Some of you may already be aware of the craze that is sweeping the Feudal lands. I am sure your masters and lords have taken the time to inform you, toiling serfs, of an art form delicate in its composition, fantastic in its successful rendition, and so green that burying it within your rice paddies and wheat fields would yield no corruption of the soil. For those still ignorant of this most glorious and holy art forms I submit to you the wonder of the far east: the Mandala!
It is a beauty isn’t it? What’s more is this intricate, colorful, vibrant craft is usually comprised entirely of either sand, rice, rocks, or other small, organic objects. Of course; the colors themselves (traditionally) are created with natural dyes, though in these modern times you lowly wretches will have to be sure to find organic, non-toxic dyes specifically. If you aren’t a dedicated, tedious soul; your options do include simply painting or drawing one of these babies; though, what would be the fun in that?
The Mandala had its start in the Hindu religion, then became a major fixture of Tibetan Buddhist monks. The famous Tibetan sand Mandala is a laborious endeavor meant to cultivate inner and outer harmony, the monks used it to symbolize their dedication to a life of contemplation as well as the impermanence of life itself. They are generally geometric in design, focused on a single point in the middle and radiating out in various patterns important to the individual or culture. They have spread around the world; being adopted by religions far and near.
Of course, you don’t actually have to be religious to engage in this craft. Make a Mandala of Micheal Jackson and Sandra Bullock having a perfectly geometrical picnic on planet Mars if you’d like. Something to do in-between herding your flocks of sheep and goats, at least? I say give Mandala a chance; free Nelson Mandala! Frankie says MANDALA! Don’t cry for me Mandala!
(Photo credits (in order of appearance: Ottawa Friends of Tibet, Henryart, Crazy Anonymous Christian Webmaster, Onmarkproductions.com, Grow-A-Brain)
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I recently purchased a neat coloring book called Kid’s First Mandalas.
On the inside cover here is what is written: “We often forget that children need a way to relieve stress, too. Coloring Mandalas is the perfect way to help them relax and focus, while fostering a love of art. …through their free-flowing arrangements, mandalas have a calming effect upon even the most rambunctious child. ”
When I read that, I immediately though it might be a nice trade for drugs for those kids that have trouble focusing.
Sold me! I bought the coloring book for my daughter! Not because she’s rambunctious but because relief of stress at an early age might help her cope in later years.