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Perhaps someone will ask whether, in interpreting totemism thus, we do not endow the native with ideas surpassing the limits of his intellect. Of course we are not prepared to affirm that he represents these forces with the relative clarity which we have been able to give to them in our analysis. We are able to show quite clearly that this notion is implied by the whole system of beliefs which it dominates ; but we are unable to say how far it is conscious and how far, on the contrary, it is only implicit and confusedly felt. There is no way of determining just what degree of clarity an idea like this may have in obscure minds. But it is well shown, in any case, that this in no way surpasses the capacities of the primitive mind, and on the con­trary, the results at which we have just arrived are confirmed by the fact that either in the societies closely related to these Australian tribes, or even in these tribes themselves, we find, in an explicit form, conceptions which differ from the preceding only by shades and degrees.

The native religions of Samoa have certainly passed the totemic phase. Real gods are found there, who have their own names, and, to a certain degree, their own personal physiognomy. Yet the traces of totemism are hardly contestable. In fact, each god is attached to a group, either local or domestic, just as the totem is to its clan.1 Then, each of these gods is thought of as immanent in a special species of animal. But this does not mean that he resides in one subject in particular : he is immanent in all at once ; he is diffused in the species as a whole. When an animal dies, the men of the group who venerate it weep for it and render pious duties to it, because a god inhabits it; but the god is not dead. He is eternal, like the species. He is not even confused with the present generation ; he has already been the soul of the preceding one, as he will be the soul of the one which is to follow.2 So he has all the characteristics of the totemic principle. He is the totemic principle, re-clothed in a slightly personal form by the imagination. But still, we must not exaggerate a personality which is hardly reconcilable with this diffusion and ubiquity. If its contours were clearly defined, it could never spread out thus and enter into such a multitude of things.

However, it is incontestable that in this case the idea of an impersonal religious force is beginning to change ; but there are other cases where it is affirmed in all its abstract purity and even reaches a higher degree of generality than in Australia. If the different totemic principles to which the various clans of a single tribe address themselves are distinct from each other, they are, none the less, comparable to each other at bottom ; for all play the same role in their respective spheres. There are societies which have had the feeling of this unity with nature and have consequently advanced to the idea of a unique religious force of which all other sacred principles are only expressions and which makes the unity of the universe. As these societies are still thoroughly impregnated with totemism, and as they remain entangled in a social organization identical with that of the Australians, we may say that totemism contained this idea in potentiality.

This can be observed in a large number of American tribes, especially those belonging to the great Sioux family : the Omaha, Ponka, Kansas, Osage, Assiniboin, Dakota, Iowa, Winnebago, Mandan, Hidatsa, etc. Many of these are still organized in clans, as the Omaha1 and the Iowa ;2 others were so not long since, and, says Dorsey, it is still possible to find among them " all the foundations of the totemic system, just as in the other societies of the Sioux."3 Now among these peoples, above all the par­ticular deities to whom men render a cult, there is a pre-eminent power to which all the others have the relation of derived forms, and which is called wakan.4 Owing to the preponderating place thus assigned to this principle in the Siouan pantheon, it is some­times regarded as a sort of sovereign god, or a Jupiter or Jahveh, and travellers have frequently translated wakan by " great spirit." This is misrepresenting its real nature gravely. The wakan is in no way a personal being ; the natives do not repre­sent it in a determined form. According to an observer cited by Dorsey, " they say that they have never seen the wakanda, so they cannot pretend to personify it."5 It is not even possible

to define it by determined attributes and characteristics. " No word," says Riggs, " can explain the meaning of this term among the Dakota.  It embraces all mystery, all secret power, all divinity."1 All the beings which the Dakota reveres, " the earth, the four winds, the sun, the moon and the stars, are manifesta­tions of this mysterious life and power " which enters into all. Sometimes it is represented in the form of a wind, as a breath having its seat in the four cardinal points and moving every­thing :2 sometimes it is a voice heard in the crashing of the thunder;3 the sun, moon and stars are wakan.4 But no enumera­tion could exhaust this infinitely complex idea. It is not a definite and definable power, the power of doing this or that ; it is Power in an absolute sense, with no epithet or determination of any sort. The various divine powers are only particular manifesta­tions and personifications of it ; each of them is this power seen under one of its numerous aspects.5 It is this which made one observer say, " He is a protean god ; he is supposed to appear to different persons in different forms."6 Nor are the gods the only beings animated by it : it is the principle of all that lives or acts or moves. " All life is wakan. So also is everything which exhibits power, whether in action, as the winds and drifting clouds, or in passive endurance, as the boulder by the wayside."7

