What’s my purpose on the planet?
When I graduated from RISD in 1967 with a degree in photography, I wondered how I could make a living. I didn’t want to teach or be a commercial photographer. The only other thing I new anything about was graphic design. So I decided I would make an income as a graphic designer and photograph on my own. I started my own design firm in Cambridge, Massachusetts and enjoyed success, winning awards and earning national and international recognition for my work. I kept photographing and set up a darkroom in the front hall of my apartment.
I had a vision of a five-year plan for my career while I was on a four-month meditation course in Switzerland. It included getting a Masters Degree in Graphic Design (Yale) working as a designer for a large corporation (Westinghouse) and for a large design office in NYC (Vignelli Associates) and then starting my own design practice (Larrabee Associates). I did all of this, only it took me ten years instead of five.
In 1993 I decided to take a chance to pursue my photography. I had been chanting in Chinatown, New York with a Tibetan Rinpoche. This experience of chanting along with my daily practice of meditation and Agnihotra led me to the point where I couldn’t go deeper in my practice without first answering the question “what’s my purpose on the planet?”