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DSST Anthropology as a Discipline

Religion is a group phenomenon so it is important to

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Religion is a group phenomenon so it is important to see how an individual's behavior is shaped by the group, and how group behavior shapes and is influenced by that of larger society . One of the problems in a society is the different and mixed emotions for individuals of the group. Among primitive people, some persons are considered to have special powers of acting as middlemen between man and god. Such persons are called shamans. A shaman performs certain rituals concerning magic and religion to save the tribe in times of crisis. Revitalization Movements are conscious efforts to build an ideology that will be relevant to changing cultural needs.
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These movements are social movements, often of a religious nature, with the purpose of totally reforming a society. Examples of these movements are Melanesian cargo cults, or Mormonism in the U.S. A key belief among cargo cults was that vast quantities of European goods would arrive by ship or plane. Cargo cults first appeared in 1885 and were widespread in New Guinea and Melanesia. In 1932 cult leaders in the Solomon Islands prophesied that ships would arrive with all the western goods the people could want. People stopped farming and instead built docks and facilities for the expected cargo. Animism refers to the belief that personalized, supernatural beings (or souls) inhabit ordinary objects and govern their existence. One example of this is the idea that the Goddess and God consist of everything that exists. The term "animism" was first introduced by EB Tylor in his 1871 book, Primitive Culture. According to Tylor, animism referred to any belief in mystical, supernatural, or non-empirical spirit beings. Tylor proposed that animism served as a starting point for human religious development. Most tribal religions are animistic. Totem ism (derived from the word ote in the Ojibway dialect of the Algonquian language) is a religious belief involving animal spirits that is frequently associated with shamanistic religions. The basis of totemism is the animistic conception of nature. Totem ism involved a group of beliefs and customs wherein an intimate relation existed between an individual or a group of individuals and a class of natural objects known as a person or group's totem. The main features in the religious aspect of totemism are shown in the rites and ceremonies performed with a view to show or to attain identity with the totem. Thus, at solemn totemic festivals the totem animal is sacrificed and eaten even by its own clan. An impersonal, supernatural force that exists within certain people or objects and is believed to give strength or success is called mana. Among Melanesian and Polynesian peoples, mana is a supernatural force or power that may be ascribed to inanimate objects, persons, or spirits and may be either good or evil, beneficial or dangerous. A
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Religion is a group phenomenon so it is important to see...

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