CSUed 2010

Cahill, M. (Participant)

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventConference/SymposiumAcademic

Description

Cahill, M. 2010. Relating Wiradjuri culture to Biochemistry students. Session on Cultural competence & Indigenous education. Bld: S15, Rm 2.05.Abstract:

Charles Sturt University (CSU) recognises the Wiradjuri people as the traditional custodians of the land in which the University operates, and aims to foster increasing student cultural awareness of the Wiradjuri through its teaching practises. This posed a daunting problem to me as a newly appointed lecturer in Biochemistry, who was to give the introductory lecture to students in BCM210/BCM211 "Foundations in Biochemistry". My solution was to compare Wiradjuri spirituality and beliefs to those of Neolithic Eurasian man, and especially to the mother-goddess and sun-worshipping cults of the Middle East. These understood the interconversion between sun and plant matter, plants and animals as food for man, and the decomposition of the bodies of the dead, as manifest demonstrations of the power of the spirit world to interconvert secret energies between matter and energy. In that sense, the belief systems of both Wiradjuri and of Neolithic Eurasians were perhaps more biophysical than the doctrines of the modern major world religions. Because Biochemistry considers the mechanisms that dictate those interconversions, this provided a stimulating potential introduction to the subject while simultaneously aligning with CSU objectives and provoking students to consider their own cultural roots, and the spatio-temporal roles of gross societal beliefs.

Period10 Sep 2010
Event typeConference
LocationOrange, Australia
Degree of RecognitionRegional