Shinto is the indigenous spirituality of Japan. A combination of myth, history and ritual designed to connect the present with the ancient past, Shinto is practised by the vast majority of the Japanese but is not regarded as a definable religion. Over the last two centuries Japan has repeatedly responded to the challenges of modernity, but it has struggled to define the spiritual and moral essence of Shinto. Shinto has been viewed as a national religion, a non-religious patriotic cult, a moral way, a “private religion” of Shinto shrines, and an ancient form of animism offering a contemporary ecological ethic. Defining Shinto brings together the key official documents as well as political, religious, philosophical and historical essays to illustrate how Shinto has been transformed - from Japan's emergence as a modern nation state in the late 19th century to the postmodern Japan of today - yet continues to be one of the most contested terms in the study of religion. Contributors Kato Genchi, Ishida Ichirô, Ueda Kenji, Yanagita Kunio, Kume Kunitake, Sonoda Minoru, Miyata Noboru, Hozumi Nobushige, Kôno Seizô, Murakami Shigeyoshi, Orikuchi Shinobu, Tsuda Sôkichi, Watsuji Tetsurô, Kamata Tôji, Muraoka Tsunetsugu, Ashizu Uzuhiko
Defining Shinto brings together the key official documents as well as political, religious, philosophical and historical essays to illustrate how Shinto has been transformed - from Japan's emergence as a modern nation state in the late 19th ...
Author: Mark MacWilliams
Publisher: Critical Categories in the Study of Religion
Shinto, Nature and Ideology in Contemporary Japan is the first systematic study of Shinto's environmental turn. The book traces the development in recent decades of the idea of Shinto as an 'ancient nature religion,' and a resource for overcoming environmental problems. The volume shows how these ideas gradually achieved popularity among scientists, priests, Shinto-related new religious movements and, eventually, the conservative shrine establishment. Aike P. Rots argues that central to this development is the notion of chinju no mori: the sacred groves surrounding many Shinto shrines. Although initially used to refer to remaining areas of primary or secondary forest, today the term has come to be extended to any sort of shrine land, signifying not only historical and ecological continuity but also abstract values such as community spirit, patriotism and traditional culture. The book shows how Shinto's environmental turn has also provided legitimacy internationally: influenced by the global discourse on religion and ecology, in recent years the Shinto establishment has actively engaged with international organizations devoted to the conservation of sacred sites. Shinto sacred forests thus carry significance locally as well as nationally and internationally, and figure prominently in attempts to reposition Shinto in the centre of public space.
DEFINING SHINTO Competing Perspectives It is not easy to provide a neutral
and historically accurate definition of Shinto. In popular discourse – travel
guidebooks, popular-scientific introductions, online encyclopaedias and
depictions in ...
Author: Aike P. Rots
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Yijiang Zhong analyses the formation of Shinto as a complex and diverse religious tradition in early modern and Meiji Japan, 1600-1868. Highlighting the role of the god Okuninushi and the mythology centered on the Izumo Shrine in western Japan as part of this process, he shows how and why this god came to be ignored in State Shinto in the modern period. In doing so, Zhong moves away from the traditional understanding of Shinto history as something completely internal to the nation of Japan, and instead situates the formation of Shinto within a larger geopolitical context involving intellectual and political developments in the East Asian region and the role of western colonial expansion. The Origin of Modern Shinto in Japan draws extensively on primary source materials in Japan, many of which were only made available to the public less than a decade ago and have not yet been studied. Source materials analysed include shrine records and object materials, contemporary written texts, official materials from the national and provincial levels, and a broad range of visual sources based on contemporary prints, drawings, photographs and material culture.
By categorizing Shinto and Buddhism together, he defined Shinto as a religion.
This definition, however, failed to clarify the relationship between the Shinto
sectarian groups, doctrine, and shrines and rituals performed there. Indeed, in ...
Author: Yijiang Zhong
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Distinguished scholar of Japanese religions and culture Helen Hardacre offers the first comprehensive history of Shinto, the ancient and vibrant tradition whose colorful rituals are still practiced today. Under the ideal of Shinto, a divinely descended emperor governs through rituals offered to deities called Kami. These rituals are practiced in innumerable shrines across the realm, so that local rites mirror the monarch's ceremonies. Through this theatre of state, it is thought, the human, natural, and supernatural worlds will align in harmony and prosper. Often called "the indigenous religion of Japan," Shinto's institutions, rituals, and symbols are omnipresent throughout the island nation. But, perhaps surprisingly, both its religiosity and its Japanese origins have been questioned. Hardacre investigates the claims about Shinto as the embodiment of indigenous tradition, and about its rightful place in the public realm. Shinto has often been represented in the West as the engine that drove Japanese military aggression. To this day, it is considered provocative for members of the government to visit the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, which honors the Japanese war dead, and this features as a source of strain in Japan's relations with China and Korea. The Yasukuni Shrine is a debated issue in Japanese national politics and foreign relations and reliably attracts intensive media coverage. Hardacre contends, controversially, that it was the Allied Occupation that created this stereotype of Shinto as the religion of war, when in fact virtually all branches of Japanese religions were cheerleaders for the war and imperialism. The history and nature of Shinto are subjects of vital importance for understanding contemporary Japan, its politics, its international relations, and its society. Hardacre's magisterial work will stand as the definitive reference for years to come.