Among the Iroquois, whose social organization has an even more pronouncedly totemic character, this same idea is found again ; the word orenda which expresses it is the exact equiva­lent of the wakan of the Sioux. " The savage man," says Hewitt, " conceived the diverse bodies collectively constituting his en­vironment to possess inherently mystic potence . . . (whether they be) the rocks, the waters, the tides, the plants and the trees, the animals and man, the wind and the storms, tlie clouds and the thunders and the lightnings,"8 etc. " This potence is held to be the property of all things . . . and by the inchoate menta­tion of man is regarded as the efficient cause of all phenomena, all the activities of his environment."9 A sorcerer or shaman has orenda, but as much would be said of a man succeeding in his enterprises. At bottom, there is nothing in the world which does not have its quota of orenda ; but the quantities vary. There are some beings, either men or things, which are favoured ; there are others which are relatively disinherited, and the universal life

consists in the struggles of these orenda of unequal intensity. The more intense conquer the weaker. Is one man more success­ful than his companions in the hunt or at war ? It is because he has more orenda. If an animal escapes from a hunter who is pursuing it, it is because the orenda of the former was the more powerful.

This same idea is found among the Shoshone under the name of pokunt, among the Algonquin under the name of manitou,1 of nauala among the Kwakiuti,2 of yek among the Tlinkit3 and of sgdna among the Haida.4 But it is not peculiar to the Indians of North America ; it is in Melanesia that it was studied for the first time. It is true that in certain of the islands of Melanesia, social organization is no longer on a totemic basis ; but in all, totemism is still visible,5 in spite of what Codrington has said about it. Now among these peoples, we find, under the name of mana, an idea which is the exact equivalent of the wakan of the Sioux and the orenda of the Iroquois. The definition given by Codrington is as follows : " There is a belief in a force altogether distinct from physical power, which acts in all ways for good and evil; and which it is of the greatest advantage to possess or con­trol. This is Mana. I think I know what our people mean by it. ... It is a power or influence, not physical and in a way super­natural ; but it shows itself in physical force, or in any kind of power or excellence which a man possesses. This mana is-not fixed in anything, and can be conveyed in almost anything. . . . All Melanesian religion consists, in fact, in getting this mana for one's self, or getting it used for one's benefit."6 Is this not the same notion of an anonymous and diffused force, the germs of which we recently found in the totemism of Australia ? Here is the same impersonality ; for, as Codrington says, we must be careful not to regard it as a sort of supreme being ; any such idea is " absolutely foreign " to Melanesian thought. Here is the same ubiquity ; the mana is located nowhere definitely and it is everywhere. All forms of life and all the effects of the action,

either of men or of living beings or of simple minerals, are attri­buted to its influence.1

Therefore there is no undue temerity in attributing to the Australians an idea such as the one we have discovered in our analysis of totemic beliefs, for we find it again, but abstracted and generalized to a higher degree, at the basis of other religions whose roots go back into a system like the Australian one and which visibly bear the mark of this. The two conceptions are obviously related; they differ only in degree, while the niana is diffused into the whole universe, what we call the god or, to speak more precisely, the totemic principle, is localized in the more limited circle of the beings and things of certain species. It is mana, but a little more specialized ; yet as a matter of fact, this specialization is quite relative.

