Life of the Aboriginal Aboriginal child is being painted for a dance festival in Northern Queensland, Australia.
© John Miles/Survival
Archaeologists believe that the Aboriginals first came to the Australian continent around 45,000 years ago.
Aboriginals themselves, however, trace their creation back to the Dreamtime, an era long past when the earth was first formed. One Aboriginal man explained it thus:
‘By Dreaming we mean the belief that long ago these creatures started human society, they made all natural things and put them in a special place.

’These Dreaming creatures were connected to special places and special roads or tracks or paths. In many places the great creatures changed themselves into sites where their spirits stayed.

’Aboriginals have a special connection with everything that is natural. Aboriginals see themselves as part of nature … All things on earth we see as part human. It is true that people who belong to a particular area are really part of that area and if that area is destroyed they are also destroyed.’
Aboriginals’ land was invaded from the end of the 18th century onwards, with catastrophic consequences for them.

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