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Home » 9. Texts and Sources » Other Basic Texts
Hongakukyoyō
This two volume work is the magnum opus of Ōkuni (known at the time as Nonoguchi) Takamasa and was finished in 1855. Included is a two volume appendix entitled Gyojyū mondō. Faced with increasing Western influence following the "opening" of Japan, Takamasa argued that it was necessary for Japan to reform its national character so that it might one day become a "great imperial power" which would rise to establish an empire that would rule over all nations of the world. According to Ōkuni, this reforming of the national character was best done through the teachings of loyalty and filial piety based upon honkyō hongaku and through the teaching of mutual aid (aitasuku) based upon the work ethic of family industries. The appended Gyojyū mondō addresses in question-and-answer format the main points of hongaku that should be used in discussions with Westerners. This work clearly shows Takamasa's often-expressed position that his scholarship should be seen as "the study of receiving foreigners." The Hongaku kyoyō is included in the Ōkuni Takamasa zenshū, volume 1 (1937, Yūkōsha), and in the Nihon shisō taikei, Hirata Atsutane, Ban Nobutomo and Ōkuni Takamasa (1973, Iwanami Shoten).

—Takeda Hideaki
"Establishment of a National Learning Institute for the Dissemination of Research on Shinto and Japanese Culture"
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