Gardens can be places of profound sanctuary, remembrance, reflection and regrowth. For many cultures and religions, they are paradise.

Our garden of healing is a project that seeks to build a garden of the most diverse nature, where all of us can heal.  Take some time to remember, to reflect and to begin the journey of rebuilding we must all share.

In our virtual garden, we are planting flowers from all around the world, in memory and empathy of brothers and sisters lost to racial and religious violence, the dehumanising acts and massacres committed on the soil on which we stand in Australia and around the world.

OSCAR AND VALERIA RAMIREZ

Today our Garden of Healing has three lilies for the family of Oscar and Valeria Ramirez, innocent young victims of unacceptable racial violence.

“Through a little hole in the wall the children had crept in… in every tree the he could see there was a little child. And the trees were so glad to have the children back again that they had covered themselves with blossoms. The birds were flying about and twittering with delight, and the flowers were looking up through the green grass and laughing. And the Giant’s heart melted as he looked out. “How selfish I have been!” he said; “now I know why the Spring would not come here… I will knock down the wall, and my garden will be the children’s playground for ever and ever.”

Oscar Wilde (The Selfish Giant) / Hieronymus Bosch (The Garden of Earthly Delights)

WORLD REFUGEE DAY

On World Refugee Day, our Garden of Healing is overflowing with olive sprigs, in respect for the persistence of so many people held in detention, and the ways they produce beauty out of hardship. The images in this garden are contributed by people who work tirelessly to raise awareness and amplify the voices of those whose basic human rights have been severely curtailed, including Professor Suvendrini Perera and Dr Joseph Pugliese, founders of the Deathscapes project. It is fitting that the gardens they tend are as beautiful, peaceful and important as the work they do.

Olives carry a deep connection to the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean homelands of many of those detained, as well as the ways in which migrants and refugees from those regions have productively reshaped the ground of Australia.

NATIONAL SORRY DAY 

On National Sorry Day, 26 May, we add the Native Hibiscus to our Garden of Healing. This five-petal flower is used in Western Australia as a symbol for the Stolen Generations. It was chosen by Survivors (from Kimberley Stolen Generation Aboriginal Corporation) to symbolise the scattering of the Stolen Generations and their resilience to the policies that saw children forcibly taken away from their families, communities, Country and Culture.

PLANTING THE SEEDS OF OUR GARDEN OF HEALING 

Click on the images below to play videos from our virtual memorials to the Christchurch and Sri Lanka terror attacks.  The memorials encompass three stages of healing in our garden: remembrance, reflection and regrowth.

REMEMBRANCE

REFLECTION

REGROWTH

SRI LANKA

SMOKING CEREMONY TO LAUNCH GARDEN OF HEALING, PERTH CULTURAL CENTRE, 2 MAY (CLICK ON IMAGE TO PLAY)

The Museum of Freedom and Tolerance would like to thank Yi Xiao Chen for her concept, artwork and videos, Riadh Ali for Arabic translation; and Sultana Shamshi,  Zhang Di Hua and Osama Mah for their calligraphy.

 

PLANT A FLOWER IN OUR VIRTUAL GARDEN

We invite you to be part of our garden of healing, and to contribute an image or artwork of a flower, with a small note, quote, a name, an event, a feeling or a story.

Post this on Instagram or Facebook and tag @mftwa, using the hashtag #gardenofhealing or email your contribution to info@mftwa.org.au. We’ll add your contribution to a growing and permanent virtual memorial garden archive.