Moreover, there is one case where this connection is made especially apparent. Among the Omaha, there are totems of all sorts, both individual and collective ;2 but both are only particular forms of wakan. " The foundation of the Indian's faith in the efficacy of the totem," says Miss Fletcher, " rested upon his belief concerning nature and life. This conception was complex and involved two prominent ideas : First, that all things, animate and inanimate, were permeated by a common life; and second, that this life could not be broken, but was continuous."3 Now this common principle of life is the wakan. The totem is the means by which an individual is put into relations with this source of energy ; if the totem has any powers, it is because it incarnates the wakan. If a man who has violated the interdictions protecting his totem is struck by sickness or death, it is because this mysterious force against which he has thus set himself, that is, the wakan, reacts against him with a force proportionate to the shock received.4 Also, just as the totem is wakan, so the wakan, in its turn, sometimes shows its totemic origin by the way in which it is conceived. In fact. Say says that among the Dakota the " wahconda " is manifested sometimes in the form of a grey bear, sometimes of a bison, a beaver or some other animal.5 Undoubtedly, this formula cannot be accepted without reserve. The wakan repels all personification

and consequently it is hardly probable that it has ever been thought of in its abstract generality with the aid of such definite symbols. But Say's remark is probably applicable to the particular forms which it takes in specializing itself in the concrete reality of life. Now if there is a possibility that there was a time when these specializations of the wakan bore witness to such an affinity for an animal form, that would be one more proof of the close bonds uniting this conception to the totemic beliefs.1

It is possible to explain why this idea has been unable to reach the same degree of abstraction in Australia as in the more ad­vanced societies. This is not merely due to the insufficient aptitude of the Australian for abstracting and generalizing : before all, it is the nature of the social environment which has imposed this particularism. In fact, as long as totemism remains at the basis of the cultural organization, the clan keeps an autonomy in the religious society which, though not absolute, is always very marked. Of course we can say that in one sense each totemic group is only a chapel of the tribal Church ; but it is a chapel enjoying a large independence. The cult cele­brated there, though not a self-sufficing whole, has only external relations with the others; they interchange without intermingling; the totem of the clan is fully sacred only for this-clan. Con­sequently the groups of things attributed to each clan, which are a part of it in the same way the men are, have the same indi­viduality and autonomy. Each of them is represented as ir­reducible into similar groups, as separated from them by a break of continuity, and as constituting a distinct realm. Under these circumstances, it would occur to no one that these hetero­geneous worlds were different manifestations of one and the same fundamental force ; on the contrary, one might suppose that each of them corresponded to an organically different mana whose action could not extend beyond the clan and the circle of things attributed to it. The idea of a single and universal mana could be born only at the moment when the tribal religion developed above that of the clans and absorbed them more or less completely. It is along with the feeling of the tribal unity that the feeling of the substantial unity of the world awakens. As we shall presently show,2 it is true that the Australian societies are already acquainted with a cult that is common to the tribe as a whole. But if this cult represents the highest form of the

Australian religions, it has not succeeded in touching and modify­ing the principles upon which they repose : totemism is essentially a federative religion which cannot go beyond a certain degree of centralization without ceasing to be itself.

One characteristic fact clearly shows the fundamental reason which has kept the idea of the mana so specialized in Australia. The real religious forces, those thought of in the form of totems, are not the only ones with which the Australian feels himself obliged to reckon. There are also some over which magicians have particular control. While the former are theoretically considered healthful and beneficent, the second have it as their especial function to cause sickness and death. And at the same time that they differ so greatly in the nature of their effects, they are contrasted also by the relations which they sustain with the social organization. A totem is always a matter of the clan ; but on the contrary, magic is a tribal and even an intertribal institution.  Magic forces do not belong to any special portion of the tribe in particular. All that is needed to make use of them is the possession of efficient recipes. Likewise, everybody is liable to feel their effects and consequently should try to protect himself against them. These are vague forces, specially attached to no determined social division, and even able to spread their action beyond the tribe. Now it is a remark­able fact that among the Arunta and Loritja, they are con­ceived as simple aspects and particular forms of a unique force, called in Arunta Arungquiltha or Arunkulta.1 " This is a term," say Spencer and Gillen, " of somewhat vague import, but always associated at bottom with the possession of supernatural evil power. . . . The name is applied indiscriminately to the evil influence or to the object in which it is, for the time being, or permanently, resident."2  " By arunkulta," says Strehlow,

the native signifies a force which suddenly stops life and brings death to all who come in contact with it."3 This name is given to the bones and pieces of wood from which evil-working charms are derived, and also to poisonous animals and vegetables. So it may accurately be called a harmful mana. Grey mentions an absolutely identical notion among the tribes he observed.4 Thus among these different peoples, while the properly religious

forces do not succeed in avoiding a certain heterogeneity, magic forces are thought of as being all of the same nature; the mind represents them in their generic unity. This is because they rise above the social organization and its divisions and sub­divisions, and move in a homogeneous and continuous space where they meet with nothing to differentiate them. The others, on the contrary, being localized in definite and distinct social forms, are diversified and particularized in the image of the environment in which they are situated.

