Before there was a religion in Japan, there were just local gods and shrines. As the years progressed, Japan established connections with other religions. “Buddhist religion and Confucian social values from China and Korea brought a different way of life for the Japanese including changes to their religion” (Voorst 190). With these close connections to China and Korea, the new culture consisted of “Confucianism and Buddhism, literature, philosophy, art, architecture, science, medicine, and government” (Voorst 190). A unity was formed when Shinto was being combined with Buddhism and Confucianism. As the Japanese nation started to take shape, worship and religious obligations started to take over daily routines. “These annual ceremonies for purification and blessing, which soon included many Buddhist and Confucian elements, became a regular part of the Japanese government” (Voorst 191). This being said, the Shinto religion was greatly affected by other religions as well as other cultures.
For a long period of time, Shinto religion was getting influenced by Buddhism and Confucianism. “Confucianism provided social ethics; Shinto provided everyday philosophy and a feeling for the nation; Buddhism provided philosophy and a hope for the life after death” (Voorst 192). Although this happened, Shinto pushed back to not be so influenced by outside religions. The Shinto people started to “acquire a stronger intellectual tradition” and they “revived the study of archaic Japanese text” (Voorst 192). During the Meiji period, Shinto started getting recognized and Buddhism almost became totally separate. This separation though caused changes in the Shinto religion. Rituals were affected and the “kami could no longer be explained as incarnations of the Buddha” (Voorst 193). It seems that all of the beginnings, or influences that this religion had were getting stripped away. Shinto was becoming its own religion, but the other religions still had the original influence....
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