105 Shinto was deeply rooted in lived communities in imperial Japan. Kamidana
marked the domicile as a Shinto space. ... Unquestionably, the state played the
defining role in structuring Shinto from 1868 to 1945, but state-sponsored ...
Author: Helen Hardacre
Publisher: Oxford University Press
This accessible guide to the development of Japan’s indigenous religion from ancient times to the present day offers an illuminating introduction to the myths, sites and rituals of kami worship, and their role in Shinto’s enduring religious identity. Offers a unique new approach to Shinto history that combines critical analysis with original research Examines key evolutionary moments in the long history of Shinto, including the Meiji Revolution of 1868, and provides the first critical history in English or Japanese of the Hie shrine, one of the most important in all Japan Traces the development of various shrines, myths, and rituals through history as uniquely diverse phenomena, exploring how and when they merged into the modern notion of Shinto that exists in Japan today Challenges the historic stereotype of Shinto as the unchanging, all-defining core of Japanese culture
In the nineteenth century, the modern nation-state had a vital role to play in
shaping and defining Shinto. From the second half of the twentieth century,
following Japan's defeat in the war, the Allied Occupation, and the promulgation
of the ...
Author: John Breen
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
character of modern Shinto , Holtom finds a unifying point of view in a definition of
Shinto as “ the characteristic ritualistic arrangements and their underlying beliefs
by which the Japanese people have celebrated , dramatized , interpreted , and ...
Author: Joseph John Spae
Category: Church documents
Scholarly studies on Shinto usually focus only on one of its dimensions: Shinto as a 'nature religion', an 'imperial state religion', a 'primal religion', or a 'folk amalgam of practices and beliefs'. Thomas Kasulis explains how these different aspects interrelate.
This would make the defining characteristic of “Shinto” (the way of kami) a belief
in, and praxis responsive to, any such presence. If a particular neo-essentialist
Shinto finds the emperor to have such presence, the believer would consider the
Author: Thomas P. Kasulis
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
In the introduction to this book she argues that the term Shinto is best confined to
the historical context in which it actually occurs , and defined with reference to
that context . Thus she arrives at a narrow definition of the term Shinto , referring
Author: Mark Teeuwen
Shinto - A Short History provides an introductory outline of the historical development of Shinto from the ancient period of Japanese history until the present day. Shinto does not offer a readily identifiable set of teachings, rituals or beliefs; individual shrines and kami deities have led their own lives, not within the confines of a narrowly defined Shinto, but rather as participants in a religious field that included Buddhist, Taoist, Confucian and folk elements. Thus, this book approaches Shinto as a series of historical 'religious systems' rather than attempting to identify a timeless 'Shinto essence'. This history focuses on three aspects of Shinto practice: the people involved in shrine worship, the institutional networks that ensured continuity, and teachings and rituals. By following the interplay between these aspects in different periods, a pattern of continuity and discontinuity is revealed that challenges received understandings of the history of Shinto. This book does not presuppose prior knowledge of Japanese religion, and is easily accessible for those new to the subject.
Thus, this book approaches Shinto as a series of historical 'religious systems' rather than attempting to identify a timeless 'Shinto essence'.
Author: Nobutaka Inoue
The Nanzan Guide to Japanese Religions has been prepared as an aid for students and scholars engaged in research on Japanese religions. It is the first resource guide to encompass the entire field of Japanese religions and provide tools for navigating it.
The trouble starts with our first attempts at defining an object of study . As recently
described by Inoue Nobutaka ( 1988 , pp . 245 ) , “ Shinto is ordinarily understood
as Japan's traditional religion , or indigenous form of religion , but there exists ...
Author: Paul L. Swanson
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
An in-depth look at the Kurozumi-kyo sect of Shinto, giving readers a deep appreciation of the spiritual values of Japan as well as a detailed exploration of the ongoing influence of the oldest of thirteen official sects of the Meiji period.
Shinto is not a missionary religion , and it has not sought to convert nonJapanese
people to its message and practice . It is tied very closely to the cultural and
national experience of Japan , and to no other culture or nation . In defining
Shinto it ...
