Gift brings 'breath of life"


Referrals, including self-referrals, to the IWC Healing Circle Work program are now open. Please contact executive@iwc.org.au and mark: Attn Aunty Cheri

SELF-DESCRIBED as “the book that brings out your inner smile”, Splitting the Arrow by Prem Rawat is helping to transform lives within Aboriginal community-controlled organisation Indigenous Wellbeing Centre (IWC).

Gifted to IWC by Japanese organisation Kifubon South Pacific, the books have been passed on by IWC Chaplain and Director Cheri Yingaa Yavu-Kama-Harathunian to team members working within the holistic whole-of-person model of care.

John Carroll, President of Kifubon South Pacific, said his organisation was committed to building a global culture of empathy and compassion.

In a letter accompanying the copies of Splitting the Arrow provided to IWC, Mr Carroll wrote that Kifubon was a Japanese word meaning “book donation or contribution” and that this was a global gifting. He said the desired outcome was to “help build an increased awareness of our humanity and the sharing of empathy and compassion throughout the world”.

Some of the books arrived at the Bundaberg headquarters of IWC, in Central Queensland. Aunty Cheri, an Aboriginal Elder and Traditional Owner, responded by sharing them initially with staff.

“We placed four down in our Medical Service,” she said. “They were received by staff with gratitude. Given that staff are reading them presently, I do not know when they will go out into our waiting room. I know eventually that they will.

“Secondly, we placed three copies in our Corporate reception area. We are hopeful that they will not be removed but if they are, that is okay too because we know that whoever takes them will be blessed by the stories that they read.

“I also support two staff in facilitation of Healing Circle Work, a cultural approach that uses ancient Aboriginal ways of healing. I have been blessed to create a Healing Circle Work manual, developed from the wisdoms and lessons learned from Aboriginal Healers who taught me. With deep humility, I can say I am an Aboriginal Healer.”

The Healing Circle Work is showing participants how to:

  • Release themselves from their past.,

  • Recognise and understand trauma as a teaching lesson, not something to wallow and live their precious life moments in.

  • Forgive themselves and their perpetrators.

  • Understand how memories can be just that, not prisons in which to live for the rest of your life.

“Most importantly, participants learn how to look at problems, and other trauma as life experiences that have use-by dates. They can be seen and recognised as lessons that can strengthen them and build their character, and where they can recognise and regain their identity, their wholeness, wellbeing and their wellness.

“I am enabled to assist people, through Healing Circle Work, who have great difficulty dealing with life because of the many traumas they have experienced from childhood to adulthood,” said Aunty Cheri. “Currently we are working with four women, all from different backgrounds, who each carry heavy burdens. The work is intensive, but so rewarding, especially when participants learn they are experiencing their traumatic histories only because they are trapped in those memories.

“The transformations from ‘just existing’ to being alive each moment of every day is such a blessing. I have seen the transformations each time we have closed the Healing Circle. These four women were given Splitting the Arrow as a gift. I left the letter in the book and explained to them my connection with you and with the Japanese Organisation that gifted the books to us here at IWC. Unbelief, tears of joy and gratitude from all of them.

In a personal message to Mr Carroll and author Prem Rawat, Aunty Cheri said: “The women are learning to breathe again and I know that the stories in the book will resonate with ‘breath of life’ for each of them. Go well, stay well, be well. Creator bless this work that you do.”

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