Can anyone who's lived in Japan tell me if there are any true believers of the Shinto faith?Anime makes it seem like a cultural thing rather than actual spirituality/belief in various gods and divine intervention.
>>1243436Depending on your standards of what "true believer" means*, presumably the actual priests are.I've never encountered a true believer in Christianity in the west, in the sense that they live their life as if the teachings of christianity are obviously, unquestionably and self-evidently true. i.e. they're happy when their friends and family die, because those people are in heaven now, and heaven is better than earth, so being sad about them dying would be as absurd and inappropriate as being sad about them winning some money. We don't expect this kind of thing from "true believers" in the West, so it seems unfair to expect it from Japan.
>Anime makes it seemkill yourself
>>1243439Right, I get what you mean, but I must say, believing in heaven does seem to ease the blow for believers in Christianity. I do think there's many people in the west who still believe every part of Christianity's teachings, actually.Christians believe in God, Angels, the existence of various other legendary beings in the bible. My main question is, do those in Japan believe legends presented in Shinto?>>1243440Fuck off. I'm just trying to explain where my current understanding comes from.
>>1243439you can be happy that your loved one is in heaven but sad that they're not with you right now.
>>1243439>presumably the actual priests areWould be cool, but that's not always true, some are just in to make the family happy or it's an interesting job.Shinto priests don't have the same role as Western priests or Buddhist monks, especially as those guys are the ones who do funerals and counsel the bereaved. Human corpses ae unclean in Shinto so they won't perform funerals or have the corpse on the shrine ground. In that sort of role where you have to counsel someone about life and death, or the general sort of pastoral work and counselling and time in the community that western priests and monks /friars do, it can become pretty taxing when you don't believe.Shinto guys don't do that sort of thing, so you can not believe in kami without it having a great impact on your ability to perform the rituals and keep the donations rolling in.
>>1243444>believing in heaven does seem to ease the blow for believers in Christianity.I'm not saying they don't believe that they believe, just that they don't believe in heaven the same way they believe in gravity or cause-and-effect, or something. If someone needs the car keys, I can just throw them to them, because I am a "true believer" in gravity. There is not a chance that the keys will just keep going in the direction I threw them until they leave the atmosphere. I don't believe most Americans believe in Christianity like that, or you'd see it in their actions. They just don't act like heaven is perfect and amazing and eternal and guaranteed, and that this life is just a short "admission test", and anyone who did would at the very least be considered a bit odd.>I do think there's many people in the west who still believe every part of Christianity's teachings, actually.Therefore it's this kind of standard you have to hold Japan to: Do they believe as much as your average American who considers himself religious?
>>1243638Anon, I don't necessarily disagree with you, but this argument sucks. To use your example, if I am a true believer in gravity, and I drop my keys in a lake, I know my keys are unharmed at the bottom. But I'd still be upset that they're gone. A loved on has way more sentimental value than keys, and are irreplaceable. So even if you know a loved one is going to heaven, why wouldn't you be sad they're not with you anymore?
>>1243436I lived in Chiba between 1997 and 1999, Nokia related things.I was invited to visit four of my Japanese co-workers homes during that time. They all had a small shrine corner or shelf. I asked about them.It wasn't ever about religion, it was all about spiritual tradition. They respect any and all Gods in their faith, which wasn't about trust in any religion but more like faith in the future, which stands on the good decisions made in the past.In other words, you can't have any future without a recognized past. This is very much Japanese way of thinking about things regarding faith.
>>1244178>if I am a true believer in gravity, and I drop my keys in a lake, I know my keys are unharmed at the bottomIf you were a true believer in gravity, you'd know not to drop your keys in a lake, because you'd know what would happen.Heaven is just one example, there's a whole separate level of belief that people afford to banal ordinary things that they just know to be true and don't think about, that most people who call themselves religious don't afford to religion. No-one thinks worse of them for not believing that God made everything the same way they believe their house will still be there when they drive home.
>>1244178>why wouldn't you be sad they're not with you anymore?Because you're going to heaven too, and you'll be in heaven forever.
>>1244224>If you were a true believer in gravity, you'd know not to drop your keys in a lake, because you'd know what would happen.How is this comparison supposed to be interpreted? The topic in question was dying and going to heaven. >If you were a true believer in God, you'd know not to die, because you'd know what would happen.What are you saying?
>>1244236>If you were a true believer in God, you'd know not to dieGravity was never intended to be an analogy for heaven, they're just two things you can believe in.
>>1243436>>1243444When you have to ask any questions about a different culture because of cartoons you watch, you're a fucking absolute moron.
Shinto isn't really a "religion" in the sense Christianity is, or Buddhism is. In the first place, modern Shinto has been heavily reformed by the national government, in an effort to create a more coherent "native Japanese" religion. Prior to their efforts, Shintoism was highly decentralized without any kind of standard doctrine. Beliefs, rituals, and rites differed a lot from place to place, and at best you had a kind of association of various major shrines as a kind of religious authority, but things were simply too fragmented and often people didn't even practice "shrine shinto", particularly in more remote locations where they had no shrines, and in other places Buddhist temples had absorbed a lot of the old Shinto traditions and folded them into the Buddhist doctrine. So you can see why the average Japanese person wouldn't describe themselves as "Shintoist", it wouldn't evoke any kind of common feeling, since one "Shintoist" might have entirely different beliefs and practices to another, even if they only lived one town over. But since the Meiji Restoration that was an effort to change this and create a modern Shinto "religion" of sorts, a kind of standard doctrine. As of WW2 the best they have is the Association of Shinto Shrines, which is the largest Shinto organization in Japan, but is by no means comprehensive of all Shinto practices, or even all Shinto shrines. Anime though loves old, spooky shinto shrines as plot devices. Very often you'll have settings with weird local shrines that worship peculiar local gods and have bizarre rituals, it's a common trope in Japanese horror and fantasy, but for the most part shrines will try to join an Association to get funding and support.
>>1244405Thanks for an actual answer on this
>>1243440Not a nice thing to say