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Letters by a modern St. Ferdinand III about cults

Gab@StFerdinandIII - Plenty of cults exist - every cult has its 'religious dogma', its idols, its 'prophets', its 'science', its 'proof' and its intolerant liturgy of demands.  Cults everywhere:  Corona, 'The Science' or Scientism, Islam, the State, the cult of Gender Fascism, Marxism, Darwin and Evolution, Globaloneywarming, Changing Climate, Abortion....a nice variety for the human-hater, amoral, anti-rationalist to choose from.  It is so much fun mocking them isn't it ?

Tempus Fugit Memento Mori - Time Flies Remember Death 

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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Was Shintoism also sacred like the Koran and Islam is supposed to be ?

The revival of Japanese pan-theism in the 19th century led directly to totalitarianism.

by StFerdIII

I am no expert on Japanese history but a cursory glance at developments during the 19th century in the land of the rising sun [the Japanese like the Muslims were self-declared as the children of 'God or Gods' and superior to all races of course] provides some startling parallels to what has unfolded in Islam's 1400 imperialist march. Shinto-ism or the native Japanese poly-theistic tradition took a sharp fundamentalist turn in the early 19th century and the inevitable result was 20th century Japanese totalitarianism. Yet today the Shinto creed – fundamentalist and polytheistic – would be and indeed is declared, a sacred religion, premised on sacred ideals and texts. How absurd and yet how very post modern and confused.

Background to the Shinto ideology:
For millenia the Japanese like the Chinese, thought of themselves as the superior race, chosen by God or Gods and infinitely better than the 'others'. Non-Japanese barbarians, especially Westerners, had nothing of interest or note to teach or to give to the Japanese. The fact that 19th century Japan was about as advanced as 8th century Byzantium in economy, politics, tools, technologies and inquiry made no impression upon the Japanese. It was a feudal state, ruled by a warrior caste who controlled land, money and the illiterate peasant mass.

Like China, 19th century Japan was an insular, arrogant, poor and corrupt state – where blind supremacism trumped reality – and the best interests of the average Japanese serf. The Japanese, like the Chinese, had no interest in outsiders, or outside influences. It was no accident that the so-called 'West' 'discovered' Japan and forced open trade and not the other way around. Japanese insularity guaranteed its poverty in all matters ranging from the moral, to the political and economic. Certainly the average person suffered under a system run on doctrines of power, contempt for the individual and a disavowal of non-state forces and dynamics.

Against this feudal backdrop there arose in the 19th century a resurgence in Shinto ideas. Shinto-ism is not a codified set of laws per-se, like the Mosaic code, but rather a ritualised program of pantheistic worship. Within the Shinto world there is approximately 8 million different Gods which can be worshipped. The Shinto follower will live a life devoted to the appeasement of one or more of these Gods – or so the Shinto creed adjures.

Its fundamentalist rise in 19th century Japan:
The rise of the West and of Western trading and cultural interests in the Far East during the 18th and 19th centuries stirred up a predictable Japanese response. Closed to foreigners, fearful of losing gold and silver in trading for Western materials; desirous to close off the inquiry and rationality of Western science and technological progress; and fearful of Christianity's moral appeal, the Japanese ruling military caste did what came naturally – it outlawed all contacts with the Barbarians.

In the place of Western influences the Japanese developed a strain of fundamentalist Shinto ideology. The intent was rather obvious. In order to negate what was viewed as inferior and corrupt Barbarian practices, Japanese society must coalesce around a Japanese-inspired system of living and belief. Only then can the superior Japanese – the chosen ones of the Sun God – be able to repel the inferior, unclean and incredibly stupid Russian and Western brutes and cast off the shackles of Chinese cultural domination embedded in Confucian and Buddhist doctrines.

