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Lecture

October 10th notes.docx

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Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANTH-2108
Professor
Jane Leverick

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10/17/2013 3:25:00 PM Gods and Spirits Spirit A supernatural being that is less powerful than a god and is usually more localized Do not have human origins Often one of a collection of nonindividualized supernatural beings that are not given specific names or identities Individually recognized spirits include: Guardian spirits Ancestral spirits Shaman’s spirit helper Nonindividualized spirits include: Leprechauns Jinn Kami JINN In Islamic traditionsa spirit being created of fire. Jinn are normally invisible but can make themselves visible, and usually take the form of a human or animal. They are born, live, and die. Jinn are unpredictable, but can be companion spirits. Angels In Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, spirit beings who act as mediators between God and the human beings. God/dess An individual supernatural being, with a distinctive name, personality, and control or influence of a major aspect of nature (such as rain or fertility), that encompasses the life of an entire community or a major segment of the community Typically God/dess(s) Are: More powerful than spirits Personalized with individual names, origins, and specific attributes Anthropomorphic Nonhuman entities that have human characteristics 
 Types of Gods
 Creator God –responsible for the creation of the physical earth & plants & animals that live upon it Otiose God –is too remote & uninterested in human activities to participate in the activities & fate of humans Trickster God – a god who gave humans important things or skills often by accident or through trickery Attribute God – a god that rules over a narrowly defined domain Theorists Durkheim Functionalist The divine reflects the mundane Societies place their own values (social and familial) onto their Gods H
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