Spirit Tree: Origins of Cosmology in Shinto Ritual at Hakozaki

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ISBN: 9780761834168
Publisher: UPA
Publication Date: 2007-03-06
Number of pages: 246
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Despite what some scholarship has suggested, Shintô does exhibit a unifying cognitive integrity. Spirit Tree offers a unique social psychological interpretation of Shintô ritual at the Hakozaki Hachiman Shrine in Fukuoka, Japan and situates the cosmological organization of this practice within the larger context of ritual in East Asia. Employing a comparative approach, this study blends two theoretical orientations: cultural anthropology and Jungian psychology. Hakozaki's rituals are a combination of a Yayoi period female medium tradition with a complex set of Chinese Yin-Yang Five Phase principles. Both systems are based on the feminine archetype, a fundamental conceptual foundation of Shintô ritual practice, which cognitively links woman and the earth. While the female shaman tradition is female-affirming in outlook, the later Chinese system is much less so. This monograph is a new acknowledgement of the conceptual continuity of Shintô ritual as an outgrowth of social cognition.

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