What does a 21st century version of Animism look like?
Animism is the world's oldest religion, starting in the Paleolithic age. Its view is that all phenomena have agency, that there exists no distinction between the spiritual & material, and that sentience exists not only in humans, but also in animals, plants, rocks, rivers, etc.
Beyond the naive & outdated interpretations of Animism as "primitive" superstition, one can think of it as one of humanities oldest still active cultural lineages. Beyond the spiritual domain, Animism has highly relevant views on socio-political, ecological & technological issues
In a sense, one can think of Animism as a *holistic framework* which elegantly encompasses ecology, culture, art, politics, technology, science & spirit. It is age old & battle proven yet still alive & in flux. Animism is not a belief system, but a world view and a value system.
Among the many positive and highly practical affordances that Animism offers us today, here are a few: It addresses the "people-in-nature" (opposite the current "people-VS-nature") question heads-on, which is critical in times of climate change & mass species extinction.
Animism is fundamentally *process-oriented* & *relations-oriented* (VS our current cult-like obsession with consumption & dead artefacts). Looking at human-environment interactions as processes and relationships is indeed the way to get out of the "people.VS.nature" trap.
And finally, by re-enchanting our worldview, Animism invites us to feel deeply at home in our own skin & reality - and not live in an constant state of alienation and fear of the "other", which results in our current pathological need to control, model & predict everything.
To conclude, i like to invite you to earnestly meditate on this: Fairies, Ents, Elfs, Gnoms, Jinns and Water Spirits are real! As real as the spirit in plants, animals & humans. Animism has much to offer for the 21st century. Let's embrace it & re-enchant our world.