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Ayers Rock is also known by its Aboriginal name 'Uluru'. Uluru is considered one of the great wonders of the world. It is a large magnetic mound large not unlike Silbury Hill in England and is located on a major planetary grid point much like the Great Pyramid in Egypt.

Uluru (also Ayers Rock or The Rock) is a large rock formation in central Australia, in the Northern Territory. It is located in Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, 350 km southwest of Alice Springs at 25 degrees 20' 41" S 131 degrees 01' 57" E. It is the second-largest monolith in the world (after Mount Augustus, also in Australia), more than 318 m (986 ft) high and 8 km (5 miles) around. It also extends 2.5 km (1.5 miles) into the ground. It was described by explorer Ernest Giles in 1872 as "the remarkable pebble".

 

Climbing Uluru - The local indigenous community request that visitors respect the sacred status of Uluru by not climbing the rock, with signs posted to this effect. In 1983 the former Prime Minister of Australia, Bob Hawke, promised to respect the request from the community that climbing Uluru be prohibited, but broke his promise when title was handed to the traditional owners in 1985 because access for tourists to climb Uluru was made a condition before they could receive the title. The climb crosses an important dreaming track, which has been a cause of sadness and distress among traditional owners. Nevertheless, they are unable to prohibit climbing, and climbing Uluru is a popular attraction for a large fraction of the many tourists who visit it each year. A rope handhold makes the climb easier, but it is still quite a long and steep climb and many intended climbers give up partway up. There are several deaths a year as a direct result of climbing the rock, mainly from heart failure.

  Climbing Uluru - like the ants ;-) A rope handhold makes the climb easier
 
The eroded surface of the Ayers Rock  

The Rock is arkose, a course-grained sandstone rich in feldspar at least 2.5 km thick. Uplifting and folding between 400-300 mya turned the sedimentary layers nearly 90 degrees to their present position. The surface has then been eroded.

 

Depending on the time of day and the atmospheric conditions, the rock can dramatically change color, anything from blue to violet to glowing red! Many avid photographers set up for days and record the many changing colors of Uluru.

  The Ayers Rock (Uluru) changing its color
 

Ayers Rock was named for the Premier of South Australia, Sir Henry Ayers. It extends down over 3 and a half miles beneath the surface.

Approximately 500 million years ago it was part of the ocean floor at the center of Australia. Some report that there is a light source emanating at various times of the year. Most likely this can be explained scientifically.

The Aborigines believe that there it is hollow below ground, and that there is an energy source that they call 'Tjukurpa' the dream time. The term Tjukurpa is also used to refer to the record of all activities of a particular ancestral being from the very beginning of his or her travels to their end. Anangu know that the area around Ayers Rock (Mount Uluru) is inhabited by dozens of ancestral 'beings' whose activities are recorded at many other sites. At each site, the events that took place can be recounted, whether those events were of significance or whether the ancestral being just rested at a certain place before going on.

Usually, there is a physical feature of some form at each ancestral site which represents both the activities of the ancestral being at the time of its formation and the living presence of Tjukurpa within that physical feature today. For the Australian Aboriginal people, that physical feature, whatever its form or appearance, animate or inanimate, is the Tjukurpa. It may be a rock, a sand hill, a grove of trees, a cave. For all of these, the creative essence remains forever within the physical form or appearance.

Around Mount Uluru there are many examples of ancestral sites. The Anangu explanations of these sites and of the formation of Mount Uluru itself derive from the Tjukurpa. Most of these explanations are in the realm of secret information and are not disclosed to Piranypa, the non-Aborigines.

'The Dreaming' is not a creation myth, per se, but a myth of formation. The world existed, but was featureless. Giant semi-human beings, resembling plants or animals, rose up from the plains where they had been slumbering for countless ages.

These ancient heroes roamed the land aimlessly. As they wandered around, they carried out the tasks that the present Aborigines do today including camping, making fires, digging for water, fighting each other, and performing ceremonies. When the heroes became tired of doing these things, Dreamtime came to an end.

Wherever the creators had been active, some form of natural feature now marks the place. The creators made everything with which the aborigines are in daily contact and from which they gain their living. The heroes also established laws that govern all aspects, both secular and sacred, of the tribes.

Dreamtime was in the past, but it is the Aborigines present religion and culture. The saying, 'As it was done in the Dreamtime, so it must be done today,' dominates all aspects of aboriginal behavior. Because of their beliefs in 'the dreaming,' ceremonies and rituals are held, stories are told, pictures are drawn, and daily life is defined.

In order to understand the religion of the Aborigines, one must have a basic understanding of the organization of the tribes. All men and women belong to small groups, called clans. Each clan posses a distinct body of spiritual properties, or sacred sites.

 
Stone monument made by the heroic ancestors  

A clan may have several sacred sites that they claim, and the area surrounded by the connection of these sites forms the clan's estate. Clans are linked by common religious traditions, intermarriage, shared dialects, and overlapping foraging rights.

 

Each clan has a totem. 'Totemism is a view of nature and life, of the universe and man, which colors and influences the Aborigines' social groupings and mythologies, inspires their rituals and links them to the past. It unites them with nature's activities and species in a bond of mutual life-giving, and imparts confidence amidst the vicissitudes of life. The totem provides a tangible expression of a man's relationship to his deities. Everything in the Aboriginal world contains an essence or spirit that had its beginnings in the Dreamtime. Each person descended from one of these spirits and possessed some of its life force. The spirit it descended from is the person's totem. Images of totems make-up a large part of Aboriginal art. They were painted on cave walls, which we title rock art, drawn on the interiors of their huts, drawn on their bodies, and carved in wood. Totemic spirits are celebrated in ceremonies and rituals, and played a prominent part in Aboriginal myth.

  Clans people of the crow believe they are descended from the Dreamtime's crow spirit who became a man.
 
Ayers Rock (Uluru) paintings  

In the creation period, Tatji, the small Red Lizard, who lived on the mulgi flats, came to Uluru. He threw his kali, a curved throwing stick, and it became embedded in the surface. He used his hands to scoop it out in his efforts to retrieve his kali, leaving a series of bowl-shaped hollows. Unable to recover his kali, he finally died in this cave. His implements and bodily remains survive as large boulders on the cave floor.

 

The Bell-Bird brothers, were stalking an emu. The disturbed animal ran northward toward Uluru. Two blue-tongued lizard men, Mita and Lungkata, killed it, and butchered it with a stone axe. Large joints of meat survive as a fractured slab of sandstone. When the Bell-Bird brothers arrived, the lizards handed them a skinny portion of emu, claiming there was nothing else. In revenge, the Bell-Bird brothers set fire to the Lizard's shelter. The men tried to escape by climbing the rock face, but fell and were burned to death. The gray lichen on the rock face is the smoke from the fire and the lizard men are two half-buried boulders.

  Ayers Rock (Uluru) - The body of Lungkata
 
 

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