Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623 | Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Cosmology refers to worldview and myths in general or, more specifically, to the cultural and religious imagery concerning the universe. African cosmology, which often takes the form of oral narratives, describes the web of human activities within the powerful spiritual cosmos; it transmits the beliefs and values of African peoples. African cosmology, then, is an attempt to describe and understand the origin and structure of the universe, how humans relate to the cosmos, and how and to what extent their thoughts and actions are shaped by it. African religion poses an interesting and complex problem of description and interpretation. In fact, African languages have no equivalent word for religion . Indeed, African social structures and cultural traditions are infused with a spirituality that cannot be easily separated from the rest of the community's life at any point. To analyze religion as a separate system of beliefs and ritual practices apart ...