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Da Witch
November 4th, 2001, 04:48 PM
Animism

Anthropologists say that Animism could be concidered the original human Religion, it is simply the belief in the existence of spiritual beings. It is said to date back to the earliest humans and it does still exist today, making it the oldest form of religious belief on Earth. Aboriginal and native cultures believed in these concepts, it can be practiced by any one who believes in spirituality, yet does not believe in any specific organized religion. Acknowledgement that there is a spiritual realm that humans share the universe with is the basis for Animism. The concept that not only humans possess souls and that souls have life apart from the human body both before and after death, but also animals, plants and celestial bodies are central to animism.
The creation of fire, wind, water, man, animals, and other naturally earthly things are explained by Animistic Gods whom are often immortalized by mythology. There are certain similarities between the characteristics of gods, goddesses and rituals that are practiced by animistic societies; however the specific beliefs of animism vary widely. The presence of holy men or women, visions, trancing, dancing, sacred items, and sacred spaces for worship, and the connection felt to the spirits of ancestors are characteristic of animistic societies.


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