Dear penny, thank you for sharing your perspective and help me watch through Australian glasses. My rebel applauded your ‚penny crime‘. What a beautiful pic to set the kangoroo free ;) I know about your deep connection to the land you live in/on and I am always touched hearing you honor the original owner of the land before starting groups you facilitate. I am wondering what this could mean translated to a European context? And notice how much I am/we are devised from land and ancestors and how much somehow needs to heal in this relationship too.

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Oct 5, 2022Liked by Stephanie Bachmair

Hi Stephanie, it is an early morning in Warsaw. A whole night I am listening voice of my father taking part in the second World World and many other wars all over the world. He is 92 and partly on the other side of reality. There is my 92-year old mother laying after stroke in the other room. I have been on night and day, 24 hour, full time shift for the last 3 weeks. The Queen and the King are not dead here yet. But who cares about them except me?

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Oct 10, 2022Liked by Stephanie Bachmair

Reading the meanwhile 18 comments leaves me thinking about Netflix. I wonder: Why has Netflix been mentioned so often in these comments? Is it time to also become a Netflix member? Why should I do that? ... Is it relevant so that I can follow the conversation? Do I want to verify that we are all talking of the same thing? ... Is it even relevant to talk about the same thing?

I remember sitting next to two teenagers in a cafe a few weeks ago. Both of them talking about different Netflix series. The conversation went on and on. I enjoyed listening to them, even though I didn't know what they were talking about.

I remember stories of old Avalon, in times way before TV. How the musicians sang songs of victories, love and death. Wonder about the atmosphere that had been created.

Here I am sitting, asking myself: why does it matter? When I allow myself to sink in, I realize: It is not so much about the story itself ... it is about the atmosphere, the web of connection that is created.

Me, grateful for this space.

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Oct 6, 2022·edited Oct 6, 2022Liked by Stephanie Bachmair

Thanks Stephanie for bringing this topic forward. I didn't even want to talk about the queen but now that I have lifted the lid off my ambiviliance I see how passionate I am about it all. I feel other roles wanting to be given a voice, but for now here are my opinions.

I was born 6 years after Queen Elizabeth II became Head of State in Australia. I’m not sure how I came to be an anti-royalist at such a young age, but I do remember trying to erase the queen from any relevance she might have in my life. As kids there was the small thrill of literally erasing her image off the back of penny coins. Given these coins and I shared the same name I felt entitled to engage in this illegal act. Us kids had been warned it was ‘against the law to deface Australian currency’ but as the adults never chided us we figured this law breaking was of a permissible kind. Sitting on the side of the road we’d rub the coin against the concrete gutter until the copper became shiny and smooth. Liberated from the paternalistic authority figure of the queen, the kangaroo on the other side of the coin was at last free to bound around in true Australian style.

So many viewpoints crowd in on me when I think about the shiny bling of those queen-less coins. The optimism of a young nation in the 1950’s (in an ancient country) ready to go its own way, yet still yoked to the British Crown, to what some lovingly called the ‘Mother country’. Echoes of Australia’s convict past – the English, Welsh, Irish, Scottish ancestors who didn’t get away with breaking the law, who got sent to the other side of the world, mostly for the crime of being poor, to a place so far away that hardly anyone ever went back home again. And the preposterous and tragic lie of the legal concept of Terra Nullius meaning ‘land belonging to no-one’ used by the British government to justify the colonisation of Australia. Which continued to be used by the Australian government (up until 1992) to justify the ongoing exploitation of lands stolen from the First Nations people who have over 60,000 years of continuous connection to this Land. The Australian psyche will find no peace until our vexed history and its ongoing impacts are dealt with.

So, it’s impossible to separate the Queen from Australia’s colonisation story of dispossession and injustice. Or from capitalism and the ongoing legacy of Britain’s colonisation of peoples throughout the world. Yet among many Australians (and not only white Australians) there is a deep affection for the queen, which perhaps explains the hush hush of, ‘we need to wait till the queen dies before we can revisit the question of being a republic’ after it failed in the 1999 referendum. After the queen’s death it was deemed disrespectful (even among my friendship circles) to mention the republic issue until all the funeral ceremonies were done. Despite my anti-royalist sentiments, I do admire Elizabeth for all those 70 years of service in public life. Her regal stature and queenly authority command a respect that is hard to ignore.

