Category Archives: history

An Advent sermon. Aboriginal land and the Uniting Church’s covenanting process.

An Advent sermon presented to the West End Uniting Church, December 15 2013.

(The original sermon included a commentary on James 5:7:11 in accord with the church lectionary readings for the week but it is of only tangential relevance to the substance of the sermon so I have left it out)

Advent is the time when we prepare to celebrate the festival of the birth of Jesus and a time when we prepare for the incoming of God’s kingdom in all its glory.

Jesus is the liberator who brings good news to the poor, release for the captive and liberation for the oppressed.

Advent is a season of expectantly waiting, let us expect Jesus the liberator and in terms our covenanting process, let us expect liberation and justice for Aboriginal people. Continue reading

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The Federal Government’s “Act of Recognition” and Aboriginal customary law.

What the high court says has been extinguished, legislation now says is continuing.

It is not the Australian constitution, with or without its proposed amendments, that extinguishes Aboriginal sovereignty and customary law within Australian law. It is the Racial Discrimination Act that does it. Continue reading

The epistle of John Tracey to the Christian Anarchist congregation of the Brisbane Anarchist Summer School 2013

Christian anarchism and the religion of Caesar: Transcending the Roman religion and rediscovering the tribal indigenous Jesus

read it – here

A couple of speeches from Occupy Wall Street.

Slavoj Zizek


“They tell you we are dreamers. The true dreamers are those who think things can go on indefinitely the way they are”

Dr. Cornell West


“I’ve been spiritually breakdancing on the way here”

Australian socialism and Aboriginal struggle; a critique.

I paint this essay with very broad brushstrokes. I am aware that there are many exceptions as well as different degrees amongst different groups regarding my various generalisations. This essay does not attempt to provide an accurate historical record but rather to provoke consideration of some general issues of the history of the Australian “Left”.

The Australian ethos is anti-racist, within its own definitions of what racism is. Australia’s anti-discrimination laws affirm all Australians’ right to be white (culture, not skin colour), equal under the sovereign legal and parliamentary system modeled on the English law. All rights and interests outside the white law including rights specifically attributable to an ethnic group such as rights inherent in Aboriginal customary law, are considered discriminatory, therefore illegal. The High Court of Australia relies on anti-discrimination legislation in its blanket extinguishment of Aboriginal customary law as a law pertaining to a particular race.

Notions of “racism”. “equality” and “justice” that are constructed within the cultural and legal frameworks of the dominant colonial society will only affirm colonial domination, whether those frameworks are conservative, liberal democratic or radical socialist. Continue reading

The historical context of the new testament.

The time of the stories of the new testament lies between two major events in the Middle East, the Maccabees revolt of the second century BC and the Roman-Jewish wars of the first and second centuries AD. Continue reading

Australian folklore, biblical exegesis, Christian non-violence and a man with a big hat and a tricycle.

An open letter to the Australian Christian non-violence movement.

Once a Jolly protester
camped by a helicopter
under the shade of total surveillance

And he spruiked and rode
and smashed his mattock on the Helicopter
Who’l come a tricycling Matilda with me


Continue reading