Tag: samurai

Image of Samurai on the battlefield

Samurai Status On Sale!

Presently it is generally accepted that social status during the Edo period was not completely fixed. A generation earlier, we learned in school that there was a hierarchical system called Shi-no-ko-sho (Samurai-Peasant-Artisan-Merchant). But this is now rejected and the word Shi-no-ko-sho has disappeared from textbooks. Even then, it is generally Read More

Tozando 2017 Essay Contest Winning Article

Death in Samurai Literature from Practical to Idiolization

by Edward N. Smith Death comes to us all at the end of our life’s journey, regardless of the path we walk. Inescapably, it pursues us; hiding in the shadows, it waits patiently for our time when our road runs out. Across human societies, culture and class mark subtle differences Read More

Atago Shrine on Mount Agato

The Belief System of Commanders During the Warring States Period

The Japanese people’s reverence of nature dates back to ancient times and is rooted in the religious worship of nature, especially since the prosperity of Sangaku Shinko. This roughly translates as ‘mountain worship’ and originated as a practice in Shugendo in the 7th century as an amalgamation of beliefs and Read More

Woodblock print of Samura committing Seppuku scene

The Loser’s Big Stage

The previous article on seppuku was met with a lot of responses, so I would like to write a follow-up. As mentioned, seppuku initially was not something one did to take responsibility for a mistake, but was done in order to follow a deceased master to death or to kill Read More