The Dreamtime

The Australian aborigines viewed the beginning of the world as a cold and empty place. In time, the original ancestors awoke and began to wander the barren earth in the shapes of animals. They came upon half-formed humans in the shapes of animals or plants. The ancestors then finished the humans by carving them with their knives. Therefore all humans must be true and faithful to their totem animals or plants.

When the ancestors had created the first humans they went back to sleep. The paths they had wandered and the places had visited became holy and must be revered by all humans.

This happened in the Dreamtime, which is not just time gone by, but which also extist here and now. Humans may enter this magical time and space in their dreams, to visit their ancestors.

More on Australian Mythology on the net!
The sun god's travels across the heavens (Egypt) * Yin & Yang (China)
The dreamtime (Australia) * The good and the bad twin (Persia)
The father who eats his children (Greece) * The end of the world