A remarkable collection of essays written by an international team of contributors explores different aspects of religion in Japan. Subjects discussed include new religions in postwar Japan, beliefs about fox-possession in the Heian period, and the religious life of the first shogunate in the late twelfth century. The essays offer fresh insights into the rich religious traditions of Japan, many of which have been previously neglected in the English-language writing on Japan.
Table of Contents1. Notes on the kuji David Waterhouse; 2. The worship of Confucius in ancient Japan James McMullen; 3. An early anthropologist? Oe no Masafusa's A record of fox spirits Ivo Smits; 4. Religion in the life of Minamoto Yoritomo and the early Kamakura bakufu Martin Collcutt; 5. Rethinking Japanese folk religion: a study of Kumano Shugen Miyake Hitoshi; 6. Keeping the faith: bakuhan policy towards religions in seventeenth-century Japan Peter Nosco; 7. Heavenly affinities and discrepancies: Fr Leturdu's early ethnographic account of Okinawa (1846-8) Patrick Beillevaire; 8. Accommodating the alien: Okuni Takamasa and the religion of the Lord of Heaven John Breen; 9. Shinmeiaishinkai and the study of shamanism in contemporary Japanese religious life Helen Hardacre; 10. The Ainu iyomande and its evolution Fosco Maraini; 11. Mizuko kuyo: the re-production of the dead in contemporary Japan Elizabeth G. Harrison; 12. Pilgrimage as cult: the Shikoku pilgrimage as a window on Japanese religion Ian Reader; 13. The sacred power of wrapping Joy Hendry.