From this we can see how thoroughly the idea of an impersonal religious force enters into the meaning and spirit of Australian totemism, for it disengages itself with clarity as soon as no contrary cause opposes it. It is true that the arungquiltha is purely a magic force. But between religious forces and magic forces there is no difference of kind :1 sometimes they are even designated by the same name : in Melanesia, the magicians and charms have mana just like the agents and rites of the regular cult ;2 the word oranda is employed in the same way by the Iroquois.3 So we can legitimately infer the nature of the one from that of the other.4

The results to which the above analysis has led us do not concern the history of totemism only, but also the genesis of religious thought in general.

Under the pretext that in early times men were dominated by their senses and the representations of their senses, it has frequently been held that they commenced by representing the divine in the concrete form of definite and personal beings. The facts do not confirm this presumption. We have just described a systematically united scheme of religious beliefs which we have good reason to regard as very primitive, yet we

have met with no personalities of this sort. The real totemic cult is addressed neither to certain determined animals nor to certain vegetables nor even to an animal or vegetable species, but to a vague power spread through these things.1 Even in the most advanced religions which have developed out of totemism, such as those which we find among the North American Indians, this idea, instead of being effaced, becomes more conscious of itself; it is declared with a clarity it did not have before, while at the same time, it attains a higher generality. It is this which dominates the entire religious system.

This is the original matter out of which have been constructed those beings of every sort which the religions of all times have consecrated and adored. The spirits, demons, genii and gods of every sort are only the concrete forms taken by this energy, or " potentiality," as Hewitt calls it,2 in individualizing itself, in fixing itself upon a certain determined object or point in space, or in centring around an ideal and legendary being, though one conceived as real by the popular imagination. A Dakota ques­tioned by Miss Fletcher expressed this essential consubstanti-ability of all sacred things in language that is full of relief. " Every thing as it moves, now and then, here and there, makes stops. The bird as it flies stops in one place to make its nest, and in another to rest in its flight. A man when he goes forth stops when he wills. So the god has stopped. The sun, which is so bright and beautiful, is one place where he has stopped. The trees, the animals, are where he has stopped, and the Indian thinks of these places and sends his prayers to reach the place where the god has stopped and to win help and a blessing."3  In other words, the wakan (for this is what he was talking about) comes and goes through the world, and sacred things are the points upon which it alights. Here we are, for once, just as far from naturism as from animism. If the sun, the moon and the stars have been adored, they have not owed this honour to their intrinsic nature or their distinctive properties, but to the fact that they are thought to participate in this force which alone is able to give things a sacred character, and which is also found in a multitude of other beings, even the smallest. If the souls of the dead have been the object of rites, it is not because they are believed to be made out 01 some fluid and impalpable substance, nor is it because they resemble the shadow cast by a body or its


reflection on a surface of water. Lightness and fluidity are not enough to confer sanctity ; they have been invested with this dignity only in so far as they contained within them something of this same force, the source of all religiosity.

We are now in a better condition to understand why it has been impossible to define religion by the idea of mythical per­sonalities, gods or spirits ; it is because this way of representing religious things is in no way inherent in their nature. What we find at the origin and basis of religious thought are not determined and distinct objects and beings possessing a sacred character of themselves ; they are indefinite powers, anonymous forces, more or less numerous in different societies, and some­times even reduced to a unity, and whose impersonality is strictly comparable to that of the physical forces whose manifestations the sciences of nature study. As for particular sacred things, they are only individualized forms of this essential principle. So it is not surprising that even in the religions where there are avowed divinities, there are rites having an efficient virtue in themselves, independently of all divine intervention.  It is because this force may be attached to words that are pronounced or movements that are made just as well as to corporal substances ; the voice or the movements may serve as its vehicle, and it may produce its effects through their intermediacy, without the aid of any god or spirit. Even should it happen to concentrate itself especially in a rite, this will become a creator of divinities from that very fact.1 This is why there is Scarcely a divine personality who does not retain some impersonality. Those who represent it most clearly in a concrete and visible form, think of it, at the same time, as an abstract power which cannot be defined except by its own efficacy, or as a force spread out in space and which is contained, at least in part, in each of its effects. It is the power of producing rain or wind, crops or the light of day ; Zeus is in each of the raindrops which falls, just as Ceres is in each of the sheaves of the harvest.2 As a general rule, in fact, this efficacy is so imperfectly determined that the believer is able to form only a very vague notion of it. Moreover, it is this indecision which has made possible these syncretisms and duplications in the course of which gods are broken up, dismembered and con­fused in every way. Perhaps there is not a single religion in which the original mana, whether unique or multiform, has been

