Journal of Urban Culture Research

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Tenrikyo, one of the New Japanese Religions, has a charitable tradition of practical voluntary help called hinokishin. The teaching of this tradition translates as selfless actions performed in gratitude for life's blessings that are usually taken for granted. Hinokishin has been ingrained in Tenrikyo's philosophy since its inception, as a natural reflection of Buddhist and Christian norms circulating in Japan at the beginning of the 19th century. In modern Japanese history, Tenrikyo hinokishin provided relief after the earthquakes of Kobe and Sanriku - Minami, and other natural disasters. When the bewildering news was broadcasted on 22 March 2011 that the powerful Tohoku earthquake was followed by a tsunami hitting the coast of Japan, Tenrikyo established a disaster response centre at its headquarters in Tenri and members from all over Japan instantly joined the Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps.



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