o i n f o r m a n t , w h i c h s u g g e s t s t h a t t h e a s s o c i a t e d songs a r e n o t sung i n a s e t o r d e r a t J i g a l o n g . 9 3 . Winba went back east to Galiwara, and then on u n t i l he became t i r e d and lay down at Winba where he went inside the water as a b i g snake, and big clouds rose up from the waterhole. Winba was the 'last man', the l a s t rainmaker l e f t a l i v e . 1 On a l l his travels Winba was followed by r a i n and i t f e l l wherever he went. 2 A l l the other rainmakers had turned to snakes and gone inside waterholes (except f o r Djabula and Garbadi) while Winba was away on t r a v e l s . For some reason or other-' the other r a i n - makers who had been l e f t behind got into a big spearfight, and a l l of them injured one another i n the thighs. Unable to walk, they had a l l crawled off i n d i f f e r e n t directions u n t i l they could go on no further*... The spots where they lay became waterholes and they turned to snakes and went to l i v e inside the holes, and they are s t i l l l i v i n g there today. Some are quiet and good, others are 'cheeky' and may be dangerous. According to some informants, several other hunter-traveller rainmakers (Gudalj, and Garbadi among them) were away at the time of the big f i g h t , and consequently changed to snakes a f t e r the r e s t . Two men, both northerners, claimed Djabula and Gudalj respectively as the true l a s t rainmaker, but the Jigalong Aborigines assert that Winba was the l a s t one l e f t a l i v e i n human form. 'Winba made his own clouds (sometimes from his beard-hair) and r a i n (from penis and armblood, and. perhaps arm-pit sweat) as he went. 'No informants ventured any reasons f o r t h i s b ig f i g h t . Some say that i t was only the young men camped at Galiwara waterhole who fought, and that the old senior men were brought to a halt by t h e i r age and the weight of a l l the sacred rainmaking objects they were carrying. 'The blood from t h e i r wounds f i l l e d the depressions made by t h e i r bodies and turned into water. 9 4 . The s e c t i o n o f t h e Winba myth where t h e r e i s g r e a t e s t v a r i a t i o n i n d e t a i l i s t h e e a r l i e r p a r t d e a l i n g w i t h W i nba ' s t r i p t o t h e s o u t h , w h i c h i s n o t s u r p r i s i n g i n v i e w o f t h e f a c t t h a t t h i s j o u r n e y h a r d l y appea r s i n t h e D a : w a j i l s o n g - l i n e , w h i c h c e n t r e s on h i s e x p l o i t s i n t h e P e r c i v a l L akes and s u r r o u n d i n g a r e a s . A l l i n f o r m a n t s a g r e e t h a t Winba must have made a b i g t r i p t o t h e s o u t h , because many o f t h e r a i n - mak i ng o b j e c t s he l e f t b e h i n d en r o u t e have been f o u n d by A b o r i g i n e s , bu t f ew p e o p l e a r e c l e a r as t o t h e e x a c t r o u t e t a k e n by W i nba . O t h e r w i d e l y a g r e ed -upon f a c e t s o f t he Winba myth a r e : ( a ) Winba c a r r i e d much r a i n m a k i n g equ ipment w i t h h im (some o f w h i c h he l e f t a t h i s camp ing s p o t s e n r o u t e ) , and made r a i n whe r eve r he wen t . (b ) He met up w i t h t h e Two Men and w i t h Kanga roo , w i t h whom he exchanged o b j e c t s and d a n c e s . ( c ) Winba f o u n d t h e t i r e d D j a b u l a and c a r r i e d h im t o h i s home. (d ) W h i l e he was away, t h e r e s t o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s had a b i g f i g h t , were wounded, c r a w l e d away i n d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s and t u r n e d i n t o snakes and w a t e r h o l e s . ( e ) When Winba a r r i v e d back i n h i s home a r e a he f o u n d t h e r a i n m a k e r s a l r e a d y changed t o snakes and l i v i n g i n w a t e r - h o l e s , w i t h c l o u d s and l i g h t n i n g v i s i b l e above them. He wept f o r them. 95. ( f ) Coming c l o s e r t o h i s f i n a l r e s t i n g p l a c e , he met h i s age-mate G a r b a d i , a t e w i t h h im t h e n went on u n t i l he t o o grew t i r e d , changed i n t o a b i g snake and went i n t o a b i g w a t e r h o l e , a t W i nba . The g r e a t d e a l o f v a r i a t i o n t h a t o c c u r s i n t h e Winba myth o u t s i d e t h e s e c o r e e l emen t s r e s u l t s f r om ea ch p e r s o n ' s a t t e m p t t o p i e c e t o g e t h e r a n d r u n i f y t h e r a t h e r f r a g m e n t a r y i n f o r m a t i o n he has a c c u m u l a t e d abou t t h e D a : w a j i l l i n e . As more d e t a i l s come t o h and , a n A b o r i g i n e i s a b l e t o g i v e a f u l l e r a c c o u n t o f t h e my th , and he may d i s c a r d c e r t a i n d e - t a i l s i n t h e l i g h t o f what he c o n s i d e r s t o be more a c c u r a t e know l edge . T h i s i s p o s s i b l e because t h e myth p l a y s no p a r t i n t h e p e r f o rmance o f t h e D a : w a j i l , w h i c h c e n t r e s m a i n l y on t h e s o n g l i n e and t h e d a n c e s . I t i s t h e s e e l emen t s t h a t v a r y v e r y l i t t l e i n a c t u a l c o n t e n t f r om pe r f o rmance t o p e r - f o rman ce . C. R a i n m a k i n g B e i n g s The A b o r i g i n e s u se t h e t e rm D j a r a m a r a t o r e f e r t o t h e P e r c i v a l L ake s a r e a , i t s w a t e r h o l e s , t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s and t h e i r a s s o c i a t e d b e i n g s ; i . e . i t c onno te s r a i n m a k e r s and C e n t r a l A u s t r a l i a n myths c o n c e r n i n g t h e wande r i n g a n c e s t r a l h e r o e s - e n d w i t h t h e p h r a s e , " t h e y became t i r e d , became t j u r u n g a " (Bohe im, 1945:209). S i m i l a r l y , C r a w f o r d (1968 :124) c i t e s a myth abou t two c r o c o d i l e s who h i d i n a c ave and had t o l i e down and s t a y t h e r e when t h e i r knees go t t o o t i r e d and h e a v y . 96. r a i n m a k i n g . I t appea r s t h a t n o t a l l t h e a n c e s t r a l r a i n m a k e r s assumed o r m a i n t a i n e d wa t e r s nake f o rm when t h e y r e a c h e d t h e i r f i n a l r e s t i n g p l a c e s , because t h e A b o r i g i n e s d i s t i n g u i s h as D a j a r a m a r a s e v e r a l human and b i r d m a n i f e s t a t i o n s t h a t a r e s a i d t o have o r i g i n a t e d i n t h e Dreamt ime, and w i l l be d e s - c r i b e d i n t h e f o l l o w i n g p a r a g r a p h s . - (1 J a d a g g a l . ' These l a r g e humano id c r e a t u r e s wh i c h l i v e i n t h e D j a r ama r a w a t e r h o l e s , a r e Winba*s work ingmen who p a r a l l e l i n s t a t u s men o f t h e s e cond h i g h e s t l e v e l i n t h e D a : w a j i l h i e r a r c h y 1 . Some i n f o r m a n t s s ay t h a t some o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s t u r n e d i n t o J a d a n g a l , o r t h a t t h e w a t e r s n a k e s a r e a l s o J a d a n g a l and c an assume e i t h e r f o rm a t w i l l , b e i n g c l e v e r m a g i c i a n s l i k e a l l a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s . The J a d a n g a l a c t as h u n t e r s f o r t h e D j a r a m a r a s n a k e s , and do t h e work o f b r i n g i n g r a i n . F u l l y d e c o r a t e d and c a r r y i n g r a i n - mak i ng o b j e c t s , t h e y r i d e i n r a i n c l o u d s , d i r e c t them t o t h e d e s i r e d a r e a s ( g e n e r a l l y i n r e s p o n s e t o D a r w a j i l performance's/ o r v i s i t s by A b o r i g i n e s i n d r e a m - s p i r i t f o r m , who j o u r n e y t o D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y t o b r i n g up r a i n ) , t h e n cause t h e r a i n t o f a l l by r e l e a s i n g b l o o d f r om t h e i r arms and p e n i s e s , and some s a y , sweat f r om t h e i r a r m p i t s . T h e i r heads a r e some- times v i s i b l e , s t i c k i n g ou t above distant cumulus-type c l o u d s ( p e o p l e p o i n t ou t t h e head^shaped v e r t i c a l protuberances) and t h e i r l e g s a r e s e e n r u n n i n g a c r o s s t h e g round v e r y r a p i d l y , i n t h e f o rm o f mov ing c u r t a i n - l i k e s h e e t s o f r a i n f a l l i n g f r om P ; i d d i n g t o n ( 1 9 3 2 : 3 7 5 ) , i n h i s d i s i c u s s i o n o f t h e t o t e m i c s y s t e m o f K a r a d j e r i t r i b e ( n o r t h w e s t o f J i g a l o n g ) g i v e s t h e t e r m y a r d a r j g a l a s r e f e r r i n g t o ' s p i r i t c h i l d ' . A t J i g a l o n g t h e n a m e i s i d e n t i c a l , b u t t h e c o n n o t a t i o n o f J a d a n g a l i s d i f f e r e n t . 97. thunderclouds during summer storms i n the desert. They hunt using powerful l i g h t n i n g bolts (wilud.juru: wilu means • »•"~ 'penis') which emanate from bunu rods that either hang from 2 t h e i r penises, or a c t u a l l y are t h e i r penises. They thrust these in t o the ground, the charge t r a v e l s underground then back up into the sky where they . quickly r e t r i e v e i t . A l l such bolts t r a v e l from ground to sky and can be used to k i l l and cook game, or to k i l l Aborigines who have offended them. After the Jadangal have dropped t h e i r r a i n , they are weakened Tn h i s discussion of Aboriginal b e l i e f s associated with the Wandjina beings of north-western A u s t r a l i a , Crawford (I968: 28-31) refers to them as cloud s p i r i t s which are human i n form and have power over rainclouds and l i g h t n i n g . He notes that clouds often take on human shapes, l i k e people wander- ing through the sky; the cumulo-nimbus clouds that herald the a r r i v a l of the summer monsoon are thought by the Aborigines to be the Wandjina themselves. Arndt (1964:161-169) also notes the humanoid c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of cumulo-nimbus clouds with t h e i r t r a i l i n g c u r t a i n of r a i n as they move e r r a t i c a l l y about the countryside. The Wara- munga i n fac t c a l l the r a i n - c u r t a i n gnapa:waili ('rain leg') Arndt posits the evolution of Wandjinas from rainclouds. "The development of ideas about a s p i r i t u a l control of r a i n clouds i s not d i f f i c u l t to understand since the clouds are s t i l l regarded as walking about the countryside and the dark patches on the storm head do on occasion resemble f a c i a l features." Arndt thus suggests a s h i f t i n emphasis from the amorphous shape of clouds to the more regular anthropomorphic shape of a s p i r i t . This i s a convincing explanation i n the l i g h t of the Jigalong Aborigines' b e l i e f s about rain-cloud s p i r i t s (Jadangal). :Roheim (1945:55,84) states that among the Central A u s t r a l i a n tribes,as among the D i e r i of South A u s t r a l i a , l i g h t n i n g i s thought to be the penis of the r a i n . 9 8 . from the loss of blood and must return to their Djaramara homes to recuperate before setting forth again. They take back with them cooked meat for the snakes. Some people say that there are female and child Jadangal, while others say that they are a l l bachelors, as were Winba and the other rainmaking ancestors-*. Raji, To many Aborigines, Raji and Jadangal are synonymous, but some make a clear distinction between the 1 two sorts of being. Raji are said to be very t a l l and hairy and of human form. They also live i n Djaramara country, but venture abroad only during the spring and early summer months, when they hunt galahs, eaglehawks, white cockatoos and other birds by taking them directly from their nests high i n trees, then returning to Djaramara with them for them- selves and the Jadangal to consume. They travel alone, move constantly and are associated with weather known as mlnibugu: scattered thundershowers with loud thunder and strong lightning, but l i t t l e accompanying r a i n f a l l . For the rest of the year Several Aboriginal groups i n north-western Australia use the term r a i to refer to spirit-children, which are thought to sometimes reveal new songs and dances to men during dreams (Coate, 1966:93-123) . Elkin (1933:295) also refers to them as "totemic species s p i r i t s " i n the beliefs of the Karadjeri. There i s a connection between r a i .and weather phenomena among the Bardi, who believe that the r a i hate superhuman powers and subsist solely on their own armblood. If a pearlshell orna- ment (bind.iibind.i) i s found i n a tree that has apparently been struck by lightning, i t i s thought that a r a i really k i l l e d the tree with one of the shells that i t keeps inside i t s body (Elkin, 1 9 3 3 : W - ^ 5 0 ) ; 9 9 . t h e y r e m a i n i n s i d e t h e i r home w a t e r h o l e s . G a n j d j i n a d a . L i t t l e i s known o f t h e s e humano id b e i n g s e x c e p t t h a t t h e y a r e s u p p o s e d l y a mob o f u n c i r c u m c i s e d o l d men who l i v e i n D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y , and g i v e t h e i r name t o t h e f o r k e d l i g h t n i n g d e c o r a t i o n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h the E )a :wa j i l l i n e . G i d i r b a and Wi .1urba(or . . B a d . i i w i r i w i r i ) . ighese two b i r d s , w h i c h a r e s a i d t o have t h e i r permanent homes i n D j a r ama r a c o u n t r y , a r e c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h r a i n m a k i n g and w i t h t h e D a : w a j i l and a r e men t i oned i n t h e s o n g l i n e as h a v i n g been s e e n by Winba f l y i n g above t h e w a t e r h o l e s upon h i s r e t u r n f r om h i s l o n g j o u r n e y . B o t h a r e named f r om t h e i r c a l l s . I have n e v e r been a b l e t o p o s i t i v e l y i d e n t i f y e i t h e r b i r d , s i n c e t h e y a r e r a r e i n t h e J i g a l o n g a r e a , bu t f r om i n f o r m a n t s 1 d e s c r i p t i o n s , g i d i r b a i s p r o b a b l y t h e o r i e n t a l p r a t i n c o l e ( g l a r e o l a - p r a t i n c o l a ) . a n A s i a n m i g r a n t t h a t spends f r om December t o abou t A p r i l i n t h e n o r t h - w e s t o f A u s t r a l i a , a nd , a c c o r d i n g t o H i l l (1967), i s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h e coming o f r a i n among b o t h t h e w h i t e s and t h e A b o r i g i n e s . 1 The s m a l l e r c f . N o r t h (1898:160-161): "The appea rance o f t h i s b i r d i s r e - ga r ded by r e s i d e n t s o f N o r t h West A u s t r a l i a a s a n i n d i c a t i o n o f t h e app r oa ch o f r a i n , and i t i s known l o c a l l y as t h e ' L i t t l e S t o r m - b i r d ' . " . . . . . " T h e y came i n a s i m i l a r manner t o a f l i g h t o f S w i f t s , s c a t t e r e d o v e r a w ide a r e a and c i r c l i n g o r d a s h i n g a l o n g i n p u r s u i t o f i n s e c t s . " "The examples s e c u r e d were s h o t w h i l s t s k imming o v e r a swamp, f r om w h i c h t h e y were r e - t r i e v e d by a l i t t l e b l a c k u r c h i n abou t e i g h t y e a r s o l d . The n a t i v e s were v e r y i n d i g n a n t a t my s h o o t i n g t h e s e b i r d s , and a d e p u t a t i o n f r o m t h e b l a c k s ' camp e x p l a i n e d f o r my e d i f i c a - t i o n t h a t i f I k i l l e d any more a b i g r a i n ^ w o u l d come and n e v e r s t o p u n t i l i t had washed e v e r y t h i n g away . " J i g a l o n g p e o p l e g i v e t h e same r e a s o n f o r n o t ha rm i ng e i t h e r o f t h e s e b i r d s • 100. wijurba, also known as bad.1 iwi i d m l r , l ^ . i s probably the fork- t a i l e d swift (apus p a c i f l o u s ) . another Asian b i r d that migrates to A u s t r a l i a i n l a t e spring and stays until,.the end of summer, Both birds f l y high, except i n humid, thundery weather , catch almost a l l t h e i r food on the wing, and r a r e l y land on the ground. They f l y i n c i r c l e s and i n swooping, dash- in g zigzag&r, and the movements of the two groups of Da:wajil dancers who represent these birds are sai d to be i n i m i t a t i o n of t h e i r f l i g h t . iGidlrba belong to the Banaga and Garimara sections, wi.iurba to the Burunu and Milanga sections, and throughout the Da:wajil members of the respective pairs of sections imitate the c a l l of the b i r d with which they are associated. The birds are only seen during the time of b i g rains and are thought to l i v e i n the clouds while ; away from T. Djaramara country. Gidlrba are associated with heavier r a i n f a l l and more powerful l i g h t n i n g than wljurba, but no According to McConnel (1930:347-349) i n a paper on r a i n - bow serpent b e l i e f s i n North Queensland, two storm birds are associated with thunder, as i t s parents. I f Aborigines k i l l them, floods follow and a l l the people w i l l be drowned, they believe. S i m i l a r l y , two birds f i g u r e prominently i n the water-serpent myth reported by Piddington (1930:352-354) f o r the Karadjeri people of north-western A u s t r a l i a . The Drysdale Biver Aborigines of north-western A u s t r a l i a regard the water-serpent Galoru as the rainbow and s p i r i t of ,;rain, and have a myth i n which he sends two birds as messengers down to earth (Hernandez, 1961:116). 