- the belief that natural objects, natural phenomena, and the universe itself possess souls.
- the belief that natural objects have souls that may exist apart from their material bodies.
- the doctrine that the soul is the principle of life and health.
- belief in spiritual beings or agencies.
Origin of animism
Examples from the Web for animism
Animism in this sense is undoubtedly the beginning of some at least of the great religions.History of Religion
Magic has been cleverly defined as "the strategy of animism."The Oriental Religions in Roman Paganism
In its essential elements it is a commingling of Animism and ancestor-worship.The Shinto Cult
Milton Spenser Terry
Fetishism, phallicism, animism, and tree- and serpent-worship were very common.The Gist of Japan
R. B. Peery
Now this is connected with the question of animism, preanimism, and dynanimism.The Group Mind
- the belief that natural objects, phenomena, and the universe itself have desires and intentions
- (in the philosophies of Plato and Pythagoras) the hypothesis that there is an immaterial force that animates the universe
Word Origin and History for animism
1866, reintroduced by English anthropologist Sir Edward Burnett Taylor (1832-1917), who defined it (1871) as the "theory of the universal animation of nature," from Latin anima "life, breath, soul" (see animus) + -ism.
Earlier sense was of "doctrine that animal life is produced by an immaterial soul" (1832), from German Animismus, coined c.1720 by physicist/chemist Georg Ernst Stahl (1660-1734) based on the concept of the anima mundi. Animist is attested from 1819, in Stahl's sense; animisic is first recorded 1871.