Earlier in 2017, I accepted a commission from my son, Sensei Joshua Copson, a 4th-degree black belt, to create a series of five paintings for his martial arts studio, The Blue Dragon Dojang.
The paintings embody the order in which his Oh Do Kwan students progress in their spiritual studies. The shapes are consistent with the five elements of the Gorintou – the Five Ring Pagoda.
He teaches the 5 elements in a circular pattern: Water, Earth, Void, Wind, Fire – with none being more powerful than any others but rather continually moving one into the other as they support the whole.
This is the painting for Earth.
Earth represents the foundation of the world. The cube is the basis – hard, solid, objective. This is where conditioning breeds strength, certainty, and integrity.
In the martial arts, to master Earth is to be the toughest and strongest, to root yourself to the world having all attacks break upon you as you break your opponent.
“Root yourself to the world, pushing down through your foundations and out through your technique.”
~Sensei Joshua Copson