101. s p e c i a l r a i n m a k i n g t a s k s a r e a l l o t t e d t o t h e b i r d s . I n t h e Dreamt ime, f l o c k s o f b o t h b i r d s (some s a y t h e y were i n human f o rm a t t h a t t i m e ) were l i k e men o f t h e w a l u m a l i n j s t a t u s ; i . e . t h e y h u n t e d meat f o r t h e s e n i o r r a i n m a k e r s . Now ; t hey j u s t h e l p b r i n g up t h e r a i n . JWhen r a i n b e g i n s , w i j u r b a a r e g e n e r a l l y s e en f i r s t , and a r e s a i d t o be ' h u n t i n g up t h e r a i n ' w i t h t h e i r s t r o n g s m e l l . A n o t h e r b i r d , l l m b l . t h e b l a c k - f r o n t e d d o t t e r e l , a w a t e r - l o v e r , i s a l s o c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h r a i n and s u r - f a c e w a t e r , and i s u s u a l l y s i g h t e d f i r s t when r a i n i s a p p r o a c h - i n g . L i m b i i s a l s o s a i d t o be D j a r a m a r a and t o have been w i t h t h e r a i n m a k e r s d u r i n g : t he D reamt ime . P r og s a r e a l s o t h ough t t o o r i g i n a t e i n D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y and t o be c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h r a i n . T h e i r c r o a k i n g n o i s e s a r e s a i d t o be i n g l e e f u l a n t i c i p a t i o n o f imminent r a i n - f a l l . I n t h e Dreamt ime t h e y were a mob o f women,who l i v e d a t t h e D j a r ama r a w a t e r h o l e s and sang ou t d u r i n g p e r f o rmance s o f t h e ria:wajil by t h e a n c e s t o r s . T h i s i s why t o d a y , women make f r o g - n o i s e s a t i n t e r v a l s :; d u r i n g t h e s i n g i n g . D. Weather Phenomena T h i s s e c t i o n i s a d i s c u s s i o n o f A b o r i g i n a l v i ews and e x p l a n a t i o n s o f t h e v a r i o u s wea the r phenomena, i n a n a t t e m p t t o i l l u m i n a t e some o f t h e u n d e r l y i n g c on c ep t s o f t he B a r w a j i l . B a i n . I n t e rms o f s e a s on o f o c c u r r e n c e , most A b o r i g i n e s d i s t i n g u i s h ;summer r a i n ( p a n g a l i r a n u ) . w h i c h ;comes f r om 1 0 2 . D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y i n r e s p o n s e t o r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t i e s , f r om w i n t e r r a i n ( g u l u w a ) . wh i c h comes f r om c e r t a i n a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s who a r e now i n t h e heavens i n fefcarffoim. Some p e o p l e a l s o d i s t i n g u i s h s p r i n g r a i n (m i n i buga ) and e a r l y summer r a i n ( w l l u d . i a d u ) . b o t h o f w h i c h a r e s a i d t o emanate f r om D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y . The Two Men (Wadi G u d j a r a ) and t h e i r MB Gamurubu l , t h e M i n j i b u r u women, t h e N a t i v e Ca t and Possum mobs ( G i n g i l j b a and Wa j uda ) , l i k e most o t h e r a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s , went i n t o t h e s k y and became s t a r s a f t e r t h e y had f i n i s h e d t h e i r e a r t h l y e x p l o i t s . E a r l y i n w i n t e r , t h e s e s e t s o f s t a r s d i s a p p e a r be l ow t h e w e s t e r n h o r i z o n , ' i n t o t h e s e a - w a t e r ' ; f i r s t t o go a r e t h e M i n j i b u r u , t h e n G i n g i l b a - W a j u d a , t h e n Wadi Gud j a r a -Gamu rubu l , and a t t h a t t i m e w i n t e r r a i n comes f r om t h e w e s t . When t h e y l a t e r r e a p p e a r on t h e e a s t e r n h o r i z o n , w i n t e r r a i n comes f r om t h e e a s t . The f i r s t l i g h t r a i n s a r e M i n j i b u r u 1 s , and a r e s a i d t o be a m i x t u r e o f s e a - w a t e r and t h e a n c e s t r e s s e s ' u r i n e ; t h e n e x t r a i n s , a l s o l i g h t , a r e G i n g i l j b a - W a j u d a ' s and come f r om t h e o cean , as do t h e f i n a l heavy , t h u n d e r - shower r a i n s t h a t a r e a t t r i b u t e d t o Wadi G u d j a r a - G a m u r u b u l . The A b o r i g i n e s a r e a m b i v a l e n t abou t w i n t e r r a i n , because a l - t hough i t g e r m i n a t e s g r a s s e s , i t a l s o b r i n g s c o l d and m i s e r a b l e wea t he r c o n d i t i o n s t o t h e d e s e r t . T he r e i s d i s a g r e emen t among 1 0 3 . i n f o r m a n t s as t o whe t he r o r n o t n a t i v e d o c t o r s have t h e power t o j o u r n e y s i n d r e a m - s p i r i t f o r m t o t h e o cean and o b t a i n w i n t e r j . r a i n , and whe the r o r n o t t h e y and t h e s e n i o r r a i n m a k e r s have t h e power t o stop®or4dri¥e away t h i s k i n d o f r a i n , coming as i t does f r om t h e a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s i n t h e s k y . A l l summer r a i n o r i g i n a t e s i n t h e P e r c i v a l L ake s a r e a , i s - c o n t r o l l e d by Winba and t h e o t h e r r e s i d e n t r a i n m a k e r s , and b r o u g h t by t h e J a d a n g a l , who r e l e a s e i t f r om t h e i r b o d i e s a s b l o o d (and as swea t , a c c o r d i n g t o some i n f o r m a n t s ) . T h i s r a i n i s s u p p l i e d i n r e s p o n s e ; t o p e r f o rmance s o f ; t he D a r w a j i l and v i s i t s t o D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y by n a t i v e d o c t o r s and o t h e r s i n d r e a m - s p i r i t f o r m . I n a d d i t i o n t o t h e i r s e a s o n o f o c c u r r e n c e , r a i n s may be c l a s s i f i e d a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r d i r e c t i o n o f o r i g i n , i n t e n s i t y , d u r a t i o n and t y p e of a c c o m p a n i m e n t ( e . g . l i g h t n i n g , t h u n d e r , h a i l ) * C l o u d s . The c l o u d s made by Winba were a m i x t u r e o f m a r s u p i a l f u r and e a g l e hawk down, bu t t h e y may a l s o be f o rmed f r om w a t e r g r a s s e s . The A b o r i g i n e s have many d i f f e r e n t names f o r c l o u d - t y p e s , w h i c h t h e y c l a s s i f y a c c o r d i n g t o s i z e , shape , c o l o u r a t i o n , d i r e c t i o n and speed o f movement, a p p a r e n t h e i g h t , c o n f i g u r a t i o n and so o n . The b r o a d e s t d i v i s i o n i s be tween j u ndu r ba ( ' r u b b i s h c l o u d s ' ) w h i c h c o n t a i n no r a i n and t h e r e f o r e , a c c o r d i n g t o most i n f o r m a n t s , no J a d a n g a l , and r a i n - c l o u d s , u s u a l l y r e f e r r e d t o g e n e r i c a l l y a s nangali.. 104 . w h i c h i s t h e name o f t h e b i g cumulo-n imbus c l o u d . 1 Some o f t h e many c l o u d names, and t h e names o f w i n d s , a r e men t i o ned i n c e r t a i n o f t h e D a r w a j i l s o n g s . The r e a r e no s p e c i a l e x p l a n a - t i o n s f o r t h e o c c u r r e n c e o f w i n d s , e x c e p t t h a t t h e y b r i n g up c l o u d s . Winds a r e i d e n t i f i e d a c c o r d i n g t o t h e d i r e c t i o n f r om w h i c h t h e y b l ow and t h e k i n d o f wea the r c o n d i t i o n s t h e y g e n e r a l l y b r i n g . Good w inds a r e t h o s e t h a t b r i n g r a i n - c l o u d s w i t h them. L i g h t n i n g . F o r k - l i g h t n i n g i s t h e weapon o f t h e Jada iaga l as t h e y h u n t , o r as t h e y ' t r y ou t t h e i r powe r 1 d u r i n g t h e i r t r a v e l s i n s i d e c l o u d s . Many o f t h e s e c r e t - s a c r e d dances o f thee I 3 a :wa j i l f o c u s on t h e J a d a n g a l and t h i s g r e a t power t o 2 shoo t b o l t s o f l i g h t n i n g . Some s a y t h a t t h e l i g h t n i n g i s t h e J a d a n g a l ^ h u n t i n g boomerangs as t h e y bounce back o f f t h e g r ound , and t h a t d i s t a n t b u s h f i r e s a r e e v i d e n c e o f t h e J a d a n g a l c o o k i n g t h e i r game. When t h e J a d a & g a l s e t ou t f r om D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y , t h e i r l i g h t n i n g r o d s (bunu) a r e ' l o a d e d ' w i t h power , 1 Warner ( 1 9 3 7 /64 : 3 7 2 ) , w r i t i n g on t h e M u r n g i n o f Arnhem L a n d , c i t e s a n A b o r i g i n a l b e l i e f t h a t c l o u d s coming f r o m t h e s o u t h and e a s t a r e m a l e , and t h o s e f r om t h e west a r e f e m a l e . The two meet and c o p u l a t e ; i . e . t h e y a r e r e a l l y s n a k e s . B a i n i s s a i d t o be t h e s a l i v a o f t h e r a i n b o w s e r p e n t . 2 I n a myth r e g a r d i n g t h e o r i g i n o f s u b i n c i s i o n among t h e Wunambal o f n o r t h - w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a (Lommel, 19^9:160) t h e Wand j i n a K a l a r u t h r e w t h e f i r s t f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g by s p l i t t i n g h i s p e n i s and l e t t i n g ou t t h e f i r e and f l a s h o f l i g h t n i n g . K a l a r u c a n d i r e c t t h e f l a s h by t a k i n g h i s p e n i s i n h i s l e f t hand and show ing t h e d i r e c t i o n he wants t h e l i g h t n i n g t o go w i t h a c l u b i n h i s r i g h t h a n d . I n t h i s way he c an h i t h i s enemies and s p l i t t r e e s i n t o f i r e w o o d . 1 0 5 . and t h e y f i r e them by p o i n t i n g t h e r o d s ( t h e i r p e n i s e s ) down p a s t t h e i r ; anuses and i n t o t h e g r ound , t h e n t h e y shake t h e i r l e g s r a p i d l y and stamp t h e i r f e e t t o d i s c h a r g e t h e b o l t . Bunu , e i t h e r b r o k e n o r i n t a c t a r e s a i d t o be somet imes f o u n d n e a r s p o t s where l i g h t n i n g has s t r u c k . S h e e t - l i g h t n i n g ( b a r b a r o r g i r i w i r l ) . w h i c h i s g e n e r a l l y s e e n h i g h i n c l o u d s and a t a d i s t a n c e , i s ; s a i d t o be c au s ed by f ema l e J a d a n g a l , who have l i g h t s on t h e i n s i d e o f t h e i r t h i g h s , w h i c h f l i c k e r a s t h e y dance and^produee s h e e t - l i g h t n i n g . They a r e s a i d t o do t h i s t o make a l i g h t e d p a t h f o r A b o r i g i n e s who a r e mak i ng j o u r n e y s i n d r e a m - s p i r i t f o rm t o and f r om D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y . T h i s appea r s t o be t h e o n l y t ime t h a t t h e e x i s t e n c e o f f ema l e J a d a n g a l i s e v e r m e n t i o n e d . S h e e t - l i g h t n i n g i s somet imes s a i d t o be caused by D j a r amara b e i n g s w a v i n g t h e i r f e a t h e r - b u n d l e s ( j i l i w i r i o r n a l u w i r i ) t h a t a r e worn s t i c k i n g up t h r o u g h t h e i r f o r e h e a d bands ; t h i s s h a k i n g movement i s t h ough t t o i n d u c e r a i n . Thunde r . T h i s i s c a l l e d dududu, and i s o f two ma in t y p e s , a c c o r d i n g t o n o i s e l e v e l and c a u s a t i o n . Loud t h u n d e r - c l a p s a r e t h e n o i s e e m i t t e d by t h e J a d a n g a l a s t h e y r e l e a s e l i g h t n i n g b o l t s . S o f t e r , more d i s t a n t , g r o a n i n g n o i s e s o f t h u n d e r a r e a t t r i b u t e d t o two k i n d s o f l i t t l e i n s e c t t h a t a r e b e l i e v e d t o f a l l w i t h t h e r a i n : b l r u m b u r . a s m a l l w a t e r b e e t l e , and l i d l l l d i . an#. u n i d e n t i f i e d r ed -mou thed b e i n g , shaped l i k e 106. a c e n t i p e d e , w h i c h l i v e s i n c l a y p a n s and d i e s when t h e y d r y u p . H a i l . Known v a r i o u s l y as gunada . b u l i d j i d a and wa ru rugu , i s o b t a i n e d by Winba and t h e J a d a n g a l f r om t h e bo t tom o f D j a r a m a r a w a t e r h o l e s . H a i l s t o n e s may o r i g i n a l l y have been W i n b a ' s f o o d - p o u n d e r s . He i s s a i d t o have once made some b i g , ] b l a c k , s h a r p ones , wh i ch p r o v e d t o o dangerous t o u s e , so he l e f t them a t t h e w a t e r h o l e . H a i l i s f e a r e d and d i s l i k e d by t h e A b o r i g i n e s , who c o n s i d e r i t v e r y dange rous , and when i t f a l l s t h e y s i n g ou t t o i t and t e l l i t t o go away. Men may p i c k i t u p , p u t i t i n t h e i r mouths , t h e n s p i t i t back i n t o t h e s k y , s h o u t i n g , "Take i t away ! " O l d women who s i n g ou t a r e s a i d t o be t h e most e f f e c t i v e , s i n c e t h e J a d a n g a l a r e t hough t t o be n e r v o u s o f f e m a l e s . I n t h e same way, o l d women a r e e n j o i n e d t o s i n g ou t t o t h e J a d a n g a l d u r i n g l i g h t n i n g s t o rms and s c a r e them away by e m b a r r a s s i n g them. They c r y o u t , " W i l u gambara i Gawa w l r i l j l l " . "Newly s u b i n c i s e d p e n i s J Take i t f a r awayi 1 " On h e a r i n g t h i s t h e J a d a n g a l wou ld be g r a v e l y emba r r a s sed and r e t r e a t . , i t i s s a i d . I n n o r t h - w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a , t h e A b o r i g i n e s c l a i m t h a t t h e y have t h e power t o c a l l up ' d r y ' l i g h t n i n g , w h i c h p r e c ede s t h e f i r s t monsoona l r a i n s by s e v e r a l weeks , and u s e i t t o k i l l p e o p l e o r h i t t r e e s o r r o c k s ( C r a w f o r d , 1968:96). They may a l s o d i s m i s s i t ; t h e A b o r i g i n e s a t Kunmunya M i s s i o n u s e d t o c ha se t h e l i g h t n i n g b r a n d i s h i n g s t i c k s t o d r i v e i t away.,; •Wet' l i g h t n i n g , w h i c h accompan ies t h e monsoon, i s t h o u g h t t o be c o n t r o l l e d by W a n d j i n a . S i m i l a r l y , t h e A b o r i g i n e s a t Ka l umburu i n n o r t h - w e s t e r n A u s t r - a l i a , who b e l i e v e t h a t l i g h t n i n g i s t h e work o f e v i l s p i r i t s ( d j i m i ) . t r y t o s c a r e i t away. The women shou t a t t h e s k y and t h r e a t e n t h e l i g h t n i n g w i t h s t i c k s (Cawte , 1964:174) 107. Ra inbows . The r a i n b o w ( d u n j d j u ) i s b e l i e v e d t o be a J a d a n g a l man p r o t e c t i n g h i s 'WM', a n o t h e r J a d a n g a l , who i s be l ow h i m , a g a i n s t t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f an a t t a c k by A b o r i g i n a l n a t i v e d o c t o r s who a t t emp t t o s t o p e x c e s s i v e r a i n o r w i n d . I n t h e Dreamt ime, t h e r a i n bow was Winba h i m s e l f , w i t h h i s 'WM 1 b e l o w . Such a j u x t a p o s i t i o n i s u n u s u a l because t h e DH-WM r e l a t i o n s h i p i s p a r e x c e l l e n c e one o f a v o i d a n c e , though t h e p a i r i s bound by t i e s o f r e c i p r o c a l o b l i g a t i o n . Some s a y t h a t t h e p r e s e n c e o f a r a i n b o w i s t o l e t A b o r i g i n e s know o f t h e p r e s e n c e o f a b i g r a i n , b u t o t h e r s s a y t h a t a f u l l r a i n b o w i s a s u r e s i g n t h a t no r a i n w i l l f a l l , because t h e body odour coming f r om t h e e r o t c h e s o f t h e J a d a n g a l p a i r s c a r e s t h e r a i n 2 away .