Where the Dead Pause, and the Japanese Say Goodbye: A Journey

Where the Dead Pause and the Japanese Say Goodbye A Journey Marie Mutsuki Mockett s family owns a Buddhist temple miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant In March after the earthquake and tsunami radiation levels prohibited the burial of

  • Title: Where the Dead Pause, and the Japanese Say Goodbye: A Journey
  • Author: Marie Mutsuki Mockett
  • ISBN: 9780393063011
  • Page: 279
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Marie Mutsuki Mockett s family owns a Buddhist temple 25 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant In March 2011, after the earthquake and tsunami, radiation levels prohibited the burial of her Japanese grandfather s bones As Japan mourned thousands of people lost in the disaster, Mockett also grieved for her American father, who had died unexpectedly.SeekingMarie Mutsuki Mockett s family owns a Buddhist temple 25 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant In March 2011, after the earthquake and tsunami, radiation levels prohibited the burial of her Japanese grandfather s bones As Japan mourned thousands of people lost in the disaster, Mockett also grieved for her American father, who had died unexpectedly.Seeking consolation, Mockett is guided by a colorful cast of Zen priests and ordinary Japanese who perform rituals that disturb, haunt, and finally uplift her Her journey leads her into the radiation zone in an intricate white hazmat suit to Eiheiji, a school for Zen Buddhist monks on a visit to a Crab Lady and Fuzzy Headed Priest s temple on Mount Doom and into the thick dark of the subterranean labyrinth under Kiyomizu temple, among other twists and turns From the ecstasy of a cherry blossom festival in the radiation zone to the ghosts inhabiting chopsticks, Mockett writes of both the earthly and the sublime with extraordinary sensitivity Her unpretentious and engaging voice makes her the kind of companion a reader wants to stay with wherever she goes, even into the heart of grief itself.

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      Published :2020-04-24T03:32:40+00:00

    About “Marie Mutsuki Mockett”

    1. Marie Mutsuki Mockett

      MARIE MUTSUKI MOCKETT was born in California to a Japanese mother and an American father A graduate of Columbia University, she lives in San Francisco with her husband and son.Marie Mutsuki Mockett s family owns a Buddhist temple 25 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant In March 2011, after the earthquake and tsunami, radiation levels prohibited the burial of her Japanese grandfather s bones At the same time, Mockett grieved for her American father, who had died unexpectedly As Japan mourned thousands of people lost in the disaster, she wondered how does one cope with overwhelming grief Seeking consolation, Mockett is guided by a colorful cast of Zen priests and ordinary Japanese who perform rituals that disturb, haunt, and finally uplift her From the ecstasy of a cherry blossom festival in the radiation zone to the ghosts inhabiting chopsticks, Mockett writes of both the earthly and the sublime with extraordinary sensitivity Her unpretentious and engaging voice makes her the kind of companion a reader wants to stay with wherever she goes, even into the heart of grief itself.

    432 thoughts on “Where the Dead Pause, and the Japanese Say Goodbye: A Journey”

    1. What an incredibly lovely but solemn book. The reader journeys across Japan with Mrs. Mockett, a Japanese-American woman, who recently lost her father as she grapples with both the grief of his death and that of the devastating aftereffects of the March 2011 tsunami. We visit the family-run temple residing in the long shadow of Fukushima nuclear power plant that she knows well from her youth. Pilgrimages are made to other temples and shrines from zen to Pure Land to Shingon to the delicate weavi [...]


    2. I received an ARC of this book from W.W. Norton through the Giveaway program.It took me a long time to read this book as I was literally savoring every word. The author takes a spiritual journey through Japan, her mother's homeland, where the author spent much of her own childhood. She has been unable to recover from the sadness she feels at the deaths of her father and of her maternal grandparents, and seeks solace through the Buddhist faith of her family. It is an absolutely fascinating journ [...]


    3. A solid three star book though sometimes it inched up in the rating when the author wrote more about the Japanese character. Her discussion of the Japanese aesthetic view of wabi sabi, interested me greatly. At some point the subject of ghosts and the spirit world lost my attention, though I was very much interested in the various Buddhist sects. The writing at times was disjointed but not so much that it lost my interest or focus.


    4. The subtitle of the book is A Journey, and Mockett's journey is a complicated one. Half Japanese by birth, she never forgets—or lets the reader forget—that she was also born and raised American. With family in Japan, though, and her grandfather's bones to bury, she sets out in the wake of the 2011 earthquake to better understand Buddhism and grief and Japan's peacefully co-existing contradictions.I read this for class, and it's easily my favourite book of the semester. There aren't easy answ [...]


