Japanese Religion: The eBook 2nd Edition is a self-contained textbook for a one-semester introductory course on Japanese religions. Designed for undergraduate level study, it provides everything students and teachers could expect from a printed text and more.
Japan has been called a "Living Laboratory of Religion." Its colorful and diverse spiritual traditions range from very ancient and mysterious imperial accession rites (reenacted as recently as 1990) to the mythic images underlying Japan's contributions to planetary pop culture in anime, manga, and Nintendo games, which seem uniquely able to speak to alienated teenagers worldwide. Introducing Japanese Religion presents these and the meaning behind them, together with martial arts and sacred mountains, esoteric chants and Zen masters urging students to go beyond all words and concepts in the journey to enlightenment
All this and much more out of spiritual Japan is described in this textbook. The order of presentation is basically historical, but always with a view to the contemporary expression a religious tradition under discussion. Balanced attention is given to the conceptual world, the practices, and the sociology of each form of Shinto, Buddhist denomination, or new religion. Issues of particular historical importance, such as the relation of religion to Japan's extreme nationalism in the 1930s and early 1940s, and religion in the affluent Japan of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, receive especial notice. Japanese Religion: The eBook is accessible to all college and university students, whether they have had previous Japanese studies or not.