Nature worship is any of a variety of religious, spiritual and devotional practices that focus on the worship of the nature spirits considered to be behind the natural phenomena visible throughout nature. A nature deity can be in charge of nature, a place, a biotope, the biosphere, the cosmos, or the universe. Nature worship is often considered the primitive source of modern religious beliefs and can be found in theism, panentheism, pantheism, deism, polytheism, animism, Totemism, shamanism, paganism and sarnaism. Common to most forms of nature worship is a spiritual focus on the individual’s connection and influence on some aspects of the natural world and reverence towards it.
See also: List of nature deities
Nature is Sacred
To students of religion, the closest example of what may be termed nature worship is perhaps most apparent in ancient cultures in which there is a high god as the lord in heaven who has withdrawn from the immediate details of the governing of the world. This kind of high god—the deus otiosus, Latin for “hidden, or idle, god”—is one who has delegated all work on earth to what are called “nature spirits,” which are the forces or personifications of the forces of nature. High gods exist, for example, in such indigenous religions on Africa’s west coast as that of the Dyola of Guinea. In such religions the human spiritual environment is functionally structured by means of personified natural powers, or nature spirits.
Heaven and earth, as personified powers of nature and thus worthy of worship, are evidently not of equal age. Although from earliest times heaven was believed to be the residence of a high being or a prominent god, the earth as a personified entity is much rarer; it probably first occurred among archaic agrarian civilizations, and it continues to occur in some less industrialized societies in which agriculture is practiced. Gods of heaven, however, are characteristic spiritual beings of early and contemporary hunting and gathering societies and are found in almost all cultures.
Forms and aspects of nature worship
Adapted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia