The Essence of Shinto: Japan's Spiritual Heart
In The Essence of Shinto, revered Shinto master Motohisa Yamakage explains the core values of Shinto and explores both basic tenets and its more esoteric points in terms readily accessible to the modern Western reader. He shows how the long history of Shintoism is deeply woven into the fabric of Japanese spirituality and mythologyindeed, it is regarded as Japan's very spir...more
This is a thoroughly conservative, even reactionary book. It is in a way a fundamentalist tract. Here is what the author had to say in the preface:
"Shinto is the consciousness underlying the Japanese mentality, the foundation for Japanese culture and values. Japanese society is still in a state of confusion, one of the symptoms of which has been the proliferation of bizarre cults and sects. It is important, therefore, for the Japanese people to rediscover their spiritual essence and their cultur...more
This is absolutely a book written by a religious practitioner rather than a secular scholar. The author's tone reflects that. However, I disagree that the entire book is preachy. I think it is written by a true believ ...more
That said, it wasn’t an easy read. It reads like it was translated faithfully from the original, and literal Japanese translations ...more
It turns out I barely scratched the surface!
And, after reading Master Yamakage's book, I've still barely scratched the surface. But this is a must-read for anyone exploring religions and ...more