- 人間文化研究 (ISSN:21889031)
- no.1, pp.97-125, 2014-11-28
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the starting point of Japanese people's morality.Moral standards, which are historically constructed, provide us with a measure of which behavioural patterns are acceptable and which are not.The transition from tsuwamono (soldiers) to bushi (warriors) created a peculiar value standard for Japanese people, leading to the so-called Bushido.Reflecting on the pre-Bushido period in Japan can help to understand themselves better. The framework of this paper is as follows : First, I consider what was regarded as evil in the Heian era by examining Vol. 29 of the Konjaku Monogatari.Second, I investigate the word tsuwamono in the Konjaku Monogatari and Shomonki.The way that this word is employed in those two texts suggests that people in the Heian era regarded Tsuwamono ambivalently, as newcomers. Third, comparing the Konjaku Monogatari Vol.25 with the Shomonki, I examine Taira no Masakado's Rebellion (939-940), which is a typical example of the transition from tsuwamono to bushi.I conclude that tsuwamono, originally related to the common people through land or locality, became a newly-influential power by their ability to pacify rebellions. Their transformation into bushi was the result. In the world of Heian aristocrats, the common people were not held to have the same moral sense that noble-born members of the Imperial Court enjoyed. Accordingly, they would be willing to join a rebellion if the time and circumstances were right. Since the gap between tsuwamono and bushi and the common people in their attitudes to work, rebellion, religion and other matters was so small, it became possible for them to hold a similar moral sense. As a result, from the second half of the Heian era onward Japanese people began to make their moral decisions based on a similar set of attitudes to those found in the tsuwamono no michi and, later, the Way of the Samurai.