* A v e r y s h o r t , p a r t i a l r a i n b o w , however , has h a r d l y any s m e l l and I n d i c a t e s t h a t a b i g r a i n i s g o i n g t o f a l l . The r a i n b o w i s a lway s t r a v e l l i n g a l o n g , r a p i d l y . B i g r ound w a t e r - h o l e s a r e f o rmed f r om t h e p o i n t o f o r i g i n o f r a i n b o w s ; i . e . f r om t h e d e p r e s s i o n made by t h e f e e t o f t h e J a d a n g a l i n t h e r a i n b o w . Many become d r y , b u t i f t h e bot toms a r e dug o u t , i t i s s a i d , w a t e r w i l l a lway s be f o u n d . I n A r anda my th , t h e r a i n b o w i s a man w i t h h i s b r o t h e r - i n - l a w and m o t h e r - i n - l a w ( C . S t r e h l o w , 1907:28) ' Among t h e M u r n g i n (Warner , 1937/64 :372) t h e r a i n bow c onno t e s v a r i o u s l y s n ake , s n a k e ' s house and t r u m p e t . I t i s t h e announce- ment n o t o n l y o f heavy r a i n s , b u t a l s o o f heavy f l o o d i n g a t t h e h e i g h t o f t h e r a i n y s e a s o n . The N o r t h e r n T e r r i t o r y K a i t i s h , on t h e o t h e r hand , r e g a r d t h e r a i n b o w as t h e sona o f t h e r a i n , w h i c h i s s a i d t o be a lway s t r y i n g t o s t o p i t ( Spen c e r and G i l l e n 1904:295) . S i m i l a r l y t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f t h e P e n n e f a t h e r R i v e r a r e a i n N o r t h Queens l and r e g a r d t h e r a i n b o w as a v e r y b r i g h t l y c o l o u r e d snake t h a t comes up t o s t o p t h e r a i n t h a t has been w i l f u l l y made by t h e i r enemies (Ro t h 1907:10) 1 0 8 . Dew and F r o s t . Dew ( w a r g u l j b a - ' s w e a t ' ) and f r o s t ( d . l unm i r l - ' i c e ' ) a r e n o t a t t r i b u t e d t o t h e D j a r ama ra b e i n g s , b u t t o t h e work o f s p i r i t - c h i l d r e n ( d j i d j i g a r g a l ) . f o r whom t h i s i s t h e i r ma i n w a t e r - s u p p l y . Dew and f r o s t come f r om w i n t e r - r a i n and so a r e f o u n d o n l y i n w i n t e r . The i c e t h a t i s somet imes s e e n f o r m i n g on w a t e r i n w i n t e r i s c a l l e d ' d . j a gu l . j ugu l j u ( a n o t h e r name f o r t h e M i n i j i b u r u a n c e s t r e s s e s ) o r gumbu ( u r i n e ) . I t i s c o n s i d e r e d t o be bad and i s n o t e a t e n , b u t may be d r unk l a t e r when i t m e l t s , E. How B a i n i s Made. The r a t i o n a l e b e h i n d t h e b r i n g i n g up o f r a i n i s q u i t e s i m p l e and i s ba sed on t h e same e x p e c t a t i o n s o f r e c i p r o c i t y t h a t o b t a i n be tween A b o r i g i n e s i n t h e i r e v e r y d a y l i f e . A t c e r t a i n s p e c i a l l y c o n s t r u c t e d g r ound s , and u s i n g a v a r i e t y o f s a c r e d o b j e c t s t h a t a r e s p e c i f i c a l l y r e l a t e d t o t h e D j a r ama r a b e i n g s , t h e y p e r f o r m many d i f f e r e n t r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s , i n - c l u d i n g s i n g i n g , d a n c i n g , w a t e r - t h r o w i n g , a n o i n t i n g and ' f e e d - i n g ' t h e p i l e s o f s a c r e d s t o n e s , e t c . A l l t h i s i s done f o r t h e b e n e f i t o f t h e i r k i n smen , t h e D j a r a m a r a , who i t i s p r e - sumed w i l l be b o t h f l a t t e r e d by a l l t h i s a t t e n t i o n and i n - d e b t e d t o t h e A b o r i g i n e s f o r a l l t h e i r k i n d a c t i o n s , and w i l l t h u s be e x p e c t e d t o r e c i p r o c a t e , as any good k i n smen w o u l d , b y r e w a r d i n g them w i t h r a i n . The l i g h t n i n g r o d s t h a t make up t h e b u l k o f t h e two p i l e s o f s a c r e d o b j e c t s a t t h e men 's D a : w a j i l g r ound i n t h e bush do n o t m e r e l y r e p r e s e n t l i g h t n i n g and s nake s , t h e y a r e 1 0 9 . l i g h t n i n g and s n a k e s , and t h e y a r e c onne c t e d w i t h t h e D j a r ama r a a r e a and w i t h Winba v i a unde rg round j tunne l s t h a t a l l o w them t o be i n b o t h p l a c e s v i r t u a l l y a t t h e same t i m e . i T h u s Winba c an see and h e a r a l l t h a t t r a n s p i r e s d u r i n g p e r f o rmance s o f t h e D a : w a j i l , and r e a c t s f a v o u r a b l y o r a d v e r s e l y d epend i ng on t h e e v e n t s he w i t n e s s e s a t J i g a l o n g . ,5 L i k e humans, t h e D j a r a m a r a b e i n g s a r e s e n s i t i v e t o s l i g h t s and i n s u l t s , and may a l s o f a l l p r e y t o t h e s e l f i s h n e s s o f men who may f o r p e r s o n a l r e a s o n s want t o do them harm ( t h i s i s d i s c u s s e d i n t h e f o l l o w i n g s e c t i o n ) . I f a l l goes w e l l w i t h t h e r i t u a l , t h e J a d a n g a l , a c t i n g * on t h e commands o f Winba a i i d K t h e - o t h e r r a i n m a k e r s , w i l l l o a d t h emse l v e s up w i t h r a i n m a k i n g o b j e c t s , w h i c h , b e i n g now f u l l o f power as a r e s u l t o f t h e b l o o d , meat and o t h e r f o o d s t u f f s t h a t have been f e d t o them d u r i n g t h e r i t u a l , w i l l be c a p a b l e o f p r o d u c i n g much r a i n . Bu t f o r r a i n t o come , the p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h e r i t u a l must make j o u r n e y s i n b a d u n d j a r i ( d r e a m - s p i r i t ) f o r m , l e d by t h e s e n i o r r a i n m a k i n g men and p r o t e c t e d by n a t i v e d o c t o r s , t o a c q u a i n t t h emse l v e s w i t h t h e D j a r ama r a w a t e r h o l e s , see t h e s n a k e s , and show t h e J a d a n g a l t h e r o u t e t h e y must t a k e w i t h t h e r a i n ; .'Such a c t i v i t y i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e i d e a o f t h e D a r w a j i l a s a n i n c r e a s e r i t e , s i n c e t h e A b o r i g i n e s s a y t h a t t h e y make su ch j o u r n e y s t o o t h e r i n c r e a s e c e n t r e s ( d j a b i j a ) t o p e r s u ade t h e a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s t h e r e i n t o s end ou t l o t s o f t h e s p e c i e s c o n c e r n e d . 110. These a l l e g e d j o u r n e y s a r e t a k e n en masse , as t h e p a r t i c i p a n t s (men, women and c h i l d r e n ) assume b i r d - l i k e b a d u n d j a r i f o rm and s i t a s t r i d e jungu. jungu, l o n g l e n g t h s o f h a i r - s t r i n g w i t h a p e a r l s h e l l ' l i g h t * on t h e end , u s e d d u r i n g some K )a :wa j i l d a n c e s . These jungu.jungu become snakes ( o f t e n s e en as l o n g t h i n c l o u d s t h a t b e a r t h e same name), p i l o t e d f r o n t and r e a r by p o w e r f u l n a t i v e d o c t o r s t o p r o t e c t them a g a i n s t m a l i g n a n t s p i r i t s t h a t may be e n c o u n t e r e d en r o u t e , and l e d by m a l g a r a r a , men o f t h e most s e n i o r D a : w a j i l s t a t u s who a r e s a i d t o be snakes t h e m s e l v e s and p o w e r f u l r a i n m a k e r s i n t h e i r own r i g h t . 1 They do n o t f l y d i r e c t l y , bu t f o l l o w p t h e r o u t e t a k e n by W inba , and when t h e y r e a c h D j a r a m a r a Roheim (1945 :184-185) c i t e s a n e x p l a n a t i o n o f r a i n m a k i n g g i v e n h im by P i n t u p i - J u m u A b o r i g i n e s , whose d e s e r t c u l t u r e i s s i m i l - a r t o t h a t o f t h e p e o p l e now a t J i g a l o n g . N a t i v e d o c t o r s a r e b e l i e v e d t o l i e on t o p o f a w a t e r - s n a k e , wh i c h t i e s them i n t o a kno t and t a k e s them i n s i d e a w a t e r h o l e , where t h e y r o t and grow t h i n . The snake l a t e r s u r f a c e s and v o m i t s on to t h e b a n k , t h e n r e l e a s e s t h e men, who l i e f a c e down on t h e bank . Then t h e y g e t up and e n c i r c l e t h e w a t e r h o l e w i t h b o t h hands r a i s e d . C l oud s then|come up , and t h e n a t i v e d o c t o r s jump up and down, sway i ng t h e i r p e n i s e s as t h e y do s o . L i g h t n i n g i s s a i d t o come ou t o f t h e i r p e n i s e s as t h e y move. E l k i n (1930b:349-350) , A w r i t i n g abou t t h e F o r r e s t R i v e r d i s t r i c t o f n o r t h - w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a , where t h e w a t e r s e r p e n t i s t h e . u l - t i m a t e s o u r c e o f t h e n a t i v e 1 d o c t o r ' s powe r s , s t a t e s t h a t t h e d o c t o r r i d e s on t h e s n a k e ' s back and t h e snake i n s e r t s s m a l l snakes and q u a r t z c r y s t a l s i n t o h i s body . Among t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f Ka lumburu i n n o r t h - w e s t e r n A u s t r a l i a , t h e n a t i v e d o c t o r c a n summon t h e r a i n b o w s e r p e n t t o do h i s b i d d i n g . The snake t r a n s f o r m s i t s back i n t o a h o l l o w l i k e a canoe and may t a k e a l a r g e g roup o f n a t i v e d o c t o r s a b o a r d . (Cawte , 1964 :186) 'cf. E l k i n , 1934:173-17^: "The i m p o r t a n c e o f t h e 'd ream t i m e 1 t r a c k s i s s e e n i n t h e cus tom o f a p p r o a c h i n g s a c r e d h e r o i c and t o t e m i c s i t e s by t h e a c t u a l p a t h b e l i e v e d t o have been f o l l o w - ed by t h e h e r o o r a n c e s t o r . " I l l ; c o u n t r y t h e y f l y r i g h t i n s i d e t h e w a t e r h o l e s t o t h e home o f t h e r a i n m a k e r s . They p a t t h e snakes on t h e head t o q u i e t e n them , j u s t -as t h e men p a t t h e t o p s o f t h e s a c r e d p i l e s o f o b j e c t s when f i r s t t h e y e n t e r t h e bush g r ound , t h e n t h e l e a d e r s t a l k w i t h t h e J a d a n g a l , They s a y , "We want r a i n ; t h e c o u n t r y i s t o o d r y ; we want g r e e n c o u n t r y s i d e - f o o d f o r t h e game," They t h e n l e a v e t h e w a t e r h o l e s and r e t u r n t o t h e s e t t l e m e n t , and i f a l l goes w e l l , a b i g w i n d s h o u l d f o l l o w them b a c k , t h e n c l o u d s and f i n a l l y r a i n s h o u l d f a l l i n t h e J i g a l o n g a r e a . I f i t does n o t r a i n , a n o t h e r t r i p w i l l be n eeded . I f t h e I 3 a : w a j i l and d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s have been s u c c e s s f u l , t h e J a d a n g a l w i l l come i n t h e i r b i g r a i n - c l o u d s and empty them on t o t h e d e s i r e d a r e a , u n t i l , w e a k e n e d f r om t h e l o s s o f power v i a t h e i r b l o o d and p r e s umab l y a l s o t h e i r l i g h t n i n g b o l t s , t h e y r e t u r n t o t h e i r homes t o r e c u p e r a t e . L i k e w i s e , t h e l i g h t n i n g r o d s , e t c . i n t h e two p i l e s o f r a i n - mak i ng o b j e c t s a l t t h e s e t t l e m e n t l o s e t h e i r power , and f o r more r a i n t o be made, t h e y must be ' r e l o a d e d ' o r r e c h a r g e d by a n o i n t i n g , f e e d i n g and r e p e a t e d p e r f o rmance o f t h e I 3 a : w a j i l . I n d i v i d u a l Ra inmaking, Men fortunate enough to havefe&een b o r n i n t h e D j a r ama r a a r e a a l r e a d y have snakes i n s i d e them and by v i r t u e o f t h i s a r e a b l e t o make r a i n on t h e i r own, i f t h e y so d e s i r e . I n a d d i t i o n , men who have been t h r o u g h t h e D a r w a j i l many t i m e s and r i s e t o t h e r a n k o f m a l g a r a r a , o r 112. m a s t e r s , a s t h e y a r e o f t e n c a l l e d i n E n g l i s h , a l s o have power - f u l enough snakes i n s i d e them t o be a b l e t o make r a i n . I f he i s u p s e t by s o m e t h i n g , a m a s t e r may.) v i s i t t h e D j a r ama r a a r e a d u r i n g a dream and f l i c k w a t e r - g r a s s (gubanba) ou t o f t h e w a t e r h o l e s and i n t o t h e a i r , u s i n g a s a c r e d b o a r d . The g r a s s becomes c l o u d s w h i c h f o l l o w h im back and may b r i n g i n e e s s a n t h eavy r a i n and l o c a l f l o o d i n g . The now-dead f a t h e r s o f some o f t h e o l d e r J i g a l o n g men a r e s a i d t o have done t h i s . They c a n a l s o make r a i n by t y i n g a n a l u w i r i f e a t h e r bund l e o r a s m a l l p e a r l s h e l l ( b i n j d j a b i n j d j a ) t o t h e end o f a s p e a r w h i c h i s h e l d u p r i g h t and shaken t o and f r o , a s t h e y s i n g D a t w a j i l s o n g s . They a r e a l s o s a i d t o have t h e power t o e n l i s t t h e h e l p o f t h e D j a r ama r a b e i n g s i n p u n i s h i n g mu rde r e r s o r o t h e r s e r i o u s t r a n s g r e s s o r s . O n l y t h e m a l g a r a r a and t h o s e men who were b o r n i n D j a r a m a r a t e r r i t o r y c a n s a f e l y make d r e a m - s p i r i t t r i p s i n t o t h e snakes* w a t e r h o l e s . B u t , a c c o r d i n g t o i n f o r - man t s , f ew a t t e m p t s a t i n d i v i d u a l r a i n m a k i n g a r e made u n l e s s a p e r s o n i s u p s e t and wants t o b r i n g m i s f o r t u n e t o o t h e r s . P. C o n t r o l o f B a i n I n summer, r a i n c a n somet imes be s een f a l l i n g a t some d i s t a n c e f r om t h e settlement-.;» A l t h o u g h t h e y have no power t o r e c a l l c l o u d s once t h e y have p a s s e d ove rhead t owards t h e s o u t h , any man f r om t h e se cond l o w e s t r a n k up c a n s i n g D a r w a j i l songs and beckon r a i n b e a r i n g c l o u d s t owards t h e 1 1 3 . settlement from areas to the north. As they sing, they may- shake a feather-bundle to and fro, to attract the Jadangal. When fast-moving 'traveller' clouds are spotted on the horizon i n summer, men often break spontaneously into choruses of Da:wajil songs to encourage the clouds to enlarge and come closer. Most efforts to attract rain are concentrated into the performance of the Da:wajil,but there i s also the problem of how to control or put a stop to excessive rain on the i n - frequent occasions that this occurs and there i s danger of local flooding. The Aborigines can take several steps to attempt to bring a halt to excessive rain. A group of senior Da:wajil status men may v i s i t the secret bush ground (bal.ibara). remove the long jungujungu hairstring i f i t i s s t i l l wound around the piles of objects and then sing some Da:wajil songs, but this time to drive the rain away. The removal of the hairstring i s likened to the turning off of a tap, or the releasing of the clouds to dissipate, as i s the removal of a l l the men's hairstring belts. They either take their own off, or have them forcibly removed by certain older women, who are related to them as 'ZD1. Some of the older women who wear pearlshell neck-ornaments (most are women who come from Djaramara country) remove them, and any men who may be wearing pearlshell ornaments also remove them. People w i l l wave the rain away, and c a l l out to the Jadangal to go away. 114 . D u r i n g one p r o l o n g e d f a l l o f heavy r a i n , abou t 1968 , when t h e J i g a l o n g C reek was r i s i n g r a p i d l y and t h e r a i n showed no s i g n s o f a b a t i n g , t h r e e o f t h e s e n i o r e x - D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y men were f o r c i b l y e n j o i n e d t o s t o p i t . Women r e l a t e d t o them as ' Z D ' e n t e r e d t h e i r camps ,pushed them on to t h e i r b a c k s , r ubbed f r e s h mud on t h e i r heads ( t o c o v e r up t h e f e a t h e r - b u n d l e s t h a t a l l s u ch men a r e s a i d t o have i n s i d e t h e i r h e a d s ) , t h e n removed t h e i r h a i r - b e l t s . The t h r e e men s t r i p p e d naked and w a l k e d down t o t h e c r e e kbank , w i t h eve ryone w a t c h i n g , t h e n t h e s e n i o r man b l e w on to two s h o r t s t i c k s ( t o l o a d them w i t h power , p r e s u m a b l y ) and s t u c k them i n t h e mud j u s t above t h e w a t e r ' s edge , as a ' f e n c e ' , beyond w h i c h t h e w a t e r l e v e l wou l d n o t r i s e . 1 The t h r e e men t h e n ' l i f t e d ' t h e w a t e r i n b o t h hands and t h r ew i t back t owa rds D j a r ama ra c o u n t r y . A c c o r d i n g t o i n f o r m a n t s , t h e r a i n s t o p p e d s h o r t l y a f t e r and t he w a t e r - l e v e l a b a t e d . R a t i o n a l e s f o r t h e N o n - A r r i v a l o f R a i n ; I n an a r e a where r a i n f a l l i s most u n r e l i a b l e and i r r e g u l a r , t h e I 3 a :wa j i l i s no t a lway s s u c c e s s f u l i n b r i n g i n g r a i n t o J i g a l o n g , even t hough i t i s h e l d o n l y d u r i n g t h e midsummer months when t he chances o f p r e c i p i t a t i o n a r e h i g h e s t and t h e r e i s f r e q u e n t t h u n d e r s t o r m a c t i v i t y . The A b o r i g i n e s c a n a lways f i n d e x - "''Old ;men o f t h e Bange rang t r i b e i n V i c t o r i a u s ed t o wrap a l i t t l e human h a i r a r ound a t w i g abou t s i x i n c h e s l o n g , t h e n s t i c k i t i n t o t h e mud on t h e m a r g i n o f t h e r i v e r and s i n g o v e r i t , t o make t h e w a t e r s r e c ede ( C u r r , 1 8 8 6 , 1 : 4 8 ) . 