saata VOL: 3, ISSUE: 2 - APRIL 2019 facebook

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Japan Nalla Japan - Mathangi
Nalla(adj) is a word in Tamil language that means Good, Nice."
Mathangi Mathangi Ramprasad is a second year TA trainee training with Ms. Susan george . She is also a psychologist and an avid lover of nature.

Japan - Land of the rising sun, has always fascinated us. But it has never been a must do list on our travel itinerary. And then suddenly in one of our conversations we said why not Japan. Then the idea became a reality. And what a reality it was! 10 days of visit which included two and a half days of travel and transit. It was all at the same time, exciting, curious, charming, fascinating , humbling, so much to take in, learn and observe. And most of all, so many spaces where one could just ‘be’ with the surroundings. The ancient temples, pristine beautiful nature naturally brought out the Free Child in me and a sense of calm descended automatically.

Our first entry into Japan, allowed us to experience the Narita airport, and like all other public spaces and private, most of the spaces were scrupulously clean. We quickly grabbed our Japan rail pass and dragged along our suitcases to take the super fast bullet train. Oh my god, that was amazing, my Free Child Ego State was happy to take in the super fast Shinkansen.

And to my sheer amazement, the flyer said the train would roll in at 11.13 and it precisely did just that. There were clear signs as to where we had to stand to board the cars of the train and then began a fascinating 2 hour duration of my most favoured activity, people watching. Most of them were with their phones of course pouring down to pick up information. There were cute little kids with moms, working people. I noticed many old people who were bent with age but not in spirit - they had several small cloth bags in their hands and were moving around - independent and struggling on slowly but with great intent and determination. I thought to myself maybe the years of hard work, and what the nation had gone through has shaped them to be thus and mentally folded my hands in a Namaste🙏🏽. The hotels were very comfortable and we loved the toilets especially because they came equipped with the latest bidets and all its luxuries. The Adult in me enjoyed figuring out the how and whys?

We spent four days at Kyoto ,four days at Tokyo.

Moving around Japan with a rail pass, subway, buses etc was very easy once we moved into our Adult Ego State to find out “how to, when, where ?”

Each and every one who we asked for help with directions , stopped  with a smile and had a cute way of walking alongside for a few moments to show us the route. Their Nurturing Parent State helped us overcome even the language barriers. Such was the warmth we felt. The weather was pleasant and lo behold the beautiful cherry blossoms were everywhere. The beauty of the flowers was incredible and amazing. Arashiyama, one of the places we visited had a lovely path sidelined with these trees and a bridge and a river. What beautiful photo ops !

Apart from the tall, extremely modern skyscrapers built for the super smart Japanese workforce, in contrast, the old Buddhist temples were maintained so well.

Automatically a sense of calming presence descended on us as we entered the places of worship. Huge statutes of Buddha , Tara’s and other gods of Buddhist tradition stand tall and strong. When we stood in their mighty presence a sense of humility creeps in without any effort.

I saw  Be Perfect working style predominantly in most of their actions. Garbage that we had, like tissues or wrappers of food items had to be held on to and thrown only at specific areas where there were bins. And what was amazing is I saw an old bent woman who had thrown down a bit of paper and she bothered to bend down pick it up and put it in her bag to dispose it off later...

Among the Japanese, I found that the Adult Ego State is quite active in giving , receiving information and apart from a few smiles., I didn’t really see too much of a dramatic emotional display in the time that I was there, may be they don’t express emotions in public so much (but this could only be mind-reading and not supported by fact).

The Adult Ego State which gives very precise information exactly like a robot sometimes, also spends a lot of time doing work on improving stuff, making lovely designs of household articles which makes them so easy to use.

The systematic way in which we were taken up and down the Kyoto tower was amazing. I didn’t see one person jostling, pushing or moving ahead of the line, such was the respect to the system and individuals.

As much as there are malls showcasing the latest in world fashion, we also saw women attractively dressed in their traditional costume while going to the temples and so were the men. Cultural archetypes being maintained in such a modern, crowded city like Tokyo was very interesting to observe.

Rules are followed all the time, so much so even friends greeted each other sometimes with a bow and “Aarigato”. The Positive Adapted Child appeared to be very strong. Being a vegetarian we were sometimes like wild animals searching for food, wondering if, where and when we will get our food 😃. Apart from the proverbial pizza ,we did get to eat wholesome amazing Japanese vegetables and soups at some vegan Restaurants.

We were also given a Stroke for being an Indian when one Japanese said Indians are very smart people.

The art and culture of Japan was indeed fascinating and we had an opportunity to meet a Maiko( training to be a Geisha). What elegance, charm and grace with which she used her arms and legs. With all of us giving her our “attentive listening “, we sat spell bound as she was so well versed in singing, dancing and also in playing games.

We saw in Japan  and the Japanese, a beautiful blend of the East and West, the best of both the worlds, the planning, their need to Kaizen, (improve any one thing every day (Adult Ego State), their courteous hospitality (Nurturing Parent State), and a lot of Positive Adapted Child. The incredible art work and the temples and artistic zen gardens showed an excellent creative Free Spirited Child State with a sense of order.

I felt positive, appreciated and accepted and never at any moment Discounted.
Being away from the humdrum of our daily routine, I also found a lot of time to introspect and use TA principles and concepts in my interactions with family.
Several opportunities were like the little bit of green grass that was found growing amidst a huge stone wall at the imperial palace in Tokyo, practicing the TA concepts brings freshness and zest in my life.
As we tamils would sing it .......Japan....nallla Japan...
Sayonara !

Head or Tail
TAzzle - The TA Crossword

Solutions & Winners of Previous Issue
arr Attitude Change – Understanding Life Positions to Make the Difference
- Ragini Rao
arr Overthinking, Thinking or Underthinking?
- Kiran Katawa
arr Child is the Father of the Man
- Ravikumar Ramanathan
arr Japan Nalla Japan
- Mathangi Ramprasad
arr Love is Online
- Dr. Rizwana Nulwala
arr Relationship Transformation
- Bhavani Shankar

Creative Corner
Poem: Here and Now
- Pragnesh Patel
Journey of a TA Practitioner
- Prasad Naveen
Poem: TA,TA Where Will You Take Me Today
- Rachana Mittal


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