Video: Japan: Where Gods Aren't Gods and Worshipers Aren't Religious (Shinto Explained)

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Japan: Where Gods Aren't Gods and Worshipers Aren't Religious (Shinto Explained)

Youtube Channel: Life Where I'm From
Have you ever wondered about all the gates (torii) you see around Japan? They are entrances to the sacred ground of Shinto shrines (jinja). While some might see Japan's traditional practices of Shinto as a religion, and their various kami as gods, it's not quite as simple as that.

Special thanks to David Chart for explaining the ins and outs of Shinto. Find out more about Shinto on his blog at and support his writing on Patreon at

See our second video together where we talk about Shinto in Everyday Japanese Life

Also a big thanks to Yushima Tenjin and Shirahata-san for letting us film on their sacred grounds. As mentioned in the video, tourists snapshots at jinja are fine, but you should get permission to film within the sacred space if you'll be using for the commercial or YouTube purposes.

Lastly, thanks to my Patreon supporters who help me make videos like this. Become a patron yourself at

Additional Sources
- Emperor Akihito, Daijosai By Website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, CC 表示 4.0,
- Emperor Akihito 20140424 By State Department photo by William Ng / Public domainEast Asia and Pacific Media Hub - President Obama and Emperor of Japan at the Welcome Ceremony in Japan | Flickr - Photo Sharing!, Public Domain,
- The First Lady guided through torii (Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon)
- Kyoto Gion Matsuri J09 060 By Corpse Reviver - Own work, CC BY 3.0,
- Kyoto Gion Matsuri J09 111 By Corpse Reviver - 投稿者自身による作品, CC 表示 3.0,
- Kyoto Gion Matsuri J09 136 By Corpse Reviver - 投稿者自身による作品, CC 表示 3.0,
- 國輝画「本朝英雄傳」より「牛頭天皇 稲田姫」、大判錦絵 By 歌川国輝 -, パブリック・ドメイン,
- Drawing of Sugawara no Michizane By 菊池容斎 - Kikuchi Yosai, パブリック・ドメイン,
- 岩戸神楽ノ起顕(三代豊国)By 歌川国貞 - [1] , パブリック・ドメイン,
- 玉鬘図 (『源氏物語』画帖の内)-“The Jeweled Chaplet” (“Tamakazura”), from The Tale of Genji (Genji monogatari) MET DP361161.jpg By Creator:Tosa Mitsuyoshi - This file was donated to Wikimedia Commons as part of a project by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. See the Image and Data Resources Open Access Policy, CC0,

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