Thursday, March 29, 2012

Occult Japan or The way of the Gods : An esoteric study of japanese personality and possession By Percival Lowell

SHINTO, or the Way of the Gods, is the name of the oldest religious belief of the Japanese people. The belief itself indefinitely antedates its name, for it has come down to us from a time when sole possession of the field precluded denomination.

It knew no christening till Buddhism was adopted from China in the sixth century of our era, and was then first called Shinto, or the Way of the Gods, to distinguish it from Butsudd, or the Way of Buddha.

If it thus acquired a name, it largely lost local habitation. For Buddhism proceeded to appropriate its possessions, temporal and spiritual. It had been both church and state. Buddhism became the state, and assumed the greater part of the churches ; paying Shinto the compliment of incorporating, without acknowledgment, such as it fancied of the Shinto rites, and of kindly recognizing the more popular Shinto gods for lower avatars of its own.

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