1 1 5 . p l a n a t i o n s f o r f a i l u r e , and a l t h o u g h i n d i v i d u a l o p i n i o n s f r e - q u e n t l y d i f f e r as t o t h e c au se o f f a i l u r e , some c o n j e c t u r e s q u i c k l y f i n d f a v o u r and become g e n e r a l l y a c c e p t e d r a t i o n a l e s . The f o l l o w i n g p a r a g r a p h l i s t s some o f t h e many r e a s o n s g i v e n f o r t h e n o n - a r r i v a l o f r a i n t o i l l u s t r a t e t h e w ide r ange o f s u ch e x p l a n a t i o n s . ( a ) Too many l o u d arguments and f i g h t s i n t h e Gamp a r e a c au sed Winba t o become u p s e t and withhold the r a i n . (b ) Dogs u r i n a t e d on t h e p i l e s o f s t o n e s , and d i s a r r a n g e d them, t h u s o f f e n d i n g S W i i i b a . ( c ) Some men had t h r own boomerangs d u r i n g f i g h t s a t r a i n * mak ing t i m e and t h e s e had s e v e r e d t h e j ungu j ungu h a i r - s t r i n g - s n a k e - c l o u d i n w h i c h J a d a n g a l were r i d i n g , t h u s i n j u r i n g them and mak ing them a n g r y . (d ) L o c a l n a t i v e d o c t o r s , u p s e t f o r some r e a s o n , h a d m a l i c i o u s l y c u t t h e c l o u d . iungu.iungu. w i t h t h e same r e s u l t as i n ( c ) . ( e ) The snakes i n s i d e t h e p i l e s may no t have been f e d s u f f i c i e n t meat , damper, e t c . and were t h u s t o o weak t o b r i n g up r a i n . ( f ) Some o f t h e men who went on d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s u p s e t Winba because when t h e y went t h e y were j u n d i r i ( a f r e q u e n t - l y u s e d wo rd , t r a n s l a t e d v a r i o u s l y as ' s u l k y 1 , ' c r o s s 1 , •mean bugge r* , a mood t h a t i s t h e s t a n d a r d r e a c t i o n o f p e o p l e who a r e o f f e n d e d by s ome th i ng and become* j u n d i r i t o l e t o t h e r s know how t h e y f e e l ) . To make r a i n come, e ve r yone must be happy i n t h e i r h e a r t s , w i t h a good f e e l i n g ; i n s i d e t h e i r s t omachs , ( w i l a l g a r a ) . 1 1 6 . (g ) The s p i r i t s o f two r e c e n t l y dead ' h ead b o s s e s ' i n M o o l y e l l a were h o l d i n g back t he r a i n . T h i s a c t i o n was a l s o a t t r i b u t e d t o t h e o l d e s t r a i n m a k e r a t J i g a l o n g a f t e r h i s d e a t h i n 1 9 6 9 . (h) A l o c a l n a t i v e d o c t o r , s a i d t o p o s s e s s v e r y s t r o n g mag i c , was a l l e g e d l y a n g r y a t n o t g e t t i n g e i t h e r o f t h e two g i r l s p r o m i s e d t o h im i n m a r r i a g e , so he removed t h e snakes f r om t h e p i l e s and h i d them i n t h e d e s e r t a l o n g way e a s t o f t h e s e t t l e m e n t . They were l a t e r d i s c o v e r e d and r e l e a s e d by two o t h e r l o c a l men d u r i n g a d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y . ( i ) P e r s o n s unknown, bu t c e r t a i n l o c a l n a t i v e d o c t o r s were s u s p e c t e d , c u t t h e j ungu j ungu on wh i c h a mob o f p e o p l e were t r a v e l l i n g as d r e a m - s p i r i t s on t h e i r way back f r om D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y , and t h e y a l l f e l l t o t h e g r ound , so t h e r a i n d i d n o t f o l l o w them. T a b u s . The r e a r e a number o f p r o p e r b e h a v i o u r s t h a t p e o p l e s h o u l d o b s e r v e a t t h e t i m e o f t h e D a : w a j i l , b u t t h e s e are not i m p e r a t i v e s i n t h e sense t h a t s a n c t i o n s wou l d be i m m e d i a t e l y i n v o k e d t o p u n i s h t r a n s g r e s s o r s . The r e s h o u l d be no f i g h t i n g o r arguments and people should have.a good-feeling- i n t h e i r s t o m a c h s . Young men s h o u l d n o t f o o l a r ound w i t h g i r l s , o r e l s e t h e i r e l d e r s m i gh t l a t e r g i v e them onerous tasks to f u l - f i l . . ; Boomerangs s h o u l d n o t be t h r own a t O a r w a j i l t i m e when t h e r e a r e c l o u d s i n t h e s k y , f o r f e a r o f a c c i d e n t a l l y c u t t i n g 117 . the .iupgu.iungu. which may cause illness or blindness to the Jadangal therein. People should not make excessive noise at Da:wajil time; the hitting o f d r y wood,for instance, w i l l result i n dusty, windy conditions but no rain.; Likewise, i f people run away from having water poured over them during the r i t u a l , the rain w i l l also run away from them. Parti- cipant males should not cut wood for at least a week after the end of the Datwajil, because they are s t i l l •loaded' with power from the designs on their bodies and the small lightning rods that have been 'inserted' magically into them for protective purposes during the r i t u a l . If they cut wood, the power within them could try to escape and cripple them i n the arms'. The Ritual and i t s Introduction to Jigalong The Datwajil i n Djaramara Country. According to the few men who actually participated i n the r i t u a l at one or other of the major Djaramara waterholes i n the Percival Lakes area, the overall form of the r i t u a l , the decorations, dances and songs, differed very l i t t l e from i t s present form. Among the many Aborigines who at some stage journeyed to Djaramara country to attend the big mid-summer performances of the Da:wajil, were at least twenty who later settled at Jigalong. Only four of these are known to have reached the highest rank (malgarara) i n pre-contact days, which suggests that* 118. these men must have made repeated trips to the area; the last of the four died i n 1 9 6 9 . Just prior to the start of the hot, cloudy season (November- December), the custodians of the waterhole that was to be the venue would send out messengers, carrying feather-bundles and small lightning rods to summon the various groups who were invited to attend.^ One such venue was the waterhole at Djabula, which from informants' descriptions sounds typical of the Djaramara centres. The pool i t s e l f i s rectangular, measuring about thirty by twenty feet with one end much shallower than thei other,permanent water,edged with reeds or watergrass and surrounded by naljga trees (possibly a type of white gum) and a high sandhill which i s allegedly the rainmaker Djabula's juqgu.iungu (beard-hairstring-snake-cloud) which he put around his camp as a windbreak and i t became a sandhills 3 During most of the Ba:wajil the pool was tabu to women and children. The men's ceremonial ground,the baljbara, was 2 0 0 - 3 0 0 yards from the pool surrounded by trees. This i s the ground where piles of lightning rods, etc. were kept, and underground here were huge rods, called bidurba. Also about two hundred yards from the pool, but i n a different direction from the baljbara. was the ninjinganu, the fenced area where the women and children spent their day during the ;men's performances of the Da:wajil. The main focal points for the 119. r i t u a l were t h e p o o l and t h e b a l j b a r a , and t h e men s p en t a c o n s i d e r a b l e t i m e s t a n d i n g i n t h e p o o l i t s e l f a s t h e y s ang and t h r e w w a t e r , and each day f e d the snake t h a t was t h ough t t o l i v e i n t h e bo t tom o f t h e p o o l . A t J i g a l o n g t h e r e i s no p o o l , s o t h e snakes a r e f e d a t t h e b a l j b a r a . The b u l k o f t h e w a t e r - t h r o w i n g and much s i n g i n g and d a n c i n g t a k e p l a c e a t t h e n i n j i n g a p u boughshed and n e a r b y g r ound ( n u r a l a n a n d . i i ) where n i g h t s e s s i o n s o f s i n g i n g , d a n c i n g and w a t e r - t h r o w i n g a r e h e l d . T h i s wou l d a ppea r t o be t h e o n l y ma jo r d i f f e r e n c e be tween t r a d i t i o n a l and c on t empo ra r y p e r f o rmance s a t t h e D a t w a j i l . The Westward Movement o f t h e D a ; w a j i l . D e p o p u l a t i o n o f t h e G r e a t Sandy D e s e r t r e g i o n p r o b a b l y began e a r l y t h i s c e n t u r y as g roups o f A b o r i g i n e s , a t t r a c t e d by r e p o r t s o f t h e p r e s e n c e o f e x o t i c a l i e n s , headed wes t t o see f o r t h emse l v e s and u l t i m a t e l y s t a y e d on as permanent r e s i d e n t s o f c a t t l e s t a t i o n s , m i s s i o n s , e t c . Most o f t h e o r i g i n a l i n h a b i t a n t s o f t h e D j a r ama r a a r e a , m a i n l y D j i w a l i n J and Mana l a s p e a k e r s , f o l l o w e d t h e e a r l i e r e m i g r a n t s to- coastal settlements at La Grange and Anna P l a i n s , and t o o u t l y i n g s t a t i o n s i n t h e De Grey and Oakover R i v e r a r e a s ( see F i g u r e 1 ) ,n o t a b l y t o War rawag ine , C a l l a w a and Y a r r i e and l a t e r on t o t h e towns o f M a r b l e B a r - M o o l y e l l a and N u l l a g i n e . O t he r s l e f t t h e d e s e r t v i a w a t e r h o l e r o u t e s t o t h e n o r t h , and s e t t l e d on s t a t i o n s and m i s s i o n s i n t h e S o u t h K i m b e r l e y r e g i o n , bu t i t i s n o t known t o me whe the r o r n o t t h e y c o n t i n u e d t o p e r f o r m 1 2 0 . the:Da:wajil i n that area. When the senior Da:wajil custodians l e f t the P e r c i v a l Lakes area f o r the last'"time they took with them many of the more portable l i g h t n i n g rods and other sacred stones, pre- sumably so that they could continue to hold the r i t u a l , and thus ensure a continuance of t h e i r rainmaking a b i l i t i e s i n t h e i r new l o c a t i o n s . 1 Ceremonial grounds and the necessary p i l e s of rainmaking stones, etc. were established i n the bush close to the settlements and the Da:wajil was performed regularly. Yarrie station, where most of the senior status rainmakers s e t t l e d , apparently became the most important centre, and attracted Abori- gines from many areas, including large numbers who had never known the r i t u a l t r a d i t i o n a l l y . Many members of more coastal gr&ups were i n i t i a t e d . As the general westward migration con- tinued, many of the stones and associated paraphernalia were moved down to Moolyella, a large Aboriginal community close to the mining town of Marble Bar, and Moolyella i n turn became, and al l e g e d l y s t i l l i s , the major Da:wajil centre. New malgarara 'masters' fo r the r i t u a l were appointed as the older ones died, arid According to informants, at some stage there were rainmaking grounds and paraphernalia at Warrawagine, Yarrie, Callawa (a s t a t i o n twenty miles east of Y a r r i e ) , La Grange, Anna Plains, Moolyella, Nullagine, and perhaps at Wallal, (see Figure 2 ) , Broome and even Derby (a town about 1 3 0 road miles north east of Broome). 121. c u s t o d i a n s h i p o f t h e D a z w a j i l p a s s e d on t o t h e o l d e r r e s i d e n t s o f M o o l y e l l a , who a r e s t i l l t o d a y acknow ledged by t h e J i g a - l o n g e l d e r s as t h e ' h ead b o s s e s 1 and f i n a l a u t h o r i t i e s i n a l l m a j o r m a t t e r s o f p o l i c y c o n c e r n i n g t h e r i t u a l . The J i g a l o n g m a l g a r a r a who now d i r e c t t h e D a : w a j i l t h e r e were a p p o i n t e d by t h e M o o l y e l l a b o s s e s . I n t r o d u c t i o n o f t h e P a t w a j i l t o J i g a l o n g . As p r e v i o u s l y s t a t e d , some o f t h e d e s e r t A b o r i g i n e s who m i g r a t e d i n t o t h e O l d J i g a l o n g depo t f r om t h e 1920s onwards had been i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e 13a:wa j i l i n D j a r ama ra c o u n t r y , and two o r t h r e e o f t h e s e n i o r men owned some l i g h t n i n g r o d s and o t h e r g e a r g i v e n t o them by D j a r ama ra c u s t o d i a n s . A l t h o u g h t h e y a r e s a i d t o have somet imes engaged i n i n d i v i d u a l r a i n m a k i n g , t h e y n e v e r b u i l t any D a t w a j i l g rounds o r p e r f o r m e d t h e r i t u a l . A c - c o r d i n g t o i n f o r m a n t s t h i s was because t h e r e were t o o few men who had been i n i t i a t e d i n t o ^ t h e r i t u a l and a l s o because t h e y had no a u t h o r i t y t o s t a g e t h e r i t u a l , w h i c h b e l o n g e d t o t h e D j a r ama r a p e o p l e , n o t t o them. The f i r s t J i g a l o n g men t o make t h e t r i p t o M o o l y e l l a and be i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e D a : w a j i l d i d so i n t h e mid-1940s n o t l o n g p r i o r t o t h e e s t a b l i s h m e n t o f t h e m i s s i o n . Between t h a t t i m e and abou t i 9 6 0 , o t h e r g roups a t t e n d e d b i g mee t i n g s a t M o o l y e l l a and N u l l a g i n e d u r i n g w h i c h E ) a :wa j i l p e r f o rmance s were h e l d , bu t no men were e l e v a t e d t o a h i g h e r s t a t u s t h a n 1 2 2 . mad.in.1anu, t h a t o f t h e new l y i n i t i a t e d , e ven though some had been pu t t h r o u g h t he r i t u a l s e v e r a l t i m e s . A f ew J i g a l o n g men had j o u r n e y e d f u r t h e r n o r t h and were p u t t h r o u g h t h e r i t u a l a t Wa r r aw i g i n e and Y a r r i e . Most i n i t i a t e d men r e - c e i v e d s m a l l p e a r l s h e l l s and l i g h t n i n g r o d s f r om t h e n o r t h e r n e r s t o c a r e t a k e , and were t o l d t o l o o k ou t f o r l i g h t n i n g r o d s , w h i c h wou l d be l e f t b e h i n d i n c r e ekbeds and bush a r e a s by J a d a n g a l . A f t e r t h e d e a t h o f two J i g a l o n g men who were m a l g a r a r a mas t e r s f r om p r e - c o n t a c t d a y s , men began f i n d i n g l i g h t n i n g r o d s , t h ough t t o have been p u t t h e r e by t h e s p i r i t s o f t h e dead men. These were c o l l e c t e d and b r ough t t o t h e m i s s i o n , whe re , w i t h t h e a d d i t i o n o f some o t h e r s t o n e s g i v e n them by t h e n o r t h e r n e r s , t h e l o c a l s c o n s t r u c t e d t h e i r f i r s t bunu p i l e , unde r t h e s u p e r v i s i o n o f two M o o l y e l l a v i s i t o r s , abou t i 9 6 0 . The l o c a l bo s se s were t h e o l d e x - d e s e r t m a s t e r s , who c o n d u c t e d s i n g i n g and a n o i n t i n g a c t i v i t i e s a t t h i s s m a l l p i l e , b u t w i t h o u t any d a n c i n g o r m a j o r r i t u a l a c i t i v t y , s i n c e t h i s had n o t been s a n c t i o n e d by t h e M o o l y e l l a b o s s e s . I t was a t t h i s t ime t h a t some o f t h e o l d e r l o c a l men who had n o t j o u r n e y e d n o r t h were i n i t i a t e d , and o t h e r s were e l e v a t e d t o t h e j i r g i l i w i n d i ( cook ) s t a t u s . About a y e a r l a t e r i t was d e c i d e d t h a t t he l o c a t i o n o f t h e p i l e was t o o c l o s e . t o t h e m a i n camp, so a second s i t e Some i n f o r m a n t s d i s a g r e e w i t h t h i s , and s a y t h a t t h e men who had been i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e r i t u a l i n t h e d e s e r t were e l e v a t e d t o t h e t o p s t a t u s a t M o o l y e l l a m e e t i n g s . 