Out of Australia: The Didgeridoo – A lifetime journey.

A young man who prefers to remain anonymous was on a global walkabout from Australia.  At the height of 6’3” with a lean build, and sporting various tattoos on his chest, arms and legs one’s first impression is he is someone who has chosen to walk an individualistic path much like many young people one meets in Hawaii. His lack of intoxication, and clear-focused  brown eyes indicated that he wasn’t currently partaking in the festivities of many of the youth who travel to Hawaii to vacation. His hair was unkempt, and he wore several days of beard growth.  It was the uniqueness of color and thickness of his hair that drew my attention, it had the red, tawny and thickness of his hair I had seen on aboriginal people from Australia.

He  happened to be residing in the same hostel in Waikiki as I, Yvonne-Cher was inhabiting, this last November.  He and I lived in a coed dorm style room, wherein the influx of guests varied on a daily basis.  As he was settling in, I viewed his drum with familiar markings.  I asked him, about it and he explained to me that it was a gift from his spiritual teacher who was of Navajo descent, while he had lived in the Southwest region of the United States over the previous summer.  

He then began to speak of the Didgeridoo, a low-toned instrument of which he had first learned to play as a child. An aboriginal instrument, often used for healing and medicine work.  He confirmed that he had viewed a physical, emotional and spiritual change in the recipients of this unique healing technique.  He is the descendant of aboriginal ancestors, the most closest link being through his mother, apparently his grandfather was a seer, one who worked with healing energies and taught his grandson about healing and connecting and manipulating these energies.  This early education commenced a lifelong pursuit of healing and learning methods from anyone who is willing to teach him. Which brings us to the current chapter in his life wherein he had decided to study Native American medicine.  Connection with ancestor spirits and ongoing relationships with these spirits are a driving force in ceremony and meditations.

While on his current journey, he had experienced a sweat with his teacher and found Native American medicine fascinating and similar to what he had learned growing up in Australia, as far as the lessons one can learn from one’s elders, one’s visions and listening to the voices of nature.  The Didgeridoo, can be heard for miles, and was a means of communication among various groups as well as a means of entering and leaving the spirit world for the practitioner.  An integral part of the process of learning to use the instrument was learning how to make one, and being in the state of mind to develop the spiritual strength needed to undertake such a sacred task.  This required preparation, both of the creator and the materials of the instrument.  Knowledge of wood needed to create a digeridoo, as well as a knowledge of shaping and preparing the instrument as far as weight, flexibility and tone expectations are all elements of which this individual was taught as an apprentice to a master craftsman who had learned all he knew about the instrument as a child, which lends itself to a cyclical pattern which tends to be the songs that are played while working with the medicine of tones.

Yvonne-Cher Skye

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