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Discuss Totemism as a theory of religion.

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Totemism is a form of tribal religious belief in which people believe that they have descended from animate or inanimate objects and hold a feeling of awe and reverence towards these objects. These objects may range from being plants and animals to even stones or rocks. Durkheim observed totemism as being the simplest and most basic form of religion among the aborigines of Australia. 

The totemic object is worshipped and considered to be sacred. Totemic objects are not only important for the people as religion but also are associated with clan membership. Every clan has a totem which could be an animal or a plant. The tribe is reverent towards the totemic object and adopts its name and offers sacrifice to it and adorn it. They consider the relationship with the totemic object of a descendant and believe themselves to have descended from that object. Harming of the totem is not allowed, although, eating of the totem is allowed during special occasions. The loss of a totem is mourned ceremoniously.

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