“Madness” was often considered evidence of divine possession which would be in a sense incarnation. There are many kinds of avatars and different degrees of divine connection from the Voodoo spirit horses, to the Hindu avatars, to the Buddhist bodhisattvas.
An avatar isn’t “doing”. Priests are at the level of doing and their doing is valid, but as in some Shamanic practices there is also a “being”. The totems are the “ancestors” and the ancestors are guardians and are older than humanity. As one embraces the way/power/medicine of their guardian spirit, your own spirit changes even without your trying. Showing more traits of your guardian was seen as evidence of strong spiritual power. The Saints have meditated on God/Buddha/Tao for so long that without trying these things become their nature and they no longer live as “normal” humans.
“Just as in earthly life lovers long for the moment when they are able to breathe forth their love for each other, to let their souls blend in a soft whisper, so the mystic longs for the moment when in prayer he can, as it were, creep into God.” Soren Kierkegaard (Danish Philosopher and Theologian, generally recognized as the first existentialist philosopher. 1813-1855)
“An enchanted world is one that speaks to the soul, to the mysterious depths of the heart and imagination where we find value, love, and union with the world around us. As mystics of many religions have taught, that sense of rapturous union can give a sensation of fulfillment that makes life purposeful and vibrant.” Thomas More (English Humanist, Statesman and Chancellor of England, 1477-1535)