An #ensoaday: New Zealand

Myra Lowe from New Zealand joined the #ensoaday project very soon after I first started, and she has been sharing her daily enso with many other people on the Art of Mindfulness Facebook page. Here she talks about herself, and her experience of making enso. Many thanks to Myra for generously sharing her story and images. (Copyright for these belongs to Myra Lowe 2016). You can find Myra on Facebook here.

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I live in a small town in Central North Island, New Zealand, an beautiful area with mountains, lakes and rivers which constantly move and inspire me. It is here that I practice and teach Tai Chi, my passion for which I have been practicing and teaching for more than twenty five years. I have recently retired from my career as a psychotherapist, during which I used art, my other passion, as a tool for inner exploration, creative and self development. I entered a new phase of life earlier this year, my vision to pursue life as an artist and continue to teach tai chi, to follow my passions. Over and above my own practice is to bring these together for others, to enhance their creativity, their physical well being and spiritual growth. Each endeavour I undertook, however, disintegrated around me and moving forward and finding a way to do this seemed difficult. Within this struggle, in a small bookshop in my home town, I found Wendy Ann’s book incongruently placed amongst other books of unrelated topics. A gift!  I believe the right thing is given at the right time. Realising this was what I had been attempting to achieve I looked further  into the website. I was drawn immediately to the ENSO project.

The ENSO symbol was familiar to me being used in Tai Chi as the symbol for Wu Chi – stillness and emptiness. I had explored this symbol briefly 15 years ago through art to express what Tai Chi was and still have the framed piece I made then. I began incorporating this symbol into my Tai Chi practice by making one at the end of completing the form or routine. As I progressed with the ENSO project I found I was more focused and gaining clarity about what I could do. I noticed each ENSO was becoming more complex and expressive. With each one completed I opened the  Tao Te Ching a Taoist book by Lao Tzu, at a random page to use an excerpt as a daily theme. The common theme that emerged was to cease striving and seek simplicity the basis of Taoism. Now at the end of the thirty days I have a workshop in place – The Tao of Drawing – I have made a beautiful book of enso’s – One Breath One Line – am more relaxed and at peace with my process of change. My next ENSO will be a large one on exquisite hand made water colour paper for a space on my wall in my home.

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