GMP | To Hear, To Listen, To Know

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

The following excerpt is from the WARRUWI embody prayer resource, written by Billy JANGALA Williams. Unless otherwise stated the language words in this article come from the Gamilaraay people of northwestern NSW.

Winanga-li (win-un-gar-lee)
To Hear, To Listen, To know

The original custodians knew what it meant to listen. Silence was seen as an important practice, because how could you know if you didn't listen? All Gamilaraay learning concepts revolve around the ears. To listen is to learn. An ancient method still understood today is to "listen to country." This means to listen to the land, to the creation... because in doing so the opportunity is to know the Creator of all that. Dadirri (dar-deer-ee) is a Ngangikurungkurr language word that means inner, deep listening and quiet, still awareness. It is a 'tuning in' experience with the specific aim to come to a deeper understanding of the beauty of nature. Dadirri recognises the inner spirit that calls us to reflection on, and contemplation of, the wonders of all God's creation.

In our busy lives, we often find it hard to stop and listen. This is sad, because how can we learn if we do not listen? Read aloud 1 Kings 19:11-12 so that you can listen carefully to it... then ask the Creator to help you to know/experience His presence in whatever way He chooses to. This may be to act out physically what you read (e.g. try to stand somewhere special/significant/symbolic for your prayer time). Try and make this outside if possible.

Just as I wrote this, I heard the breeze. Then I intentionally listened to it... and then I felt it. Prayer cannot be captured as a mere process, but it can help to understand it as an invitation. Through prayer, firstly, we are invited by the Creator. Invited to hear, listen and know Him. In turn, we then have an opportunity to invite Him to do the same.

You can read more devotions like this and download the full WARRUWI prayer resource online at

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