1 2 3 . v e r y c l o s e t o t h e p r e s e n t one, was s e l e c t e d n o r t h o f Camp and t h e p i l e was s h i f t e d t o t h e r e . A l t h o u g h t h e r e were s t i l l no *major r i t u a l s b e i n g h e l d , t h e r e was s i n g i n g and a n o i n t i n g o f t h e p i l e , and t h e men h e l d wanaburga f e a s t s i n a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s a t t h e p i l e . A l s o , more l o c a l men were e l e v a t e d by t h e mas t e r s t o t h e r a n k o f c ook . Most o f t h e s t o n e s i n t h e p i l e were removed and t a k e n away when t h e A b o r i g i n e s l e f t t h e m i s s i o n a f t e r a c o n f r o n t a t i o n w i t h t h e m i s s i o n a r i e s a t C h r i s t m a s , t i m e i n 1 9 6 2 ,and h e l d t h e i r b i g m e e t i n g a t a soak n e a r t h e ma i n n o r t h e r n h i g hway . Many N u l l a g i n e and M a r b l e B a r A b o r i g i n e s were i n a t t e n d a n c e so I 3 a :wa j i l songs were sung , and t h e e f f e c t i v e n e s s o f t h e J i g a l o n g s t o n e s was p r o v e d when a v e r y b i g r a i n f o l l o w e d t h e p e r f o r m a n c e . When t h e J i g a l o n g p e o p l e l a t e r moved back i n t o t h e m i s s i o n , t h e y c o n s t r u c t e d a new p i l e o f r a i n m a k i n g s t o n e s (most o f w h i c h had been r e c e n t l y d i s c o v e r e d and b rough t i n ) i n t h e c r e e k b e d c l o s e t o Camp and t h e r e t h e y h e l d t h e ' I 3 a :wa j i l t o t e s t t h e s t o n e s . T h i s was l a t e i n 1 9 6 3 , d u r i n g my f i r s t f i e l d w o r k p e r i o d a t t he m i s s i o n . The s t o ne s p r o v e d p o t e n t , and r a i n f e l l , s o t h e n o r t h e r n bo s se s a g r e e d t h a t t h e s e s t o n e s s h o u l d be moved t o t h e g round n o r t h o f t h e s e t t l e m e n t . A new s i t e was c ho s en , two p i l e s were e r e c t e d , and J i g a l o n g f i n a l l y had i t s f i r s t p r o p e r c e r e m o n i a l bush g r ound , o r b a l j b a r a . E a r l i e r i n 1963 s e v e r a l r i t u a l l y 1 2 4 . prominent Jigalong men journeyed to Moolyella and were appointed to the second highest status, walumalinj, were shown new dances and given i n s i g n i a of t h e i r new rank to take back to Jigalong with them. Despite p o l i t i c a l d i f - ferences between the Jigalong and Moolyella mobs, l o c a l men continued to make t r i p s north to be further i n i t i a t e d into the Da:wajil and to pick up new dances, sacred objects and so on, to strengthen the r i t u a l at Jigalong, now that i t s f u l l performance had been sanctioned by the northern bosses. Ear l y i n 1966 a group of Moolyella Da:wajil leaders made a s p e c i a l t r i p to Jigalong to inspect the new ground and to pa r t i c i p a t e i n a f u l l performance of the r i t u a l . At t h i s time, they chose ten l o c a l men f o r elevation to the rank of walumalinj, and appointed from the ranks of those who had * recently been given walumalinj rank at Moolyella, eight men to be malgarara, the top rank. They joined seven others who had been given top status membership at Moolyella e a r l i e r , and three surviving malgarara from desert times. At the big meeting of Christmas, 1 9 6 5 , held at Jigalong, two senior Moolyella men v i s i t e d the mission and authorized the construction of a ninjingarju boughshed, and nearby nuralarjandji ground. This gave the l o c a l people a l l the necessary grounds to hold a f u l l Da:wajil, i n time to i n i t i a t e a large group of southerners who were making t h e i r f i r s t v i s i t 1 2 5 . en masse s p e c i f i c a l l y t o be i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e D a : w a j i l . A l - most a l l o f t h e J i g a l o n g men who had l o n g been r e s i d e n t i n t h e W i l u n a a r e a had a l r e a d y been t h r o u g h t h e r i t u a l a t e i t h e r J i g a l o n g o r t h e n o r t h e r n c e n t r e s , and a few Wi luna 1 . men had been t h r o u g h i t d u r i n g e a r l i e r v i s i t s t o t h e s e t t l e m e n t . The b u i l d i n g o f t he n in . i i n .1anu was l a t e r j udged p r ema tu r e by t h e o t h e r D a : w a j i l l e a d e r s i n M o o l y e l l a , and t h e y p u n i s h e d t h e two men who had a u t h o r i z e d t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n w i t h o u t p r i o r c o n s u l t a t i o n w i t h t h e o t h e r b o s s e s . The new grounds r ema i ned however , and have been i n use f o r t h e D a r w a j i l e v e r s i n c e . The M o o l y e l l a head bo s s e s have l e f t t h e J i g a l o n g m a s t e r s w i t h c o n s i d e r a b l e autonomy i n t h e o r g a n i z a t i o n and r u n n i n g o f t h e r i t u a l e a ch y e a r , and w h i l e some men say t h a t t h e r e a r e s t i l l a f ew more dances t o be o b t a i n e d f r om M o o l y e l l a , l i t t l e i n t e r v i s i t i n g has t a k e n p l a c e s i n c e 1 9 6 6 . The d e t e r i o r a t i o n o f r e l a t i o n s be tween t h e two commun i t i e s w i l l be d i s c u s s e d i n a l a t e r c h a p t e r . One r u l i n g by t h e M o o l y e l l a heads t h a t i s o f g r e a t i m - p o r t a n c e f o r J i g a l o n g as a ma j o r c e n t r e f o r t h e D a : w a j i l i s t h a t f o r b i d d i n g t h e f o r m a t i o n o f new p i l e s and grounds anywhere s o u t h o f J i g a l o n g * Thus any s o u t h e r n e r s who want t o be i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e I 3a :wa j i l must j o u r n e y n o r t h t o J i g a l o n g , o r even f u r t h e r i f t h e y so d e s i r e , t o do s o . I n i t i a t e d men a r e p e r m i t t e d t o r e c e i v e p e a r l s h e l l s and o t h e r 126 . objects such as small lightning rods, as insignia erf* status, but they too must obey the rule that prohibits the sale or giving away of these objects, which they must bring back with them at every subsequent Da:wajil performance they attend, to be replaced by larger objects i f their work i n connection with the r i t u a l continues to be satisfactory. They can sing Datwajil songs back at their home centres, but they cannot use their objects to form the basis of new bunu piles, and any large stones that they discover during the year should be brought up to Jigalong with them, or at least into Wiluna, where v i s i t i n g Jigalong Da:wajil leaders can examine them. This ban on the southerly spread of the 13a:wajil means that Jigalong i s assured of i t s central place i n the performance of the r i t u a l . Eor the I 9 6 9 - I 9 7 0 big meeting at Jigalong, visitors came from as far south as Warburton Ranges mission, about 900 miles by road, to be initiated into the Da:wajil and to take part i n other religious a c t i v i t i e s . Thus i t i s that the !3a:wajil was introduced to Jigalong and has since rapidly grown i n significance, to become, i n the view of local Aborigines, one of the three or four most': important rituals performed by them. Because of i t s status as an imported r i t u a l , the Da:wajil has involved Jigalong Aborigines i n periodic and important interaction with their northern and later their southern, neighbours. Inter- 1 2 7 . community c u l t u r a l transmissionkof t h i s kind has t r a d i t i o n a l l y characterized Western Desert Aboriginal groups. Likewise, the transfer of r i t u a l s and other knowledge has always been influenced by p o l i t i c a l considerations, e s p e c i a l l y the cur- rent tenor of relationships between contiguous groups, l a t e r i n t h i s study (Chapter 7) i t w i l l be shown that growing i d e o l o g i c a l differences between Jigalong Aborigines and t h e i r more acculturated northern neighbours constitute a major reason f o r the assumption of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y by Jigalong 1s leaders f o r the continuance of the Da:wajil. These marked i d e o l o g i c a l c o n f l i c t s with the northerners, "combined with the strong desire of Jigalong's Aborigines to maintain and i f possible expand c u l t u r a l transmission l i n k s with t h e i r southern neighbours, are highly relevant to the search f o r answers to the question posed at the outset of t h i s t h e s i s . The implications entailed by these p o l i t i c a l considerations are considered at length in'"the la s t , two chapters. 128. Chapter 5 . The Datwa.jil: B i t u a l A c t i v i t i e s This chapter describes i n some d e t a i l the main features of the Darwajil r i t u a l . The temporal sequence chosen f o r t h i s outline i s that of the f u l l - s c a l e performances that are held during the b i g meetings that take place around Christmas time, when large numbers of v i s i t o r s from southern Law centres come to Jigalon'g s p e c i f i c a l l y to p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h i s r i t u a l . The following account i s based l a r g e l y on the Darwajil performed during the meetings of the 1 9 6 5 - 6 and 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 hot seasons, held at the beginning of January. 1 Many other Da:wajil sessions were seen and recorded, mainly i n the l a t t e r parts of 1963 and 1 9 6 4 , but these were not held at b i g meeting time, and generally involved the i n i t i a - t i o n of l o c a l Aborigines newly a r r i v e d from t h e i r places of employment. These smaller-scale i n i t i a t o r y performances usually entailed some fe a s t i n g (wanaburga), and sessions at the bal.ibara bush ground to f a m i l i a r i z e newcomers with the paraphernalia and songs that accompany the r i t u a l . Such performances r a r e l y continued over a number of consecutive ''"During the 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 Da:wajil, I took notes on a l l a c t i v i t i e s as they occurred. For a c t i v i t i e s at the Camp grounds, I also took photographs, and tape recorded some: of the evening singing sessions. I witnessed a l l secret-sacred a c t i v i t i e s here described. Interpretation of the a c t i v i t i e s was gained from l i s t e n i n g to Aboriginal exegeses during the performances, by remarks volunteered to me by Aborigines and by d i r e c t questioning, the same day wherever possible. 129 . d a y s , b u t t h e y somet imes i n v o l v e d t h e s e l e c t i o n o f men f o r e l e v a t i o n i n t o a h i g h e r r i t u a l s t a t u s . R e g a r d l e s s o f t h e immed ia t e m o t i v a t i o n s b e h i n d any g i v e n pe r f o rmance o f t h e 13a :wa j i l , and r e g a r d l e s s o f i t s d u r a t i o n , t h e sequences o f e v en t s and t h e k i n d s o f b e h a v i o u r s t h a t t a k e p l a c e a t t h e b a l j b a r a g round and d u r i n g t h e f e a s t s a r e v e r y s i m i l a r no m a t t e r what t h e c i r c u m s t a n c e s . What v a r i e s most i s t h e number o f p e r s o n n e l i n v o l v e d , and t h e c h o i c e o f c e r t a i n dances t o be e i t h e r p e r f o r m e d o r o m i t t e d d epend i n g on t h e numbers p r e s e n t and on t h e i r r i t u a l s t a t u s e s ; i . e . some dances r e q u i r e l a r g e numbers , and t h e r e a r e c e r t a i n dances t h a t n ew l y i n i t i a t e d men c anno t w i t n e s s . B a s i c a c t i v i t i e s s u c h as a r r a n g i n g and a n o i n t i n g t h e p i l e s o f s a c r e d s t o n e s ( i . e . t h e ' o pen i ng* o f t h e b a l j b a r a a t t h e commencement o f t h e D a : w a j i l ) and r e l a t e d s i n g i n g and d a n c i n g a r e a lways much t h e same r e g a r d l e s s o f t h e s c a l e o f t h e p e r f o rmance t o f o l - l o w . L i k e w i s e t h e b a s i c r e p e r t o i r e o f songs t h a t make up t h e l i n e i s g e n e r a l l y t h e same, t hough t h e sequence o f t h e songs and t h e number sung a t any one s e s s i o n w i l l v a r y . A . P r i n c i p l e s o f Dua l O r g a n i z a t i o n . The G e n e r a t i o n L e v e l D i v i s i o n . M e n t i o n was made i n C h a p t e r 1 (page 11) o f t h i s k i n d o f s o c i a l d i v i s i o n and o f i t s i m p o r t a n c e i n t h e r i t u a l l i f e o f t h e A b o r i g i n e s o f J i g a l o n g . I t i s nowhere b e t t e r e x e m p l i f i e d as a n o r - g a n i z i n g p r i n c i p l e t h a n i n t h e D a : w a j i l , where i t i s em- 1 3 0 . ployed to separate a l l the participants into two ideol- ogically equal but opposing groups, who are encouraged to give vent to their opposition at certain times during the rit e s , but particularly during those held at the grounds near the main camp area, where men, women and children are i n attendance much of the time. At times when the two sides are most actively opposed, good-humoured shouting matches are directed en masse at the opposition, or to a l l opposition members of the one sex, pertaining mostly to matters such as hunting prowess (or lack thereof), laziness and other inadequacies, or alleged failures to f u l f i l l obligations pertaining to the giving of women i n marriage. But interpersonal opposition, which is acted out by the throwing or spitting of water over other'r people's heads and bodies, i s directed at members of the other division who stand i n specific kinship rela- tionships to Ego. Thus a man can throw wafcer over his •MB*, »ZS», 'WK«, 'FZ' (some FZ are not cla s s i f i e d as WM), and 'ZD' and a woman can throw water over her 'ZS*, ('DH'), •MB1, ('HF'), 'ZD' ('SW') and 'FZ«. Of people i n these categories, water i s not thrown over members who are closely related to Ego; e.g. a consanguineal MB or ZD, or an actual WM or HF. It i s between members of the above-mentioned kin- ship categories i n opposing levels that most of the 'poking 1 3 1 . f un* ( m i l . i u r a ) t a k e s p l a c e d u r i n g t h e ' p l a y 1 ( t h e v e r b ba rawa , t o p l a y , i s u s e d t o d e s c r i b e t h e a c t i v i t i e s t h a t t a k e p l a c e a t t h e g rounds n e a r t h e Camp). S e n i o r members o f t h e two g roups meet s e p a r a t e l y t o a r - r ange f o r the c o l l e c t i o n o f money and t h e p u r c h a s e o f f o o d - s t u f f s f o r t h e f e a s t s . These a r e bought and s t o r e d s e p a r a t e l y and cooked by members o f t h e r e s p e c t i v e s i d e s , bu t a t t h e same p l a c e . Members o f b o t h s i d e s dona te money f o r t h e men c ho s en as t r a v e l l e r s whose number must i n c l u d e members o f b o t h s i d e s , when t h e y go t o c o l l e c t A b o r i g i n e s f r om o t h e r Law c e n t r e s . Each s i d e rounds up i t s own members f o r each p e r f o r m a n c e , p e o p l e s i t i n t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e g r oup s , and n o v i c e s a r e l e d t o and f r om t h e bush g round i n two g r o u p s , Bu t t h e s ongs , dances and r i t u a l p a r a p h e r n a l i a o f t h e D a r w a j i l a r e s h a r e d by a l l who a r e e n t i t l e d t o w i t n e s s o r p a r t i c i p a t e i n l Da :wa j i l a c t i v i t i e s . A g a i n , t h e o v e r a l l emphas i s i s on t h e A b o r i g i n e s ' s h a r i n g o f t h e J 3 a : w a j i l as a t o t a l i t y . D u r i n g r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s t h a t t a k e p l a c e a t t h e bush g round t h e r e i s a d i v i s i o n i n t h e s e a t i n g a r rangement o f most p a r t i c i p a n t s , most n o t i c e a b l y f o r t h e n o v i c e s (and l e a s t so f o r t h e m a l g a r a r a m a s t e r s who s i t c l o s e s t t o t h e p i l e s ) . The p r e l i m i n a r y d a n c i n g and t h e s e l e c t i o n ( c a l l e d ' g r a b b i n g ' ) o f new cooks i s u n d e r t a k e n by t he r e s p e c t i v e g r oup s , as i s 1 3 2 . the supervision and decoration of the novices, and t h e i r chastisement i f t h i s i s necessary. At the blood-drinking r i t e (rjajigala wanaburga), members of the two sides w i l l drink one another's blood i f there are only l o c a l people at the r i t e , but during the big meeting when there are many v i s i t o r s , the d i v i s i o n f o r the blood-drinking i s between l o c a l s and v i s i t o r s , not according to generation l e v e l membership. For much of the a c t i v i t y at the bush ground, the more important d i v i s i o n i s between novices and i n i t i a t e d men, and t h i s becomes the p r i n c i p a l determinant of people's behaviour. The same i s true for what happens i n the Camp area grounds i n the early stages of the r i t u a l , when the a c t i v i t i e s of the novices are considerably r e s t r i c t e d . The Sexual D i v i s i o n . As i s the case with most of the re l i g i o u s l i f e at Jigalong,women play a r e l a t i v e l y minor and peripheral part i n the performance of the Da:wajil. Yet although they neither sing nor dance and cannot go anywhere near the bush ground, they p a r t i c i p a t e a c t i v e l y i n ce r t a i n Da:wajil r i t u a l a c t i v i t i e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y water-throwing bouts at the boughshed ground (ninjingarju). In addition, c e r t a i n senior women have the rank of cook, and prepare dampers f o r the men's wanaburga feast, while other women are selected as 'creekbed cooks', who prepare dampers f o r consumption by the women and children. Each day during the Da:wajil, a l l 1 3 3 . women and c h i l d r e n a t t he s e t t l e m e n t must be i n a t t e n d a n c e a t t h e boughshed g round f o r t h e a c t i v i t i e s t h a t p r e c ede t h e d e p a r t u r e o f t he men ( f o r t h e bush g r ounds , o r t o go h u n t i n g ) and a g a i n i n t h e l a t e a f t e r n o o n when a l l t h e men r e t u r n t o t h e n i n j i n g a n u a r e a . They a r e a l s o s a i d t o t a k e p a r t i n d r e a m - s p i r i t j o u r n e y s t o D j a r amara c o u n t r y a t n i g h t d u r i n g t h e c o u r s e o f t h e D a : w a j i l . B. The B i t u a l S t a t u s H i e r a r c h y The r e i s a r i t u a l d i v i s i o n o f l a b o u r i n t h e 13a :wa j i l , b a s e d on membersh ip i n a p a r t i c u l a r named r i t u a l s t a t u s , o f w h i c h t h e r e a r e f i v e i f we i n c l u d e t he s t a t u s o f t h e n o t y e t i n i t i a t e d man, who i s r e f e r r e d t o as nu r ba ( ' u n k n o w i n g ' ) . The o t h e r f o u r s t a t u s e s , i n i n c r e a s i n g o r d e r o f r a n k , a r e as f o l l o w s : 1 . M a d i n j a n u ( S . I V ) J T h i s t e rm r e f e r s t o new l y i n i t i a t e d men who have n o t y e t been cho sen f o r e l e v a t i o n t o t h e second r a n k , a n e ven t t h a t may n o t t a k e p l a c e u n t i l t h e y have p a r t i c i p a t e d i n t h e D a : w a j i l s e v e r a l t i m e s . D u r i n g r i t u a l p e r f o rmance s t h e y a r e u s u a l l y r e c o g n i z a b l e by t h e i r r e s e r v e d b e h a v i o u r , and i f d e c o r a t e d , by t h e c o m p l e x i t y o f t h e l i g h t n i n g d e s i g n s on t h e i r b o d i e s . A t a l l t i m e s t h e y must a c t a c c o r d i n g t o t h e d i r e c t i v e s o f h i g h e r s t a t u s men, and d u r i n g D a : w a j i l "h?or e a s i e r c omprehens i on , subsequen t r e f e r e n c e s t o t h e s e s t a t u s e s . w i l l . b e by i n i t i a l s on ly;, t h u s S . I V i s S t a t u s No . 