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The Wakeful World, by Emma Restall Orr

Reviewed by John Beckett

[Snip] I am not qualified to critique the philosophical theories presented in The Wakeful World. Instead, I want to talk about what I took away from reading the book and how it relates to my beliefs and practices as a Pagan and as a Druid.

A working definition of animism

I’ve always thought of animism as the belief that whatever gods or spirits or forces animate (“to give life to”) humans also animate other animals, plants, the land, the sky and the sea. That’s not wrong, but there are some foundational principles that support the idea. Emma Restall Orr says

Animism is a monist metaphysical stance, based upon the idea that mind and matter are not distinct and separate substances but an integrated reality, rooted in nature.

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