Shinto!!

Discussion in 'Eastern Religions and Philosophies' started by 17th Angel, May 30, 2008.

  1. 17th Angel

    17th Angel לבעוט את התחת ולקחת שמות

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2005
    Messages:
    9,437
    Likes Received:
    3
    No Shinto In the Eastern area?

    Any That follow the way of shinto or from Japan here? lol....

    Looking into it more I have researched for the past two days.... And I was just looking at the photo of Shintoists carrying the Mikoshi..... And They look like they are having so much fun lol.... I'd love to join in on that festival lol... Is it just the festivals and the fun? Or is there more to it than that personally for you (the Shintoist) Like apart from the oharai and the misogi..... There isn't much to really define Shinto as a religion... Right? (cringes lol)
     
  2. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Messages:
    6,549
    Likes Received:
    26
  3. 17th Angel

    17th Angel לבעוט את התחת ולקחת שמות

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2005
    Messages:
    9,437
    Likes Received:
    3
    Muchas Gracias... :)

    We need to go round up some shintoists :\ Never spoken to a shintoist as far as I am aware... Something I must do some day.
     
  4. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0
    I`m here if you want to talk. Technically I consider myself to be Shinto-Buddhist Christian accordingly to what I am. But between Shinto and Buddhism I gear myself towards Shinto more than Buddhism. I also consider any Japanese who sits in a chair to be Shinto-Buddhist who was influenced by Christianity although Japanese are in denial for no reason. A Japanese Christian may insist that people are either Christian or not.

    What ancient Shintoist may have pursued in present day, is Shinto-Buddhist Christianity in modern times, although I view that our capacity as Shintoists have somewhat deteriorated probably due to buddhist influences. Buddhism is an import in Japan by Shinto imperial orders and they dominate Japanese religious practice by enjoying somewhat a monopoly on funeral and new years ( J Christmas) practices.

    If this famous warlord called Oda Oda Nobunaga - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (Shaka Zulu equivalent of Japan) was not assassinated (possibly by J Christians..)when he united the country after centuries of war, Japan might have had normal Christianity this present day. It doesn`t say much in the wiki, but Oda was the most ruthless, feared warlord ever to be seen in Japanese history credited to end centuries of civil war. He is the only famous warlord in Japan known to take no hostages. His descendant is a happy world class ice figure skater now, you`ll probably see him twirling around at the winter Olympics.

    I view Shintoists as a flexible bunch, willing to integrate and mix cultures. Shrines are like wishing wells. Clean natural water is considered to purify our bodies, the religious, go to waterfalls to gain knowledge by meditating under waterfalls.

    The festivals you see, are exactly as you see it. We sometimes push around things similar to an ark, sometimes have huge drum concerts, sometimes ride logs downhill, hold onto huge fireworks as displays, get all drunk and get into t-strings depending on where you are and have a blast. Although I think we`re kind of trying to lose the t-string traditions.

    Peace.

    TK
     
  5. c0de

    c0de Vassal

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    0
    If anyone has any intell on Shinto's influence on Bushido...
    please kindly hand over your 2 cents (yes, you are being robbed)
     
  6. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Messages:
    9,953
    Likes Received:
    1,119
    But it is a religion.

    In Japan the deal is bring your kids up Shinto, for all the festivals, processions, fireworks, etc.,
    Then become Christian for a white wedding,
    Then become a Buddhist when you start thinking about your mortality.

    It may be of interest to know that Shinto was far more influential on the samurai than Zen — the latter is quite late and derives from the peacetime restructuring of the idealised image of the noble warrior ... but during the Era of Warring States, it was primarily Shinto.

    Thomas
     
  7. c0de

    c0de Vassal

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    0
    So first came Budhism, then Shinto, then Bushido, then Zen Budhism...
    Pre 5th century, 5 century, 9-12 Century and 12th century respectively...

    I have noticed Shinto beliefs are ever present in Japanese popular
    culture. I watched a couple of animes that have the concept of
    animism and spirits as a central theme. However, how much does this
    animism overlap with other traditions?

    I know there is one sect (mainly practiced in Okinawa) which
    recognizes the concept of a "hell". Also, there is a Chinese version of
    Buddhism which also recognizes levels of hell... Shinto, I am not too
    sure about... however, what about Bushido? Which manner of after-life
    does it adopt (if any) and from which of these traditions?

    The question which seems to fascinate me is the strong attachment that
    Bushido has with death. Yet, there is no obvious hints towards any
    afterlife... I mean, total sacrifice is one thing, but for the bare purpose
    of serving mortal masters? Or is the dedication to the principle itself?
    This relates to all eastern religion in a sense, Shinto & Buddhism especially.

    Also, what seems to be a contradiction here is the connection with
    Confucianism. If the loyalty is to the principle itself, then how can
    Confucianistic emphasis on filial piety be reconciled with the loyalty
    to the ideal?

    .... hope these questions dont distract away from the subject of
    Shinto... But since Shinto is so connected in spirit to Buddism and
    hence the whole tradition of Eastern Religions, I think they can fit
    in here somewhere...
     
