The Bawaka gunda ‘rock’ story

Told by Timmy Djawa Burarrwaŋa

Come and experience our beautiful land where there is the oldest environment in the world. There is significance in everything – living things and non living things that have existed since the beginning of time. We also have gunda ‘rock’ that represents my tribes and the clan groups – a place called Bawaka gambu maluku garrkarrnga gambu rringa – the land of Wurmarri. This is the scientific name for all of the Bawaka area. It is given by the ancestors, the songlines and the people and is connected to the land.

The gunda bakitju rirraliny nangapa rraywala – this is very significant and sacred in the songlines that give my tribes the strength, the power and the knowledge to pass down to our next generations. We will always remember there will be a bush library or djalkiri – if you burn the library it will grow again or if people pass away their knowledge has been passed down to their family. That’s why the knowledge can be passed on from generation to generation – it will always remain the same because the gunda stands firm and never moves. The gunda, bush library and the land are all connected – this is how it operates in the Yolngu world.

The gunda story is one of our most significant stories and takes a lifetime to learn. Come to Bawaka and walk side by side with me and my family and explore our heritage. Our land was designed for people to live with love, harmony and work together to build a common unity within both worlds.

Timmy Djawa Burarrwaŋa