One of the world’s oldest living cultures meets the world’s newest emerging technologies as Aboriginal Australians begin to participate in the Metaverse.
“The pioneers have to be there. Aboriginal Australia has a dream culture. So we have to do it.” Professor Vanessa Lee-a-Matt, a cultural facilitator dedicated to well-being through traditional Australian Aboriginal culture, told Cointelegraph. Lee Ah Matt, co-founder of cultural mediators, artist and lawyer Beppe Barba, and attorneys Jonny Perovich and Angelina Gomez publicly presented a discussion paper this week called “Indigenous Culture in Metaverse.”
The group is seeking support for the establishment of a pilot project to achieve the objectives set out in the discussion paper and to establish an Indigenous Cultural Embassy in Metaverse.
Li-A Mat of Yupungati, Meriam, Bibi Barba of Darumbal, Biri Gubi, Gadigal and Yuin is in the process of establishing an independent indigenous owned and led organization to negotiate with relevant stakeholders and to establish and manage the work of this pilot.
In November 2021, Barbados opened its embassy to Metaverse. In February, Australia’s second Indigenous group, Queensland’s Yeidinji Sovereign Government – launched for the first time in the country – launched its own digital currency as a way to further consolidate its sovereignty since 2014 and map its own political planning priorities. .
“The cultural embassy of this Aboriginal people in Australia is the best in the world,” said Lee Ah Matt. But how do local cultures experience the Metaverset?
Aboriginal culture and meta verse
At first, the connection seems poor: an ancient traditional culture closely linked to the natural world and the Earth, and dreams linked to a new virtual world built on computers with pixelated images, avatars, and fantasy places. But the communication is clear and logical.
“The virtual world affects the physical world. The meta-verse reflects the Earth, and uses the Earth as a mirror in the game world. Ah Math explained to me that the virtual world follows the functions of the physical world. These worlds are interconnected.
Aboriginal culture is based on dreams, as Lee-A Math explained:
“The dream is an inappropriate English translation. Dreams are a past, present, and future that are unstable and non-linear, embedded in the foundation of the Earth. Part of the kinship and knowledge system, it is of central importance to identity.
Cave paintings from Carnarvon Valley which can depict “memories, signs, recalls of totem ancestors, or recordings of dream stories”.
She further claimed that the Metaverse is a future inextricably linked with the present, stating that “the process of creation gives people an identity and connection. During creation, ancestors created sacred worlds between the earth and the living. From birth we have learned to connect with the physical and spiritual world, the past, the present, the future – the Metaverset is the future.
So, the Metaverse is, according to Li-A Math, “a new paradigm of digital life, which currently lacks social structures, but affects the real world.” Indigenous history shows that the past, present, and emerging future are intertwined. Lee-A Mat believes that the Metaverse is a new spirituality, and meeting people there should be as a symbol of welcome and appreciation.
Why the embassy? Real-world ancestral land ownership
In Australia, the legal concept of “Terra nullius” or empty land prior to European settlement meant that indigenous peoples had no rights to the land and no treaties with indigenous peoples. In recent decades, long-running legal battles over land rights have followed. Australia is the only western country that does not have agreements with its indigenous peoples.
As such, it is important for Lee-A Math to “understand the stewardship and past and present approach of indigenous peoples. When it comes to claiming land in the physical world, there are 240 years of acquisition. Part of the motive is cultural therapy. It works. It’s also about identity and sovereignty.” “There is no action plan to strengthen Indigenous communities. New technology can help us try to circumvent the legal process.”
Having a cultural embassy for the group means “using the future to rewrite the past. It’s about going beyond the political process and making the cultural process part of these negotiations from the start — changing from the start.” Cryptocurrency allows us to engage in the discussion again, introducing the latest technologies, Ah Math told me. digital”.