Thursday, 24 May 2012

Minamoto no Yoritomo- The first shogun of Japan!

Minamoto no Yoritomowas the founder and the first shogun of the Kamakura period. He created amilitary system that lasted over 700 years, made a lasting impact on the modernday police force and made the Buddhism religion one of the most popularreligions in Japan.

Minamoto no Yoritomowas the founder and first shogun of the Kamakura period. In 1192, Yoritomoconfined the emperor, this lead to Yoritomo being granted the title of shogun.He therefore had supreme authority over the military force in Japan. Yoritomoestablished new governors throughout Japan. Yoritomo was able to rule withoutoverthrowing the emperor. Even now in modern Japan, the emperor has no realpower. 

Minamoto Yoritomo wasalso well known for creating a military system that lasted over 700 years! Thismilitary system Yoritomo created, operated independently of the court. Thistherefore led to Yoritomo controlling the entire military without anypermission from anyone else.  Yoritomoappointed military governors over different provinces. The governors receivedland in return for their work. Yoritomo also appointed stewards to look aftermanors. The stewards received a certain amount of money in return for theirmilitary service.

Another thing Yoritomodid for Japan was making Zen Buddhism a big religion. He did this in thought ofJapan being a calmer and more peaceful place to be. When Yoritomo was young; hespent a lot of his time in a Buddhist temple. Research tells us that Yoritomothought that life should be lived through discipline; he apparently thoughtthis was the only thing that could bring joy. Yoritomo also created Zen Templesand Zen Schools for people to both meditate and learn about Buddhism and why itis important.

Yoritomo’s samuraisystem has had a lasting impact on a modern day police force. The two of them:Samurai and the Police Officer. Took orders, had power and weapons, seek gloryin battle, violent and fight for some sort of payment. The samurai and thepolice officer look similar to each other as well. They wear armour or somesort protective clothing. This was another one of the many legacies Yoritomoleft behind.

Though some say thatYoritomo was savage and ghastly, the legacy he has left behind has beenrevolutionary! He was the founder and the first shogun in the Kamakura period;he has reformed the military system that lasted over 700 years, made a lastingimpact on the police force and took Zen Buddhism to an entirely new level. 


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