The practice of begging pardon of the animal one has just slain is in some parts of the world extended to the case of plants. When the Talein offers a prayer to the tree which he is about to cut down, it is obviously because he regards the tree as endowed with a soul or ghost which in the next life may need to be propitiated. And the doctrine of transmigration distinctly includes plants along with animals among the future existences into which the human soul may pass.
As plants, like animals, manifest phenomena of life, though to a much less conspicuous degree, it is not incomprehensible that the savage should attribute souls to them. But the primitive process of anthropomorphisation does not end here. Not only the horse and dog, the bamboo, and the oak-tree, but even lifeless objects, such as the hatchet, or bow and arrows, or food and drink of the dead man, possess other selves which pass into the world of ghosts. Fijis and other contemporary savages, when questioned, expressly declare that this is their belief. "If an axe or a chisel is worn out or broken up, away flies its soul for the service of the gods." The Algonquins told Charlevoix that since hatchets and kettles have shadows, no less than men and women, it follows, of course, that these shadows (or souls) must pass along with human shadows (or souls) into the spirit-land. In this we see how simple and consistent is the logic which guides the savage, and how inevitable is the genesis of the great mass of beliefs, to our minds so arbitrary and grotesque, which prevail throughout the barbaric world. However absurd the belief that pots and kettles have souls may seem to us, it is nevertheless the only belief which can be held consistently by the savage to whom pots and kettles, no less than human friends or enemies, may appear in his dreams; who sees them followed by shadows as they are moved about; who hears their voices, dull or ringing, when they are struck; and who watches their doubles fantastically dancing in the water as they are carried across the stream. To minds, even in civilized countries, which are unused to the severe training of science, no stronger evidence can be alleged than what is called "the evidence of the senses"; for it is only long familiarity with science which teaches us that the evidence of the senses is trustworthy only in so far as it is correctly interpreted by reason. For the truth of his belief in the ghosts of men and beasts, trees and axes, the savage has undeniably the evidence of his senses which have so often seen, heard, and handled these other selves.
 Here, as usually, the doctrine of metempsychosis comes in to complete the proof. "Mr. Darwin saw two Malay women in Keeling Island, who had a wooden spoon dressed in clothes like a doll; this spoon had been carried to the grave of a dead man, and becoming inspired at full moon, in fact lunatic, it danced about convulsively like a table or a hat at a modern spirit-seance." Tylor, op. cit. II. 139.
The funeral ceremonies of uncultured races freshly illustrate this crude philosophy, and receive fresh illustration from it. On the primitive belief in the ghostly survival of persons and objects rests the almost universal custom of sacrificing the wives, servants, horses, and dogs of the departed chief of the tribe, as well as of presenting at his shrine sacred offerings of food, ornaments, weapons, and money. Among the Kayans the slaves who are killed at their master's tomb are enjoined to take great care of their master's ghost, to wash and shampoo it, and to nurse it when sick. Other savages think that "all whom they kill in this world shall attend them as slaves after death," and for this reason the thrifty Dayaks of Borneo until lately would not allow their young men to marry until they had acquired some post mortem property by procuring at least one human head. It is hardly necessary to do more than allude to the Fiji custom of strangling all the wives of the deceased at his funeral, or to the equally well-known Hindu rite of suttee. Though, as Wilson has shown, the latter rite is not supported by any genuine Vedic authority, but only by a shameless Brahmanic corruption of the sacred text, Mr. Tylor is nevertheless quite right in arguing that unless the horrible custom had received the sanction of a public opinion bequeathed from pre-Vedic times, the Brahmans would have had no motive for fraudulently reviving it; and this opinion is virtually established by the fact of the prevalence of widow sacrifice among Gauls, Scandinavians, Slaves, and other European Aryans. Though under English rule the rite has been forcibly suppressed, yet the archaic sentiments which so long maintained it are not yet extinct. Within the present year there has appeared in the newspapers a not improbable story of a beautiful and accomplished Hindu lady who, having become the wife of a wealthy Englishman, and after living several years in England amid the influences of modern society, nevertheless went off and privately burned herself to death soon after her husband's decease.
 Tylor, op. cit. I. 414-422.
The reader who thinks it far-fetched to interpret funeral offerings of food, weapons, ornaments, or money, on the theory of object-souls, will probably suggest that such offerings may be mere memorials of affection or esteem for the dead man. Such, indeed, they have come to be in many countries after surviving the phase of culture in which they originated; but there is ample evidence to show that at the outset they were presented in the belief that their ghosts would be eaten or otherwise employed by the ghost of the dead man. The stout club which is buried with the dead Fiji sends its soul along with him that he may be able to defend himself against the hostile ghosts which will lie in ambush for him on the road to Mbulu, seeking to kill and eat him. Sometimes the club is afterwards removed from the grave as of no further use, since its ghost is all that the dead man needs. In like manner, "as the Greeks gave the dead man the obolus for Charon's toll, and the old Prussians furnished him with spending money, to buy refreshment on his weary journey, so to this day German peasants bury a corpse with money in his mouth or hand," and this is also said to be one of the regular ceremonies of an Irish wake. Of similar purport were the funeral feasts and oblations of food in Greece and Italy, the "rice-cakes made with ghee" destined for the Hindu sojourning in Yama's kingdom, and the meat and gruel offered by the Chinaman to the manes of his ancestors. "Many travellers have described the imagination with which the Chinese make such offerings. It is that the spirits of the dead consume the impalpable essence of the food, leaving behind its coarse material substance, wherefore the dutiful sacrificers, having set out sumptuous feasts for ancestral souls, allow them a proper time to satisfy their appetite, and then fall to themselves." So in the Homeric sacrifice to the gods, after the deity has smelled the sweet savour and consumed the curling steam that rises ghost-like from the roasting viands, the assembled warriors devour the remains."
 Tylor, op. cit. I. 435, 446; II. 30, 36.
 According to the Karens, blindness occurs when the SOUL OF THE EYE is eaten by demons. Id., II. 353.