It is no secret that Christianity has been widely rejected in Japan with less than two percent of the population identifying as Christian. The dominant worldview in Japan is deeply animistic, with beliefs such as the Japanese mana-concept, ki (気), the Japanese soul-concept, and the concept of God/god(s), kami (神), being deeply rooted in the culture and fundamentally influencing society. Dr Martin Heißwolf, with his years of experience in Japan, critically examines Japanese animism in light of core Christian beliefs, such as the concepts of “peace” and “salvation.”
Central to Japanese people’s rejection of Christian truth is the diametric opposition of its supernatural message to the natural focus of Japanese animistic folk religion. Heißwolf’s meticulous study is framed squarely within missiological thought and praxis so Christians serving in Japanese contexts are better able to communicate the message of the gospel by more fully understanding Japanese people, people by whom God wants to be known.