4 ; i . e . .mad in j anu . S . I I I i s j i r g i l i w i n d i . S . I I . r e f e r s t o w a l u m a l l n j . and S . I , t h e h i g h e s t , i s m a l g a r a r a . . . . feasts they are permitted to eat only vegetable foods, never meat. 2. J i r g i l i w i n d i (S.III). Selection of the j i r g i l i w i n d i ('having boomerangs*) usually takes place at the bush ground, when they are suddenly and roughly grabbed by men of the next highest status. They are tftenngiven meat for the f i r s t time, and two boomerangs, the main i n s i g n i a of t h e i r new status. At the time of t h e i r grabbing, they are lectured to by the older men present and t o l d of t h e i r new r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s , which i n - clude the 'mustering* of a l l the people f o r each day or night's performance of the r i t u a l , assistance with the cooking of the wanaburga dampers (hence the frequent use of the English word •cooks* to r e f e r to men of t h i s status), performance of most of the non-secret sacred dances that take place at both Camp and bush grounds, and assistance i n hunting a c t i v i t i e s assoc- iated with wanaburga feasting. Some of the older . j i r g i l i - windi men are i n charge of the cooking operations at the boughshed, and supervise the work of the women who prepare the dampers. I f men of t h i s status perform t h e i r various tasks well, they are presented with small p e a r l s h e l l s and perhaps small l i g h t n i n g rods (bunu) f o r safekeeping as i n s i g n i a of t h e i r rank. During Daiwajil performances they are distinguished by t h e i r two boomerangs and to a les s e r extent by t h e i r body designs, which are less complex than those of the madin.janu, but more so than those of men of 1 3 5 . h i g h e r s t a t u s , whose s i m p l e r l i g h t n i n g d e s i g n s a r e s a i d t o r e p r e s e n t s t r o n g e r b o l t s o f l i g h t n i n g . 3 . Walumalin.1 ( S . I I ) . Men o f t h i s r a n k a r e s e l e c t e d f r om among t h e r a n k s of t h e . j i r g i l i w l n d i , by t h e h i g h e s t s t a t u s men, on t h e b a s i s o f t h e i r know ledge o f t h e r i t u a l (much o f w h i c h was a c q u i r e d d u r i n g t r i p s t o a t t e n d I 3a :wa j i l p e r f o r - mances a t n o r t h e r n c e n t r e s ) and t h e i r p e r f o rmance w h i l e mem- b e r s o f l o w e r r a n k s . A t t h e t i m e o f t h e i r s e l e c t i o n , t h e y a r e g i v e n l a r g e r p e a r l s h e l l s and bunu r od s and o t h e r D a : w a j i l g e a r by t h e i r r i t u a l s e n i o r s , and a r e i n s t r u c t e d i n t h e i r new d u t i e s and r e s p o n s i b l i t i e s . They must o r g a n i z e and s u p e r v i s e h u n t s , wh i c h a r e a n i n t e g r a l p a r t o f t h e p r o c e e d i n g s and c o n s t i t u t e t he mechanism o f r e c i p r o c i t y t h r o u g h w h i c h men o f l o w e r s t a t u s e s r e p a y , w i t h meat , t h e s e n i o r men who p r o v i d e b o t h knowledge and most o f t h e v e g e t a b l e f o od s (ma.j i) e a t e n d u r i n g t h e f e a s t s . Men f r om t h i s r a n k a l s o a c t as messengers who t r a v e l t o o t h e r Law c e n t r e s ea ch y e a r and summon A b o r i g i n e s t o J i g a l o n g f o r t h e a n n u a l p e r f o rmance o f t h e B a : w a j i l . Members o f t h i s s t a t u s a r e r e s p o n s i b l e f o r c h o o s i n g new S . I I I men f r om t h e r a n k s o f t h e S . I V , and f o r t h e s e l e c t i o n o f women t o a c t as ' c r e e k b e d c o o k s 1 ( see page 132 ) . A l t h o u g h any man f r om S . I I I up may be c ho sen t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n s e c r e t - s a c r e d d an c e s , t he most i m p o r t a n t dances p e r f o r m e d a r o u n d t h e r a i n m a k i n g p i l e s i n v o l v e o n l y members o f t h e two h i g h e s t s t a t u s e s . 136. 4. Malgarara (S.I.). Men of t h i s rank are commonly referred to as 'masters' or as 'proper snakes'. In the Jigalong case, a l l were chosen by the northern headmen who are the acknowledged owners of the r i t u a l and i t s f i n a l a u t h o r i t i e s . A l l Jigalong malgarara are middle-aged and older. As the caretakers of """"" • • 1 the r i t u a l and i t s s a s s o c i a t e d objects, t h e i r duties are con- centrated at the bush ground, where they clean the area and prepare the p i l e s , organize secret-sacred dances, blood- drinking r i t e s and other a c t i v i t i e s there, and select the dancers. They are the f i n a l l o c a l a u t h orities i n matters pertaining to the mechanics of holding the Da:wajil, and members of the lower statuses must at a l l times defer to t h e i r judgment. Their i n s i g n i a , presented to them by the northern leaders, include the biggest p e a r l s h e l l s , bunu rods, h a i r s t r i n g s that can be personally owned. They alone can perform c e r t a i n of the dances done at the baljbara (bush ground) because they are sai d to be 'snakes' themselves, with the strongest bunu rods/snakes inside t h e i r bodies, l i k e the men who have Winba as t h e i r ancestral totem. Because they are able to journey s a f e l y to and from Djaramara country i n dream- s p i r i t form, the malgarara act as leaders f o r dream-spirit journeys that a l l participants must make to Djaramara country during the course of the r i t u a l , as an essential part of the proceedings. Malgarara are said to have the power to make r a i n i n d i v i d u a l l y i f they so desire. During the r i t u a l they have the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y (shared i n part by S.II men) of providing the bulk of the vegetable foods that are con- 1 3 7 . sumed d u r i n g wanaburga :teasts. D u r i n g D a : w a j i l p e r f o rmance s t h e y s i t i n t he c e n t r e o f t h e c i r c l e o f s i n g e r s and d a n c e r s ( s u r r o u n d i n g t h e bunu p i l e i f a t t h e bush g r o u n d ) . They u s u a l l y wear t h e s i m p l e s t c h e s t d e s i g n , somet imes a mere l i n e a few i n c h e s l o n g , r e p r e s e n t i n g b o t h a bunu r o d and a v e r y — ( _ s t r o n g l i g h t n i n g b o l t . The S . I men u s u a l l y c o n f e r and o r g a n i z e t h e i r work en masse . The d i v i s i o n i n t o g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l g r o u p i n g s i s l e a s t n o t i c e a b l e among members o f t h i s s t a t u s as t h e y go abou t t h e i r b u s i n e s s . Not even when t h e y a r e s i t t i n g a r ound t h e r a i n m a k i n g p i l e s i s t h i s d i v i s i o n a lways d i s c e r n i b l e . F o r a l l a c t i v i t i e s no t c e n t r i n g on t h e b a l . j b a r a g r ound , t h e h i g h e s t s t a t u s men r e l y h e a v i l y i n t h e S . I I members (who a r e o f t e n r e f e r r e d t o as t h e 'work ingmen b o s s e s ' ) f o r t h e smooth r u n n i n g o f t he 13a :wa j i l . A l t h o u g h S . I I men o p e r a t e i n t h e i r two g r o u p s , t h e y c o n f e r t o g e t h e r c o n s t a n t l y t o make s u r e t h a t a l l a c t i v i t i e s a r e s y n c h r o n i z e d . T h i s c o l l a b o r a - t i o n a p p l i e s a t a l l l e v e l s o f t h e Da- .wa j i l h i e r a r c h y because i t i s e s s e n t i a l t h a t each group knows what t h e o t h e r i s p l a n n i n g t o do n e x t . When v i s i t o r s a r e i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e D a : w a j i l , t h e o l d e s t and most s e n i o r among them a r e n o t e x p e c t e d t o p r o c e e d t h r o u g h t h e s t a t u s r a n k s i n t h e same manner as m i d d l e - a g e d and younge r men. S . I J i g a l o n g :men g e n e r a l l y t a k e them t o t h e 138. b a l j b a r a b e f o r e t h e ma i n a c t i v i t i e s b e g i n , and i n i t i a t e them s e p a r a t e l y and much l e s s f o r m a l l y t h a n t h e r e s t . A l l t h e ;most s a c r e d s t o n e s a r e shown t o them, and t h e a s s o c i a t e d i n f o r m a t i o n c onveyed , and when t h e y a r e d e c o r a t e d f o r t h e f i r s t t i m e , t h e t y p e o f l i g h t n i n g d e s i g n p u t on them i s s i m i l a r t o t h a t o f J i g a l o n g men o f h i g h s t a t u s . A l t h o u g h t h e y cannot be a c c o r d e d m a l g a r a r a s t a t u s , s i n c e s u ch an a c t i o n i s t he p r e r o g a t i v e o f t h e M o o l y e l l a h e a d - men, t h e s e o l d men a r e t r e a t e d by t h e J i g a l o n g mas t e r s as i f t h e y were o f t h e h i g h e s t r a n k i n t h e r i t u a l . The S t a t u s o f Women. D e s p i t e t h e p e r i p h e r a l n a t u r e o f t h e r o l e o f women i n t h e D a : w a j i l , i t i s p o s s i b l e t o d i s - t i n g u i s h s e v e r a l d i f f e r e n t g r o u p s . L i k e t h e i r ma le c o u n t e r - p a r t s , f ema l e n o v i c e s p l a y p a s s i v e r o l e s , r e m a i n u n d e c o r a t e d u n t i l t owa rds t h e end o f t h e D a : w a j i l r i t u a l s e r i e s and c a n - n o t p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h e w a t e r - t h r o w i n g a c t i v i t i e s , e ven though t h e y a r e v i c t i m s o f much o f t h e mer r imen t and ge t t h o r o u g h l y d r en ched d u r i n g t h e p r o c e e d i n g s . Women who have a l r e a d y been i n i t i a t e d i n t o t h e r i t u a l a r e a c t i v e p a r t i c i p a n t s i n t h e w a t e r - t h r o w i n g , bu t f o r mos t , t h i s , p l u s t h e d e c o r a t i o n o f v i s i t i n g f ema l e n o v i c e s ( w i t h w h i t e o ch r e body d e s i g n s ) and t h e mak ing o f f r o g n o i s e s d u r i n g t h e n i g h t s e s s i o n s o f t h e D a : w a j i l , i s t h e e x t e n t o f t h e i r a c t i v e r o l e . The m i d d l e - aged women who a r e c ho s en by t h e S. I I men as creekbid-6o©"gs must p r e p a r e s e v e r a l dampers each day , f o r c on sump t i o n by t h e women and c h i l d r e n , who a r e c o n f i n e d i n t h e i r two groups, t o t h e c r e e k b e d a r e a f o r most o f t he d a y . Women o f each 1 3 9 . g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l g roup p r e p a r e t h e i r own dampers and a r e s u p e r v i s e d by S. I l l men o f t h e same g r oup , who t e n d t h e f i r e s and do t h e a c t u a l c o o k i n g i n two s e p a r a t e s p o t s i n t h e c r e e k b e d . Men somet imes r e f e r t o t h e s e women as j i r a i l i w i n d i , t h e t e rm f o r S . I I I men; wh i c h s u g g e s t s a c o n c e p t u a l e q u a t i o n i n s t a t u s . The do zen o r so o l d e r women who a r e c ho s en by t h e S . I men t o p r e p a r e dampers f o r men 's wanaburga f e a s t s i n c l u d e s e v e r a l who were b o r n i n D j a r a m a r a c o u n t r y and c l a i m Winba as t h e i r a n c e s t r a l t o t e m . These women a r e c a l l e d b i d i n j a n u , ( a t e rm a l s o a p p l i e d t o t h e o l d e r men who s u p e r v i s e t h e c o o k i n g a c t i v i t i e s n e a r t h e n i n j a n g a n u boughshed) and t h e i r s i s t h e h i g h e s t s t a t u s t h a t women c an a t t a i n i n t h e D a : w a j i l . A p a r t f r om k n e a d i n g and p r e p a r i n g dampers , however , e ven t h e i r r o l e i s m i n i m a l and p a s s i v e compared t o t h a t o f ma les i n v o l v e d i n t h e r i t u a l . C. I 3 a ;wa j i l C e r e m o n i a l Grounds The D u r a l a n a n d j i and N i n j i n g a n u . These te rms r e f e r t o two d i f f e r e n t s e c t i o n s o f t h e same g e n e r a l a r e a , w h i c h i s s i t u a t e d abou t two hund r ed y a r d s n o r t h o f t h e n o r t h e r n end o f t h e ma i n Camp a r e a a t J i g a l o n g and about f i f t y y a r d s f r om t h e w e s t e r n : bank o f J i g a l o n g C r eek , wh i c h i s d r y most o f t h e t i m e . The c l e a r i n g f o r t h e g round i s r o u g h l y s qua r e i n shape and abou t f i f t y y a r d s a c r o s s . F i f t e e n y a r d s i n f r om t h e e a s t e r n s i d e i s a wooden s t r u c t u r e t h i r t y yards l o n g , p o i n t i n g n o r t h and s o u t h , two y a r d s w ide and f i v e f e e t 140 . h i g h , wh i c h i s t h e n i n . l i n g a n u boughshed . I t c o n s i s t s o f two p a r a l l e l rows o f p o s t s w i t h c r o s s p i e c e s on t o p w h i c h s u p p o r t l e a f y b r anches t h a t p r o v i d e shade . The s i d e s and ends o f t h e n i n j i n g a n u a r e open t o t h e w i n d . A mound o f a shes i n t h e n o r t h e a s t c o r n e r o f t h e g round marks t h e s i t e o f t h e c o o k i n g a r e a , where t h e wanaburga dampers a r e b a k e d . The a r e a t o t h e west o f t h e boughshed , where t h e b u l k o f t h e s i n g i n g , d a n c i n g and w a t e r t h r o w i n g t a k e s p l a c e , i s known as t h e n u r a l a n a n d j i . A p a r t f r om t h e p r e p a r a t i o n and c o o k i n g o f dampers f o r t h e women and c h i l d r e n i n t h e c r e e k b e d , a l l 13a:wa j i l a c t i v i t i e s n o t o c c u r r i n g a t t h e bush g round c e n t r e on t h e r j u r a l a n a n d j i - n i n j i n g a n u a r e a . The B a l j b a r a . The bush g round i s s i t u a t e d i n what t h e A b o r i g i n e s c a l l 'men ' s c o u n t r y ' n e a r t h e c o n f l u e n c e o f two s m a l l c r e ekbed s abou t a h a l f a m i l e f r o m , and ou t o f s i g h t o f , t h e n o r t h e r n end o f t h e s e t t l e m e n t p r o p e r . The g round i s r e c t a n g u l a r , w i t h an a p p r o x i m a t e l y wes t^eas t o r i e n t a t i o n , and measures abou t f i f t y y a r d s i n l e n g t h , f i f t e e n t o twen t y y a r d s i n w i d t h . The r e a r e f o u r mu lga t r e e s on t h e g round i t s e l f , bu t t h e dominant f e a t u r e s a r e t h e two p i l e s o f r a i n m a k i n g s t o n e s , each abou t two f e e t i n d i a m e t e r and a f o o t and a h a l f h i g h , abou t f o r t y y a r d s a p a r t n e a r t h e o p p o s i t e ends o f t h e g r o u n d . These two c o n i c a l p i l e s o f o b j e c t s , bu t p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e s l i g h t l y l a r g e r w e s t e r n p i l e , a r e t h e f o c i o f most o f t h e r a i n m a k i n g a c t i v i t y . The r a i n - 1 4 1 . making snakes are said to be i n these p i l e s which are believed to be d i r e c t l y connected to Djaramara country v i a underground l i n k s . Like the other two grounds described above, this one i s used only i n connection with the 13a:wajil, but i t i s r e s t r i c t e d to i n i t i a t e d men ( i . e . men who are both circumcised and subincised) who are participants i n the Da:wajil. At other times i t can only be v i s i t e d by men of the two highest ranks. When not i n use i t s p i l e s are covered by several layers of hessian, which protect them from dogs and from the eyes of people i n vehicles that pass on the main road north of the settlement, which runs about eighty yards east of the ground. A l l the most important and sacred objects associated with the Da:wajil are stored at or near the ground, but men keep t h e i r personal p e a r l s h e l l s and bunu rods i n carrybags that are stored i n men's country much c l o s e r to the Camp. D. Da:wajil Paraphernalia Components of the Rainmaking P i l e s . During Da:wajil performances, the two p i l e s are made up of a core of secret- sacred objects that remain i n the baljbara area and are seen only by i n i t i a t e d men, plus c e r t a i n other