Back to
Two Dragons welcome the sunrise with an improvised dance atop the Andes. Photo by Ryan Gasper.

Different Perspectives

These perspectives of the world center on the idea of everything and everyone being animated; being alive. They grant power to things and places we may not quantify so concretely as important. I may love the changing colors of Vermont’s fall, but I wouldn’t describe the leaves as bearing sami, the animated essence flowing throughout the earth. I wouldn’t necessarily think about the deeper meaning or essence associated with the hill that bears these trees by my house. Deeper relevance is given to things I may otherwise find easier to overlook (unfairly).

But I think there are base similarities. In Runakuna world view, everything is alive. In my world view, everything is composed of the same fundamental building blocks. In both outlooks, everything is connected, everything is united.

This reading evokes unfamiliarity, foreign concepts. But as connections can be drawn between the reading and beliefs I hold (atoms vs animation), I think the passage is also comforting. I liked the ambiguity of some of the beliefs: different views of death, how time can infinitely be broken down, how things usually influence each other indirectly and more subtly, rather than more obviously and directly. I found it interesting whereas Christian religions more center around strict views of death, heaven, the afterlife and so on, the Runakuna focuses less on this; and doesn’t have a strict explanation for these phenomena. It focuses more on what can be seen, which I think makes sense.