resolved entirely into a clearly defined number of beings who are distinct and separate from each other ; each of them always retains a touch of impersonality, as it were, which enables it to enter into new combinations, not as the result of a simple survival but because it is the nature of religious forces to be unable to individualize themselves completely.

This conception, to which we have been led by the study of totemism alone, has the additional recommendation that many scholars have recently adopted it quite independently of one another, as a conclusion from very different sorts of studies. There is a tendency towards a spontaneous agreement on this point which should be remarked, for it is a presumption of objectivity.

As early as 1899, we pointed out the impossibility of making the idea of a mythical personality enter into the definition of religious phenomena.1 In 1900, Marrett showed the existence of a religious phase which he called preanimistic, in which the rites are addressed to impersonal forces like the Melanesian mana and the wakan of the Omaha and Dakota.2 However, Marrett did not go so far as to maintain that always and in every case the idea of a spirit is logically and chronologically posterior to that of mana and is derived from it; he even seemed disposed to admit that it has sometimes appeared independently and consequently, that religious thought flows from a double source.3 On the other hand, he conceived the mana as an inherent property of things, as an element of their appearance ;

for, according to him, this is simply the character which we attribute to everything out of the ordinary, and which inspires a sentiment of fear or admiration.4 This practically amounts to a return to the naturist theory.5

A little later, MM. Hubert and Mauss, while attempting to formulate a general theory of magic, established the fact that magic as a whole reposes on the notion of mana.6 The close kinship of the magic rite and the religious rite being known, it was even possible to foresee that the same theory should be applied to religion. This was sustained by Preuss in a series of

articles in the Globus1 that same year. Relying chiefly upon facts taken from American civilizations, Preuss set out to prove that the ideas of the soul and spirit were not developed until after those of power and impersonal force, that the former are only a transformation of the latter, and that up to a relatively late date they retain the marks of their original impersonality. In fact, he shows that even in the advanced religions, they are represented in the form of vague emanations disengaging them­selves automatically from the things in which they reside, and even tending to escape by all the ways that are open to them : the mouth, the nose and all the other openings of the body, the breath, the look, the word, etc. At the same time, Preuss pointed out their Protean forms and their extreme plasticity which permits them to give themselves successively and almost con­currently to the most varied uses.2 It is true that if we stick to the letter of the terminology employed by this author, we may believe that for him the forces have a magic, not a religious nature : he calls them charms (Zauber, Zauberkrafte). But it is evident that in expressing himself thus, he does not intend to put them outside of religion ; for it is in the essentially religious rites that he shows their action, for example, in the great Mexican ceremonies.3 If he uses these expressions, it is undoubtedly because he knows no others which mark better the impersonality of these forces and the sort of mechanism with which they operate.

Thus this same idea tends to come to light on every side.4 The impression becomes more and more prevalent that even the most elementary mythological constructions are secondary products5 which cover over a system of beliefs, at once simpler and more obscure, vaguer and more essential, which form the solid foundations upon which the religious systems are built. It is this primitive foundation which our analysis of totemism has enabled us to reach. The various writers whose studies we have just mentioned arrived at this conclusion only through

facts taken from very diverse religions, some of which even correspond to a civilization that is already far advanced : such is the case, for example, with the Mexican religions, of which Preuss makes great use. So it might be asked if this theory is equally applicable to the most simple religions. But since it is impossible to go lower than totemism, we are not exposed to this risk of error, and at the same time, we have an opportunity of finding the initial notion from which the ideas of wakan and mana are derived : this is the notion of the totemic principle.1