I often tell people I’m an animist first, and a Wiccan second. The way I view the universe is in its vastness and connectivity. I believe that all the gods exist just as real as you and me, hearing the prayers of worshippers and sometimes even answering them. I believe that they are connected to us just as we are connected to the trees, the air we breathe, and each other.
If I choose to worship a deity in ritual, I’m calling out to a stranger (or, with repetition, a friend) to help me. The god may or may not respond or offer aid.
If I choose to worship only existence and the awesomeness of life itself, I’m calling out to the connection between everything (man, god, star, and leaf). That connection exists forever and always, before I was born and long after my death.
This is my Animism, my understanding of how reality works. What’s yours?
2 thoughts on “Defining Animism”
Dear Gods, I fear reading this post is going to throw me off into a vortex of reading about animism. That’s due to the fact that a couple of years ago, it occurred to me that I was most certainly an animist. I fully believe that almost everything has a spiritual essence. Realizing I thought that way, I read about animism for weeks.
My mind takes it far enough to believe that even inanimate objects somehow absorb some sort of spiritual essence from their surroundings. This has caused me to treat almost everything with a certain degree of respect and reverence.
Your post re-ignited an interest.
I’m glad to re-ignite a bit of passion in someone else!
My mind goes to really interesting philosophical and spiritual places with animism. Like… petroleum is made from the leftovers of animal (dinosaur) bodies, so do our cars run on spirit juice? And what about plastic? Is a plastic ritual tool acceptable if it’s technically made from a byproduct of a byproduct of petroleum (and, therefore, made of animal “parts” that are billions of years old)?