In terms of religious history, this period saw the development of many important changes in Japanese religious history. First, a number of Japanese Buddhist sects emerged, such as Pure Land, True Pure Land, Zen, Ritsu, Hokke, and Nichiren schools (Bodiford 2006). Secondly, this period marked the island chain's first encounter with Christianity, as Jesuit missionaries reached the shores of the island in the sixteenth century and began to convert large segments of the population. This practice continued until the Tokugawa government quickly outlawed the practice of Christianity in the early 1600s (Mullins 2006). Finally, during the Edo period (1600-1867) one of the most important developments in Japanese Buddhism took place, the reconfiguration of Buddhist practice into the danka system (Williams 2006).
Through this long period of history, Japanese religions went through changes that characterized them in terms of what they were at the time, and still carry on to this day.
Written by: Ryan Murphy Edited by: Katie Parish, Tayln Cox. & Dr. Roemer
Bibliography: Bodiford, William, 2006."The Medieval Period: Eleventh to Sixteenth Centuries." In Nanzan Guide to Japanese Religions. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 163-183. Mullins, Mark, 2006. "Japanese Christianity." In Nanzan Guide to Japanese Religions. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 115-130. Williams, Dunken, 2006. "Religion in Early Modern Japan." In Nanzan Guide to Japanese Religions. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 220-234.