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3. Early Shinto shamanism
worship of kami:
(Deities of Shinto that are associated with places, certain animals, and the emperor. They include mythological beings, powerful and awesome aspects of nature, and important humans.)
Appears to have been very flexible in incorporating new figures.
4. Historical Overview In the sixth century C.E. contact with China introduced Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism (and writing)
14th-century concerns that Buddhism would overwhelm Shinto, led to some defensive separations.
At the height of the Shogunate (ca. 15th-16th centuries) a preference for Zen by the samurai elite led to some declines in Shinto influence.
Under the Meiji Restoration (1868-1912) Shinto became the state religion.
After WWII, the Allies forced the Japanese government to become secular; the Japanese Emperor renounced his “divine” status.
Kuroda Toshio has proposed an alternative/revisionist history of Shinto: Only in modern times has Shinto/kami no michi designated a specific, separate religion
5. Shinto Mythology Two main texts:
Kojiki (myths of ancient times, origins of gods and man)
Nihonji (ancient history of Japan)
Of gods & goddesses: The Kami
Nature deities – represent and control natural elements and forces
Creation myth – Japan as the center of the world
6. Shinto Mythology
7. Three kindsof Shinto Shrine/Folk Shinto
8. Shrine Shinto Jinja (shrines) - Tens of thousands located throughout Japan
Natural structure, fits in with natural surrounding
Torii – entry gate, separates sacred from profane space
Tusbaki Grand Shrine of America
Household shrines – kamidana(kami shelf)
9. Torii A formal gatelike structure that marks a Shinto sacred place or shrine.
10. Miyajima An island near Hiroshima in Japan that is home to a Shinto shrine and a Buddhist temple. A large orange torii stands in the ocean in front of Miyajima, marking the entire island as a shrine..
11. Grand Shrine at Ise
12. Shimenawa a twisted rope marking a sacred or holy spot.
13. Temizuya an ablution pavilion where worshipers purify themselves by washing face and hands before approaching the kami.
14. Enshrined Kami The (symbol of the) kami remain hidden from public view
Sometimes the symbol of the kami can be an anthropomorphic figure, but that is rare.
Inscriptions on paper or cloth symbolize the kami.
The three treasures: sword, a mirror, and a jewel (comma-shaped stone)
15. Shinto Worship Worship can take place at home, at a shrine, or at festivals
The “default” mode/model is the invidual visiting the shrine:
Enter at the torii
Approaches the temizuya for purification ritual
Approaches the shrine, avoiding the middle path to leave room for the kami
Places a coin in the donation box, rings the bell (to summon the kami)
(sometimes more bows and claps are customary)
Oracles may be given, Charms purchased, etc.)
16. State Shinto Meiji period (1868) – end of WWII
Emphasis on Japanese culture and nationality (elimination of foreign influences)
Emperors of Japan as divine
Hierarchy of shrines:
Main shrine at Ise – dedicated to Amaterasu
Palace shrines honoring Amaterasu, other kami, and emperors
Shrines elsewhere dedicated to national heroes
97% of remaining shrines dedicated to local kami
17. Sect Shinto 13 recognized sects
Many founded in 19th century
Specific founders and texts
Unique teachings and practices
Some combine Shinto with influences from Buddhism or other religions
18. The FourAffirmations Tradition and Family
Love of Nature
Matsuri: festivals that worship and honor the Kami
19. Shinto PracticesTradition and Family Life cycle celebrations take place at shrines:
7-5-3 festival: blessings for boys age 5, girls ages 3 & 7
Entry to adulthood (age 20)
(since Shinto celebrates life in this world, in death, the Japanese may turn to Buddhist rather than Shinto rituals)
20. Shinto Practices Love of Nature:
Annual cycle of seasonal festivals
Misoji - Water purification rites to wash away impurity, thus restoring original purity
21. Shinto on the Web Ancient Japan: Shinto Creation Stories http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/ANCJAPAN/CREAT.HTM
Visit a Shinto shrine on-line: Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America http://www.tsubakishrine.com
The Shinto Online Network Association http://www.jinja.or.jp/english/s-0.html