By distinguishing between attributions of sentience and agency we begin to take crucial analytical steps to consider ontological and cosmological differences between groups. Scholars in New Animist and Actor-Network Theory camps sometimes expound broadly generalized notions of agency, thus overlooking the ways in which characterizations of different kinds of beingsï¿½and the implications of these characterizationsï¿½may apply to aspects of environment and change historically. In Australia there has been debate about the ï¿½sentienceï¿½ of the country as understood by Indigenous Australians. In a broader Australian public culture, there has come about in the last four decades or so an ï¿½etherealizedï¿½ apprehension of Indigenous relations to landscape, which has privileged attention to certain kinds of cosmogenic being (that is, ï¿½Dreamingsï¿½ as world founding agencies). Considering Australian Aboriginal practices and descriptions of spirit, human, other-than-human figures, and sacralized countryside, I take the view that there is incommensurability between Indigenous and non-Indigenous experiences of environment as sentient. Drawing on both my field experience with Indigenous people in North Australia and the broader Australianist ethnographic record, I discuss the many other kinds of being that populate and animate the countryside, showing a wide range of beings and forces. Three themes of continental distribution stand out: continuities between life and death; human-animal ambiguity; and communicative connectivities among life-forms. All these were elaborated in a way of life integral with its surroundings. The article considers change over time to such understandings, reduction in the range of life-forms, and what this may involve.