The mythology of Japan has a long history dating back more than 2,000 years. It became part of two major religious traditions: Shinto, an indigenous religion, and Buddhism, which developed in India and came to Japan from China and Korea.

Japanese mythology includes a vast number of gods, goddesses, and spirits. Most of the stories concern the creation of the world, the foundation of the islands of Japan, and the activities of deities, humans, animals, spirits, and magical creatures.

Let's see together the most important deities of Japan :)

Amaterasu

Amaterasu (天照) is the Japanese sun goddess, daughter of creator deities Izanagi and Izanami, and central to the Shinto religion. It is from her the Japanese nobility claims descent and their divine right to rule.
The sun in fact represents order and purity, two of Shinto’s most important concepts.

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Izanagi

Izanagi ( 伊弉諾尊, "he who invites" ) is one of the first gods of Shinto's cosmology. Together with Izanami, his female counterpart, he created the islands of Japan and populated them with many kami (deities). Though he suffered a great tragedy, he went on to rule the Heavens and later help his daughter Amaterasu ascend to the divine throne.

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Izanami

Izanami no Mikoto (伊弉冉尊/伊邪那美命, meaning "she who invites").
is a goddess of both creation and death, as well as the former wife of the god Izanagi-no-Mikoto. She is also referred to as Izanami no kami.
Izanami died giving birth to the child Kagu-tsuchi (incarnation of fire). Izanagi was so angry at the death of his wife that he killed the newborn child, thereby creating dozens of deities.

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Susanoo

Susanoo (素戔男尊、) is the Japanese god of the sea and storms. A chaotic, stubborn, and foolhardy soul, he is also the brother of Amaterasu, the Rising Sun, and Queen of the Heavens. His quarrels with his sister eventually put him in conflict with Orochi, the eight-headed dragon. His fight with the dragon led to the creation of the sword Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi, one part of Japan’s sacred regalia.

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Tsukuyomi

Tsukuyomi (月読) is the Japanese god of the moon and estranged husband of the sun goddess Amaterasu. A proud but violent deity, his killing of Uke Mochi (the goddess of food,) and consequent separation from his wife were the origins of day and night.

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Inari

Inari (稲荷) is the kami of prosperity, rice, smithing, cunning, and craftsmanship. Portrayed variously as male, female, and androgynous, Inari is a complex and popular deity worshiped for more than a thousand years throughout Japan. Their prominence has led to the creation of a special type of shrine, focused primarily on smithing and rice cultivation as well as the preservation of foxes.

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Raijin

Raijin (雷神) is the Japanese god of storms, a spirit of destruction and chaos who throws lightning and powerful thunderbolts while riding atop dark clouds. He is always accompanied by his companion gods, Fujin and Raitaro.

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Fujin

Fujin (風神) is the Japanese wind god, a powerful elemental deity whose bag of air moves all the winds of the world. Appearing alongside his brother Raijin, the thunder god, Fujin is neither good nor evil, although he is often a destructive force. He is one of Japan’s most well-known oni (demons, devils, or trolls in Japanese folklore).

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Ame-no-Uzume

Ame-no-Uzume (天宇受売命) is the Japanese goddess of the dawn, known for her merriment and humor. Credited with inventing the performing arts, her spontaneous dancing once saved the world from eternal darkness.

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This article was written by @AcvrossTheUniverse for the Tenth Muse Writers Team
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