  8. c0de

    c0de Vassal

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    0
    nevermind, got the answer via PM
    sorry for detracting from the subject :eek:

    (someone should start a thread about this other stuff though)
     
  9. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0

    Shinto is Japanese martial arts, and a bit more. Primarily I see J martial arts as the two handed sword, which is the most powerful J weapon prized by Samurai`s. The Japanese sword is made accordingly with Shinto traditions, no buddhism there.

    All the other J martial arts are probably of buddhist origin originating from Karate (boxing, ninja etc..).

    Oh, and after I posted in this thread it reminded me that I read somewhere that "death" is evil in Shinto, which makes a lot of sense to me. As opposed to Buddhism which make a good living out of it these days.

    TK
     
  10. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0
    This was primarily an influence of Confucianism(loyalty) imported by the Tokugawa shogunates which was founded by the third closest comrad of Oda mentioned above.The shogunates enjoyed a long lasting peace, and in order to accomplish that they imported Confucianist thoughts.

    I have no idea what Shinto pure concept of afterlife is, if there are any......??

    TK
     
  11. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0

    This is also very true.
    But now that I see it in writing I can see how non-Japanese might think of this as unusual..
    its absolutely weird!!.. :eek:

    This one guy I knew in LA called the Japanese(Shinto) culture as a culture that pursues super-pop as in pop culture.

    Anyways, I`m thinking about marrying like a Samurai (would depend on what the wife says though, she`d probably want a white wedding), and then eventually attending church as I have no worries that I`ll not become a shinto-buddhist anytime soon. But someone needs to comeup with a Shinto-church so that I can keep my traditions as well. I like nicely spread out laid back Christian cemeteries.

    TK
     
  12. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    Messages:
    9,953
    Likes Received:
    1,119
    Again, only latterly, I would say. The great sword schools did not emerge until the late fifteenth century. Originally the Way of the Warrior was 'The Way of Horse and Bow', the sword was not synonymous with the samurai then, that happened much later. In battle, the weapon par excellence was the spear, until the arquebus did for blade weapons.

    I was a sometime-exponent of Muso Shinden Ryu swordsmanship, so for me the sword is the business! At a demonstration of martial arts, the sword always takes pride of place. But give the bow its due ... I once watched a demonstration of yabusame (horseback archery) ... impressive!

    The sword, yes ... I'm not too sure about the other stuff. But then the history is very clouded.

    The great Ryu taught 'flexible skills' (wrestling), and other hand-to-hand combat skills, of which Sumo is a derivation. If you're having a punch-up with a bloke in full armour, the best (and maybe only) way is to get him on the ground, then stab him (think of the Sumo grip).

    Again, ninja training is steeped in shugendo lore, and the practitioner of shugendo (shugenja) were also known as yamabushi (one who lies in the mountains), from the inhospitable mountain regions where the sect of austere asceticism flourished. Yamabushi were almost legendary in their martial powers, a mix of Shinto, Tendai Buddhism, mikkyo ...

    Senei Usui, 'founder' of Reiki, was a high-ranking master swordsman — he served in a lowly position in the Japanese delegation to China, which makes him a bodyguard or a spy or both in my book — and his realisation came after practising a 20-day Tendai ritual.

    (In recent history, Paddy Ashdown, a British politician, was a one-time member of the Special Boat Service (SAS in boats), a linguist who knew numerous Chinese dialects. He turns up as the second-reserve-window cleaner or something at the British Embassy in China ... a spook, for sure!)

    There is no doubt that Buddhism played into the martial training methodology — the samurai would use anything that works! Same with 'imported' empty hand skills from China, Okinawa and elsewhere. They learnt the art of metalurgy from Korea, Japanese swords had a tendency to snap until they followed Korean methods.

    As you point out, the Tokugawa Shogunate utilised Confucianism to 'restructure' the samurai ideal, along with Buddhism and Shinto. Zen [layed a big part in this, and was already influencing the sword schools.

    BTW:
    Are you sure about Christians implicated in Oda's assassination? He was their best bet, surely? Without him, they had no real support and a lot of opposition. After his death, their position deteriorated rapidly ... but sheesh, our missionaries were also political meddlers, for sure!

    Oda Nobunaga was a mercurial and probably unbalanced personality, you never knew where you stood, and he treated his vassals very badly, by all accounts. Akechi Mitsuhide suffered more than most, and it must have come as no real surprise when Akechi attacked Oda.

    I know history is written by the victor, but by all accounts Tokugawa Ieyasu dealt very fairly with his retainers, never betrayed any of them, and stayed true to his word. As a result, from the age of 16 on he began to attract vassals who remained loyal to him throughout, so that when he fought his later major battles, notably the 'big one' at Sekigahara, he had the advantage of a unified force opposed by an uneasy coalition (of which a significant proportion deserted to the Tokugawa as soon as they got a sniff of his likely victory).

    Anyway, if you're still awake, thanks for jogging the old grey cells. I haven't thought about this stuff for years.

