Summary Of Cristavao Freira By Shusak Endo

1957 Words 8 Pages
People have been persecuted for their religious beliefs as far back as the Classical period in ancient Greek and Roman civilizations.1 As the number of popular religions multiplied globally and the amount of international travelers to Asian countries increased due to growing trade relationships, disagreements and arguments ensued between opposing cultures. In the 1500s, the Japanese culture was introduced to the Christian religion, which led to political and social unrest in the Asian nation. This unrest quickly evolved into a full persecution of the Japanese converts and foreign Christian missionaries, and there were also numerous laws and limitations placed on other Japanese citizens. In a fictional novel written by Shusaku Endo, this …show more content…
The persistent, unyielding efforts to spread Christianity by the foreign priests greatly aided in the adherence of Christianity to the Japanese culture during the Christian era in Japan as illustrated in Silence.2 In the book, Cristavao Ferreira, an influential Portuguese priest, impacted the Japanese people for some thirty-three years before he suddenly stopped communication, which alerted some of his favorite students and compelled them to travel to Japan in search of him. This historical man was of no fictitious creation, but actually an individual who was very significant to the spreading of Christianity in Japan. Ferreira was responsible for popularizing Christianity in Japan from 1609 until 1633, when he was captured and his letters stopped, alarming his devout pupils back home that something was …show more content…
With the subsequent impending danger of storing written documentation of Christian practices, the hidden Christians were individually responsible for the continuance of their religious traditions.11 This great inconvenience resulted in most of their learned information about Christianity to be preserved in memory and expressed verbally. During their attempts to adhere to the Christian ideals, the outer influence of traditional Japanese culture naturally affected the perception of Christian concepts, and errors in translation, memory, and understanding altered and changed the religious practices of the Japanese people. Through the verbal material passed down from one person to the next, this new religion maintained itself in Japan, but was greatly affected in the process, and arguably separate from Christianity. As depicted in Silence by Inoue and Ferreira’s commentary on the Christians in Japan, the concept of Christianity may have been difficult for the natives to comprehend.12 In Shinto belief, the Japanese were accustomed to a mindset that gave life to all things, including the sun, the wind, and other inanimate objects. By impulsively seeing life in insentient matter, the Japanese people were obstructed to the possibility of objects once being

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