When someone’s giving his view of things, I’ve caught myself taking a position before he’s even finished laying out his point. It’s a contagious sort of reaction that’s greatly magnified when an opinion concerns the moral right or wrong of something. Judgments on right and wrong are a nearly irresistible enticement to pick sides. And that’s exactly why the old Zen masters warned against becoming a person of right and wrong. It isn’t that the masters were indifferent to questions of ethics, but for them ethical conduct went beyond simply taking the prescribed right side. For these masters, the source of ethical conduct is found in the way things are, circumstance itself: unfiltered immediate reality reveals what is needed.
I'm working on a portrait of Roshi (Robert Aitken). On his 91st birthday I took a photo of him before lunch. The lighting in the zendo is very bad and it's almost impossible to get a good shot without artificial light.
I'm taking a class from David Julian and was inspired to do a composite to make a better portrait. I added a stone background so to give the appearance of a mountain cave. At his right shoulder is Kwan Yin. I took a photo of a painting in his residence and manipulated it. Inscribed in the rock is the Heart Sutra.
I went to see The Dragon's Gift, and exhibit of Bhutanese art at the Honolulu Academy of Arts. It is a must see and will be at the Academy until May 23. I believe that it is going to travel. That will give many more people the opportunity to see this amazing show.
The colorful prayer flags placed in the front yard of the Academy announces the show in a grand way. We were lucky to arrive in time to hear the monks daily chant at 10 AM. The thangkas in the show with intricate painting and embroidery are magnificent.
The multi-media part of the show gives it a freshness and brings the art into the present. There is a video presentation as well as an installation of photographs. Both feature the Buddhist ritual dance - colorful and lively.