objects, associated with rainmaking, which may be worn at the Camp grounds and are seen by women and children. But each of t h i s l a t t e r class of objects has at least two names, one of which i s secret-sacred i n that i t cannot be mentioned i n front of u n i n i t i a t e d persons and i s s p e c i f i c a l l y associated with the 1 4 2 . I 3 a : w a j i l . The m a j o r c l a s s o f o b j e c t s i s t h e bunu , wh i c h I have r e f e r r e d t o as l i g h t n i n g r o d s , bu t c a n a l s o conno te snakes ( s i n c e i n each ' l o a d e d 1 r o d a snake s p i r i t i s s a i d t o r e s i d e ) and t h e p e n i s o f t h e J a d a n g a l r a i n m a k e r s , and a l s o a b o l t o f l i g h t n i n g . They v a r y i n l e n g t h f r om a c o u p l e o f i n c h e s t o f o u r f e e t , and i n d i a m e t e r f r om l e s s t h a n an i n c h t o abou t two f e e t , a r e composed o f s e v e r a l d i f f e r e n t t y p e s o f r o c k (most appea r t o be e i t h e r k n o t t e d s c h i s t s o r t r a v e r t i n e p i p e s ) , and a r e g i v e n s e v e r a l d i f f e r e n t names a c c o r d i n g t o shape o r s i z e . I n a lmos t e v e r y c a s e t h e s a c r e d name i s d e r i v e d f r om one o f t h e songs t h a t make up t h e D a : w a j i l l i n e ; when t h e s t o n e s a r e h a n d l e d and t a l k e d abou t , t h e a p p r o p r i a t e song i s u s u a l l y s u n g . S e v e r a l s t o n e s s ha r e t h e i r names w i t h c l o u d s whose shape t h e y a r e s a i d t o r e s e m b l e , and some a r e s a i d t o be t h e metamorphosed b o d i e s o f J a d a n g a l b e i n g s . The b i g g e s t and t h i c k e s t r o d s , known v a r i o u s l y as d j a d a n . b i d u r , b i d a g a l i , a r e b e l i e v e d t o have been c a r r i e d by Winba and t h e o t h e r r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s as p a r t o f t h e i r c o l - l e c t i o n o f s a c r e d b o a r d s , and t o have l a t e r t u r n e d t o s t o n e a t p o i n t s a l o n g t h e i r r o u t e s . The b i g w a l u m a l i n j . w h i c h g i v e s i t name t o t h e se cond h i g h e s t r i t u a l s t a t u s , was o r i g i n a l l y W i nba ' s f i r e s t i c k wh i c h he c a r r i e d w i t h h im d u r i n g h i s t r a v e l s . Because a l l t h e s e s t o ne s have a d i r e c t c o n n e c t i o n w i t h t h e a n c e s t r a l b e i n g s , t h e y a r e b e l i e v e d t o 143. be repositories of power, or life-essence. Unlike most other sacred objects, these can lose t h e i r charge, as i t were, during the making of r a i n , and must be recharged by- performance of the Da:wajil before they can bring r a i n a second time. There are a number of small, roughly c i r c u l a r stones with a sacred-type concentric c i r c l e s design occurring n a t u r a l l y on them. These are c a l l e d band.jilnara, jgunada, or bulid.jida, "hailstones*. Some informants say that these hailstone rocks were used by Winba as pounders, while others claim that they are metamorphosed t e s t i c l e s of rainmaking ancestors. The men's name f o r them i s rjurin.jba. Some very s i m i l a r stones are c a l l e d galiwadaljba, and are thought to be metamorphosed bodies of ancestral frogs. Two:; s t e e l axes at the base of each' p i l e represent' /^l^jalmara^ ^Moi^S^.vaxe^'iTOall^^a^sacred board) used by Winba, and other rainmakers, to s p l i t open trees f o r firewood and while hunting with l i g h t n i n g as a weapon. Informants say that the stone axes a c t u a l l y used by Winba are s t i l l at the Moolyella and Yarrie baljbara. The jurjgujungu i s a very long piece of h a i r s t r i n g , with a small b i n j d j a b i n j d j a p e a r l s h e l l s l i v e r at one end, which i s wound around both p i l e s during the Da:wajil and i s thought to hold the clouds i n (represented on the p i l e by eaglehawk down, which i s stuck onto the tops of the upright l i g h t n i n g 144 . rods with "blood, which represents rain) and thus cause r a i n to f a l l . I t i s sa i d to have been Winba|5s h a i r b e l t , and can change int o a snake or vehicle during dream-spirit journeys; i t s passengers t r a v e l by s i t t i n g a s t r i d e i t , and the p e a r l - s h e l l acts as a l i g h t , to illuminate the sky and show the native doctors who p i l o t the c r a f t which d i r e c t i o n to go. I t i s used f o r dances at both the baljbara and Camp grounds, but i n the l a t t e r case i t i s always danced at night and the jungujungu i s not seen by the women and c h i l d r e n present. Large p e a r l s h e l l s , c a l l e d r e d j i (one of the secret names i s d i n g i d i q g i ) . are placed around the base of the p i l e s f o r the duration of the Datwajil. They a l l originate from the Broome area on the north west coast and are traded south; most are already i n c i s e d (mainly with abstract patterns said to represent lightning) before they reach Jigalong. These, l i k e the j i l i w i r i feather-bundle forehead decorations (secret name naluwiri) are i n d i v i d u a l l y owned and may be worn i n the Camp ground area. The rainmaking ancestors are a l l thought to have worn r e d j i as pubic pendants, but the s h e l l s are said by some to have also served as food dishes. The j i l i w i r i , several of which are also used to decorate the p i l e s , pro- vided Winba with shade. The one he wore i n his forehead was l i k e a hat, but when he stuck i t s wooden shaft into the ground i t became a huge shade tree. J i l i w i E i - fluogn' /by Djaramara beings may be seen i n the sky as a f l i c k e r i n g kind of sheet l i g h t n i n g . Any kind of b i r d feathers and wooden or bone shaft can be used to make a j i l i w i r i , but the 145. feathers of the white cockatoo (gagal.1al.ja) seem to be preferred. The sharpened end i s also used to pr i c k open the armvein ready f o r anointing the p i l e s with blood. Wid.iiwid.ii are thin, wooden rods, twleve to eighteen inches long, topped with down and used i n a dance of the same name. Individual Paraphernalia. Most men from the rank of S.III up have t h e i r own p e a r l s h e l l pendants, presented to them as i n s i g n i a of rank but outside the realm of the Da:wajil a l l men who passed through the i n i t i a t i o n stage c a l l e d burjana have t h e i r own red.ji. The . j i l i w i r i feather-bundle can be worn by men of the two highest ranks as part of t h e i r personal decorati<mns. A l l men from the rank of S.III up have two boomerangs (secret name l i r l i r b a ) which they carry during the Da:wajil mainly to provide the c l i c k i n g accompaniment to i t s songs and dances, and i n the case of the S.III as i n s i g n i a of t h e i r status. Small knife-blade shaped p e a r l s h e l l s l i v e r s , bin.id.iabin.id.ja, are worn as forehead and armband decorations by many men, and as neck-ornaments by senior women. These are thought to be the small sacred boards that Winba, etc. ca r r i e d during t h e i r travels and were l a t e r metamorphosed into s h e l l s . A l l men from the rank of S.IV up wear a white forehead band, bundawalu, about an inch wide and made of cl o t h or p l a s t i c , i n contrast to the redwool headbands worn during most other r i t u a l s . A l l i n i t i a t e s may also wear 146 . h a i r b e l t s (nanba) during the Da:wajil, but should too much r a i n f a l l and l o c a l flooding become imminent, these must be removed, to l e t the clouds 'escape' and drop t h e i r r a i n elsewhere. Body designs are also an es s e n t i a l part of per- sonal adornment i n the Da:wajil, and are worn by a l l i n i t i a t e s . Put on with charcoal, and edged with white ochre, a l l designs ( c a l l e d wiludjuru, 'lightning', or ganjdjirjada, a f t e r a type of rainmaking being) represent various types of lig h t n i n g , ranging from strong, s t r a i g h t bolts i n the case of highest status men, to weak, fragmented sheet-type l i g h t n i n g i n the lowest rank. Every year, at some stage during the Da:wajil i n i t i a t e s are 'loaded' by the l o c a l native doctors; i . e . the l a t t e r allegedly remove l i g h t n i n g rods from inside the bodies of men of senior rank and in s e r t them into the bodies of the novices, f o r protection. The decorations worn during the r i t e s are said to sink into the body and help the l i t t l e bunu to grow, thus increasing i t s protective powers. Women and children decorate with white ochre designs that represent rainclouds, and older c h i l d r e n blow white or yellow ochre from t h e i r mouths over t h e i r hands to,^"produce outlines on each other's back. Like the men, they use small l e a f y bundles to spatter white ochre a l l over t h e i r bodies, but apart from the few older women who wear p e a r l s h e l l pendants around t h e i r necks, women and ch i l d r e n have no decorations or paraphernalia other than the ochre markings. 147 . Paraphernalia at the Gamp Grounds. Apart from the ninjinganu i t s e l f , there i s very l i t t l e gear specifically associated with the two grounds close to the main camp. Old tins and cans are used as containers for throwing and drinking water, and 44-gallon drums are used to cart water whenever necessary (there are no taps near the ceremonial grounds). An old drum is used to store the flour and other bought foodstuffs during the Daiwajil, mainly to protect the food from scavenging dogs. Several hundred pounds of flour and at least a hundred dollars' worth of other food (mainly canned meat, jams, f r u i t , packaged cakes and biscuits) are consumed at wanaburga feasts held during the Darwajil. They are bought at the settlement store and taken to the ground i n local vehicles. Female bidin.janu bring their own mixing bowls and hessian bags for preparing the dampers, and the only utensils used by the male cooks are branch brooms, long sticks and their boomerangs. Hfea i s brewed i n several buckets and large tins, and ;:men drink straight out of the buckets, or else from newly emptied food cans and old mugs. E. Ritual Activities The temporal sequence followed i n this descriptive account of the IDa:wajil complex i s that of the 1969-1970 performance at Jigalong, when more than 130 southern visitors 148 . were p r e s e n t . F o r many o f t h e v i s i t o r s t h i s was t h e i r f i r s t e x p e r i e n c e o f t h e r i t u a l . 1. G e n e r a l P r e p a r a t i o n s The Open ing o f t h e B a l j b a r a . One mo rn i ng abou t t h r e e weeks b e f o r e t h e a r r i v a l o f t h e v i s i t o r s , s e n i o r members ( S . I and S . I I as w e l l as a few S . I I I men) o f b o t h g e n e r a - t i o n l e v e l g r o u p i n g s t a k e t h e i r c a r r y b a g s w i t h them and go t o the bush g round t o •open ' t h e r a i n m a k i n g p i l e s and t h u s b e g i n the D a : w a j i l a c t i v i t i e s . T h i s i s done p r i o r t o t h e d e p a r t u r e o f t h e messenge r s , t o g i v e them c o o l wea the r and pe rhaps l i g h t r a i n t o make t r a v e l l i n g more c o m f o r t a b l e . S . I men a r r i v e f i r s t , t o u n c o v e r t h e p i l e s and sweep t he g r ound , f o l l o w e d by t h e r e s t who w a l k i n r s i n g l e f i l e bu t a r e s e p a r a t e d a c c o r d i n g t o g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l membersh ip . They w a i l l o u d l y as t h e y e n t e r t h e g r ound . T h i s i s v a r i o u s l y e x p l a i n e d as show ing s o r r o w a t t h e r e c e n t d e a t h o f a m a s t e r , a m i x t u r e o f s o r r ow and j o y a t r e new i ng a c - q u a i n t a n c e w i t h a l l t h e s a c r e d o b j e c t s t h e r e , and as show- i n g c o n c e r n f o r t h e snakes t h a t l i v e i n s i d e t h e p i l e s . 1 A l l t h e men t o u c h b o t h hands t o t h e t o p o f one p i l e , t h e n A T h e w a i l i n g i s a l s o t o i n d i c a t e t o Winba and t h e o t h e r r a i n m a k i n g a n c e s t o r s t h a t t h e A b o r i g i n e s f e e l s o r r y f o r a l l t h e work t h a t t h e i r o l d e r k i n smen must do i n b r i n g i n g r a i n , and t o e x p r e s s t h e i r s o r r ow t h a t t h e a n c e s t o r s l a y down and c o u l d n o t ge t up a g a i n . 149 . the other, to •quieten' and reassure the snakes within, ; then every man eithe r shoulder-taps, head-taps or grasps the chin of every other man present, depending on the kinship r e l a t i o n - ship involved. Shoulder-tapping takes place ;among men during many d i f f e r e n t r i t u a l s , and i s interpreted by some as a gesture of peace and friendship, but apart from claiming that the practice originated among the ancestral beings during the Dreamtime, no other explanations are given by the Aborigines. The men then s i t around the p i l e s and decorate them with p e a r l s h e l l s (red.ii and bin.id.iabin.1d.ia taken from t h e i r carry- bags) and sing relevant 13a:wajil songs as they a l l a s s i s t i n the winding of long .jungu.iuijgu h a i r s t r i n g s around and around each p i l e . Several of the middle-aged and younger men then pierce t h e i r armveins and anoint the top of the p i l e s with blood while others sprinkle water around the base of the p i l e s , to 'feed' the snakes within. S. I jmen s t i c k eagle- hawk down (nudala) onto the tops of the bunu rods, using blood as f i x a t i v e . The f l u f f y down represents clouds that are held i n by the h a i r s t r i n g bound around the rods and should thus produce r a i n . Both p i l e s are prepared i n the same way, amid singing, and several of the biggest rods are brought out of hiding to be displayed and discussed, before the men re- turn en masse to the settlement f o r lunch. 1 5 0 . C l e a n i n g o f t h e Camp G rounds . L a t e t h e same day , t h e o l d e r S..II men and t h e s e n i o r f ema l e cooks sweep t h e e n t i r e nura lanand . 1 l a r e a c l e a n , u s i n g bushy sh rubs as brooms. The men a l s o add f r e s h b r anches t o t h e boughshed so t h a t i t w i l l g i v e adequa te s hade . Members o f each g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l g r o u p - i n g c l e a n t h e i r own p a r t o f t h e g r ound ; t h e n o r t h e r n h a l f and n o r t h e r n end o f t h e boughshed b e l o n g t o t h e Banaga -Ga r ima ra s e c t i o n s , t h e s o u t h e r n a r e a t o t h e ,MjL la j^a-Burunj i g r o u p . Th roughou t t h e D a : w a j i l , whenever g roups c o n g r e g a t e , t h e Banaga -Ga r ima r a g roup i s a lways t o t h e n o r t h o f t h e o t h e r . The same c o n f i g u r a t i o n a p p l i e s d u r i n g o t h e r r i t u a l s where a g e n e r a t i o n l e v e l d i v i s i o n e x i s t s . De spa t ch o f M e s s e n g e r s . The i n i t i a t e d men h o l d a g e n e r a l m e e t i n g a t t he n i n j i n g a n u boughshed , a f t e r t h e b a l . l b a r a has been opened and t h e g round p r e p a r e d , t o d e c i d e w h i c h S . I I men w i l l t r a v e l t o W i l u n a t o summon t h e s o u t h e r n A b o r i g i n e s back t o J i g a l o n g f o r t h e D a : w a j i l . I n 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 s i x men went , t h r e e f r om each g roup , and t h e y t o o k w i t h them D a : w a j i l p a r a p h e r n a l i a t o i n d i c a t e t he r e a s o n f o r t h e i r j o u r n e y . Of a l l t h e g e a r t a k e n ( h a i r s t r i n g s , bunu r o d s , f e a t h e r - b u n d l e s , p e a r l s h e l l s , and boomerangs) , o n l y t h e boomerangs and f e a t h e r - b u n d l e s were a c t u a l l y s een by t h e W i l u n a p e o p l e , s i n c e t h e o t h e r o b j e c t s c o u l d n o t be r e v e a l e d i n t h e p r e s e n c e o f u n i n i t i a t e d p e r s o n s . P r i o r t o d e p a r t u r e , a l l men who a r e a b l e c o n t r i b u t e money t owa rds p e t r o l , " and t h e t r a v e l l e r s a r e g i v e n f l o u r , t e a and s u g a r t o consume en r o u t e . U s u a l l y a wanaburga f e a s t i s h e l d b e f o r e t h e t r a v e l l e r s s e t o f f , bu t i n 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 t h e y l e f t 1 5 1 . before t h i s could be organized. Purchase of Foodstuffs. At a boughshed meeting, the men begin c o l l e c t i n g contributions of cash f o r the purchase of the food necessary to hold several wanaburga feasts and feed the entire settlement population f o r several days. The bulk of t h i s cash comes from S.I (most of whom are on pen- sions) and