Quote Originally Posted by Pachipro
But I learned to study, observe, and learn from the Japanese people and culture and why they acted in this way. I asked many questions of the Japanese and learned why they think the way they do. Soon, my thinking slowly turned 180 degrees and it no longer irritated me as I learned that, no matter what, the Japanese are basically not prejudiced, xenophobic, or have an underlying dislike of all foreigners. They are just a curious island people who are being taught that they, their history, and their ways are unique to the rest of the world and any foreigner that adapts, or tries to adapt, is the most curious and unique of all.
I am not sure it makes me feel better to know that they are being taught (=lied to) that their country is unique about such things as having 4 seasons (when not all parts of Japan doesn't even have them). After all, by whom are they being taught ? By other Japanese, by tens of thousands of school teachers, by their parents or by society as a whole. So how do you distinguish the person who is taught and the one who teaches others ?

What I don't understand is how naive they can be in the first place to believe all that nonsense that is taught to them. Keeping with the example of the 4 seasons, how can they not know that Europe or most of North America has 4 seasons, when most Japanese know Vivaldi's 4 seasons (why would have it been named like that 300 years ago if the 4 seasons were unique to Japan ?) or don't they see in Western movies or in the news on TV that it is cold and snowing in winter and that people go skiing (not a Japanese invention!), but that all the flowers forcedly bloom again in spring and that people are in t-shirt in summer and go to the beach. Don't they see like in their own JTB travel agencies that there are "autumn leaves" (koyo) tours in Canada, New England, Norway, etc. Don't they know there are cherry trees outside Japan, when they mostly eat imported American cherries, and eat German cakes like "Black Forest" with German black cherries ? I may still forgive them for not knowing that Northern Europe has more distinct seasons than Japan because of its higher latitude, and that summer days are much longer (like 17h of daylight) and winter days much shorter (about 7h of daylight).