long time! too long. so, i can’t remenber what i was going to write.
but, of course, about gods.
in old days, all over the world, all human races had a lot of gods in their myth. their gods were not far from themselves. originally, gods were familiar people and things, like ancestors, heros, heroines, rivers, mountains, forests and so on.
in countries the christianity and islam had spread to, their old gods fell.
in modern times, most of advanced countries are the christianity nations in western europe. so, even today, christianity ideas of western europe are predominant in the world.
other countries, however, have a different way of thoughts of gods.
in japan, we have a lot of gods still now. some japanese people think an excellent old artificial thing makes itself a god someday. all living and nonliving matter have the ability to be a god.
this is maybe a blasphemous idea for a monotheist. the japanese accepted the buddhism in the former part of the 6th century. we also did the christianity in the middle of the 16th. but nature of japanese is an animist, i think.
japanese say “i’m an atheist.”. and i think the word atheist probably surprises monotheists, like christians and muslims. but it does not have the original meaning of the word. it perhaps means “i’m not one of believers of monotheistic religion.”
still now, most of japanese believe their old gods in somewhere of their mind. if we don’t, why do we go the beach or the mountain and worship the sunrise on new year’s day?
off-talk voice : i’m not young anymore. so, the younger generation’s opinion might be different.
to resume the thread of my talk :
have you read kojiki? this is one of the oldest books in japan and a mixture of the history and the myth. originally, kojiki is all written by chinese character. not chinese language, but chinese character. our ancestors made up a phonographic writing system by using chinese character. the system is called a manyogana.
when i read kojiki for the first time, i was a junior high school student. of course, i couldn’t read senteces written by manyoganas. so i read kojiki was written by old writing of chinese character Japanese syllabary mixing.
still it was very difficult for me. but stories in it were very intresting.
the first part of kojiki tells us how the japanese islands were born. a god and a goddess looked down expanse of water. sea? this is biginning. kojiki tells nothing about before the biginning time.
but water as far as they can reach!! it probably means they had a big flood, like the deluge. don’t you think?
two gods, izanagi and izanami, stirred it by a pike slowly and drops dripped from it when they pulled the pike up. the drops hardend and became an island.
this is a myth. izanagi and izanami were parents of the japanese islands and some gods. but when did they make or bear ordinary people? ordinary people in kojiki appeared unnoticed. gods izanagi and izanami didn’t bear existed. where did they come from?
we have no history book is older than kojiki in japan. besides, kojiki is not a pure history book.
in its long history, japanese have accepted various religions and thoughts, such as the buddhism, the confucianism, and the christianity, etc. but we still have our original religion, the faith of mother nature.
all living and non-living things have own spirit.