A Shoka Story

June 16, 2021


Stories of the Nations are embedded in lore and legend from cultures around the world. This is a story that was included in my first book, a collection of sacred stories, and although I don’t work with the idea that stones hold the energy of fertility, they do hold the energy of the supernatural. As do all the Nations. 

I also find it interesting that I collected and wrote this story years ago, long before I started working with the knowledge of the Nations. As stones are often considered the bones of the Earth, in this story they are the bones of creation.

People of the Stones
An Aboriginal Creation Story

The Ancestor carried the sacred stone in his dilly-bag, together with six small replica stones. Each holding the energy of supernatural life and fertility. When the old man took the small namatoona stones from his bag and anointed them with lizard fat, they transformed into men, skilled in the ways of tracking and hunting

One day the Ancestor sent the hunters in search of food while he lit a fire with green leaves and grasses, sending a billowing column of smoke into the air which he knew would attract attention. And before long, six young women approached the fire filled with curiosity.

He welcomed them to sit by the fire and began telling them stories. The women were mesmerized by his tales, losing all awareness of their surroundings or the passing of time. As night began to fall he invited them to stay and share a meal, but the women looked around and saw no provisions.  “But you have no food,” they said. 

The old man laughed, “Have no worries, there will soon be plenty to eat.” And just as he had spoken these words, the six hunters returned from the bush each bent under the weight of the animals they had killed. The women were very impressed and then astonished as the old man introduced the young hunters as their husbands.

“These are my sons.” the old man said. “Each one a good, strong and honorable man. Now we will prepare a feast and celebrate the marriage that is your destiny this night.”

The young men were indeed strong and handsome, and the women were soon enchanted, singing and dancing through the long night that ended with the sleep of fulfillment. As the pale light of dawn rose in the sky the next morning, the old man quietly moved from sleeping woman to sleeping woman, gathering the namatoona stones that lay beside them.

When the women awoke they were bewildered to find the men gone and only one trail of footprints leading away from the camp. Only the ashes of the fire and the scattered bones of the feast were left for them to know it had not been a dream.

In a distant valley, the old man was once again rubbing lizard fat on the namatoona stones and lighting a fire of green leaves and grasses. And so it came to be that hundreds of babies were born from the journey of the Ancestor. And so it happened that people came to the land.

Judith – judith@stonefires.com