Banana Yoshimoto and healing

20 Oct

I just finished my third book by her, this one a collection of short stories titled ‘Lizard’. Her words are so beautiful to me.

Of this particular collection she says:

I wrote these stories over a period of about two years. In them, I was interested in exploring time, healing, karma and fate. I’d been thinking about the very different ways people can see their time on this earth, either as a sort of paradise, or as a living hell. To my mind, however, it’s not that people live lives that are inherently good or bad. I believe that we create our own heaven or hell in the very process of becoming and being our “selves”. My intention in these stories was to investigate that ongoing process, with the result that many of the pieces deal with religion and spiritual topics.


I believe that we are not born with hope, but rather that it come to us as a transforming force. The people in my stories are encountering hope for the first time. The process of discovery usually starts when they notice something about themselves or their surroundings that they were never aware of before, or experience anew a forgotten sensation. That type of awakening compels them to act and to change things. I wanted to write about the feelings of disorientation, apprehension, and uncertainty that accompany most attempts at sorting out one’s own emotional baggage, as well as the feelings of liberation that some people have at crucial times in their lives.’

This is where I am at the moment. This year has been so transforming for me, and I have changed in ways that I didn’t even realise I had to. It’s been hard work though, and I am looking forward to coming out of it on the other side… I am still not quite there.

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