Japanese People Famous Philosophers from Japan

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List of notable or famous philosophers from Japan, with bios and photos, including the top philosophers born in Japan and even some popular philosophers who immigrated to Japan. If you're trying to find out the names of famous Japanese philosophers then this list is the perfect resource for you. These philosophers are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known philosopher from Japan is included when available.

These people, like Gudo Wafu Nishijima and Hakuin Ekaku include images when available.

This historic philosophers from Japan list can help answer the questions "Who are some Japanese philosophers of note?" and "Who are the most famous philosophers from Japan?" These prominent philosophers of Japan may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected Japanese philosophers.

Use this list of renowned Japanese philosophers to discover some new philosophers that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (29 items)

Arai Hakuseki was a Confucianist, scholar-bureaucrat, academic, administrator, writer and politician in Japan during the middle of the Edo Period, who advised the Shogun Tokugawa Ienobu. His personal name was Kinmi or Kimiyoshi. Hakuseki was his pen name. His father was a Kururi han samurai Arai Masazumi. ...more on Wikipedia

Age: Dec. at 68 (1657-1725)

Birthplace: Edo

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Daisaku Ikeda is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Philosophers from Japan
Photo: via Tumblr

Daisaku Ikeda is the spiritual leader and former president of the Nichiren Buddhist Soka Gakkai, the largest of Japan's new religious movements, and also one of the most controversial. Ikeda is also the founding president of the movement's international offshoot, Soka Gakkai International, which, according to its own numbers, is the world's largest Buddhist lay organization with approximately 12 million practitioners in 192 countries and regions. Some of the books he has authored, especially "The Human Revolution" have gained canonical status within the movement. Ikeda was described in 1996 by the Los Angeles Times as a "puzzle of conflicting perceptions," ranging from "Japan’s most powerful ...more on Wikipedia

Age: 91

Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

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D. T. Suzuki is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Philosophers from Japan
Photo: Metaweb (FB)/Public domain

D. T. Suzuki

Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki was a Japanese author of books and essays on Buddhism, Zen and Shin that were instrumental in spreading interest in both Zen and Shin to the West. Suzuki was also a prolific translator of Chinese, Japanese, and Sanskrit literature. Suzuki spent several lengthy stretches teaching or lecturing at Western universities, and devoted many years to a professorship at Otani University, a Japanese Buddhist school. ...more on Wikipedia

Age: Dec. at 96 (1870-1966)

Birthplace: Kanazawa, Japan



Ennin, who is better known in Japan by his posthumous name, Jikaku Daishi, was a priest of the Tendai school. ...more on Wikipedia

Birthplace: Shimotsuke Province