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Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
Kutaki Postmaster
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Hello all-
I've seen references in a couple of places, most notably in our soke's recent Japanese Swordfighting book, of Buddhists in Japan around 500 BC. This seems odd, since that is approximately the time when Guatama Buddha was alive and predates the introduction of Buddhism in Japan by around 1000 years. I thought it was a misprint, but I have seen it elsewhere. Does anyone know anything about this?
Thanks-
Steve

Posted on: 2006/3/7 6:09
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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Have not read Sokes new book. Ordered it in September and still awaiting its arrival from Amazon. Anyway I believe it was Vedics that arrived from India in 500BC.

Gary Arthur

Posted on: 2006/3/7 16:44
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
Permanent Village Fixture
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sschmidt said:-
Quote:
I've seen references in a couple of places, most notably in our soke's recent Japanese Swordfighting book


Could you possibly provide sources for these references? Something along the lines of which book and preferably which page the reference can be found on. That'll help everyone to see exactly what you mean and thus make some constructive comments.

Posted on: 2006/3/7 18:11
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Andrew K Jones

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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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Even though this is my 2nd semester at my college, I took a Survey of Asian Art course during 1st semester and learned that Buddhism was exported to Japan in the mid-6th century C.E. (the mid 500's).
Prince Shotoku Taishi, or Prince "Crown Virtue", was accredited with actually making contacts with Chinese Buddhists and inviting them to Japan.

I used this really massive textbook called A History of Far Eastern Art by Sherman E. Lee; I forget the name though.

Hope this helps some.


- Manny

Posted on: 2006/3/8 2:06
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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Buddhism arrived to Japan some time before Shotoku - but officially it was accepted in 6th century... There is a great book titled "History of Japanese religions" written by Japanese professor of Religious Studies - great read!

Posted on: 2006/3/8 11:32
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
Kutaki Postmaster
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Thanks for your replies, but does anyone know about what sensei is referring to (on page 94 or 96 of Japanese Sword Fighting: Secrets of the Samurai ) when he says "followers of Buddhism" in 550BC?

Posted on: 2006/3/10 0:00
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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I had a quick look at the pages you mentioned in "Japanese Sword Fighting". From context I'm assuming that it's a typo and that it should have been AD instead of BC. Saying that, if someone could check the original Japanese text we'd know a little more.

The same information is given in Hatsumi sensei's other book "Budo Sensho Sojutsu" although I'm going by the RVD translation rather than reading the original Japanese.

Posted on: 2006/3/10 18:03
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Andrew K Jones

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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
Kutaki Postmaster
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Yeah, I looked at the japanese and it is the kanji for B.C. I think the event might be the same on that he refers to at the beginning of chapter 2, page 88. Any ideas? Perhaps someone could ask soke for me. Shawn?

Posted on: 2006/3/11 2:12
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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I believe that 550B.C. is a mistake - most likely just the typo... why? because it is accepted by all historians that the date 550 (modern era) is an "official" date for the arrival of Buddhism to Japan. :)

Posted on: 2006/3/11 6:59
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Remi Pulwer
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Re: Buddhists in Japan - 500BC?
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Sorry for interrupting this thread.

The reference to the Buddhists arriving to Japan around 550 B.C. comes from the Amatsu Tatara books. The story says that the Buddhist were Malays and they invaded Japan about 550 B.C. The Malays were defeated, but were allowed to stay in Japan.

Quote:
Have not read Sokes new book. Ordered it in September and still awaiting its arrival from Amazon. Anyway I believe it was Vedics that arrived from India in 500BC.


The Vedics, or sometimes referred as a "people from Caldia" (Babylon), were shipwrecked on Japan around 600 B.C., 50 years before the "Buddhist Malays."

Hope this helps.

Regards,
George Kohler

Posted on: 2006/3/11 11:09
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