Dreamtime

(redirected from Alcheringa)
Also found in: Dictionary, Medical, Wikipedia.
Enlarge picture
Illustration entitled “The Dream of Gilgamesh” by John Campbell, 1912. Fortean Picture Library.

Dreamtime

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Australian Aborigines trace their religion into prehistoric times. In their belief system, everything that exists is part of a vast, interlocking network, a relationship beginning with the ancestors of the Dreamtime. The Dreamtime continues today and is accessible to people when they "dream the fire," or enter into spiritual communion with the reality of the invisible plane supporting the visible one. The power of Aboriginal spirituality has been called both telepathic and mystical, in direct contrast to typical Western pragmatism. When Australia was discovered and exploited by European society, the Aborigines were considered primitive, people in need of "elevation" to modern cultural standards. Typically, the rich Australian spiritual heritage, existing on a plane unappreciated, misunderstood, and underestimated by Europeans, was considered nothing more than superstition. Only in the last part of the twentieth century did it begin to dawn on Westerners that Aborigines understood the dangers inherent in the trajectory of modern Western society far better than their European counterparts. When anxieties and stresses built up, when life got to be too complex and perspective was needed, it was the habit in Australia to "go walkabout," to pare down and sort things out, to spend an open-ended amount of time simply "being" until perspective was regained. Aboriginal religion intuitively understood that life can sometimes layer up, making it difficult to remain in touch with the very essence of the Dreamtime connection, the feeling of what it means to be alive, in touch with all things in the web. Through mythology, through the ritual of the dance, accompanied by the unique sounds of the didgeridoo or clap sticks, through the very act of observing, living close upon the sparse land in ways no Westerner could, Aborigines lived their religion moment by moment. When they came together to share their histories, telling the old stories, they released the power of the Dreamtime into presentday reality, informing new generations and carrying on the wisdom of the ancestors who had lived for so long on the land.

It can be argued that Dreamtime was experienced when early pioneers told stories around fires in the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains. Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett "went walkabout." American Indians danced and felt the presence of the divine in their environment. Indigenous Australians were no different.

Of course there existed those Aborigines who abused Dreamtime, walkabout, and the spiritual heritage that existed in Australia. There can be found, within the culture, abuse of women, laziness, drunkenness, and lack of direction. Probably no religious tradition has ever existed that personified a "golden age" when everyone was wise and spiritually fully developed. But spiritual traditions must be judged on their merits, not on their problem children. Dreamtime connected people with their heritage, supported and informed countless generations of people over the course of thousands of years, and is perfectly logical. Aboriginal customs have stood the test of time,

coming to the aid of people who have seen their world turned upside down in a matter of a few short years. And, the greatest test of all, Dreamtime has been validated by people who feel the pressures of modern life and want to establish spiritual roots in a rapidly changing world. When the pressures of life build up and threaten to overcome us, when too much information floods our souls, perhaps we all need to "go walkabout" or spend some quiet time "dreaming the fire."

References in periodicals archive ?
As an example, here is one page of notes:</p> <pre> Alcheringa time
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.
Alcheringa published a part of "talking at pomona" in 1972, "the sociology of art" in 1976 and "talking to discover" in 1976, and "tuning" in 1977.
The technical reasons for his disappointment with the possibilities of ethnopoetics are detailed in his essay "The Heraldic Vision: Some Cognitive Models for Comparative Aesthetics," which originally appeared in Rothenberg and Tedlock's journal of ethnopoetics, Alcheringa.
Et sans doute les hommes aranda repondaientils avec une phrase type telle que cette affaire maintenant, c'etait la meme chose dans l'Alcheringa, on ne peut pas manquer un pas dans cette affaire, on ne peut pas faire d'erreur, la parure de tete reste bien attachee a la tete ( dat business now, im been same longa Alcheringa, im same, cant missim step datun, cant mistake, im properly stuck longa head , dont le texte deviendrait la complaisance sexuelle, qui etait une pratique de l'Alcheringa, empeche que quoi que ce soit ne tourne mal au cours du rituel; par exemple, il devient impossible que les parures de tete se detachent et se derangent pendant la ceremonie .
The warmth of the avuncular bond seems implicit in Wiglaf's exceptional fidelity to the hero, which mirrors Beowulf's own loyalty to his uncle before him (and so forth back down through the mythic lineage to an Anglo-Saxon alcheringa "illo tempore").
The expression "Dreamtime" is perhaps a translation of the word altyerrenge (usually anglicized as Alcheringa or Alchuringa) in the language of the Aranda, a people of the Alice Springs region, Northern Territory, whose culture was described in classic studies by the anthropologists W.
Some of the material included in his reader Bright solicited in 1980 with a call in Alcheringa for a variety of Coyote material: translated traditional coyote stories, numerous commentaries including one on the biological aspects of coyotes, and original creative literature inspired by Coyote.
Alcheringa has developed a group of passionate collectors, committed not just to enjoying their acquisitions but also to furthering the future of the artists.
The discovery has been detailed in the journal Alcheringa.
The case studies examined by Healy consist of the 1962 television series Alcheringa, some examples of Aboriginal art and its influence on White artists (or rather, those who write about that influence), the treatment of Aborigines in the heritage industry, Aboriginal artefacts in museum collections (notably breastplates) and Aboriginal tourism in the form of the Lurijarri Trail near Broome in Western Australia.
Jorge Klor de Aira, "The Aztec-Spanish Dialogues 1524", Alcheringa, Ethnopoetics, v.