HOKYO: Dharma Mirror
Taking Jukai meant taking a step forward in my practice. I had been going to the Black Scorpion Temple for more than three years and I felt I had a lot to work on and to learn before I made that commitment; or at least that is what my ego thought. When Hosso Sensei talked to me about taking the vows, more than ten thousand excuses came to my mind in one second. Nevertheless, she was confident about the work I had been doing, so I put my trust in her experience rather than in my thoughts. Above all it was about trusting my Sensei's practice and, of course, my own.
With my Dharma name I work on non-attachment to myself: to my "I." Through its meaning I work on creating a clean mirror that only reflects what is in front of it, with no judgment. This is a possibility I have in life, and I intend to explore it. On the other hand, I understand that the same word is used to address those monks who from time to time jump over of the temple's wall to experience their human side. This was a risky but welcome addition to my Sensei's motives in calling me HOKYO.
NYOREN: Like a Lotus
I have taken paths in life prompted by wonder and intuition. That is what happened to me when I decided to take Jukai. It was an arrival, a crossroads. The Jukai experience was very moving to me. While reading the precepts, I recognized myself as a human being, in my behavior, my words and my limitations. I went beyond that individuality thinking about others, seeing the affection I have toward the people that surround me, toward my family, the Sangha and the whole of humanity. It was a moment of great lucidity and concentration.
My Dharma name is NYOREN. The implication is Like a lotus! There is a sentence that comprises the deep meaning of my name: May we live in muddy water with purity like a lotus. My name reminds me of life's kindness; I don't have to keep running from life, rather I can embrace it and have trust. It is a great teaching that keeps me standing upright and liberates me from my own attachments.
ENSO: Perfect Circle
Taking the Buddhist vows meant a lot to me because all my life I had been avoiding any kind of spiritual or religious commitment. However, I have found in Buddhism a philosophy that is adequate to my existentialist way of thinking. Receiving this Dharma name had a great emotional impact because it exposes my Achilles heel and reveals at the same time the potential that lives within me. One of my main features is to be very judgmental and severe toward myself and the people around me. I live in constant self-deception, punishing and hurting myself for "not being perfect," but above all, I get easily angry when the world doesn't turn perfectly around me.
ENSO is meditating while drawing or painting a perfect circle freehand, although the possibilities for this to happen are almost impossible. Zen meditation is helping me to observe my personal drama, to cut it and return to the present moment. There is no perfection or imperfection: Things simply are. Working with what is. Without judgments.