Religion and the environment
On June 2, 2012, the Koyasan Shingon sect held a joint symposium with the Tendai sect and the Jinja Honcho Association of Shrines. The symposium, entitled “Religion
and the Environment: Living in Vow with Nature,” explored these subjects from the point of view of traditional religion. The project started from a single idea:
What is religion’s role in Japan today?
It goes without saying that the recent events of the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake, in which numerous people’s lives were lost and society was launched into massive turmoil and damage, were a large factor that triggered this symposium.
Since that time, Japan has been doing some deep soul-searching on what role people should play in society and how they should face nature in their lives.
The Koyasan Shingon sect and Kongobuji temple have for many years preserved traditional religion as a fundamental part of Japanese spirituality. Whether you consider yourself a believer or non-believer, there is a deep part of the Japanese mentality and spirit that comes from these traditions. We are sure to find hints for the future in the knowledge and prayer accumulated over a period that exceeds 1,000 years.
Living together in vow: this refers to following the path of correct practice and living in harmony with all sentient beings in the world.
This symposium was but a step on the journey to search for the roots of the Japanese spirit and soul through the lens of religion. We hope to work with those throughout the community to explore what it means to live in this day and age.