Military Review

Religion of the blooming plum and sharp sword warriors (part of 2)

The soldiers wander,
Huddled together on a muddy road

What a cold!

In the past, the material on the religious beliefs of the samurai, we stopped at the fact that Zen Buddhism was very beneficial to the top of the samurai class. And it is interesting that the matter touched not only the spiritual sphere, but also the practical side of their military and sports preparation for war. The fact is that both in fencing, and in archery, and in various kinds of wrestling without weaponsand even in swimming, the Japanese took the main role not on the physical state, but on the spiritual one. Psychological balance and self-control, developed by Zen, were very important for the samurai. Well, the main way to know the truth in Zen was meditation (zazen) - mindless contemplation of the surroundings in a sitting position and with crossed legs. The place for it was a garden or an empty room, in which there would be nothing to distract the meditator.

Religion of the blooming plum and sharp sword warriors (part of 2)

Yoshitoshi Tsukioka (1839 - 1892) - an outstanding Japanese artist who worked in the technique of woodcuts, depicted not only "100 views of the moon." They also performed other series in the uki-e genre, which were as skillfully executed as they were filled with deep meaning. For example, he painted demons, which, as all the Japanese knew well, surrounded them from all sides. Here is one of his works, which is called “The Spirit of the Falls”.

The main rule when contemplating was to train the lungs, the training of a person to take a breathing helped his “self-deepening” and brought up his endurance and patience. The condition that was achieved by this practice was called “musin”, after which it was already possible to reach the moog (or the absence of “me”). That is, a person has renounced all earthly things and, as it were, soars above his mortal body. In such self-deepening, in the opinion of adherents of the school of Zen-soto, a satori - a state of enlightenment - could have per person

A koan or a question that the tutor asked his student was also used. This method was used, for example, by the Rinzai school. Questions mentor should also lead to satori. Moreover, logic was not welcomed here, since the ideal was complete “thoughtlessness” and, again, detachment from earthly existence.

Sometimes, in order to reach satori, the sensei mentor (which is now often practiced in various fashionable sects!) Used the blow of a stick, could suddenly push a person into the dirt and even pinch his nose. All this, however, had a definite purpose - to maintain calm and self-control. Moreover, it was argued that the person who experienced satori looked at life completely differently after that, but the main thing was that such a person could act effectively in any situation, because he remained calm when they pinched his nose and beat him with a stick ...

And it turned out that power, fame, money, and even victory, that is, - all that the Japanese warrior was supposed to strive for, after satori, became of little value to him, which was beneficial for the elite of society, as it allowed saving material benefits on ... rewards! It’s like an order for courage: you got a cheap tsatsku and rejoice ... everyone seems to respect you, although in fact people respect land and expensive cars much more. But any elite usually keeps these benefits for itself!

But this is a duel with a shadow and ... who can say that without Sigmund Freud there wasn’t enough?

In the XII - XVI centuries. “Zenxu” entered its highest flowering stage and became a very influential sect in Japan, and was supported by the shogun government. Although we note that Zen Buddhism greatly influenced all areas of Japanese culture. Moreover, the victory of the Tokugawa clan and the assertion in the country of the samurai authorities in some way changed the essence of Zen.

Now Zen was no longer so strict a teaching as it was at the beginning. Of course, readiness at any moment, on the orders of the overlord “to go into emptiness,” has not been canceled. But now the opinion that a person should live and enjoy life, love and appreciate all that is beautiful, has also become established. It was believed that the Japanese warrior should possess not only one military prowess (bu), but also culture, and even humanity (bun).

One of the Yoshitoshi xylography series was called “28 Famous Killers”. And why not glorify them? These are not some ordinary murderers, but the most famous !!!

Since the wars in Japan stopped, the samurai began to indulge in the tea ceremony, learned to paint with ink, learned the art of ikebana, and even ... participated in theatrical performances! And here again, the paradox of any religion like “you will not sin, you will not repent”: Zen asserted the uselessness of knowledge, however, the moments of Zen that helped in bringing up the character of a warrior were considered useful and for that… they learned! For example, they were taught by the tea ceremony, because they saw elements of meditation in it and ... why can we drink tea only in Buddhist monasteries and clergy ?! According to legend, the founder of the “Zen” sect of Daruma just fell asleep during meditation, as he was very tired. When he woke up, in a rage he cut off his eyelids for himself, so that they no longer prevented him from following the “path” to “enlightenment”. He threw them on the ground, where they turned into shoots of tea bushes, which gave people a remedy for sleep.

