As Rosemary Bernard tells us, the Shinto tradition encompasses both local community practices as well as the formal ceremonial practices of the imperial institution. But largely “Shinto beliefs are often values that are entrenched in Japanese folk culture in general, and which find expression in other areas beyond religion.” Sacred nature shrines and a fluid interplay between nature, human, and divine show that this ancient system has much to teach us about reverence for our home, Earth.
In “Shinto and Ecology: Practice and Orientations to Nature” Rosemarie Bernard of Waseda University gives us a look at Shinto beliefs and practices around nature and the environment, including their concept of sacred space; the interrelation and interactivity of human, deity, and nature; and ceremonies of ritual purification.
This list of resources, complied by Rosemary Bernard, provides additional avenues for exploration of this topic from the 1960s through the 1990s.
Here you will find the Shinto Faith Statement released by the Jinja Honcho, the representative body of all Shinto Shrines in Japan.
Though we are unaware of any engaged projects working specifically within the Shinto tradition, we provide links here to some international projects that encompass all traditions. If you have a project that you believe should belong in this section, Please message our webmaster using the Contact Form.
Located here are multimedia offerings of interest, relating to the intersection of Shinto and ecology.
In addition to the links in the Engaged Projects section, we have provided a brief list of additional online resources here.
Header photo: The torii of Itsukushima Shrine,Itsukushima, Japan