How has modern civilization affected the spiritual lives of the indigenous peoples you explored?
Hinduism is one of the oldest religions and covers the entire Indian subcontinent where people follow this religion and there are various stories and rituals associated with this religion. The people who used to follow this religion in the past were following a system that hailed into the society since many civilizations however with the change in time the people also changed their way of following this religion and although it could be observed that the people follow the religion, belief in the God and traditions however the myths and taboos associated with this religion have decreased drastically with time. Similarly, the Muslim culture which started from the Middle East spread across the world and today the culture is modernized and issues like women empowerment are wisely dealt with, which explains that although the belief in God may have been the same but modern thinking has definitely improved the harsh side of these cultures and religion.
Are indigenous religions still practiced today? If so, how have the practices changed over time?
It is true that in both the religions whether Hinduism or Islam, the indigenous religions are effectively practiced, which means that the Vedic practices like ‘Havan’ and ‘Kirtans’ in Hinduism still exist and the people follow it, however people understand the importance of modernity at the same time and therefore the way these things were followed in the past and today are quite different. These practices are not too common now, and those which are followed are restricted to temples or on rare occasions. Similarly in case of Islam, the common practices and rituals are followed all across the world considering the fact that the religion has spread across the world however the intensity of the rituals has gone down, and today although it's still followed along with its indigenous culture, the extremists are decreasing in the social context.
How do you think the importance of these relationships developed?
The indigenous sacred relationships are existent since ages and they are related through various civilizations. Fisher suggests that these relationships are interconnected and have a close association with the ancestral beliefs that these people have, in them who follow these traditions and relationships and carry them to the next generation. The people who follow these relations are extremely particular about the way they have been transferred the traditions and cultures that have been followed, practiced and sustained over the various civilizations. There are lots of symbols that continue to maintain the Heritage of this relationship, and the symbols can be the specific places which are associated to the cultures, the various people who are representing these relationships and the time which is regarded as the start of the religion. The continuation of the relationships as a symbol of life for the people sustains through various generations and the customs associated are passed on to the future civilizations so that they continue to prevail with the same freshness.
What spiritual purpose do you think they serve for indigenous peoples?
There are various ways in order to spread and share spiritual knowledge with people that are indigenous, and the groups who are specifically associated with following a particular religion and have their own knowledge about spirituality also believe in transferring this knowledge to the others. The purpose of spirituality may be different for different kinds of groups and people however reason behind the transfer remains only the motive to increase the awareness about the association with the spiritual ‘Him’. Spirituality may be in the form of a certain ritual, or maybe an oral teaching, the idea behind spreading it to people is related to the importance of transferring, maintaining and improving the knowledge level at which a given indigenous group exists. According to Fisher, the relationships create a sense of attraction for life and motive to follow and practice a particular belief, which has been existent over the past, and more than a motive it is the belief which matters for these relationships and provides satisfaction to the individuals who are indigenous.