About the Book
This book is the true story of Terri Yamaguchi, a Japanese girl growing up in a poor family during the 1970s and '80s. Each childhood episode is then followed by fictional discussions between the girl and her adult self, talking about the painful events of that day.
The adult, living in 2012, enters a meditational state in order to contact the girl while she is dreaming, and by using her adult perspective and spiritual beliefs, is able to console, encourage, and provide explanations for her childhood self in an effort to help her through difficult times.
This not only creates a healing effect for the girl, but the healing of the child also transcends time, reaching into the future to simultaneously heal the adult.
The book begins with an introduction to Terri and her family and the circumstances of their lives. It describes the dominant role of her father; the subservient role of her mother; the embarrassment of being poor; the controlling influence of their church; and how these forces combined with the nature of Japanese society to condition Terri to think and feel the way she did - as passive, powerless, and always obedient.
However, as she grows older she finds ways to overcome this conditioning, which will eventually rescue her from what she thought would be a predetermined life of drudgery and control and the awful fate of simply repeating her mother's life.
The stories are told in chronological order, beginning with memories of events that occurred as an infant, through to events that occurred at 24 years of age. Topics range from relatively minor episodes of being spanked and social embarrassment, to more serious issues of domestic violence, an abusive teacher, life in a Japanese company, the controlling influence of religion, and dealing with a friend's mental illness.
An alternative title for the book was 'Things I Wish I'd Known as a Child'. This is because the conversations that occur between the Terri and her childhood self, provide the girl with explanations that she never received from the adults around her at the time, and also provide her with spiritual philosophies that enable her to see the painful events of her life in a completely different light.
Not only is there the general kind of wisdom that any adult could provide to a child, but also ideas that were virtually unknown in the 1970s, but are now helping thousands of people to find deeper meaning, renewed purpose, and greater ease in their lives.
Introduction To The Family
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