    5. After the Tohoku quake and tsunami caused the meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, there was a widespread effort to plant sunflowers as a way to remove radiation from the soil. It was a gentle Buddhist way to try to make life bearable again in a land where the dead are never far away from the living. This kind of insight into a major catastrophe is what made reading this book such a delight.It was once believed that if a chair or table or any object had been around for one hundred ye [...]


    6. As someone living in Japan for almost four years, I loved this book. I found myself thinking, "Yes, exactly. That's exactly how Japan feels" over and over while I read. The author opened up a piece of Japan to me that I do not have access to because of the language barrier. There are no wasted words or pages in this book. It is filled with history, culture, religion and personal stories. Some reviewers thought she jumped around too much. Because this is a cultural exploration of grief, the shift [...]


    7. This book is an amazing look into the cultural mores of Japan especially concerning grief and death. It is a clear and concise treatise on the different forms of Buddhism and how the Japanese people believe in both animism and a supreme being. It incorporates the journey of a Japanese-American woman to Japan, soon after the devastating earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Northern Japan. It also captures the clear differences in thinking, in acting, in living between those of the Japanese people [...]


    8. a rich, generous and deeply personal exploration of japanese spirituality and religion, approaches to death, grief & ancestors, and the collective trauma of the 2011 earthquake and nuclear disaster. careful and nuanced telling of the process of learning about and making sense of these things as a relative outsider. evocative descriptions of sights, tastes, smells and the feelings of places.i read this hungrily in a single day (just after returning from a visit to Tokyo), and am looking forwa [...]


    9. Not knowing much about the book other than it was about grief and Zen Buddhism, and nothing at all about the author, I went to a reading of it. Mockett read an excerpt, and I found that my fears of New Age-ism and "Eat, Pray, Love" fetishization and egotism were totally unfounded. This is much more than just a memoir; it's a history book, a book on Japanese culture, and on religion as well. Mockett does an incredible job of providing the necessary context for her experiences, (historical, cultur [...]


    10. The first Noble Truth is that we all suffer, and one of those sufferings, for all of us, is the loss of the people we love. Death is inevitable, as are the wounds caused by the loss of those around us.The writer has lost her father, her grandparents, and her sense of joy. She returns to the land of her mother's birth to try to make sense of her pain. Her mother's family has long owned a temple. Her ancestors helped people, and, when there seemed to be no one to inherit the temple and its respons [...]


    11. I received this book for free through Fist ReadsAfter her Grandfathers death, the author who is _ Japanese and whose family owns a Buddhist Temple just 25 miles from the Fukushima Daiich nuclear plant, decides to go back to visit after the earthquake and tsunami that took many lives on March 11, 2011. The plant which was damaged in the tsunami as well, started to leaked radiation causing the area to become an unsafe place for people to return. Not having been able to bury her Grandfathers bones [...]


    12. I read an interview with the author that was so compelling to me that I put aside everything that turned me off about the descriptions of this book. I don't normally read memoirs and have no interest in reading a memoir about grieving a dead father. But that's not what it is. We hardly learn anything about the author's father other than that she's sad he's dead. It's less about the aftermath of 3/11 than I expected (although that's definitely a central component.) And if I'd known this was mostl [...]


    13. Mockett’s memoir explores her experiences with Japanese traditions surrounding grief. She personally grieves her American father who died recently and unexpectedly, an event that is probably partially the impetus for her memoir. Yet she is also deeply affected by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami where so many thousands died. She travels to her extended family’s Buddhist temple in 2011, not far from the Fukushima nuclear power plant, and finds herself in a country where almost everyone is grie [...]


    14. I won an advance copy of this book through a giveaway, and I'm very glad that I did!While at times meandering and repetitive, this is a well written book. Miss Mockett's journey across Japan visiting many different temples and shrines to process her personal grief, while at the same time experiencing the aftermath of the March 2011 disaster, was compelling and also easy to follow. I am quite fond of Japanese spirituality, from ceremonies to ghost stories, so there was a lot to enjoy here.There' [...]


    15. Interesting exploration about how the Japanese grieve.The author loses her father and grandparents. She's learning to deal with her grief or as she describes it she want to be "more happy than sad". She travels to Japan which is her mother's homeland during the aftermath of the March 11, 2011 tsunami. This is the perfect time and place for her to learn how the Japanese grieve.She visits several temples and Buddhist training schools. In fact, her family are guardians of a small temple. I learned [...]


