The story opens in the summer of 1902 in a rural village in the northern peninsula of Okinawa, a tiny island in the East China Sea, where a young girl Mahataa is born. She arrives as a High Born One in a matriarchal culture that has not seen such a one in ten generations. Growing up against the backdrop of tremendous adversity, including natural disasters, heavy taxation, loss of loved ones and poverty, Mahataa nonetheless remains focused on high spiritual values.
Her connection and alliance with a young boy foreshadows a joint destiny. Mahataa is mentored in her very early years by Great-Grandmother, a gifted storyteller and diviner, and is then taught Clear Mind Meditation, Tai Chi and the secrets of Taoist Alchemy by an old monk. Later, Mahataa apprentices under the three powerful matriarchs of the culture: the Noro (High Priestess), the Yuta (Soothsayer) and the Yabuu (Medicine Woman). Mahataa is instructed in “manifestation through prayer” by the High Priestess, hones her divining abilities through her work with the Soothsayer by absorbing the wisdom of the I Ching, a book of oracles, and learns healing methods based on Traditional Chinese Medicine and indigenous practices when she studies with the Medicine Woman.
The story begins with her unusual birth, continues through her adventures and misadventures to the moment when she leaves her village for more education in the South at the age of fifteen. Her karma unfolds as she matures. The book is a work of historical fiction laced with magic and spirituality, and explores the wisdom of the crones. The book teaches the importance of reaching out to our spiritual elders, those who hold the keys to higher consciousness and who can show us the way.
Revealed in the novel is a kind and resilient people who lived in the early 1900’s with the yoke of heavy taxation imposed by the Japanese after the Satsuma Clan invaded the islands in 1609. It is written about a time before American occupation following the devastating impact of World War II. No matter how poor the Okinawan villagers of the 1900’s were, there existed a deep, caring bond among them and even today, Okinawans are a closely-knit people. This loving care that runs through the hearts of the people is a deep spirituality, untainted and unique to this culture. The reader is given bits of knowledge in the areas of meditation, Tai Chi, Yoga, Taoist alchemy and Chinese medicine. May the reader be inspired to explore the internal arts that lead one on a path to Self-discovery.
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