Who Is Prince Shotoku
Prince Shotoku is considered to be one of the most prominent figures in the history of Japan. Born in the year, 574, in a royal family, Prince Shotoku went on to establish a centralized Government in Japan during his reign. It is to be noted that though utmost importance has been attached to Shotoku, he was never the Emperor of the state but was given the rank of a regent. As per sources, Prince Shotoku is said to have been an ardent follower of Buddhism and played a major role in the growth of Buddhism in Japan. He is known for the foresight of his and is termed as the visionary who shaped Japan into what it is today. Prince Shotoku was born in the Soga clan and he is the son of Emperor Yomei.
He gained fame in Japan, after he played an important role in overpowering the rival Mononobe clan. It is said that, though he was appointed by Emperor Suiko as the regent, he looked after most of the administration matters related to the state. It is to be noted that Emperor Suiko was his uncle and placed his trust in Shotoku. The credit of establishing the first centralized Government in Japan goes to Prince Shotoku and he is also said to have formulated constitution that consisted of seventeen articles. Thus, this goes on to showcase the fact that Shotoku was a great administrator.
Prince Shotoku believed in establishing good trade relations with China. This is the reason as to why he favored the migration of people from China into Japan. Chinese craftsmen and scholars enjoyed great respect in Japan in the period of Shotoku. Japan is said to have benefitted greatly from the Chinese culture and technological advancements. However, the most important effect of this relationship between the two countries is said to be the development of Zen Buddhism in Japan. Thus, Zen Buddhism went on to be the second main belief in Japan after Shintoism.
There are many temples in Japan that are said to have been constructed by Prince Shotoku. The expertise that he exhibited at administration and the strong morality of the Prince is said to be the main factor as to why he was a loved figure in Japan. He was given many titles too, due to the role that he played in development of Japan. Though there are many speculations as to how he died, the exact reasons for the death of Prince Shotoku is not known.