Features of Primal Religion

  1. Unity of the material and supernatural worlds
  2. The importance of physical place as a spiritual focus.
  3. Orality: the spoken word has a real power: it expresses metaphor and not simile, that is there is no difference between the word and the thing it represents.
  4. Time is cyclical not linear. This means that there is a recurring cycle of birth, growth, death, rebirth and so on.
  5. Ritual: rituals are not mere ‘plays’ or re-enactments, but the making of a spiritual event of the past exist in the present, a ‘re-present’, or being present again.
  6. Liminality: the state when an individual or society is in transition, usually from childhood to adulthood.
  7. Numinosity: the sense of the sacred infusing existence.


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