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Studies of Religion- Notes

The Dreaming- can be defined as the ast! the resent and the future" The Dreaming also
e#lains ho$ the h%sical landscae came into e#istence" Also e#laining ho$ Aboriginal
eole are to send their life no$"
Aboriginal Siritualit% has man% beliefs these include ancestral beings! erson connected
to siritual and material elements! understanding imortance of sacrad tradition"
Aboriginal Siritualit% also has an ine#tricable lin& to the land $ith the land being central
to the siritualit%
'efore (uroean colonisation there $as a significant di)ersit% in Aboriginal belief
s%stems" Through destruction of h%sical and siritual asects of the siritualit% the
di)ersit% has been limited and broadened as more general! although differences still occur
for different tribes"
Integration of *hristianit% and Aboriginal belief s%stems has been romoted b% man%
Aboriginal eole" Incororating the *hristian stor% into Aboriginal $a%s! use of
*hristian religious s%mbols in art and rituals! etc! translations
Differences++couldn,t be bothered
(uroean colonisation $as e#tremel% de)astation on Aboriginal belief s%stems and
societ%" *olonisation imacted on Aborigines b% loss of land! traditional $a%s and
siritualit%" *olonisation also caused the Aborigines to be deendent on the $hites
-olicies instruction throughout this time! include! rotection! assimilation! integragation"
.issions and missionar% acti)it% also had a great effect on Aborigines" .issions
undeniabl% attemted to force assimilation but some laces $ere safe! ro)iding refuge!
food and education" .issions often searated families! &et Aborigines from traditional
lands! remo)ing lin& and destro%ed traditional $a%s of li)ing
.isconcetions $ere e)ident from (uroeans to$ards the Aborigines" Some sa$ their
siritualit% being simle! others said Aborigines had no religion"
The land rights mo)ement in e#tremel% imortant in the histor% for Aborigines! as there
is a strong lin& $ith the land and siritualit%" /and rights from an aboriginal ersecti)e
is the non- restricti)e return to )iable land bases $here those Aboriginal eole $ho
chose to can $or& to regenerate their communities! culture and siritualit%" The .abo
case in 1001! 2i& *ase in 1003 and Nati)e Title Act 1004 are )er% imortant asects in
the land rights debate" The .abo *ase being the first land rights granted to Aborigines"
The Nati)e title act! outlined the recognising the ossession of the land b% Aborigines for
man% %ears" The 2i& case declared land rights could co-inside $ith astoral leases! but if
both met at a disute astoralists rights $ill re)ail"
*hristianit% had a strong influence on Australian societ% and $as significant bet$een the
time eriod! from 1051 to the resent" *hristianit% has had a formati)e influence on all
areas of societ%" In 1051 statistics sho$ed 657 of *hristians $ere Anglican! 147
catholic and 467 other *hristian denominations" 8ro$ing religious luralit% and
secularisation! *hristianit%,s stronghold has deteriorated but still has a significant effect"
*hristianit%,s effect on social $elfare has been significant" Social $elfare $as initiall%
reser)ed to each denomination and $or&ing in secific classes of societ%" Through
ecumenism! churches $or& together and ro)ide for all $ho need" The *hristian churches
collecti)el% being the largest non-go)ernment ro)ider of communit% and $elfare
ser)ices in Australia"
*hristianit%,s effect on education has also been )er% significant" From 191:- the Schools
(state *ooeration *harter! to the 1995 -ublic Instruction Act! ma&ing school free!
comulsor% and secular! *hristianit% $as in)ol)ed! $ith at this oint a dual s%stem $as
established go)ernment schools and non- go)ernment schools! $ith no funding to non-
go)ernment schools" To 1031- the 8oulburn stri&es $hich sho$ed significance of the
*hristian schools" State aid began $ith funding for science labs as so)iets launched
satellite" State aid granted to non ;go)ernment schools in 103<"
The inter-relationshi of the Australian h%sical and cultural en)ironment is imortant"
The redominant culture of Australia is (uroean %et $e are isolated from (uroean
o$ers" The harsh and e#ansi)e en)ironment ha)e caused a challenge for *hristian
influence" In toda%,s cultural en)ironment eole are more oen to ne$ ideas and less
sectarian in attitude"
Resonses b% some religious traditions to social change and initiati)es in communit%
de)eloment from 1051 to the resent are e)ident in areas of ministr% in rural and
outbac& Australia" Resonses include )arious *hristian organisations set about ro)iding
ser)ices for the eole of rural and outbac& Australia $ho suffer from isolation and
t%rann%" (#amles of this include 'ush *hurch Aid Societ% and the Australian Inland
Roles of religious traditions )ar% throughout )arious e)ents! these could include! the
/abour .o)ement! conscrition! $ars and the great deression" N((DS .OR(+"=UST
*OU/DN,T '( 'OT>(R(D
Religious traditions also la% roles in imortant issues! li&e unemlo%ment! o)ert% and
gambling" The churches continue to be social ad)ocates for the unemlo%ed and to
challenge the structures that institutionalise it" Sal)os-emlo%ment lus! *atholics-
centrecare emlo%ment and the Uniting *hurch for 2esle% uniting emlo%ment are
e#amles of churches in)ol)ement" For o)ert% churches also hel out the need%!
coinciding strongl% $ith unemlo%ment! $ith unemlo%ment being the biggest cause of
o)ert%" *lothing bins and laces li&e Sal)os and St ?incent De -aul could hel eole
$ith o)ert%" 2ith referral to gambling not until late 1005s did the -rotestant and
*atholics begin to be more unified in the oosition to gambling"
Religious luralit% has been drasticall% influenced to the current da%" 2ith luralit%
referring to the de)eloment and accetance of different! and di)erse e#ressions of
religion" This has been achie)ed through stages! these include! changes to olitical olic%!
gro$th of ne$ religions! changes to e#isting religion and changing attitudes" Asects
outlined in these stages include the immigration after 22I! the ending of the 2hite
Australian -olic%! formation of Uniting *hurch in 10<<! ne$ age religions! religious
con)ersion and denominational s$itching and gro$th in -entecostalism and the
charismatic mo)ement"
The recognition of common elements in religious e#ression and $orld )ie$s in
Australia toda% is common" It in)ol)es the incororation of eole of different religious
traditions" (g inter-faith aeal"