Osprey drills get nod in Gunma

Jun 20, 2014

Osprey drills get nod in Gunma

The municipal assembly in Shinto, Gunma Prefecture, has approved holding military exercises involving the MV-22 Ospreys flown by the U.S. Marine Corps. The municipality is home to the Ground Self-Defense Force’s Somagahara training range. The resolution, passed Thursday, says Shinto will accept joint drills ...

Resisting the historical deniers

Nov 23, 2013

Resisting the historical deniers

by David Mcneill

Shin Kawashima recalls his heart sinking with the reelection of Shinzo Abe. A specialist in Asian diplomatic history at the University of Tokyo, Kawashima has spent years trying to narrow the gap between Japan and China’s strikingly different interpretations of wartime history. The election ...

Nov 23, 2013

Re-engineering Shinto

by David Mcneill

Japan’s ancient, indigenous religion, premodern Shinto, was considered one of the world’s least dogmatic, laidback belief systems. Many of its earthy, animist rituals were tied to a love of nature and tradition, anchored around festivals and ceremonies honoring kami (gods) found in all aspects ...

Shinto priest blazes trail as a community activist

Oct 23, 2013

Shinto priest blazes trail as a community activist

by Takeshi Nishide

In these challenging times, Shinto priests can’t afford to confine themselves to the quiet and peace of their shrines. On a Sunday afternoon in September, Mitsunobu Okada, chief priest of Sugimori Shrine in Higashihiroshima, Hiroshima Prefecture, was talking to a group of children as ...

Seeing where Shinto and Buddhism cross

May 16, 2013

Seeing where Shinto and Buddhism cross

by Sachiko Tamashige

“The number of Shinto shrines in Japan has changed over centuries due to various political and social changes. There were about 190,000 shrines during the early Meiji Era (1867-1912), before a drastic change came about in the merging of shrines and temples. The number ...