Reframe Japan, Wabi-Sabi

Religion ( 宗教 )

Religion ( 宗教 ) in Japan

It is said that most Japanese have no religion. It is true that the majority of Japanese people today lack a sense of belonging to religions, and many Japanese also consider themselves to have "no religion," although they actually engage in religious rituals.

Actually, many Japanese people engage in rituals of multiple religions, holding the seven-five-three festival and other seasonal festivals at shrines and visiting shrines at the beginning of the New Year based on annual events and rituals developed in the natural climate from ancient ethnic religions of Japan, and by the influence of the temple guarantee system in the Edo period, holding funerals and bon festivals (a festival of the dead or Buddhist all soul’s day) with Buddhist rites. It may be not true that they are atheists, as seen from the fact that many of them do not strongly deny religions or Shinto and Buddhist deities, rely on the deities when they are in trouble, and respect religious ideas, such as 'curses' and 'bad karma.'

The above situations may be caused by a world view that yaoyorozu no kami (eight million deities) reside in shinrabansho (all things in nature, the whole of creation), a kind of animism, took root in Japan’s ancient Shinto.

Shinto is the native religion originating in particular cultural traditions that have been believed since ancient Japan. This philosophy is called the ancient Shinto, the origin of which traces back at least to the Jomon perid, and it is also called the Jomon Shinto.

Ancient Shinto, which is the origin of current Shinto, is also called a primitive religion. It is also referred to as primitive Shinto, Jomon Shinto and Fukko Shinto; all such names are used refer to the Shinto that existed before being influenced by foreign religions like Buddhism, esoteric Buddhism and Taoism, and indeed ancient Shinto is sometimes used to express those forms of Shinto opposed or contrasted to Shrine Shinto.

Anyway, Shinto is the native religion of Japan.

However, folk beliefs which were the origin of ancient Shinto and Shinto were based on the concept of nature worship, and this had an animistic element that regarded every object as occupied by a spiritual entity such as a god (deity), a spirit, or a soul. Animism is a concept that everything regardless of a living thing or a non-living object has a spirit or a soul and it is a primitive religion all over the world.

From my point of view, Japanese culture remains animism, a primitive religion, and which is still believed in strongly.


Animism is a concept that everything regardless of a living thing or a non-living object has a spirit or a soul. While the above explanation of the animism refers to "non-living," the object absolutely remains in the range of the seas, mountains, rivers, rocks, grounds, weathers such as winds, rains, and thunders, and the like in the nature, and there is no description of artificial objects such as tools.

However, there is a thought that tools which have been used with love for a long time will have souls.

I like the concept.

A spirit or a soul can be also referred to as Energy, Force, Chi, Wave, Ripples, God, Prana, or (may be) Anything.

It means it is unevenly distributed in every space of the world.

Religion ( 宗教 )