Ed Heckerman
Erich Making Prayer Flags, Urgyen Samye Chöling, France, 1991Tree and Prayer Flags, Urgyen Samye Chöling, France, 1991Prayer Flags on the Edge of the Woods #1, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2010Prayer Flags on the Edge of the Woods #2, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2010Prayer Flags on the Edge of the Woods #3, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2010Orchid and Lamp Offerings, Yeshe Nyingpo, Santa Monica, 1999Offering Lamps, Orgyen Chö Dzong New York, 2005Buddha Statue, Swyambhunath, Nepal, 1992Swyambhunath, Nepal, 1992Prayer Wheels, Swyambhunath, Nepal, 1992Boudhanath Stupa, Nepal, 1992Prayer Wheel Quartet, Dudjom Gompa, Boudhanath, Nepal, 1992Mani Stone, Zuni Mountain Stupa, New Mexico, 2009Riwo Sang Chö Offering Chimney, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2006Rinpoche's Office Window, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2005Padmasambhava Embroidery,Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2000Mantra Preparation for Consecration, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2000Mantra Rolls and Consecration Materials, Urgyen Samye Chöling, France, 1991Sky and Stupa, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2010Stupa and Sky, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2009World Peace Prayer, Orgyen Chö Dzong, New York, 2002
That Which Holds
"Dhr", the root of the word "dharma," means to "hold." The Sanskrit word dharma was translated into Tibetan as "chö," replete with additional meanings, such as to heal. Dharma holds and heals in many ways. It holds with openness, clarity, and compassion, and heals by removing the negativity that blocks these qualities. Photography also holds, but in a very different sense. It holds visual evidence of impermanence. Photography also has the potential to heal insofar as it can help us remember what continues to be important to us.

There are two ways to be a Buddhist photographer, firstly, to focus on Buddhist subject matter, and secondly to see and record ordinary phenomena with unfettered awareness. In this series I have endeavored to merge these approaches. As a series, "That Which Holds" seeks to lyrically convey a sense of continuity to photographs made intermittently from 1989 to 2010 in France, Nepal, New York, California, and New Mexico in various Buddhist centers and sites of pilgrimage.

May this meager offering of fragments from the totality of space, unstained by the photographer's ego, bring benefit and succor devotion.