An exploration into the vitality and richness of Japanese religious life! Distinguished scholar and teacher H. Byron Earhart provides a fresh, firsthand look at Japanese religious life, sensitively distilling its unique characteristics. Within the larger framework of the distinctive Japanese religious heritage, Earhart explains the major traditions; provides a historical-cultural context; examines objects of worship--kami ("gods"), Buddhas, ancestors, and holy persons; interprets Japanese concepts of worship reflected in views on society, space, time, and human life; and assesses the general world view created by the individual traditions taken as a whole. Religions of Japan is enriched by the author's fieldwork, which brings an immediacy to his description of a traditional rural community festival and the life story of a member of a new religion in a modern urban setting. The result is an insider's view of Japanese religious life today, showing its vitality and the richness and distinctiveness of its impressive heritage.