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What is the animism?

When they ask us: "What is animism?" we say that it is a group of different beliefs in which, the spirits and the personalized entities live in objects that can be inanimate or animated, for this reason the fact is that inside this concept we can find diverse variants of the phenomenon.

The word animism derives from the plural for the word “soul“ that originally alludes to the belief in the spiritual beings, especially the soul of the human being. Now then, in practice of the animism, this definition is extended to the belief of which the spiritual beings live inside inanimate objects governing his existence, therefore the base of the belief in the animism is that quite he is alive or everything is conciente. In Africa, the animism gathers a much more complex version since inside this one there is included the concept of Magara that is related to the universal force since precisely she is this one who connects all the animated beings as well as also, the belief in which a certain narrow relation exists between the soul of the alive ones and that of the dead persons. In other parts of the world, the animism includes only the belief in which the objects possess a luck of expression of intelligent life.

animism - manIn fact, the persons who represent to the ideological current of the neo-paganism, usually describe his beliefs as animists. Now then, the basic beginning of the animism is the belief in which a vital force exists inside all the animated beings, in turn, he recognizes the interaction between the world of the alive ones and the dead persons, by means of the only existing God although unattainable. The origin of the animism is quite difficult to determine since together with the shamanism it represents one of the religions and the most ancient beliefs of the history of the religions and in fact, the religion of the ancient Egypt was already founded on some bases regarding the animism.

An important detail that we can emphasize about the religion of the animism, is that generally these beliefs together with his rituals are centralized usually in those tribes or not literate peoples and for this reason many catholic missionaries use sui work of evangelización like a method of syncretism, basically what they do is to combine and to conciliate the religious beliefs that are different with the one that they try to spread. Anyhow many coreligionists think that this is not a good method of spreading a religion but rather it represents a danger to avoid the different beliefs. Basically if we have to give him a very short definition to answer to the question: "What is animism?", we will say that one treats as a primitive religion in which it is created that every animated or inanimate object possesses an interior vital force.

Beliefs of the animism

To be able to understand a little more about the philosophy of the animism we can say that for this religion the animals, plants, and inanimate objects possess a spiritual soul; also one believes that there are spiritual beings who live inside the soul of the human being; one believes that the life of the ancestors as continuous ours after the death and in addition to the only God, also other hierarchies and divine spirits exist. Now then, studying in depth a little the belief of the animism about the life after the death we can say that most of the systems of belief that exists inside the animism support that the soul is capable of surviving the death of the physical body.

animism - photoIn fact, one believes that the soul goes on to a plane much more comfortable than the physical plane where basically the souls will enjoy everything what they lacked during his mortal life; we can find in this point one certain similarity with the Christian "paradise". Other systems that also enter I enter of the group of beliefs of the animism, like for example the beliefs of the animism that handle the puddles of the USA, which assure that the soul him belongs to the ground like bogey, which often can become evil.

Other systems also combine these beliefs and support that the soul must not leave the material plane since otherwise a bogey would turn and would stroll around during the whole eternity; to avoid this, when a person dies it is necessary to do a funeral and to keep duel during a certain time space. As for the rituals of the culture of the animism we must say that they are not realized by the believers straight but they are informed usually as the hand of priests or shamans since one believes that the same ones possess spiritual powers. In this sense, the practice most known about the animism is that of “reducing skulls”, a ritual that there usually carry out the called “hunters of head”, which at the same time derives from the belief of the animism that he says that the soul of the enemy cannot escape if the same one is caught inside the skull.

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