Essay about El Vuh

Submitted By sebastiann
Words: 448
Pages: 2

To this day, ceremonies play an important part in Aboriginal life. Small ceremonies, or rituals, are still practised in some remote parts of Australia, such as in Arnhem Land and Central Australia, in order to ensure a supply of plant and animal foods. These take the form of chanting, singing, dancing or ritual action to invoke the Ancestral Beings to ensure a good supply of food or rain.
The most important ceremonies are connected with the initiation of boys and girls into adulthood. Such ceremonies sometimes last for weeks, with nightly singing and dancing, story telling, and the display of body decoration and ceremonial objects. During these ceremonies, the songs and stories connected to each of the Ancestral Beings are told and retold, some being “open” for women and children to see and hear, others being restricted or “secret-sacred”, only for the initiates Funeral ceremonies. Another important time for ceremonies is on the death of a person, when people often paint themselves white, cut their own bodies to show their remorse for the loss of their loved one, and conduct a series of rituals, songs and dances to ensure the person’s spirit leaves the area and returns to its birth place, from where it can later be reborn.
Burial practices vary throughout Australia, people being buried in parts of southern and central Australia, but having quite a different burial in the north. Across much of northern Australia, a person’s burial has two stages, each accompanied by ritual and ceremony.The primary burial is when the corpse is layed out on an elevated wooden platform, covered in leaves and branches, and left several months for the flesh to rot away from the bones. The…