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The Na’vi’s Sacred Locations In Avatar Explained

The Na’vi of James Cameron’s Avatar have many sacred and spiritually important locations on their home world of Pandora. The 2009 blockbuster Avatar became a watershed moment in cinematic history, pioneering revolutionary visual effects and 3D technology that propelled it to become the biggest movie of all time. Avatar is also just chapter one of James Cameron’s Avatar franchise. Cameron’s planned sequels, beginning with Avatar: The Way of Water, are taking years to get going due to the scope of the equally ambitious effects involved.

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In Avatar, the Na’vi population maintains a deep bond with Pandora’s wildlife, the planet itself a sentient network of different co-existing species and botanical beings. The Na’vi are also deeply connected to their goddess known as Eywa, with Avatar‘s human protagonist Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) coming to experience Eywa’s presence directly. In worshiping Eywa and having such a deeply rooted relationship with Pandora, numerous locations on the planet hold particular importance to the Na’vi in uniting them with their world and Eywa.

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Home Tree

Avatar- Home Tree - Neytiri and Jake

A Home Tree, or Kelutral, is what Pandora’s Na’vi population calls home. Like the Na’vi themselves, everything is bigger on Pandora than on Earth, with the Home Trees towering hundreds of feet over the surrounding forest. While Avatar‘s various Na’vi clans have their own sacred Home Trees, the Omaticaya tribe lives in a giant Home Tree several millennia old and literally the size of a skyscraper. The Omaticaya have resided in their Home Tree since the beginning of their culture.

Additionally, Omaticaya’s Home Tree rests over a giant Unobtanium deposit that is the target of the RDA (Resources Development Administration). Under the orders of Colonel Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang), the RDA shoot down the Omaticaya’s Home Tree, killing many Na’vi in the process. With the importance of Home Trees to Na’vi culture, the loss of the Omaticaya’s Home Tree is a massive spiritual blow to them and has often been likened to the destruction of the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks. The destruction of the Omaticaya’s Home Tree also prompts Jake and Sigourney Weaver’s Grace to rejoin Neytiri, the Omaticaya, and other Na’vi tribes to battle against the RDA’s forces.

The Tree Of Souls

Avatar Tree of Souls pic

The Tree of Souls, called Ayvitrayä Ramunong” in Na’vi, is a tree that enables the Na’vi to directly interface with the internal network that comprises Pandora’s biological canopy. The Na’vi accomplish this in the same manner in which they connect to Pandora’s wildlife by using their queues to link with the Tree of Souls. The Tree of Souls also has an important function in being able to transfer souls into different bodies, with entire Na’vi tribes being present for these and similar ritualized spiritual events at the tree.

Jake and the Na’vi try to use the Tree of Souls to port the soul of Grace into her artificially made Na’vi avatar after she is shot by Quaritch. Unfortunately, Grace dies of her mortal wounds (although Sigourney Weaver will return in Avatar 2). However, she is able to directly experience the presence of Eywa at the tree, joyfully telling Jake Sully, “I’m with her, Jake. She’s real.” At the end of Avatar, Jake chooses to stay with the Omaticaya, and the Na’vi ritualistically transfer his soul into his own Na’vi avatar.

RELATED: Every Actor Who Almost Played Jake Sully in James Cameron’s Avatar

The Well Of Souls

well of souls avatar

The Well of Souls is another sacred tree location for the Na’vi and is featured prominently in Avatar‘s wider canon, even if it isn’t in Cameron’s first film of the franchise, especially Avatar‘s videogame prequel, Avatar: The Game. Surrounded by towering arcs, the long-forgotten Well of Souls has sat vacant for some time. The RDA learn about it and realize it has a similar capacity to tap into Avatar‘s beautiful-looking Pandora bio-network as the Tree of Souls does. With this knowledge, the RDA sets about trying to find the Well of Souls in a bid to gain control over the wildlife of Pandora.

The Na’vi, in turn, set about trying to re-discover the Well of Souls to avert the RDA’s plan. Avatar: The Game has different endings for the Na’vi, with the RDA each finding the Well of Souls, which is located in the Tantalus region of Pandora. The presence of the Well of Souls in Avatar: The Game helps expand Avatar‘s universe even beyond what Cameron has already established in the first Avatar movie.

The Tree Of Voices

A Tree of Voices, or Utral Aymokriyä,” serves a similar function as the Tree of Souls in enabling the Na’vi to hear their ancestor’s voices. It is described by Neytiri as “a place for prayers to be heard, and sometimes answered.” Similar to Jake’s Na’vi transformation in Avatar at the Tree of Souls, the Na’vi are also able to connect their queues to the luminescent appendages of the Tree of Voices to communicate with their ancestors.

Like the Tree of Souls, the Tree of Voices reveals information about the Na’vi’s concept of the afterlife, with Neytiri telling Jake that the long-deceased Na’vi whose voices he hears “live within Eywa.” Furthermore, the Tree of Voices is a particularly important location to Jake and Neytiri’s romance, as it is the setting where Jake declares his love to Neytiri. In making love under the Tree of Souls, Jake and Neytiri are “mated before Eywa,” as Neytiri puts it, with the two becoming soul mates as a result.

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Floating Mountains

Avatar Pandora Hallelujah Mountains

Among Pandora’s most breathtaking locations are the Floating Mountains, or Ayram alusìng.” The Floating Mountains hover thousands of feet over Pandora’s surface and are a major location in the Omaticaya’s hunter initiations. After Jake Sully becomes a Na’vi, he has to prove himself to the clan by undergoing this hunter initiation. The tradition of the Na’vi dictates that a new hunter must ascend the mountains to select a Mountain Banshee, or Ikran,” to become his airborne hunting companion for life. The trek up the Floating Mountains is made even more dangerous by the fact that a Mountain Banshee can only be bonded with a Na’vi hunter after trying to kill him or her.

In Avatar, Jake climbs the Floating Mountains with Neytiri, her brother Tsu’tey (Laz Alonso), and other Na’vi. After some struggle, he, fortunately, manages to bond with a Mountain Banshee without falling to his death from the mountain. Fittingly for Avatar‘s Sci-Fi story, the many sacred sites of Pandora are both physically rooted in the planet itself and unfathomably deep in the spiritual knowledge they provide.

NEXT: The Real Reason The Avatar Sequels Took So Long

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