Difference Between Shinto and Buddhism


Shinto vs. Buddhism

Shinto or kami-no-michi (the original traditional term) is the natural spiritual cult of Japan extensively followed by the Japanese people. Shinto or literally meaning the way of the Gods was originally adopted from the ancient Chinese inscriptions. The very word Shinto is the combination of the two terms, “shin” or ‘shen’ meaning gods or spirits and “tō” or “do” denoting an idealistic path of study or path of existence. On the other hand, Buddhism is a tradition envisaged as the ultimate path of salvation which is to be achieved through an imminent approach into the absolute nature of reality and existence.

Shinto essentially integrates the various religious practices consequent of the diverse regional and local prehistoric traditions that were practiced in ancient Japan. On the other hand Buddhism takes within its purview many diverse traditions, religious practices and spiritual beliefs which are majorly based on the teachings of the Siddhartha Gautama Buddha.

Shinto is a unique religion where the ritual practices, actions and rites are a lot more significant than the words or preaching. On the other hand, Buddhism is a religion that does not recognize many religious rites or practices. It primarily focuses on the relation and study of the words and philosophies of the Buddha and the paths of existence as showed by him.

Shinto exemplifies the worship of the abstract forces of nature, the ancestors, nature, polytheism, and animism. The central focus remains on ritual purity which revolves around the honoring and celebration of the existence of Kami which is the ultimate spirit of essence. In a differing way, the foundation of Buddhism lies on the performing of altruism and following the paths of ethical conduct. Some of the common practices of Buddhism are cultivation of wisdom through meditation and renunciation, invocating the bodhisattvas and studying the scriptures.

Buddhism has two main branches termed as Mahayana and Theravada. Mahayana includes the traditions of Pure Land, Nichiren Buddhism, Zen, Shingon, Tibetan Buddhism, Shinnyo-en and Tendai whereas Theravada centers on the thoughts from the earliest surviving School of Elders. But Shinto has no branches and exists as one single institution of ancient Japanese religion.


1. Shinto is an ancient religion from Japan whereas Buddhism is a tradition envisaged in India by Siddhartha Gautama.
2. Shinto originated from ancient Chinese inscriptions, whereas Buddhism has its inception in the thoughts and teachings of Gautama Buddha.
3. Shinto lays importance to religious actions and rites rather than words and preaching whereas the foundation of Buddhism is the words and preaching of Buddha. Buddhism focuses on an altruistic life that leads to salvation.
4. Buddhism has religious branches in the form of Theravada and Mahayana whereas Shinto has no such religious sects.
5. Shinto worships the forces of nature, polytheism and animism whereas Buddhism is all about following an ethical code of conduct in one’s life and practice meditation and renunciation.


Introducing Reiki Sensei Shinpiden Harmony Blossom-Starr

From our Southern California Halau … Reiki Sensei Shinpiden Harmony Blossom-Starr, Reiki Master-Teacher in both Usui Teate Reiki (Japanese) and Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki (American) systems. Harmony is also a Certified Yogini and Ayurvedic health practitioner.



You don’t need to know.

Life wouldn’t be this grand adventure if you knew what was coming.

Love the mystery.

This is Lana.  I have folded thousands of cranes for 30+ years and have imbued them with healing energies and left them for others as prayers for peace and blessings.  My expression of spreading the Aloha Spirit to anyone and everyone.  For many years while commuting on the Vallejo Ferry to and from San Francisco, I  folded and left cranes for people to discover and take away with them … I have left cranes at the various places I visited throughout my day.  Every December, I would use specially made beautiful Japanese washi papers to fold cranes and create ornaments for my Yule tree … only to give them away to friends and family during the course of the new year.  I find folding and sharing Origami cranes is a willful way to connect myself with those around me and the spirit of mystery.  Gassho.


I have folded thousands of cranes over 30+ years as tangible prayers for peace and blessings. I often share them with people at events i attend. – See more at: http://www.kindspring.org/story/view.php?sid=64217#sthash.xxRaud2j.dpuf
You don’t need to know.  Life wouldn’t be this grand adventure if you knew what was coming.  Love the mystery. – See more at: http://www.kindspring.org/story/view.php?sid=64217#sthash.xxRaud2j.dpuf
“You don’t need to know.  Life wouldn’t be this grand adventure if you knew what was coming.  Love the mystery.” – See more at: http://www.kindspring.org/story/view.php?sid=64217#sthash.xxRaud2j.dpuf
“You don’t need to know.  Life wouldn’t be this grand adventure if you knew what was coming.  Love the mystery.” – See more at: http://www.kindspring.org/story/view.php?sid=64217#sthash.xxRaud2j.dpuf

Recipe ~ Vegan Yakisoba

veggie yakisoba

Lana made this dish for her parents and housemates, and it was a HIT!

