Growth of Japanese Culture

Japanese Forms of Buddhism as summarized by Zachary Pfeiffer

Buddhism Spreads to Japan

Japanese Buddhism had the support of Prince Shotoku causing it to spread rapidly throughout Japan. Japanese Buddhism also had the ability to spread as it was compatible with the existing Shinto religion in Japan. Buddhism had a large effect on Japanese society. It was originally only practiced by nobility but eventually spread to the common folk.

The Sects of Buddhism

The Sects or versions of Buddhism in Japan developed over the centuries. Tendai Buddhism focused on the study of religious texts. Shingon Buddhism is based around the complex rituals involved in Buddhism. Amida, or "Pure Land" believed in a life after death with salvation for people. The Zen sect of Buddhism believed that something precious and divine exists in each person.

Zen Buddhism

Many Buddhist ideas died out and some stayed. The Japanese hand picked the ideas that best fit their lifestyle and needs. In the 1100s, Zen, a sect of Buddhism, became the most popular and common. Zen Buddhism focuses on simplicity, meditation and reflection. Followers believed in quiet reflection rather than the previously common rituals.
Zen Buddhism became popular among Samurai , as they believed it would bring them strength in battle. It also developed among artists as they were able to illustrate its values into art.

Amazing and very proffessional video:

Japan's Sects of Buddhism


Essential Question:

Build on What You Know: How did the Japanese adapt Buddhism?
With the support of Prince Shotoku, Buddhism first spread to Japanese nobility, but because of its compatibility with Shinto, the common religion at the time, it was able to spread to the majority of people in Japan.

Review Question:

How was Japanese society affected by Buddhism?
Buddhism was spread throughout Japan and adapted to meet the needs of each individual. It became favored among artists and samurai as well as the common people of Japan.