This might seem a rather odd post for a blog about Photography, but in my professional career I have been some challenging situations, this is one of them ,not just physically and lighting wise but spiritually to. Let me explain just a little, this is a situation that is almost unique , it’s the result of one mans work and study for the last four years , and the teachings of the other priests and Abbot , even a mans dream coming true , once this ceremony is complete ,there is no going back, your life is changed in perhaps more significant ways than marriage and in that view a continuation of practices thousands of years old ( I think Marriage is only a few hundred in its present form ) and something that doesn’t happen thousands of times a week . So on that note enjoy and learn just a tiny bit.
Once in a great while you get an opportunity to be part of something very special, last Wednesday Dec 12th was the ordination of Joseph, now in my time I have shot weddings of most faiths or just the quick drive through type here in Las Vegas , and for the most part I try to be inconspicuous get great shots of the usual thing , rings, first kisses ect, these I don’t do too much these days by choice, but the ordination of a Buddhist priest was special and as I was invited I felt quite honored , and I found myself trying so hard to keep a low profile and yet getting completely caught up in the spirituality of the ceremony.
There were so many parts that just begged to be shot but I had to limit my self as this is held in a pretty small room and to get the shot you want, you can’t just go leaping around snapping away as if you’re at a press conference.
The ceremony it’s self is quite long, not a lot of audience participation if that’s the right term to use and for the ordained a lot of physical bowing . I’ve picked a few images to share here : Here is the transmittance of wisdom (I hope I have the terminology right ) it rather speaks for its self , the thing is you can really feel the electricity in the room , almost like it’s crowded with spirits, now whether you believe in this or not there’s no doubt you’d feel the energy , a photographic moment that I ‘m glad I got and for Joseph the culmination of 4 years of hard study and devotion.
Presented with a begging bowl of rice another very significant moment that I thought just needed to be in monochrome , perhaps with the symbolism of a beggars bowl, it to begs for good ol’ black and white.
It makes me feel honored to have witnessed this ceremony and just how interesting photography can be and the powerful situations you can find your self in, for some this might well be life changing, I know I shall never forget this particular event, congratulations Joseph , you worked hard for this and I don’t think I’ve seen a bigger smile on one persons face in a long long time.