Were there to be reconciliation in Australia between the white Europeans and the Aboriginal people, not only would some of the wealth and ease of Australian white culture need to be transferred to the Aboriginal people but some of the white cultural conventions that cause Aboriginal (and indeed many white people) to feel alienated, isolated, and alone would also need to be reconsidered.
I am talking about such things as profit motive, consumerism, materialism, pragmatism, cynicism, work-ethic, and the nuclear family.
These are the things which cause our society to be cold , especially to outsiders - immigrants and Aboriginal people.
Our society is cold, hard, tough, and exclusive.
This process can be brought about by listening.
Listening to the stories and experiences of Aboriginal people.
Hearing their cries for help, seeing their tears.
We must see value in Aboriginal people.
Perhaps their wealth lies in their spirituality - something which is not highly valued in Australian or any other western culture.
Hearing their cries of disconnection from the land, as indeed they are in our cities, is a beginning.
Perhaps such things as architecture and town planning need to be looked at in regard to green spaces, native flora, and communal spaces.
This would not only benefit Aboriginal people but white people also.
When do our bear feet touch the red Australian earth?
Only sand at the beach.
When do we hear the silence of the bush?
Only on holidays.
We are surrounded by things of our own making: radio, T.V., stereo, movies.....
There is constant chatter to distract us.
We are afraid of silence.
It makes us feel alone.
We are afraid of nature.
We try to tame it and control it.
Aboriginal people try to commune with nature.
This is the dreaming.
Nature is not their enemy but their mother.
They feel loved and nurtured by nature.
This is their connection to the land which has been reversed by the white colonialists.
Perhaps a return to mother nature may help with the process of reconciliation.
White men and women live in an alien landscape which is why their cities and towns resemble Europe.
Europe is their home, not Australia.
So while we live our lives in our little boxes with our manicured gardens of European flowers and trees we cannot be truly Australian.
We have to place our bear feet on the red Australian earth to become truly Australian.