Theme 1: Contemplative beginnings - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Theme 1: Contemplative beginnings

A new beginning; To create, to transform, to transport, to delight.

This first theme sets the scene for the conference, inviting us to dream, contemplate and connect – to connect to the beginning of knowledge and story, to connect to our foundational relationships, to acknowledge the rich philosophies and holistic knowledges of First Nations peoples and what the embracing of life as a whole entity which has its source and meaning in the land might mean for us.

This theme of contemplative beginnings invites us to reflect on our relationship within, to the essence of our spirit, soul, heart and body. It invites us to consider our experience of relationship and kinship with others in our local, academic and global communities and to commit to using this conference space to create new and caring connections.

This theme also invites us to remember our relationship with the earth, water and sky, and the more-than human world. And to cultivate our embodied, aesthetic and sensory responses and expression. How might we transform our various worlds and experiences in ways that acknowledge respectful, holistic, integrated ways of living and being, and acknowledge the wisdom of First Nations peoples?

This theme encourages us to create and hold spaces from which to dream new stories for ourselves, for the academy, for our collective futures. Let us feel our way gently and birth something new.

(Aust/NZ/South Africa time zone friendly)

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Tracey Bunda
Tracey Bunda
Professor Tracey Bunda is a Ngugi Wakka Wakka woman, mother, educator and Head of the College for Indigenous Studies, Education and Research at the University of Southern Queensland.
Mabokang Monnapula Mapesela
'Mabokang Monnapula-Mapesela
Mabokang Monnapula-Mapesela is Senior Director and Associate Professor in the Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching at the Central University of Technology, Free State, South Africa.
Kathryn Gilbey
Kathryn Gilbey
Dr Kathryn Gilbey is an Alyawarr woman and Senior Lecturer of the College for Indigenous Studies, Education and Research at the University of Southern Queensland.