Hands down the biggest influence in my life was my teacher Ron Spickett. I took drawing and painting from him in my 3rd and 4th years of university. He became my biggest champion in art and in life. When he was ordained a zen buddhist monk in the ’90’s he took the name Gyō-zō.
In the buddhist tradition a dharma name is given to a student by their teacher. It is designed to help connect the student with their inner, true nature, awakening their divine blueprint, a reminder of their spiritual commitment.
Gyozo gave me the dharma name Okori –
It was to be a constant reminder that I am the creator, the architect of my life – every breath, every thought, every choice, every action a brushstroke on the canvas that is my life – rendering the invisible visible – sometimes in incomprehensible ways.
I had a great deal of resistance to this name, it did not resonate with me. It felt more like an assignment than a reminder of my commitment to live a life aligned to source – to creativity.
However as my skin and bones experience the passage through time, my life, the experience of it – has grown deeper, richer, more mysterious – and now without being able to adequately describe why, I feel as though the Okori vibe / energy, has moved in and taken up residence – a new level of understanding – a new operating system has been downloaded –
Finally, feeling not the weight of the name as much as the honour of it, ready to explore that alignment, to understand the creative process on a new level, a deeper knowing of my part in all of it.
Finally, allowing myself to step into what it really means to be the source of my life, and seeing what Gyō-Zō would say over and over again –
that I am the form that the formless chose, the character in the book that my soul wrote for me, playing out my role in a story that has already been written –
creator, seer, witness –
the source of my life on levels beyond mysterious – okori