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Shingaku

Shingaku. A popular religious movement, sometimes known as ‘Education of the Heart’, started in 1729 in Japan by Ishida Baigan (1685–1744), a self-taught scholar and chief clerk for a Kyōto commercial house. Shingaku appealed mainly to the urban merchants, but it also attracted devotees from the peasant and samurai classes who listened to Baigan's public lectures or were acquainted with the movement's many popular tracts and house codes (kakun). The teachings of Shingaku were an eclectic blend of Confucian moral precepts, Buddhist meditational practices, and worship of the national gods (kami).

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