Original Chinese Language Article: By Dong Yong
(Translated by Adrian Chan-Wyles PhD)
The Photographer States:
On June the 6th, 2009, my friend and I visited the Bai Ta Temple in Chang’an. I was working on a series of Buddhist themed photography shoots. At this time, the temple was temporarily led by a young monk who was humble and courteous, and very devoted to meditation practice. He had an unperturbed mind that was very admirable. We were photography after 5pm in the afternoon, when into the courtyard came a young lay-Buddhist child. The right-arm of this cute little boy was injured, and was held in a sling. However, this injury did not stop the little boy from being mischievous around the monk – who sat quietly meditating and unaffected by the otherwise amusing performance. I was suddenly aware of a profound dynamic exist between the two with the monk exhibiting a quiet and peaceful maturity, and the child behaving with a youthful exuberance. This was an incredibly vivid scene of contrasts. Suddenly I understood the saying “My mind does not move” and I intuitively understood its meaning! I raised my Nikon D3X camera, and photographed this fun-filled moment. (I used the speed setting of 160 per second, with 400 sensitivity.)
Appreciation of Art
Monks practice meditation all the time, but it is difficult to maintain an undisturbed mind, particularly when a young child is playing and making noise. It is easy for a photographer to take a picture like this, but in fact the implications contained within it, are both deep and profound. Can a mind really be completely unmoving like a rock, and in a non-active state? Of course, it comes down to the fact that not all people can meditate, or become a monk; as most blindly wander the Earth, taken with this or that attraction. However, if I could attain to the state where my “my heart does not move”, then why should I worry about anything? I remember common sayings such as ‘Cleverness is like a Floating Cloud’ and ‘Be Calm’ – then I laugh as I wonder how many people have truly understood the meaning! I found Mr Song’s ‘My Mind Does Not Move’ a very good read, and I may yet realise its deep meaning. I think I applied this understanding to my photographic work and this is shown in the above picture where the interaction between the monk and child – like the interplay between light and dark – is captured in an instant through a single photograph. This is three dimensional graphic art that cleverly captures subtle and underlying themes not always obvious to the naked eye.
©opyright: Adrian Chan-Wyles (ShiDaDao) 2015.
Original Chinese Language Source Text: