Churinga


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Churinga

 

a sacred object of certain Australian tribes. Churingas are flat, decorated pieces of wood or stone that were kept in special hiding places and used in religious rites. They were regarded as totemic incarnations. Ornamented pebbles similar to churingas have been uncovered at habitation sites of the Mesolithic Azilian culture.

References in periodicals archive ?
However, when he learnt that the museum possessed a churinga connected to the land claim, he came to the conclusion that if he could prove his ownership of the object, the land claim decision might be overturned in his favour.
There is also the issue of what happens to a churinga once the owner dies.
In August 2004, I conveyed these churingas back to their owners in Central Australia.
The Churinga came in, he thought, `to express the spiritual part of the alcheringa animal or man, the meaning of the term I take to be sacred--in the sense that the sacramental wafer is sacred to the Roman Catholic.
Although it is unknown whether Sambo requested the ceremonial photographs spontaneously or took up an offer of the prints, it would seem likely that it was his idea to place the photographs in the churinga storehouse.
1997:124), in another (1997:70) that 'Your picture of the Cutting Operation (mock) at Tempe has greatly interested my niggers and I have arranged to take a series of pictures giving different stages of the ceremony etc shortly', and then there is the opening account of Sambo placing the images in the churinga storehouse.
Spencer and Gillen recorded that churinga ilkinia (atywerrenge-designs) consisted of a number of designs that were the property of the local totemic clan.
Though Gillen's knowledge of the marriage system and churinga led him beyond the issues of primitive promiscuity and totemic cannibalism as they had been posed by Baldwin Spencer, Gillen still failed to formulate alternative anthropological or historical questions to these spurious evolutionary ones.
Roheim proposed that Aranda ontology was articulated through an ontogeny and with this proposal was able to reveal the consistencies between practised rite and churinga of various types including stones, wooden boards, sand painting, head dress and body designs, not to mention man-land relations themselves.
By way of introduction to the first volume of myths, Leonardi summarises information sent by Strehlow on churinga beliefs:
At an Engwura (sic) ceremony they attended, they note that two lots of Churinga (sic) were brought onto the ceremonial ground to be examined.
Spencer and Gillen (1899/1969:133) make a similar observation when they state that 'churinga (sic) are stored in the storehouse of the locality from which the spirit child came -- that is to the spot where the churinga was deposited in the Alcheringa ["dreamtime"]'.