Mala Walk

"We who know about the Tjukurpa will tell you about the Mala, the hare-wallaby people.

Everything that you see, right across to the northern face of Uluru, is connected to the Mala. This is what is happening here.

In the beginning, Mala men, women and children must travel a long way from the west and the north to reach Uluru. When they arrive they camp at separate sites from one another in groups of young men; old men; young and single women; and old and married women. They do this because they are here for an Inma (religious ceremony).

Some Mala men, who came from the west, carry the ceremonial pole, Ngaltawata. They scramble quickly to the top of Uluru and plant the pole in the ground at the most northern corner to begin the Inma. From this moment on, everything becomes part of the ceremony. Even everyday jobs like: hunting; gathering and preparing food; collecting water; talking to people; or just waiting, are now done in a proper way for ceremony. This has become Law for men, women and children ever since.

The Mala are happy and busy. Suddenly people from the west come with an invitation to join another Inma. The Mala must refuse, as they have already started their own ceremony. The people from the west return home in great anger at the insult. They plan to wreak vengeance upon the Mala in a terrible way.

Across the land comes an evil, black dog-like creature: Kurpany. He has been created by these people in the west to destroy the Mala ceremony. Luunpa, the kingfisher bird, cries a warning to the Mala men, women and children. In terror, the remaining Mala flee to the south with kurpany chasing them all the way.

Today, on the Mala Walk, you will see some of the very places where the Mala prepare for ceremony. As you walk through this area you will be surrounded by the Mala Tjukurpa."

Taken from 'An Insight into Uluru - The Mala Walk and the Mutitjulu Walk', Parks Australia and Mutitjulu Community Incorporated 1990. (Available to purchase from the Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park).




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