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All through the years since World War II the Japanese peoplehave I am convinced made strenuous efforts to preserve andpromote world peace contributing to the progress andprosperity of mankind - Eisaku SatoAncient Japan has a wide cultural variety Traditional foodclothing architecture and religion can be traced down as farback as 2000 years ago Ancient Japanese history is broken into3 periods the Paleolithic period prehistoric the Jomonperiod 14000 BCE to 300 BCD and the Yayoi period 300 BC to300 AD Throughout these years the people of Japan havecultivated their own unique customs and traditions that stillinfluence the rest of the worldRELIGION AND CUSTOMSReligions of Japan share a close resemblance to one anotherBecause of this it was common for the people to combinereligions The three main ancient religions of Japan wereShinto Buddhism and ConfucianismShinto is the first known religion of Japan Beginning as earlyas 500 BCE Shinto derived from the Chinese phrase shin taomeaning The Way of the Kami Under the Shinto religion agroup of deities called the Kami are considered the godsHowever the Kami are very different from the deities in theWest Instead the Kami have a resemblance to Roman and GreekgodsThe Kami are thought to be protectors of the people andare not considered supreme beings The Shinto gods areworshiped using shrines Ceremonies where offerings prayersand purification an act similar to baptism were also held tohonor the Kami Every Shinto shrine are honored in severalmajor festivals including the Spring Festival Autumn orHarvest Festival and Annual Festival and the DivineProcessionBuddhism was introduced in Japan during the 6th century fromChina Under Buddhism people studied the teachings of GautamaSiddhartha the Buddha The religion allows a path of birthdeath and rebirth called the Samsara The Japanese wouldcommonly use Buddhist ideals in their everyday lives whileusing Shinto for special ceremonies such as marriagesfunerals and birthsConfucianism focused on the instructions of Confucius a belovedphilosopher of ancient Japan Originally a Chinese philosophythe religion spread to Japan from Korea in 285 AD Thereligions values
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