Kitabake Chikafusa

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Kitabake Chikafusa (1293–1354). Leading advocate of Shinto revival. He lived during the confused period of conflict in Japan when there were two rival courts in the north and south (1336–92). He wrote to express his vision of a legitimate imperial line ruling over all Japan, and to reinforce the view of Ise Shinto (see HONJISUIJAKU) that Shinto is superior to the invading religions from China and India. Jinnō Shōtō-ki (Records of the Succession of the Divine Rulers) begins: ‘Japan is the land of the kami. Our heavenly ancestor, Kunitokotachi, laid its first foundations, and Amaterasu, the sun goddess, left the land to her descendants to rule over it for ever. This is true only of our country. Nothing like it can be found in foreign lands.’