    16. I read this book primarily because of how moved I was by the film "Departures" (2010), a Japanese film that was a fascinating exploration of grief and death. The film was fiction - this book is nonfiction, and revolves around the survivors of the devastating tsunami that hit Japan in 2011. The author and her mother visit Japan several weeks after the disaster, as family members live near the nuclear facility. The author continues with a personal journey into Buddhism, and examines a country shoc [...]


    17. I savored this book too (as other reviewers have said) and I also enjoyed the detailed history of Buddhism in Japan. Her experiences and encounters with people on her journey through Japan (her mother's homeland) were delightful. I feel I learned so much from this book and it all happened in such a way that I felt at the end that I had experienced the process of the cherry blossoms blooming and dying. I was aware of her grief and her struggle with coming to terms with the sudden death of her fat [...]


    18. This book made clear to me how grieving is expressed so differently between people and cultures. The stories gave rich meaning to festivals that I have experienced in Japan but failed to understand the symbolism. There were fascinating insights to religious practices far beyond text book descriptions of Buddhism and Shintoism. It is difficult to understand the impact of a disaster such as the recent tsunami and radiation leak without the intimate stories provided by the author following her exte [...]


    19. I am very interested in Japan and especially how they are dealing with the aftermath of the tsunami. I am also very interested in Buddhism and Shintoism and other "ism"s of Eastern religion. Mockett does a superb job of engaging and informing the reader on these topics, while she chronicles her visits to Japanese temples to discover what she can about her Japanese roots. However she is a bit rambling and I struggled a time or two wondering where we were going now.


    20. This sweet book follows the author's journeys to her relative's Buddhist temple and then to a number of other temples of some repute. The driving question is to discover the resources in culture, religion, custom and folklore that shape and address grief. A fascinating encounter with Japan by one uniquely qualified to see it.


    21. Beautiful book. Touched on so many of the themes that I'm going through right now in terms of death, dying, ghosts, collective grief vs. individual grief, but was also a poetic travelogue of post-Fukushima Japan. I thoroughly enjoyed it.


    22. A terrific book to read if you are a Westerner visiting Japan. Also simply a great book.One of those things they don't tell you about growing up is that, as an adult, you are enveloped in an inexplicable sense of good feeling far less frequently than when younger. But I was so enveloped during my recent (first) trip to Japan, which is probably the very definition of a successful vacation. The Long-Suffering Wife, meanwhile, was reading this book and finding it intensified her similar sense of va [...]


    23. One of the best books I have read this year. Grief is something every person and every culture faces. It's important to realize that other cultures can teach us ways to deal with grief in ways that may seem strange to us but that can also be healthy for us. Some rituals while very different can be very healing. Beautifully written. Content is about the March 11. 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan; how the people pulled together to grieve and recover their communities.


    24. A fascinating look at Japanese spirituality and customs around mourning, grief and death from the unique perspective of a Japanese-American woman whose family run a Buddhist temple in the Fukushima area of Japan. Mockett's book provides a thoughtful and beautifully written exploration of her personal and cultural journey in Japan after the March 2011 earthquake/tsunami.


    25. A very insightful novel depicting the spiritual practices of the Japanese with regards to death and the afterlife. After the Fukushima disaster, it is interesting how spiritualism can lend itself to resiliency and recovery for the victims, and in closure.


    26. really insightful on mourning practices and life both as an insider and outsider simultaneouslycuses a lot on Tohoku area and even mentions Morioka the town I lived in so it have a very personal connection for me.


    27. Lots of information on Japanese religious beliefs I feel compelled to look more deeply into the information I gleaned reading this. I was. Left wanting more. I will be following this author now.



    28. This was an interesting book that was based on the 2011 tsunami devastation and then branched out to include different branches of Buddhism, meditation and the authors own grief of losing her father.


    29. When the tsunami of November 2011 hit the coast of Japan, San Francisco resident Marie Mutsuki Mockett, child of a Japanese mother and American father, was immediately concerned about members of her family who owned and ran a Buddhist temple so close to Fukishima that it was enclosed in the radioactive `exclusion zone” after the meltdown of the reactors. Within three weeks she visited towns in the surrounding area to which residents of the affected area had been evacuated. In her memoir about [...]


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