    Thomas
     
  13. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    20,358
    Likes Received:
    1,234
    When I asked the Japanese I've met about Shinto for them it was more of a cultural thing than a religion. They had various religions or none that they were attached to but Shinto was in the background, tradition, honoring parents, honoring ancestors. They 'asked' their ancestors for advice, they listened within for responses, they felt the ancestors watched over them.
     
  14. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0
    I`m not sure. Thats why I put the question mark, and its a conspiracy theory that I wouldn`t be too surprised if it were true considering what the Roman Catholic missions wanted. If you check into Akechi, his third daughter was a devout Roman Catholic (Gratia Hosokawa).

    Yes.. the missionaries were super political meddlers more evident looking at it from the western side (not that other religious sects weren`t). I wouldn`t be surprised if they tried to highjack the unification through Akechi, or were planning somekind of revolution assuming absolute chaos would strike. Seems familiar to me knowing a bit about European history.

    I personally observe and assume the possibilities that similar things were attempted towards Zulu`s by protestants, so thats why I`m somewhat suspicious about this, although not a big deal. But then again when one is surrounded by tradition, some feel strongly about preserving tradition, and that is another possible motivation for the assassinations. Oda or Shaka Zulu weren`t notoriously known to be traditional, but rather a beginning in being International.

    TK
     
  15. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thats mostly true, for most Japanese it is just a culture. But in fact its like a Jedi knight-like religion in the back ground when one checks it out.

    I don`t know what sect they are from but that sounds like either a family tradition or something a buddhist sect might preach. But then again I wouldn`t be surprised if a Japanese couldn`t quite distinguish the both in some areas. I clearly come from emphasis on Shinto traditions and thats why its obvious but some may be geared more heavily on buddhism.

    TK
     
  16. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0

    Yes the "Horse and Bow", complicates things when asking where did the Japanese come from?

    With regards to the Japanese sword, looking at all the other sword styles around the world, the way the J sword and styles are, the only reason I can think of why, is by means of Shinto.

    I have a hunch that the Japanese were swinging oak sticks starting from ancient times as that is the only logical weapon, prior to metallurgy reaching Japan. The horse and Bow are obviously imports when you think about it.

    Having a family tree is a Shinto thing (fact), maybe not to all Shintoist, fyi. Thus the stick(staff) weapon, but its just a logical assumption of mine.

    TK

    p.s. what did the druids hold as weapons? if anyone knows.
     
  17. c0de

    c0de Vassal

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know about the Druids, but the only European fighting system
    I ever had any respect for was Fencing. Recently, I have lost much of
    my respect for Eastern martial arts as well. Ever since the advent of
    Brazilian JuiJitsu which basically made all other forms of fighting obsolete.
    Turns out all that focus on rigid forms was a waste of time after all...
    High flying jumping kicks and all that flexibility doesnt really do much
    in a real world scenario either... Ninjitsu and Judo I think are the few
    martial arts in the Eastern world which have an all-round ground fighting
    and joint-locking techniques still relevant today.

    Nevertheless, I am in love, and will always be in love with the Katana.
    Iado especially, the grace, the power, the patience... its a meditation
    in and of itself... much more so then other martial arts...

    Outdated as it might be, I still love practicing with my red oak
    Suburi Boken. I rather mess around with that then my air rifle any day...
     
  18. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    20,358
    Likes Received:
    1,234
    Watching MMA today with fighters from various styles from around the world it does appear that JuiJitsu is rising to the top, but that is mostly from one on one throws and submissions... and with highly skilled fighters. But what would be the best skill in a street fight with multiple lesser skilled oponents (sans guns or blades)?
     
  19. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think fencing was a product of how metallurgy advanced in Europe. The swords got thinner and thinner. If a super high-tech sword was created nowadays, it`d probably resemble something like those fencing swords. fyi, whereas for penetration and cutting everything European pushes, the Japanese tools are meant to cut when pulled, like saws, kitchen knives etc..

    Brazilian Jiujutsu is a product of old-school Judo, so I don`t really consider it as Jiujutsu, but if they call it Jiujutsu so be it, afterall it does do joint locks. Judo is a derivative of Japanese Jiujutsu but it lacks the elegance and spiritual aspects. Judo I think was more intended to be an Olympic sport for the masses. Whereas Japanese Jiujutsu is a derivative of Kobudo (ancient budo) which is a style derived from warfare from the old days. Kobudo has techniques like lock the joints, throw the person, break the bone while doing it. What we see today is more forgiving in Jiujutsu form obviously. Judo techniques can easily be modified for modern combat, but I wouldn`t expect them to be good swords man.

    Mentioned by Thomas, these are the kinds of areas covered by the esoteric practioners Yamabushi`s and what I mean as the Jedi knight-like areas of Shinto martial arts. I am yet to experience all this but it is everywhere in Japanese martial arts, surprising its almost like common sense to the everyday Japanese martial arts practioner.
    YouTube - Mind Body & Kick Ass Moves - Death on a beach Kuroda

    This certainly seems like something that is hidden, or lost in the European cultures. It is well preserved in Asia, IMO particularly Japan (of course I would say that).


    TK
     
  20. TheKhan

    TheKhan All Natural

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Messages:
    346
    Likes Received:
    0

Share This Page