Fukuzawa yukichi and religion

Asian Philosophy 4 (2):109 – 118 (1994)
Abstract When the Meiji government allowed Christianity to be proclaimed in Japan in 1873, there aroused heated controversy about how to deal with religion including Christianity. Fukuzawa Yukichi, the most influential thinker and opinion?leader among Japanese intellectuals in those days, participated in the controversy and wrote more than 80 articles concerning religion. At first, he took a critical standpoint against Christianity from the Utilitarian viewpoint. Then he changed his viewpoint of religion and came to admit a Unitarian Christianity for a little while. But he gradually came to be familiar with Pure Land Buddhism and developed his original phibsophy of religion in his later years. In this article I trace the process of change in Fukuzawa's religious viewpoint and clarify his philosophy of religion in his later years, by examining his writings in chronological order
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