"Killing niu." This is such a mythical creature and why not samurai kill him ?!

So that no fuss of the outside world would prevent quiet contemplation and quiet conversation during a pull, tea houses (tatsitsy) and reception rooms for waiting for this ceremony (yoritsuki) were arranged away from the living quarters, usually somewhere in the depths of the garden. Accordingly, appropriate parks were needed, which contributed to the development of park culture, gardens (gardening) and interior design. Under Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, even special rules of tea etiquette were introduced, compiled by Sanno Rikyu, whom Hideyoshi appointed as the master of the tea ceremony of his palace. The son of a seedy peasant (or woodcutter - opinions diverge here), he sought the nobility of manners to prove to the old aristocracy that he was no worse. Moreover, when Sanno Rikyu fell into disgrace at the age of 71, he did not wait for the old man to die, but ordered him to do seppuku.

And this is just "Demon". Remember? “The sad Demon, the spirit of exile, flew over the sinful land ...” Here in Yoshitoshi also, but in Japanese!

Dry gardens, which were also initially established only by Zen monks in their monasteries. Well, the Japanese called them “gardens of meditation and thinking” (as an example of such a garden, the garden in Ryoandzi monastery in Kyoto is usually given) also went beyond the monastery walls and began to settle in the courtyards of the nobility, and even ordinary samurai, who took the example of their own overlords.

In the XIV century. Zen teachings also touched the “No” theater - the theatrical art of the highest aristocracy and the serving nobility, which developed from the farcical dance of the sarukagu ​​(which Buddhist priests turned from a comic into a religious dance). It is clear that the plays “But” glorified, first of all, the courage of the ancient heroes (the modern ones were all in sight and could not serve as role models by definition!), And, of course, the faithfulness of the vassal to his master. They were divided into historical (they were also called “military performances” (shura-no) and lyrical (“feminine” (jo-no). Again Hideyoshi himself played in the performances of the No theater, performing on stage with chants and pantomime dances At the same time, his courtiers, rank-and-file feudal lords, and ordinary warriors (in extras) should have participated in the No dance, which was seen as a sign of good form and “fulfillment of a vassal duty.” Nobody dared to refuse, as it would be its violation with all the consequences that follow from this. It’s not without reason that it is noted that one who has gone “from rags to riches” (it doesn’t matter, in Japan or elsewhere) always wants to become “holier than all saints” and tries to succeed everywhere and in Or show that he succeeds everywhere and in everything and for some reason at the same time draws many on the stage ...

"Big carp". Have you seen such a big carp? So, it’s not just a carp, but a spirit or a demon, so you won’t immediately determine ...

But here the development of military affairs again came into conflict with the culture of Zen. It turned out that no matter how much you contemplate, a musket's bullet will kill you anyway, and you will not even see it and will not be able to dodge as if from an arrow! In addition, peace has come to Japan. The samurai got much more time for their education, and many for various reasons became teachers, poets, artists.

At the same time, other sects began to spread, responding to the "spirit of the times." First of all, it is the “Nitiren” sect, which arose as early as the middle of the 13th century and promised that in a certain time period all beings and things would turn into Buddha, since he is in everything around us. Over time, many samurai became members of the Nitiren sect, but most of the Nitiren were still Ronin, peasants and other sectors of samurai society deprived of the benefits.

What if such a ghost appears to you in a dream? This is not a Bondarchuk film, is it? Saves only a sharp samurai sword!

The samurai also honored individual deities from the Buddhist pantheon. These included the bodhisattvas Kannon (Avalokitesvara) - the goddess of mercy and compassion and Marisitan (Marici) - a deity who patronized the warriors. Before the march the samurai put small images of Kannon into their helmets; and from Marisiten they asked for protection and help before the start of a fight or battle.

