Short Essay on “Shintoism”

Shintoism is an ethnic religion of Japan. It developed out of nature and ancestors’ worship. The rulers of Japan recognized Shintoism as the state religion of Japan until the Second World War.

It observes a complex set of deities, family spirits and the divinities residing in rivers, trees, certain animals, and particularly the sun and the moon. One of the Shinto’s elements was the worship of the Japanese emperor as a god, a practice stopped only after the country’s defeat in the Second World War.

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Shintoism was thus as much a political cult as a religion and in cultural sense all Japanese are Shintoists. Many Japanese profess adherence to both Shintoism and Buddhism.

In Shintoism, the centers and places of worship are the numerous shrines and temples in which the gods are believed to dwell and which are approached through ceremonial torsi, or gateway arches.

From the above description, it has become clear that language and religion are the most important components of culture.

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They serve to identify and categorize individuals within a single society and to separate peoples and nations of different languages and faiths.

By their pronunci­ation and choice of words, we may easily recognize districts of origin and educational levels of speakers of our own language.

In some societies, religion may serve as a similar identifier of individuals and groups who observe distinctive modes of rhythms of life dictated by their separate faiths.


Both language and religion are the transmitters of culture as well as its identifiers. Both have distinctive spatial patterns—reflecting past and present processes of spatial interaction and diffusion—that are basic to the recognition of world culture realms.

Although language and religion are important and evident compo­nents of spatial cultural variations, they are only part of the total complex of cultural identities that set off different social groups. In most of the cases, all over the world, ethnicity is still the most important identifier of the individuals, communities, groups and nations.


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