I have been a monk for nearly forty-five years now. Why did I become a monk? The real answer is that I don’t know why! All I do know is that I heard a “calling from within monasticism” and I knew that I had to respond to it. I had to respond, knowing I had no idea what that response would mean for the course of my life!
Hawaiʻi in 2004 for me was that same experience! Some of my family were going to Waikīkī and arranged for me to come at no cost to myself. Strangely, I had no desire to go! We landed at Honolulu airport and crossing over to the baggage area through the open walkway, I was sensually assaulted: the Trades were gently blowing, the intoxicating scent of flowers carried in the breeze! It was a watershed moment, those seconds when I was ambushed by Hawaiʻi‘s beauty! It was at that precise moment that I heard Hawaiʻi speaking to me no less strongly than monasticism did so many years ago! It was at that moment that I knew that I had to respond to Hawaiʻi with my life!
A discipline in learning the monastic life is by living under the guidance of an experienced elder, an Abba. The Abba passes that life on by example, by relationship, and by teachings. Ever since that first Hawaiian moment in 2004 I have wondered if some Hawaiian ancestor is calling to me, trying to instill a deepening in me of the spiritual truths that I have learned over the course of these past monastic years? I suspect it’s true.
I hope to move to the Big Island around June of 2019. Since 2004 my artwork has been rooted in expressing my response to Hawaiʻi. These blog entries are a way of documenting and examining my response to that “calling”.