Almost as important in the religion of the samurai was a very ancient cult of Shinto, which quite peacefully got on with Buddhism. The essence of Shinto is the belief in the spirits of nature. That is, in fact, one of the options for paganism. The three main Shinto shrines were considered (and are still viewed today!) By the Japanese as symbols of state power. This is a sacred sword, a jewel (necklace of jade, jasper or just a gem) and a mirror.

Now you understand, where do Japanese animal painters get ideas for their horror films? Here are the works of the "classics of the genre" still a century ago! By the way, the picture is called “Heavy basket”.

- The sword (ame-no murakumo-no-tsurugi - "The sword of swirling clouds") was a symbol of the whole samurai army, and had to protect Japan from enemies.

- The jewel (yasakani-no magatama, “Shining Curved Jasper”) symbolized perfection, kindness, mercy and at the same time firmness in management. The ancient warriors specially wore a whole bunch of such magatam. It is possible that they (originally the teeth of wild animals) served as amulets, like many other peoples of Siberia.

- The mirror (yat-but kagami - just a “mirror” and that's it!) Was an emblem of wisdom and a symbol of the sun goddess Amaterasu. It has also been used as a protective talisman. Therefore, it was attached between the horns of the Kuwagat helmet.

And this is the “Cami of the cherry tree”. And remember: "Cheri, Cheri Lady"? This is the song of the German disco band Modern Talking. And we also have “Cherry, Cherry, Winter Cherry ...” The Japanese understand both of these songs very well. Probably, we all came out of the same Hyperborea ...

All these three attributes of Shinto were often offered to deities as a sacrifice, and sometimes they themselves represented a syntai or “body” of a deity, something like our Christian Trinity.

The ending should ...

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  1. parusnik
    parusnik 11 January 2017 06: 37
    Excellent woodcuts, waiting for graduation, thanks ...
  2. Mikado
    Mikado 11 January 2017 08: 32
    I join the esteemed Sailboat, the article is very good. Overview, visual, pleasant language.
    Hideyoshi himself played in the performances of the “No” theater ..... At the same time, his courtiers, rank-and-file feudal lords, and ordinary warriors (in extras) were supposed to participate in the “No” dances .... Nobody dared to refuse, since that would be his violation with all the ensuing consequences.

    smacks of emperor Nero. Remember the ad for Bank Imperial? "Something strange happened!" laughing
    I read about Daruma, the eyelids and the tea bush back in the 90s in some cheap book about the Shao-Lin monastery (then books about oriental martial arts were fashionable). It seems, according to legend, he came to China from India.
    In general, you read an article, and you understand that for each paragraph, if you analyze it in detail, you can write, if not a series of articles, then an entire article, there would be a desire. good
    All with the beginning of a new day! hi drinks
  3. Dekabrist
    Dekabrist 11 January 2017 09: 07
    Yes, but I warned you yesterday.
    Shintoism in Japan is an ideological foundation uniting the idea of ​​Japanese society. This is the main thing.
    In a word - I would start to prepare for the seppuk in your place.
  4. ruskih
    ruskih 11 January 2017 10: 44
    Good morning and good day to a wonderful company: Sailboat, Mikado, Decembrist! Thanks to the author for collecting such wonderful people here. Woodcuts are interesting and cause very different associations.
    1. Dekabrist
      Dekabrist 11 January 2017 11: 16
      Buddhism and woodcut are interconnected.
      The technique of woodcuts, or printing from wooden boards, appeared in Japan during the Heian period (794-1185) along with the spread of Buddhism. The technique of printing from wooden boards was initially used in the manufacture of black and white prints with images of various Buddhist saints and in illustrating the text of the sutras.
      UKIE-E is a trend in the fine arts of Japan, developed from the Edo period (1600-1868).

      The word "ukiyo" in ancient times meant one of the Buddhist categories and could be translated as "a transitory changeable world." At the end of the seventeenth century. Ukiyo began to denote the world of earthly joys and pleasures. Ukiyo-e are pictures of the daily life of the urban class of the Edo period.

