Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Cargo cult

A cargo cult appears in tribal societies in the wake of interaction with technologically advanced, non-native cultures. Focused on obtaining the material wealth of the advanced culture through magical thinking, religious rituals and practices, the cargo cult believes the wealth was intended for them by their deities and ancestors.

Following contact with people from more technically advanced societies through exploration, colonization, missionary efforts, and international warfare, the cultures of New Guinea and other Micronesian and Melanesian countries in the southwest Pacific Ocean are locations where these religious movements were initially documented.