Report Outline• Japanese Mythology• Shintoism• Who is Amaterasu?• The Myth of Amaterasu• Why did Amaterasu hide in the cave?• How did Amaterasu influenced the Japanese way of life?
Japanese MythologyJapanese mythology is a system of beliefs that embraces Shinto and Buddhist traditions as well as agriculture-based folk religion.Mainstream Japanese myths, as generally recognized today, are based on the KOJIKI, NIHON SHOKI and some complementary books
The Kojiki or "Record of Ancient Matters" is the oldest recognized book of myths, legends and history of Japan. The Nihon Shoki refers to “Chronicles of Japan”The Nihon Shoki and Kojiki accounts of Amaterasu’s origin differ. Nihon Shoki states that she was the offspring of Izanagi and Izanami, the first Shinto gods, while the Kojiki explains that she was born from Izanagi’s left eye when he ritually washed it from visiting hell.
Shintoism• Is the indigenous spirituality of Japan and the people of Japan.• It is a set of practices, to be carried out diligently, to establish a connection between present day Japan and its ancient past
Who is Amaterasu?•Amaterasu is the the SUN GODDES OFJAPAN according to Shinto Religion.•Her full name is AmaterasuOmikami, which means GREAT SPIRITILLUMINATING THE HEAVENS•a beautiful and compassionate goddesswho ruled both the sun and the heavenlyfields of rice that fed the Japanesepeople.
• She is the offspring of Izanagi and Izanami , the supreme Japanese diety who created the world and the gods.• Another story states that she came from Izanagi’s left eye.• She and her brothers, the storm god, Susanowa, and the moon god, Tsuki- yomi, shared the power of governing the universe. Amaterasu, as the sun goddess, was responsible for illuminating the world and for insuring the fertility of the rice fields.
The Myth of AMATERASUThe myth explains:• The separation between the sun and the moon.• The origin of food on earth.• The beginning of agriculture and silkworm industry.
Separation of Sun and Moon• Amaterasu was reigning in the heavens when she sent her brother and husband, the god of the moon down to the reed plains to serve the goddess of food.• When the goddess of food saw him, the goddess spit boiled rice, fish and fur-coated animals from her mouth for him to eat. This made the moon god insulted.
• The moon god drew his sword and killed the goddess of food.• He returned to Amaterasu and told her of his deed. This made Amaterasu very angry and said: “You are an evil god! Take yourself from my presence and see to it that we do not meet face to face again.• So, the sun and the moon lived apart from one another, separated by day and night.
The Origin of Food, Agriculture andSilkworm Industry on Earth. • The goddess of food was indeed dead after the moon god killed her.• The ox and horse had issued forth from her head, grain had grown from her head, silkworms had come forth from her eyebrows, cereals had emerged from her eyes, rice had grown from her stomach, and wheat and beans had grown from her abdomen.
• Amaterasu was delighted with the variety of foods. She extracted the seeds from various grains and planted them in the dry fields. She took the rice seed and planted them in the water fields.• She placed the silkworms in her mouth and collected silken thread from them. Thus, the goddess initiated the art of raising silkworm.• It is then the beginning of
Why did Amaterasu hide in thecave?• Susano-o-no Mikoto, Amaterasu’s rude, violent and evil brother decided to visit his shining sister – Amaterasu.• Susano-o-Mikoto became possesed by jealous anger. He destroyed and ruined everything – the rice field, the channels and the troughs and pipes.• Amaterasu remained calm and tolerant.
• When Amaterasu was weaving cloth for the god in her sacred weaving hall, her evil brother silently removed the roof tiles and threw a colt of heaven in to room.• Amaterasu was so starled that she pricked herself with her shuttle.
• All of the gods gathered along the banks of the peaceful river of heaven and they planned how to make Amaterasu get out of the cave.• They made prayers and offerings for her.• The goddesses danced and chanted by the door.
• Amaterasu’s curiosity overcame her anger and she opened the door a crack to look outside.• The gods and the people rejoiced in the return of the sun’s brilliant rays.• They took Amaterasu by the hand, had her among them and convinced her to join them.
• The gods punished Susano-o-Mikoto.• He is banished from heaven and from the central weed plains as well.• He left heaven forever and began his journey to the netherland.
MOTIFS1. GODS OF THE UPPER WORLD2. THE HEAVENS3. ORIGIN OF CUSTOMS4. REWARDS AND PUNISHMENTS