      The first easel prints were also black and white, then they began to be slightly tinted by hand with cinnabar (tan-e), later the engravings were tinted with dark red paint (beni-e) or shaded with black dense paint, which created the effect of being covered with black varnish (urusi) e). The first prints using red (benizuri-e) appeared in the middle of the 1765th century. Gradually the number of boards for color printing increased, and in XNUMX the first multi-color engravings appeared, called "brocade paintings" (nishiki-e).
      In general, in Japan, everything is so much interconnected that pulling one thread, you will inevitably pull a lot more. Therefore, writing about Japan is difficult.
      1. ruskih
        ruskih 11 January 2017 11: 27
        Thanks for the informative comment. Yes, Japan is a completely different world for our perception, but as always you are looking for common ground.
        1. Dekabrist
          Dekabrist 11 January 2017 13: 23
          In general, one could write a separate article, but it seems to be off topic. And the question is very interesting both historically and for understanding Japanese culture.
          Color woodcut is laborious and requires the participation of several specialists: an artist who writes a sketch of a future engraving; an artisan who "brings" a sketch to such a degree of detail that it would be possible to cut a board from it for printing; a carver transferring the image to a longitudinal cut board, and a separate board was cut for each color; and a printer who prints by hand without using a machine. Usually, the role of the publisher was very important, who not only provided general management and provided sales, but often was also the author of the idea of ​​the work. There could have been one more participant - a poet who wrote the accompanying poem for the engraving and in some cases acted as a calligrapher when he wrote down his creation on a sketch with his own hand.
          1. ruskih
            ruskih 11 January 2017 14: 12
            Indeed, the question is very interesting, and about "seemingly off-site" I have no doubt that our men are resourceful. Even the amazing woodcut of kami sakura can be summed up under the military theme for our "old soldiers who do not know the words of love." lol As young people study the Sakura Kami tactical knife and the engraving on it, we will enjoy the historical narrative.
    2. Mikado
      Mikado 11 January 2017 11: 27
      "Peace Corner" from V.O. Shpakovsky love the eye is resting, and nice people have gathered!
      1. Uncle Murzik
        Uncle Murzik 11 January 2017 14: 22
        laughing similarities clapping hands to dreamers, manipulators, plagiarists! wassat
        1. kalibr
          11 January 2017 15: 31
          That is, you immediately accuse several people unfamiliar to you personally of plagiarism without any evidence for this, right?
        2. Mikado
          Mikado 11 January 2017 15: 42
          laughing like clapping hands dreamers, manipulators, plagiarists! wassat

          Each author has features: his own style, his own claims, his own sphere of description and his readers. Skomorokhov writes well about politics, Polonsky - about Southeast Asia, Ryabov - about technology, even Kaptsov is interesting to read (simply because he wrote). The author of Shpakovsky also has its merits, which occupy their niche among readers by the totality of qualities that I cited at the beginning of the paragraph.
          Yesterday you started to write nasty things about the author out of place, today you took up his readers. I do not consider this a worthy behavior on the site.
          You are tired. Saving your presence hi
  5. Penzuck
    Penzuck 11 January 2017 12: 44
    Now you understand where the Japanese animalists draw ideas for their horror movies? Here from the works of the "classics of the genre" even a hundred years ago! By the way, the picture is called "Heavy Basket".

    I dare to express my opinion on this paragraph:
    Let's go from the "ass".
    The author is sure that a substantial part of the "VO" visitors have long joined the Japanese "horror films" and are just waiting for an answer, where do the creators of horror films get their ideas from? - then the author was "driven", because the topic of "horror films" on "VO" had not been raised earlier. Even in this article!
    Since the author is sure that animalists create precisely "horror films", and not just depict animals and anthropomorphic characters of fairy tales, the phrase "now you understand" is superfluous.
    Let's go from the "front".
    The most famous genres in pop culture and connected with both Japan and animal painters are the genres of "anime" (cartoons) and "manga" (comics), but how can they be linked to "horror films"? (I think that Miyazaki's children's animated fairy tale "Spirited Away" can still be classified as "horror films"). Then the author should reveal the concept of "horror films" and perhaps even use the clumsy word "animators". Otherwise, we should know all animalists by name and see Yoshitoshi's ideas in their "terrible" paintings.
    Develop our doubts, please.
    1. kalibr
      11 January 2017 12: 54
      You have noticed this well. It was necessary to write a little differently. "Creators of animated horror films" - it would be more correct. But now it makes no sense to fix it. You just need to take note of your remark.
      1. Penzuck
        Penzuck 11 January 2017 14: 34
        Quote: kalibr
        . "Creators of Animated Horror Films"