But I can’t help but feel that the Royal Family as an institution serves as an incredibly effective smoke screen for all the damage done in the name of the British Crown, both within the UK and abroad. And at the same time it is a hollow shell of what it once was, having little real power to influence governments. All the pomp and ceremony of royalty, the outdated symbols of authority combined with the glamour and scandals of family relations, the intimate retellings of domestic life form an intricate patina over a role that has surely run its course, at least in Australia. It is up to us now to heal the divisions in our society, acknowledge the wrongs, and find ways to go forward together.

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Oct 5, 2022Liked by Stephanie Bachmair

Thanks, Stephanie, for starting this exploration and for the invitation to dig into what is alive in me around the death of the Queen - yes, I write her title in capitals. This is the first observation. Why do I do this? I notice in myself a yearning for the world of childhood when fairies were friends and my friends and I played we were queens. Little did we know of the many documents to read, the endless people to take an interest in, the stately dinners. We just dreamt of the beautiful dresses and people running to fulfil our every wish. This childhood dream is revived with the passing of this particular human being. I did watch some of the proceedings and have admired the sense of the Brits of protocol and the ability to carry it out in this day and age. It looked to me as a uniting force in a country that has been deeply divided in these past years, as many countries are, but Brexit has cut through families and friendships. In red uniform, on horses, walking behind the slow beaten drum there was unity in grief, maybe not only over the queen (small letters here, now a person) but over all that has been lost in the way of empire, of domination in the world - yes, at the expense of others, so maybe also protocol and ceremony as bonding in the pain of loss as well as the pain of shame and guilt over what has been done to others. I am not emotional over her passing, but I am touched that her family is, this strange family to be born or married into, with its strange line of work. I do see their work and living in a kingdom myself, the Netherlands, I am a royalist for the sake of diversity. My late father was an avowed republican and we used to argue amiably about our difference. The memory of the dialogue with him who passed in 2008 is sweet and does raise emotions. We all have our losses and when we mourn together, we mourn the one just gone as much as the hardship of those in their final years like Zbyszek's parents. So much loss in this life. So good to mourn together whoever it is who dies. And then, yes, I am curious about Charles and how the role will be for him and filled by him, but enough now.

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Oct 4, 2022Liked by Stephanie Bachmair

Thank you so much, Stephanie, for initiating and opening this co-creative space.

Here´s what came through me:

I´ve always been curious about the Royal Family. I was only 3 years old when Princess Diana passed away, but I have vague memories of somehow knowing that it had happened. And I remember my mum being affected by her death so somehow, I felt it too. Later, when I was older and understood more about Diana´s story, she became a source of inspiration to me. I admired her purity, childlike innocence, and her way of caring for and relating to people of all kinds. Only when I started watching The Crown on Netflix, I learned more about Queen Elizabeth II herself. It was fascinating to hear and watch her life story, at least to some extent, and from one chosen angle. I could relate to her more after watching the series, somehow understanding better the sudden and unfortunate events that took place before she became the Queen. I have mixed feelings about her death. In many ways, I felt it was coming so it didn´t feel sudden. In some ways, it concludes an era. An era that also included some horrific events done by the monarchy in form of colonization and slavery. And at the same time, I can understand why many people grieve her Death. No matter what, for me, this feels like an opening of a new era. But this time around, I deeply hope we have learned from our mistakes in the past.

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Whoa, it took me quite a while…my feelings are numb perhaps due to the fact that I’m not a royalist or simply my emotiveness has been drained because of the every day news from my country, so her death seems like a natural consequence, like a peaceful blessing… and yet 11 years ago I lived in Britain for three years. However, I have no personal attachments, I feel like I have no right to judge, so she’s a complete stranger to me. Neither the above mentioned Netflix productions nor her biographies will contribute to filling that gap simply because she’s always had a well groomed public image, so I don’t know her at all.

P. S. Even if she’s been accompanying me for the last 11 years. That was accidentally confirmed by a 5 pence coin that I fished out of my purse.

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I never like the idea that some people have "purer" blood than others. Royalty is definitely something that is outdated and irrelevant. Some people claim that such an institute is still useful in international relations (especially with other nations that have monarchies), but I don't think that reason is good enough.

A few months ago I watched an episode in Netflix Explained (season 3 or 4) that talked about royalty and how they keep themselves in the public's eye through media and tabloids in order to stay relevant. Highly recommend it!

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