S.II men, but other i n i t i a t e d men who have cash to spare may donate some. Each generation l e v e l group c o l - l e c t s i t s own, but both endeavour to c o l l e c t about the same amount of money each time, so that roughly equal amounts of food w i l l be bought f o r both groups. S. II men usually do the actual purchasing, and they arrange f o r the transportation of the food to the ground with whomever has a vehicle handy. Men with vehicles are also heavily c a l l e d upon throughout the 13a:wajil to c o l l e c t firewood, cart water, take hunting part i e s out i n t o the bush and carry old or sick men to and from the bush ground. Before the a r r i v a l of the v i s i t o r s , the i n i t i a t e d men w i l l hold several wanaburga feasts i n the creekbed near the Camp grounds. Such fe a s t i n g occurs at frequent i n t e r v a l s during the summer season, whether or nor there i s any Da:wajil r i t u a l a c t i v i t y taking place. The men get together to eat a hearty meal and to discuss matters r e l a t i n g to the r i t u a l , they display and discuss Da:wajil paraphernalia 1 5 2 . and p l a n f u t u r e : . a c t i v i t i e s . These f e a s t s a r e a t t e n d e d o n l y by men; S . I I I members knead and cook t he dampers and brew t he t e a . A l l men f r om S . I V r a nk up a r e e l i g i b l e t o a t t e n d su ch g a t h e r i n g s , bu t S . I V men canno t e a t meat . ' L o a d i n g ' t h e Young Men. Two o r t h r e e t i m e s a g a i n b e - f o r e t h e v i s i t o r s a r r i v e , g roups o f men v i s i t t h e b a l . j b a r a t o f u r t h e r d e c o r a t e , a n o i n t and s i n g a round t h e p i l e s , and t o l e t n ew l y a r r i v e d i n i t i a t e d men pay t h e i r r e s p e c t s a t t h e bush g r o u n d . One day , a f t e r e a t i n g a midday wanaburga . a l l a v a i l a b l e men v i s i t t h e g r ound , and a f t e r s i n g i n g and a n o i n t i n g t h e p i l e s and p u t t i n g f r e s h eaglehawfe down on t h e r o d s , t h e y d e c o r a t e t h e m s e l v e s . Then a l l t h e younger men p r e s e n t a r e t o l d t o s t a n d i n a l i n e between t h e two p i l e s , w i t h arms above heads and each w i t h h i s c h e s t a g a i n s t t h e back o f t h e man i n f r o n t , r e ady t o be ' l o a d e d ' w i t h i n v i s i b l e bunu r od s t o p r o - t e c t them a g a i n s t a t t a c k s by r i t u a l k i l l e r s . The l o a d i n g , c a l l e d j u n n a , i s done by two naked S . I men who a r e a l s o n a t i v e d o c t o r s . They dance down t h e g r ound , h o l d i n g a bunu r o d p e n i s - l i k e between t h e i r l e g s , t h e n t h e y p r e s s i t h a r d i n t o t h e f r o n t and r e a r members o f t h e l i n e ( b o t h o f whom a r e a l s o n a t i v e d o c t o r s and t hu s a b l e t o w i t h s t a n d t h e shock o f d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h t h e p o w e r f u l r o d s ) . They t h e n •remove ' bunu f r om i n s i d e t h e b o d i e s o f s e v e r a l o l d e r men p r e s e n t and ' i n s e r t * t h e s e i n t o t h e l i n e ; by c o n t a g i o u s ma- g i c t h e bunu p a s s i n t o t h e b o d i e s o f a l l men i n t h e l i n e . A l l 1 5 3 . the rainmakers are sai d to have c a r r i e d such protective stones inside t h e i r bodies as they t r a v e l l e d around the country. The Practice Welcome. Ear l y i n the morning of the day when the v i s i t o r s are expected to a r r i v e , a l l the l o c a l people begin decorating i n readiness. Men, women and c h i l d r e n decorate themselves to look as 'flashed up' as possible. Women and c h i l d r e n carry small l e a f bundles to wave as they dance, while ;most men carry boomerangs which they c l i c k i n ac- companiment to t h e i r singing. By mid-morning everyone i s decorated and ready to pr a c t i c e the ceremonial welcome that they w i l l extend to the v i s i t o r s l a t e the same afternoon. The men dance i n t h e i r two groups, which are strung out i n a l i n e to give the appearance of the greatest possible num- bers, with t h e i r respective groups of women bringing -up the rear. A f t e r a few practice runs, which generate great h i l a r i t y and excitement, they s e t t l e down to await the actual a r r i v a l of the v i s i t o r s , who by t h i s time are camped just outside the settlement and are putting on the p l a i n red- ochre covering that i s t r a d i t i o n a l f o r the v i s i t i n g group. The Welcome. As soon as the news of the impending a r r i v a l of the v i s i t o r s reaches the Camp, the entire population assembles i n the creekbed, hidden from the sight of the v i s i t o r s , so as to add an element of surprise to the welcome. The v i s i t o r s ' vehicles a r r i v e f i r s t and assemble on the south western side of the main Camp on the edge of a cleared area, then the v i s i t o r s approach on foot i n single f i l e , men i n front, and Da:wajil novices with arms folded and heads down, as i s the correct behaviour f o r men of that status. The v i s i t o r s then a l l s i t down i n the cleared area, i n t h e i r res- pective generation l e v e l groupings. With a huge roar the Jigalong mob surges up over the r i s e near the creekbed and dances ri g h t up to the v i s i t o r s then r e t i r e s about 200 yards and s i t s down, to allow the southerners to reciprocate the welcome. They do so, then s i t down, and almost immediately afterwards the settlement of outstanding disputes begins t because, i d e a l l y a l l f i g h t i n g must be done with before the i i ceremonial a c t i v i t i e s get under way; Women and chi l d r e n of the respective mobs sc a t t e r f o r sh e l t e r as the boomerangs and spears begin to f l y . Owing to the r e l a t i v e l y l a t e a r r i v a l of the v i s i t o r s at the 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 meeting, the public settlement of disputes was postponed u n t i l the following day short l y a f t e r they had begun, because everyone was t i r e d and the v i s i t o r s were very t h i r s t y . • - • * 2 2 . The Opening Sessionnof the Da:wajil. The same night, a f t e r the v i s i t o r s have established t h e i r camps and have rested and eaten, l o c a l men of S.III status begin to round up a l l the inhabitants of the Camp. C o n f l i c t i s forbidden during ceremonial a c t i v i t y ; c f . Warner 1937/64 :383: "This sanction or a s i m i l a r one i s absolutely necessary to allow the r i t u a l to remain an i n t e r c l a n or t r i b a l a f f a i r . " p See Appendix A (songs sung December 3 0 t h , 1969) f o r a l i s t of the songs sung t h i s night. 1 5 5 . Jigalong women and chi l d r e n then make t h e i r own way across to the old nurala nandji ground which i s about 150 yards south of the Camp ceremonial grounds. This ground i s used f o r the f i r s t night's performance because the v i s i t o r s should enter the nin.iinganu area f o r the f i r s t time i n daylight. F i r s t to a r r i v e are the S.I men who s i t i n a c i r c l e i n the centre of the ground and are a c t i v e l y singing by the time the others a r r i v e . The v i s i t o r s are ushered, i n t h e i r respective groups, onto the ground and are seated to the north and south of the cen t r a l c i r c l e , where they w i l l remain, s i l e n t and passive, a l l through the evening's performance. Jigalong women and ch i l d r e n s i t i n t h e i r two groups, to the north and south of the v i s i t o r s , and Jigalong men stand around the central c i r c l e , but on t h e i r respective sides. Throughout the evening they p e r i o d i c a l l y dance i n c i r c l e s around the seated men, f i r s t one way then the other. Both excitement and general noise l e v e l remain very high throughout, as male and female members of both sides engage i n protracted bouts of water-throwing and a constant barrage of comments i s direct e d at members of the opposite l e v e l . During the songs, S.III men repeatedly make the b i r d c a l l appropriate to t h e i r l e v e l , either g i d i r r r r r r (Banaga-Garimara) or w i j u r r r r r r r (Milanga-Burunu), and the Jigalong women make frequent f r o g c a l l s i n accompaniment. The v i s i t o r s receive a heavy barrage 1 5 6 . of water and comments as to what i s going to happen to them i n the days that follow.. About h a l f an hour a f t e r the session commences, car l i g h t s that had been used to illuminate the ground are a l l turned o f f , and the performance proceeds i n almost complete darkness. But the promisedAall night session does not eventuate, as a very strong dusty wind springs up about ten o'clock and by 1 1 : 3 0 i t has become too uncomfortable to continue. Besides, the v i s i t o r s are very t i r e d , so everyone returns to Camp. As with most aspects of the Da:wajil, and indeed of a l l Aboriginal r i t u a l s , people cannot say f o r sure why they do much of the r i t u a l things they do; the stock answer i s , "We do i t because i t i s the Law; i t i s what the Dreamtime beings did." And i f one asks why the Dreamtime people acted thus, nobody knows. But people may sometimes hazard a guess, and i n the case of the water-throwing, some say that they throw water over one another to induce the rainmaking beings to do the same and pour r a i n over them. Certainly many believe that i f they throw water v i o l e n t l y and roughly, instead of pouring i t or throwing i t gently as they are supposed to do, the r e s u l t i n g r a i n and weather w i l l be wild and rough, and that i f people run away from being wet by others, the clouds too w i l l run away and no r a i n w i l l f a l l i n the Jigalong area. 3 . The F i r s t Day. I d e a l l y , t h i s i s supposed to be a f u l l day's performance but the rest of the dispute settlements took up most of the morning and a c t i v i t i e s d i d not get under way u n t i l a f t e r an 1 5 7 . early lunch. At the Ninjingarju. About midday the mustering begins, and the people assemble and march to the Camp grounds i n four l i n e s (two each f o r the Jigalong and v i s i t i n g mobs, and each divided into generation l e v e l grouping) with the men i n front walking with arms folded and heads down as novices must always do u n t i l they are i n i t i a t e d . Two groups of senior men are a l - ready assembled at the ground and s i t t i n g i n t h e i r respective c i r c l e s , just east of the boughshed, singing, as the novices are led i n by the S.III men. The novices are made to l i e face down inside the boughshed, with Jigalong novices and older c h i l d r e n at the two ends of the ninjingarju. and Jigalong women s i t t i n g along the western edge of the boughshed behind the male and female southern novices. The musterers immediately j o i n the older men, standing i n a semicircle around them and singing loudly, but breaking off regularly to engage i n water- throwing a c t i v i t i e s , which begin as soon as men and women can f i l l t h e i r containers or mouths. Everyone, novices included, gets drenched, amid great h i l a r i t y and a great deal of noise, movement and frequent physical clashes between members of same and opposite sex as attempts are made to disarm water-bearing members of the opposite group. After about half an hour novices are permitted to s i t up and watch the proceedings more f u l l y , but they remain s t i l l . Although some water i s thrown generally, either across a l l the novices of the opposite group or across the top of t h e i r section of the boughshed, most i s aimed at s p e c i f i c targets ( i . e . c e r t a i n k i n categories) i n the opposite l e v e l . 158. At i n t e r v a l s during the afternoon, the S.III men of f i r s t one group then the other take t h e i r respective novices and S.IV men and lead them o f f to perform dances that re- present the hunting a c t i v i t i e s of the rainmaking birds g i d i r and wi.iur who destroyed (or i n the case of the smaller wijur birds, s p l i t open) trees with t h e i r l i g h t n i n g b o l t s . Skipping i n single f i l e and making frequent b i r d c a l l s , with the S.III men c l i c k i n g t h e i r boomerangs each l i n e of dancers c i r c l e s a tree which they pretend to destroy with l i g h t n i n g by stamping t h e i r feet and whooping. They then pause before c i r c l i n g the ground and passing close to women of the opposite group who douse them with water as they dance past. The Banaga-Garimara men, representing bigger and stronger birds who hunted further a f i e l d , c i r c l e the same tree as the others but then dance further away before returning to the ground. Both groups c i r c l e the boughshed i n opposite directions at the same time, before putting the novices back inside the shade and resuming t h e i r singing and water-throwing. There are frequent l u l l s i n the l a t t e r a c t i v i t y as the supply of water runs out f a i r l y quickly and people then have to wait f o r the drums, etc. to be r e f i l l e d . The two c i r c l e s sing almost continuously, usually the same song, but not always i n perfect synchronization. During the songs, men and women frequently make to a f r o waving motions with t h e i r .upturned hands, which they say represent water flowing i n a creek. About four o'clock most of the people disperse f o r a break. Local women go to the settlement to pick up fresh bread from the bulk store and some of the S.II men go to buy stores f o r wanaburga. The v i s i t i n g novices are l e d off the ground to 159. eat clamper and drink tea, prepared earlier i n the afternoon by- some of the creekbed cooks and S. I l l men. The senior female cooks remain i n the boughshed. Later the musterers return to Camp to round everyone up again and bring them back to the ground. The singing and some water-throwing resume, and there i s more dancing by the two groups of men. About seven o'clock a l l women, children and novices leave the ground and return to Camp. The men stay on to discuss the coming hunt, before they too go back to Camp. The hunters, organized and led by S. II men, and assisted by a few of the S. I l l and S. IV men, leave about 7:30 p.m. in several vehicles, intending to camp out overnight and hunt the next morning. The rest of the people wi l l have an early night, as tomorrow a f u l l day and night of Da:wajil acti v i t i e s are to follow. 4. The Second Day The Assembly. About.- 8:30 a.m. the musterers assemble a l l novices, women and children and march them to the main creekbed about 200 yards south of the boughshed. There they s i t under shade trees i n their respective groups, women and children separate from the men, where they w i l l spend most of the day. Mid-afternoon, the novices w i l l be taken to the baljbara for the f i r s t time. The women and children w i l l stay i n the creek- bed until late afternoon, when they w i l l be mustered to the boughshed area to await the return of a l l the men from the bush. 1 6 0 . A l l those i n the creekbed are supervised and fed by S.III men, who oversee the creekbed female food preparers and do the actual cooking of the dampers. D i v i s i o n of Food. While the others are being assembled, senior status men move to the boughshed area to organize the d i v i s i o n of the day's foad. Ideally t h i s i s the task of S.II men but other senior men may a s s i s t . From the food drum, which by now contains over 700 lbs of f l o u r and other foodstuffs, they make two p i l e s of food, each containing 100 lbs of fl o u r , plus tea, sugar and a few tin s of f r u i t . S.III men of the respective groups carry t h e i r food stock to the creekbed and hand i t over to t h e i r female food preparers who w i l l l a t e r make dampers and brew tea f o r members of t h e i r own generationlievel group. Selection of New Female Cooks. Senior men of S.II rank, w i l l decide whether more female cooks are needed and w i l l them- selves 'grab' women to enter the rank of bidinjapu. I f new creekbed cooks are also to be chosen,the S.II men w i l l delegate the actual 'grabbing' to the older S.III men who oversee the creekbed a c t i v i t i e s . In 1 9 6 9 - 7 0 , they chose two women to become bidin.jarju. When she i s selected the woman weeps as she i s led to j o i n the other bidinjaqu, who are already assembled and waiting at the ninjingaqu. These women w i l l prepare a large number of dampers, some of which w i l l be taken to the baljbara and eaten by the men there; the rest w i l l be consum