        Thank you, now your idea is clear ...
  6. voyaka uh
    voyaka uh 11 January 2017 16: 26
    As far as I was told by a relative who is fond of Japan, the Japanese
    not religious "to the core." Religion for them is a tool that makes
    life is either fuller or more convenient. Therefore, in Japan there was no religious war.
    Samurai of the same master could be Zen Buddhists, and Shinto, and even
    In Europe, this did not happen.
    Women are extremely pragmatic. Romance is welcome, but not "heartbreaking"
    but as a style. Somehow a relative spoke about the translation of the phrase "naive girls",
    in relation to Japanese women. When in the circle of Japanese and Japanese women they realized what he wanted to say
    "European," a long laugh went up. They explained to him that "this does not happen" ...
    1. Mikado
      Mikado 11 January 2017 16: 40
      Therefore, in Japan there was no religious war.

      there was one, if you can call it that. It was the Shimabara uprising in 1637-38. He had many reasons, the fact remains - the rebels were Japanese Christians. It was after the suppression of this uprising that the final isolation of Japan took place - out of harm's way, otherwise "white barbarians go here, confuse the people." And it was after that, until the very end of the Tokugawa reign, there was not a single war in Japan.
  7. Taoist
    Taoist 11 January 2017 16: 31
    But I have not yet understood the message of this study. So I'll wait for the end. But something painfully scratched ... However, this is from the eternal category "West is west east is east" (c)
    But I will say one thing, for me personally, at one time, the study of Shinto and the "Haga Kure" based on it helped a lot in life. It's just that any idea can be quite easily brought to the absolute and thereby turned into its opposite. (This is the question of the value system).
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 11 January 2017 17: 50
      "However, this is from the eternal category" West is West, East is East "///

      Become like a Japanese: take the East (philosophy) is NOT close to the heart (emotionally),
      and cold as a useful tool that can improve life.
      As Steve Jobs figuratively wrote (approximately): "you walk along the road (path, Tao), monkeys (thoughts) constantly jump across the road. If there are a lot of them, they begin to interfere and obscure the bull / buffalo (Buddhism and" Zen "), which gradually need to catch up. "
  8. Andrei from Chelyabinsk
    Andrei from Chelyabinsk 11 January 2017 17: 02
    Very interesting, thank you very much! It’s a pity, of course, that I can’t add to the point - the baggage of knowledge is definitely not enough, but I learned a lot
  9. shinobi
    shinobi 11 January 2017 20: 24
    The author writes very well, but he is passing through Zen in vain. Those who have experienced at least once satori really begin to perceive reality differently, only in the human language / languages ​​there are practically no clear and intelligible words to convey the experience gained. Personal experience is how to explain to the interlocutor when you don’t understand how you start to see in all directions on the sphere or in absolute darkness? Moreover, before enlightenment, I’m just sitting down to Beijing! them teachings.
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 12 January 2017 00: 31
      "but it is in vain to drive through Zen" ///

      Passing through Zen is in the Zen style. Their gurus loved to make fun of themselves.
      All their paradoxes, like "prove that the buddha is mr". And a little bit of a student - a bamboo stick on the head. And satori is an amazing thing. But in everyday life it interferes. Here the Zen practitioner must choose - here you are (like a samurai) or "there." smile
  10. Igor K-grad
    Igor K-grad 15 January 2017 19: 51
    "It was believed that a Japanese warrior should have not only one military prowess (bu), but also culture, and even humanity (boon)."
    Concerning the "humanism" of the Japanese, and especially of the samurai comrades, I am plagued by vague doubts. Perhaps they have something purely external, acquired from the Chinese, such as elements from Chen Buddhism and Confucianism mutated on Japanese soil. But in the light of the Nanking massacre and zoological experiments on prisoners, as well as on Russian emigrants, there remains a bad aftertaste about the transcendental cruelty and pathological slaughter of these very Japanese "ritual" militants.
  11. Jääkorppi
    Jääkorppi 17 January 2017 11: 59
    Thank! Very informative, especially for those who want to understand the mentality of the Japanese. Loved the wonderful illustrations!