BUŊGUL; GURRUMUL'S MOTHERS BUŊGUL; GURRUMUL'S GRANDMOTHERS BUŊGUL; GURRUMUL'S MANIKAY
The Songs in Buŋgul
A Buŋgul is a ceremony, a meeting place of dance, song and ritual. Manikay are series of songs, passed down through generations from the ancestral beings that originally shaped and named the Yolŋu homelands. The Yolŋu people have been singing manikay at ceremonies for millenia. They are scared ritual songs, but are also songs about the land and the plants, animals, people and spirits that inhabit it. They contain ancerstral knowledge to the Yolŋuway of life.
The Yolŋu world is defined by two opposite sides, Yirritja and Dhuwa, within which individual clans have different identities. Both halves are required to find balance. For instance, Yolŋu people must marry someone from the opposite half. The whole world is made up of these balanced and specific identities which all have very specific relations with every other thing in the world. The moon, the north wind, the hammerhead shark, the emu, the Milky Way are Yirritja. The sun, west wind, tiger shark, bustard and Venus are Dhuwa. Whilst in North Arnhem Land, everywhere that you go you will be either on Dhuwa or Yirritja land and every Yolŋu person you meet, every native species or plant or animal you see will be one of these identities.
-Buku-Larrŋgay Mulka Centre