DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-G102-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved August 24, 2019, from

2. Worship of the kami

Kami are, for the most part, beneficent entities, requiring only that they be properly and respectfully attended to. Through worship, the people provide this attention and express their gratitude to the kami. The principal form of worship is the presentation of offerings to the kami, which can be rendered privately at home or publicly at a Shintō shrine. Items used as offerings include rice, other foods, sake and money.

People also say prayers and address petitions to the kami. The formal prayers, recited in archaic language by priests at shrines, typically praise the kami and express thanksgiving for the benefits they have bestowed. They may also include accounts of the lineages of the kami and describe the offerings being made to them. In their personal prayers and petitions, people make requests for such things as good health and personal success.

Citing this article:
Varley, Paul. Worship of the kami. Shintō, 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-G102-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2019 Routledge.

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