Shido YAMAGUCHI (1765 – 1842): A Man Who Uncovered the Secret of the Spiritual Power That Dwells in Words (Japanese Mystery Case #012)

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Shido Yamaguchi (1765 – 1842)

Ancient Japanese believed that spirits dwell in words and that the power of these spirits would bring what is expressed in words into reality. Each word has its own spiritual power, and these words are combined to form a magic spell. It may be explained by modern science such as linguistics, psychology, and brain science that each word (e.g., “LOVE” and “CAN”) has a definite meaning or image and has some effect on the consciousness of the person who sees or hears these words.

However, there was a remarkable Japanese man who claimed to have discovered that not only in words, but also in each letter that makes up a word (e.g., “A”, “U”, “O”, etc.), an independent spirit dwells within each letter, and each manifests its own spiritual power.

The first person in Japan to study and systematize the spiritual power of words was Shido Yamaguchi (山口志道) (1765-1842), a mid-Edo period scholar of Japanese studies who is regarded as the founder of the study of kotodama (言霊) (word spirits).

In this article, I would like to introduce Shido Yamaguchi, who has uncovered the secret of the spiritual power that dwells in words.

Shido Yamaguchi (山口志道) Who Uncovered the Secret of the Spiritual Power That Dwells in Words

Shidou Yamaguchi was born in 1765 in Terakado Village, Nagasa District, Awa Province (now Kamogawa City, Chiba Prefecture, Japan), the eldest son of Riemon Fukutaka (利右衛門福敬), a farmer. Shido also had two sisters, and the Yamaguchi family was reasonably well-off.

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A dad blogger who loves manga, anime, games. In this blog, I will introduce amazing Japanese spirituality and philosophy.


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