Do you know what we really like?  Soba noodles. And Japanese food. And putting cabbage in things.

Cabbage is so underrated.

We are also not very fast at julienning carrots, and they’re most certainly not the most evenly-cut thing we’ve ever produced, but we really like how everything is long and skinny in this dish. Normally we would be carrot coins all the way!

We like to keep this pretty simple, but it can be doctored to your liking.  Lana has added Fry’s chicken-style strips to the one in the picture here, but we didn’t like them and picked them out.  We bet it would be better with tofu, and we can’t believe we just said that.  The Vegan chickin strips work great; so does the Vegan “beef” strips, so try it and enjoy.  Anyway, here’s a basic recipe to get you started:

Serves 4

soba noodles
2 carrots, julienned
1/2 head cabbage, sliced thinly
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 green onions/scallions
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tbs sambal oelek or other chili
1 tbs sugar
toasted sesame seeds

1. Saute the carrots, cabbage, garlic and light-green part of green onion/scallion over medium heat 5 minutes or until soft and beginning to brown.

2. Meanwhile, cook your soba noodles in boiling water 2 minutes, then drain and refresh.

3. Add noodles to veggies, turn heat down and add combined soy, chili and sugar.

4. Turn up to re-heat without boiling the crap out of your sauce, and serve topped with toasted sesame seeds.
If using tofu or other chicken substitute, cook them before the veg, set aside and add to the pan again when you add the noodles.


Usui System of Natural Healing



One of the primary energyworking modalities The Halau at ‘Aha Hui Lanakila, Inc., teaches is Usui Teate Reiki (original knowledge Japanese Reiki/Gakkai system) and Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki (American Reiki/Takata system) and its progeny energies. And, if you’ve wondered, “What is Reiki?” you’re not alone!

There has been a great deal of debate about exactly what Reiki is. Most practitioners agree that it is a form of life/healing energy, but beyond that the various schools differ, with some being much more esoteric than others. The word itself can be broken down into the component parts of “Rei” (pronounced ‘ray’) and “Ki” (pronounced ‘key’).
The Japanese language has many different levels of meaning within it. Some levels are very basic while others are highly esoteric. “Rei” literally means spirit, ghost, soul, in the heavens or of spirits; but also denotes universal energy. “Ki” also means spirit and, some argue, is essentially the Japanese equivalent of the Chinese description of “Chi”, which means life force energy. The word Reiki, therefore, can be taken to refer to a balanced universal life force energy.

Because of its unique qualities Reiki seems to have a basic consciousness which, when used for healing, is able to provide exactly what is needed on all levels.
The Halau offers instruction and training in original knowledge Usui Teate Reiki from Basic through 18th Dan Reiki Grandmaster.  The Halau also offers four levels of instruction and training in American Reiki (Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki), Basics through Level 4 Reiki Master-Teacher.  On-site live classes as well as correspondence training via Skype or Google+ Hangout weekly sessions are available.
Our classes explore Dr. Usui’s Japanese healing system called Usui Teate (“healing hand”) Reiki. Students receive grade materials on CD-ROM and handouts at class meetings as needed. (Skype students receive PDF files of the grade materials via email or Skype file transfer.)  Weekly one-on-one and group mentoring classes span three hours and are tailored to each student’s specific learning needs; monthly tuition rates apply.
The Halau is a proud member of the International Natural Healers Association (INHA).  No previous Reiki experience necessary.  Students with previous Reiki training who wish to train with our Halau must bring proof of certification to their first class meeting.  (Skype students email their PDF certificate(s), if applicable, prior to first session.)
Upon receipt of your initiation fees, you will be required to receive the appropriate Reiki attunements and Reiju empowerments prior to commencement of your regular training classes.  Attunements are charged separately from regular training classes.   Once attuned, you may attend class via Skype, provided:  (1) your laptop/PC has mic/videocam capability (headsets are advisable); (2) you pre-pay your tuition via PayPal prior to commencement of the first class session.
Non-Discriminatory Policy
Halau ‘Aha Hui Lanakila (“The Halau”) admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at The Halau.  It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national, and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, employment, and other Halau administered programs.