Author: Willis Stoesz
Publisher: Anima Publications
"Designed for the undergraduate level classroom study, this anthology provides the students with interpretations and perspectives on the significance of religion in modern Japan. Emphasis is placed on the sociocultural expressions of religion in everyday life, rather than on religious texts or traditions. Readings have been selected under four categories to show the diverse forms of Japanese religiosity and the continuing role of religion in this modernized society. These are: Japanese religiosity; religion and the state; traditional religious institutions, decline and adaptation; new religious movements. A particular strength of this collection is the combination of current Japanese and Western scholarship. ' ... Highly recommended ... '"--Journal of Asian Studies.
indigenous religion called Shinto, existing in Japan since ancient times, clearly
took shape for the first time. This has remained the basis for defining the word
shintci down to the present. Scholars have yielded to this use of the word, and the
Author: Mark Mullins
Publisher: Jain Publishing Company
Category: Social Science
Author: Daniel Clarence Holtom
This book presents, for the first time, a collection of ancient Japanese Shinto prayers in a format where English speaking readers can both understand the deep meaning of the translated text and can also pronounce the original Japanese words. Shinto is an ancient spiritual tradition, primarily practiced in Japan, which is now spreading its traditions to the western world. Its primordial rituals and traditions touch a deep chord within one's spiritual self. Shinto's focus on divinity of all beings and of all creation, on living with gratitude and humility, and on purification and lustration of one's self and environment will bring light and joy to any reader. The purpose of prayer and ritual as practiced in the Shinto tradition, is to reinsert ourselves into a divine state of being, not as a new position, but as an acknowledgement and reinforcement of what already exists. Ritual restores sensitive awareness to our relationship to the universe. Through purification and removal of impurities and blockages, we return to our innate internal brightness and cultivate a demeanor of gratitude and joy. Shinto rituals and prayers were created by ancient man over 2,000 years ago in a time when mankind was more intuitive about his relationship to this world. Because of this, the rites are archetypal and invoke deep emotion within the participants. This book of prayers will introduce the western reader to the deep spirituality of Shinto, providing explanation of the spiritual tradition and practice and providing a collection of 22 prayers for use in personal meditation and devotions. Order a perfect bound version of Shinto Norito
This requirement of the practitioner to be a central part of the discovery and the
process makes the wisdom achieved more clear and more internal, rather than
followers receiving a pre-defined teaching. Shinto's scripture is Nature. The
Author: Ann Llewellyn Evans
Publisher: Trafford Publishing
Shinto: A Celebration of Life, introduces a gentle but powerful and enduring spiritual pathway reconnecting humanity with 'great nature' and affirming all aspects of life. Structured around ritual cleansing, Shinto contains no concept of sin. It reveres ancestors, but thinks little about the afterlife, asking us to live in--and improve--the present. Shinto is an unbroken indigenous path that now reaches beyond its native Japan. It has special relevance to us as we seek a more balanced and fulfilled way of life.
It follows that strictly defining Kami, either in singular or plural form, is a difficult
and arguably pointless task. As a force that is eternally shifting and evolving –
whilst remaining eternally constant – Kami are inherently difficult to 'pin down'.
Author: Aidan Rankin
Publisher: John Hunt Publishing
Category: Body, Mind & Spirit
What is Shinto ? According to Shūkyo nenkang ( Almanac of Religions ; 1997 )
published by the Japanese Ministry of Culture , Shinto is defined as a term that
designates all religions originated from and developed by beliefs in Japanese ...
This was attempted by reducing the terms contrasted with Shinto to purely
Buddhist phenomenon and forms — i . e . , Buddhist teachings , " three jewels , ”
Buddhist schools , etc . — and by defining Shinto relative to them . All the while ...
Category: Electronic journals
Defining Shinto as both a personal faith in the kami – the sacred spirits which are
the objects of worship - and a communal way of life according to the mind of the
kami " , Ono presents a straightforward introduction to its shrines , worship and ...
Author: Frank Joseph Shulman
Publisher: Oxford, England ; Santa Barbara, Calif. : Clio Press
This is the only book to date offering a critical overview of Shinto from early times to the modern era, and evaluating Shinto's place in Japanese religious culture. In recent years, a few books on medieval Shinto have appeared, but none has attempted to depict the broader picture, to examine critically Shinto's origins and its subsequent development through the medieval, pre-modern and modern periods. The essays in this book address such key topics as Shinto and Daoism in early Japan, Shinto and the natural environment, Shinto and state ritual in early Japan, Shinto and Buddhism in medieval Japan, and Shinto and the state in the modern period. All of the essays highlight the dynamic nature of Shinto and shrine history by focusing on the three-way relationship, often fraught, between local shrine cults, Shinto agendas and Buddhism.
... Japan.1 Shinto shrines, with their distinctive torii gates and shimenawa ropes
can be discreet, nestled in wooded precincts, or tucked away behind rows of
shops; they can also be more imposing, defining the landscape in which they are
Author: John Breen
Category: Social Science
V.1. Abi-Bur v.2. Cam-Cro- v.3. Cub-Edu. v.4. Edu-Gen. v.5. Gen-Ite. v.6. Jam M au. v.7. Mau-Par. v.8. Par-Rec. v.9. Reg. Soc. v.10. Soc-Tea. v.11. Tec-Zim. v. 12. Indexes.
Furthermore , the mystical aspects of Shinto cannot readily be conveyed in words
. In attempting the elusive task of defining Shinto , Holtom ( 1938 p . 6 ) has
described it as “ the characteristic ritualistic arrangements and their underlying ...
Author: Torsten Husén