ArtWaken Mandala Gallery

What is a Mandala?

"A mandala, the Sanskrit word for "circle" is a concrete symbol of its creator’s absorption into a sacred center." 

(excerpt from "Mandala - Luminous Symbols for Healing" by Judith Cornell)


"It represents wholeness, and can be seen as a model for the organizational structure of life itself - a cosmic diagram that reminds us of our relation to the infinite, the world that extends both beyond and within our bodies and minds.

Describing both material and non-material realities, the mandala appears in all aspects of life: the celestial circles we call earth, sun, and moon, as well as conceptual circles of friends, and community. Tibetan Buddhists believe that the mandala is "a matrix or model of a perfected universe" says noted Buddhist scholar, Professor Robert A.F. Thurman. "Every being is a mandala... We are our environment as much as we are the entity in the environment."

The integrated view of the world represented by the mandala, while long embraced by some Eastern religions, has now begun to emerge in Western religious and secular cultures. Awareness of the mandala may have the potential of changing how we see ourselves, our planet, and perhaps even our own life purpose.

Mandala-making can serve as an activity for meditation and relaxation or, if we dare to explore deeper aspects of our psyche, it becomes a tool for transformation. When used in a transformational process, we are rewarded with clarity, resolution, an opportunity to grow for more invested we are in the creation, the more potent and rewarding the result.

There are as many ways to create a mandala as there are individuals. Some mandalas art emerges from an emotional need to experience wholeness, to bring together disparate pieces of a life in transition. Mandala can also express a deep-seated sense of belonging to something larger than ourselves. Culture, ancient and contemporary, offer many artistic and philosophic examples of mandala concepts and those found in nature - integrating valuable lessons from each into our own, personal mandala. Whatever message we are moved to convey, it makes sense that, if we choose to explore creating from the center, we would benefit from first finding our own center. Sit silently, quiet the mind, become more keenly aware of the present moment - the place in which creation takes place. Begin with your center - it is there that you will find the center of your mandala"

(excerpt from “Mandala: Journey to the Center" by Bailey Cunningham)






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