Animism is the belief that all things in nature have a spirit.
This includes all plants, animals, bodies of water, land, weather, planets, deities and ancestors.
It's interesting that this framework/belief system is often seen in indigenous cultures independent of larger religious or geographical constructs. Many ancient cultures deeply revered the natural world around them. They depended upon this deep connection and intimacy for survival. This understanding and appreciation is something that our modern world has forgotten. Many believe that this loss of understanding is the cause of many modern physical, emotional and spiritual ailments not to mention the exploitation of our natural world.
The implication of this belief system is that;
If things like mountains and trees have spirits then we can interact with them. We can develop a relationship with them just as we would with other humans.
The other implication of this belief system is that as soon as we begin to accept non human beings as having a spirit or as 'alive', we may begin to recognize them as kin, relatives and ancestors.
This would then make us responsible to them, held accountable by them.
In a much deeper sense, this is the foundation of a deeply profound and intimate relationship with our land. Both in the here and now as well as in the past and future..