Growth of Japanese Culture

Japanese Forms of Buddhism summarized by Jessica Wandling

Buddhism Spreads in Japan

Buddhism began in India in the 500s B.C. and then spread to China and Korea, later on arriving in Japan. Since Prince Shotoku supported Buddhism it spread rapidly, but it did not replace Japan's other religion, Shinto. Buddhism was practiced alongside Shinto because they both were similar enough to each other. Buddhism has different forms that have developed over the centuries, there is Tendai Buddhism, Shingon, Amida, and Zen.

The Different Forms of Buddhism:

  • Tendai~ focuses on the intensive study of texts
  • Shingon~ is known for its complex rituals
  • Amida~ (pure land) includes a belief that people might have salvation in a pure land after their death
  • Zen~ is where something precious and divine exists in each person

Zen Buddhism

Some forms of Buddhism stayed while others did not, Zen was one that became very popular. Zen was about self-discipline, simplicity, and meditation and its followers believed this was better than ceremonies and scriptures. Zen was very simple, it focused on an individual's inner peace and quiet reflection which many people favor like some Samurai and artists.
THE ZEN MIND - An Introduction by Empty Mind Films

Essential Question: How did the Japanese adapt Buddhism?

Review Question: How was Japanese society affected by Buddhism?