One of the tenets of Wicca/Paganism is the idea that everything around us, rocks, trees, clouds, is alive. This animistic idea that animals, plants, even natural phenomenon itself have spiritual essence is ancient and very, very attractive.
As I move into Wicca/Paganism I find these ideas do enlighten my perspective toward the world around me.
Now if you ask do I believe a rock is alive in the sense we understand the makeup and biological processes of living things, no, I do not. But if you ask does that rock have a significant role to play in the overall makeup of the world and its environs then, yes, I can kind of see that.
I guess more than anything it’s being aware of the interconnectedness of things around me. Being Wiccan/Pagan gives me a jumping off point, or a skill set if you wish, to be more definitive about this worldview. The breadth of understanding it gives to my writing is, in my opinion, incalculable.
This morning I got up early and went outside to see a foggy street outside my house. The idea of animism really came home to me in that instant. No, I do not believe the fog itself is alive. I do think it has an interconnectedness with the things around it, however, certainly in a physical way, and in my mind, perhaps spiritually as well.
And I think that’s the key to much of this as regards the spiritual side of Paganism. It’s a reflection of our own minds, and what we bring to the world through our own observations and thoughtforms that helps us relate to the world. Then again that’s the motive of all religions. As a writer I find that fascinating, and very, very enlightening.
4 Replies to “Relating the Thoughtforms of Animism to Everyday Modern Life”
As an animist first and pagan second, I often muse over how animistic views permeate many different religious paths. I had such views as a child, and I never grew out of them; instead, they were folded into my spiritual path as it developed.
It seems historically that animism almost always plays an integral part in early religions before it gets crowded out by other thoughtforms. I must say I do like the philosophical view of animism that all things are alive/connected in a spiritual way. It honestly does fill a void which existed within myself for sometime.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts as well, I appreciate it. 🙂
I agree, and it seems like a lot more people today are embracing animist ideas. My roommate’s an agnostic whose only defined spiritual belief is that everything is connected and has its own essence. I know Christians who accept that everything (rocks, trees, bees) has an energy or “life force”, though they obviously connect that belief to “because God made it so”.