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  • Akiko

Definition of kagura

In 2006, all of the world, especially me as big astronomy fan, surprised about the news that the Uranus is no more a planet. It was in 1781 that the Uranus was discovered. The International Astronomical Union overthrew their finding after 225 years. It happens.

Backing to Japanese ritual dance, there are a convenient term in Japanese; minzoku-geino. According to the society of minzokugeino, it must be translated into English as Japanese folkloric performing arts. But there were no discussion of the definition of the past. It is divided into big three: kagura, ennen and dengaku.

The kagura as you see, it is normally explained as Shintoistic ritual dance, while the ennen is performed in Buddhist temple. The dengaku is bit different from former two categories, it is dance for rice-planting ceremony.

There are ambiguity.

The kagura is certainly an event at Shinto shrine or for shinto festival. However, in the Shinto ceremony, there were Buddhist rituals, before the end of World War II. Furthermore, there were genuinely no distinction between the Buddhism and the Shintoism before the Restauration because the Japanese religious tradition was mixture of everything.

At the point of music, we cannot determine anything as Kagura music or Ennen music because it is not musical genre. If these two are transmitted in same village or same religion, their music must be very similar. Then it can be same genre.

If the Uranus can no more be a planet, we kagura researchers could determine finally what is kagura.

Or is it impossible for the humanities?

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