Perhaps dating back to the fourth century BCE, Shinto traditions in Japan have evolved through the years and have become distinct as Buddhist and Chinese influences have migrated eastward. Kami, supernatural creatures that live in heaven or exist on Earth as sacrosanct forces in nature, are a distinctive aspect of Shinto, which continues to permeate modern Japanese culture. The term "Shinto" refers to the religious ideas and customs that are said to have originated in Japan before the sixth century CE, when Asian religious traditions began to be imported into the country. With a few historical exceptions, the Japanese have avoided attempting to spread Shinto outside of their country because they consider it to be the core of their cultural identity and legacy. Contrary to popular belief, Shinto has had a significant influence on world history. Shinto had a significant impact on how Japan interacted with foreign cultures. Furthermore, it is still a significant religious and cultural institution in modern Japan.
Keywords: Shinto, kami, Buddhism, monk, Japan, worship, political dominance, shrine.