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12/27  The Religions 

Today I try to touch TABOO problem.
That’s “Religion”.

It is sometimes said that ‘most of Japanese people doesn’t have their religion, unbeliever.’

In my opinion, It is YES and NO, correct and misunderstanding.
I can say that The ‘Religion’ is not so strong for us in our daily lives.
There are religions in Japan, for example, Shinto/Buddhism/ Ancestor worship and so on.
We are not totally unbeliever. Just ‘not so strong’.
On Jan 1st, many Japanese people go to Shinto shrine or Buddhist temple to pray for health, happiness, luck of their family and friends in new year.
If someone of a family die, we would have funeral by Buddhist style.
Or when we are sick, we pray to ‘god’. In daily lives, we often go to Shrine or temple.
But I never go to Shinto shrine or Buddhist temple everyday or every Sunday.
Seasons, sickness, examination, sport competition, and so on. When we face some important situations of our daily lives, we tend to pray indeed.
There is a Japanese traditional common saying. ’Kurusiitokino kamidanomi.’
There are English translation, ’Man turns to God only in trouble.’ Or ‘Danger past, god forgotten.’ .
As such proverb is born, Japanese is not deeply religious.

On the other side, When I traveled round the world, sometime I was asked about religion of Japanese.
And when I answer like this, some people were surprised. Because they feel we aren’t zealous.
But I cannot say it is wrong, because nowadays I feel there are many serious problems between religions in the world. Especially in major world religions as you know.

I think the most important thing about religious faith is Balance, not how much or how less we believe.
It also doesn’t matter which kind of religion you believe.
From this point of view, I think we Japanese have a good balance.
We respect another religions as equals.
That’s why there is no killing/fighting in Japan, because of religion.



I want to ask the people who are killing,
‘Is there a religion whose God permit to kill another religious people???’
‘Does your god permit you to do it really??? Are you sure???’

If they have no hesitation to say YES, that is a problem.
I can say one thing with conviction.
‘If there is an religion which justify murder, it is never religion.’
It is so easy for even small children to answer.
Why the adults cannot lead correct answer, nevertheless small boy and girl can lead easily?

The problem is an attitude of them which they don’t try to accept another people who believe another religion.

‘We are right, our religion is unique and best all over the world!!’

The results are many acts of retaliation each other. Not only one side, Both.
While ignoring their own faults, criticizing the other one.

I wonder why these problems still remain all over the world, nevertheless We built high advanced civilization.


When I traveled round the world, I met many people from many religions.
They were all friendly, kindly, politely, regardless of religions.
Of course, I was not in belief of their religion, but all of them were kind to me.
I like all of them. Muslim, Christian, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, whatever…..
Maybe I was just lucky?



Many news reports about conflicts between different religious make me sad and wonder.
I really hope that all of people from all kinds of religions could respect each other someday…..
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[ 2014/12/27 19:44 ] Diary and column in English | トラックバック(-) | CM(0)
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