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New Exhibition at the British Museum
Wednesday 04 October 2017
  • Living with gods: peoples, places and worlds beyond
  • 2 November 2017 - 8 April 2018
Living with gods British Museum
Living with gods: peoples, places and worlds beyond at the British Museum

Beliefs in spiritual beings and worlds beyond nature are characteristic of all human societies. By looking at how people believe through everyday objects of faith, this exhibition provides a perspective on what makes believing a vital part of human behaviour.

Seeing how people believe, rather than considering what they believe, suggests that humans might be naturally inclined to believe in transcendent worlds and beings. Stories, objects, images, prayers, meditation and rituals can provide ways for people to cope with anxieties about the world, and help form strong social bonds. This in turn helps to make our lives well-ordered and understandable.

Lion Man
Lion Man

The exhibition includes objects of belief from societies around the world and through time. It begins with a remarkable 40,000-year-old mammoth ivory sculpture known as the Lion Man. Depicting a lion's upper body on the lower half of a man, it is the oldest known image of a being that does not exist in nature. It is the earliest evidence we have of beliefs and practices, and shows humans' unique ability to communicate what's in our minds through objects.

Different areas of the show will look at key themes of belief. The significance of light, water, fire and energy is revealed, linked to the idea that religious experience is governed by our senses. Objects reflect how people connect to worlds beyond nature through the natural environment or in specially built spaces. Other objects show the power of prayer, the importance of festivals and pilgrimage, and the marking of key life experiences - birth, coming of age, marriage and death. The long history of conflict and coexistence between different religions and beliefs is also explored.

Together, the objects in the exhibition offer a fresh perspective on practices of belief and how they are hugely important for societies, as well as individual believers.

For more information & to book tickets:
Living With the Gods

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WORLD HERITAGE
Moving the stones of Stonehenge
by Bradshaw Foundation
Tuesday 16 July 2019
Adoranten 2018
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 20 June 2019
Modern sculpture meets ancient Greece
by Bradshaw Foundation
Wednesday 08 May 2019
The origin of megaliths
by Bradshaw Foundation
Tuesday 12 February 2019
Art and the Pacific with James Fox
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 06 September 2018
Constructing the Rapa Nui moai
by Bradshaw Foundation
Wednesday 06 June 2018
Is art for pleasure or politics?
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 29 March 2018
Civilisations on BBC2
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 01 March 2018
International Digital Preservation
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 30 November 2017
Exploring the lives of the Stonehenge builders
by Bradshaw Foundation
Friday 20 October 2017
Exploring belief through objects
by Bradshaw Foundation
Wednesday 11 October 2017
New Exhibition at the British Museum
by Bradshaw Foundation
Wednesday 04 October 2017
Neolithic Gathering and Feasting at Gobekli Tepe
by Bradshaw Foundation
Thursday 03 August 2017
Swabian Jura on UNESCO World Heritage List
by Bradshaw Foundation
Monday 10 July 2017
Tension at Stonehenge
by Bradshaw Foundation
Tuesday 24 January 2017
Plan for Stonehenge tunnel finalised
by Bradshaw Foundation
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