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Shugenja (修験者) were the 7th century practitioners of the Japanese religion of Shugendō. They were sometimes known as yamabushi, incorrectly translated as "mountain warriors", "warrior priests", "bandit monks", etc., though warrior priests or warrior monks are correctly termed sōhei in Japanese.
In Bushido, a role-playing game published in 1981 by Fantasy Games Unlimited, Shugenja are portrayed as wizards. Bushido was the first role-playing game to portray Shugenja at all and it can be assumed that portrayal of Shugenja in role-playing games is initially influenced by their portrayal in Bushido just as it might be stated that role-playing games with character classes are initially influenced by Dungeons and Dragons.
In the Legend of the Five Rings collectible card game, shugenja are magic-users, similar to wizards. Their spells are given power by the five different varieties of kami that can be found in Rokugan. Their magic is referred to as Elemental Magic, as opposed to Bloodspeakers who use Blood Magic. In the role-playing game, being a shugenja is one of the main alternatives in character creation (the others are to become a bushi or warrior, or to become a courtier or politician). Shugenja in L5R are considered priests more than "wizards."
 - Web site on Shugendo & Yamabushi * http://shugendo.fr/
 - Web site on Shugendo video http://www.dailymotion.com/Ken_Jaku
 - Web site on a shugenja http://pagesperso-orange.fr/gyoja/
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