Different Perspectives on Home

A reoccurring theme in all my classes has been about the idea of home. I am often asked what is my definition of home and where is my home. I have never actually thought about this question.

Some may respond with the country they live in, the actual roof over their head, family, or even a sound. A lot of the Australians in my class associated home with the sound of the waves crashing on the beach and the smell of the ocean. These individuals have always found peace and that at home feeling when by an ocean.

In Australia the idea of home is a very important concept. Prior to the British colonizing Australia, there were Aboriginal and Indigenous peoples occupying the land. They made use of all the resources on the land they were on and they would move to find other resources when one area was lacking. These individuals saw the land they utilized as their home.

Everything revolved around their home. They developed cultures and procedures based on their view of home. For instance, in Aboriginal cultures, they always pay respect to their elders who were previously on the land. They also develop different ceremonies that involve dances that are associated with the animals they see on their land. They protect and try to allow regrowth on their homes. Prior to leaving one area with limited resources, they would burn parts of the land, not only to show that people have been there, but to allow for a cleansing of nature and help new things grow in its place.

When the British began colonizing, they pushed a lot of Indigenous peoples to one area to seclude them, since they were considered to be so different. The British had thought by secluding and relocating them, it would harm the cultures they had developed. They thought by taking away the homes they developed, they would suffer in some way. However, since their home is just the land they are on, the Indigenous peoples had no problem adapting to the resources available in their relocation and their new home. In addition, they always respected the other Aboriginal cultures around them, so there was no tension between the different cultures living in one area.

Home has taken a new meaning for me. I really wondered what home is and initially I had believed it was a specific address, but to me home is a feeling. Home to me is where I feel safe, comfortable, and surrounded by loved ones.

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