This entirely expected and historically consistent xenophobic reaction against all foreigners and external contact, was manifested in the rise of a deeply hostile and militaristic pan-theism. The greatest of the Shinto revivalists was Mabuchi [mid 18th century] whose anti-Chinese doctrines were to have a profound influence in the Shinto revival of the early 19th century. Mabuchi taught that the Chinese were evil, the Japanese natively good, and that all matters of Japanese life superior to the foreigner. These ideas were expanded by another fundamentalist Moto-ori whose 1822 publications contained the full power of Japanese history, cosmology and god-worship – including all of the 8 million Shinto gods. As such the cultural ethos in Japan by the early 19th century was to reject Buddhism, Confucianism and certainly all Western artifacts.

Another Shinto fundamentalist was Hirata born in 1776 who expanded the intellectual case for Japanese exceptionalism premised on Shinto ideology. His main work begins with the phrase, 'Why Japan is the Country of the Gods', and in it he argues that all of the 8 million Shinto gods were born in Japan and not elsewhere. As such Japan was the divine center of mankind. Hirata's argument was that devotion to the Japanese pantheon of gods and the realisation of Japan's unique greatness premised on the blessing of these god's should be the basis of Japanese spirituality.

This fundamentalist Shinto ideology had no moral code, no ethical guidance and no main 'bible' providing a social road map. Instead the Shinto creed was used to support the state and the state enforced set of laws prescribing god-worship and by extension support by the individual of the state. Indeed it was the state which sanctioned Shinto ritual and worship and which mandated Shinto devotion which gave the fundamentalist movement its ultimate triumph and power. In other words, the state and politicians using an ideology to cement their hold on power.

The result:
The fundamentalist Shinto creed in 19th century Japan thus became welded to state power. It was the state which organised the ideology of society and created the documents and cultural artifacts and which pronounced them 'sacred'. Fundamentalist Shinto thus infiltrated all aspects of social life from education to cultural beliefs. Over time the exceptionalism of Japan based on Shinto fundamentalism became a 'fact' and a 'sacred' national belief. It defined the Japanese consciousness. It was however viciously supremacist. This xenophobic and illogical creed of submission to gods and to the power of the state, which of course had received the blessing of these gods, led directly to the militaristic culture and totalitarian impulse which created Tojo's fascist state in the early to mid 20th century.

Shapeless ideologies which invoke 'godly approval', and which are controlled by the state always lead to totalitarian fascism. Political masters and cult leaders are the ones who create the 'sacred' documents of course. Islam which melds church and state, and uses 'turgid and shapeless' writing mandating the support of the cult and its leadership shares much in common with the fundamentalist Shinto ideology of 19th century Japan. Xenophobia, irrationality, gullibility, confusion and an incredible narcissistic egoism in which 'God' or 'Gods' smile benignly on the 'chosen race' or the 'chosen group' which engages in rituals which in turn are used to re-confirm a 'Godly' covenant, permeate both creeds.

The Shinto followers were polytheists – somehow believing that 8 million gods supported Japanese exceptionalism. The Arabs plagiarized Jewish and Christian beliefs and monotheism – but they likewise developed a credo in which somehow they and 'Muslims' were blessed and supported by divine power and authority. In this view the 'unbelievers' were like Barbarians in Shinto dominated Japan – to be avoided, fought with, or converted to the 'right' path of life. Much like Japanese militarism, the Arab certainty that 'Allah' is with them was and is the driving force for imperial adventure and supremacist cant and racism. Why tolerate the Jew and Christian when the Arab Allah ideology is superior ? Why should the Japanese have tolerated Sinos and Westerners when the land of the rising sun was exceptional, supreme and the home of 8 million benevolent and powerful Japanese gods ?

Today of course in the pop-culture post modern stupidity which passes for 'progressive thinking' the militaristic, fascistic and pagan Japanese Shinto creed would and is declared 'sacred'. The fact that it leads inevitably to a society of imperialist aggression and one which disdains modernity, individualism and freedom is of of course lost on little post-modern, relativist minds. It is enough that the Shinto creed was not Western and was not inspired by Whites or Jews.

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