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 the Void.
The void represents those things beyond everyday experience. Void is where we continually perfect our techniques, sharpen our focus and develop the desired reflexive action.
The shape is traditionally a jewel shape, here in the painting reminiscent of a torus.
In the martial arts, the void is where you sense your surroundings without your physical senses and act without thinking, have no openings by being completely open, and strike your opponent who is both there and not there.
“The void is where you stand, for in the void nothing has been decided, therefore everything is possible.”
~Sensei Joshua Copson