A mandala is a symbolic picture or pattern created to help tap into our innate healing abilities. It enables our mind to become as still as the surface of a pool of water from whose depths come the insights needed to connect with our inner voice. Its colours and geometry are specifically designed to bring about inner peace. Mandalas often take the shape of a circle, a symbol representing our Sun, the self, a state of wholeness. By meditating on its structure we move towards a state of completeness and a realisation of our true nature, which like the circle of the mandala is boundless and perfect.
Carl Jung asserted that they are a key to personal transformation because they represent “an archetype of wholeness”. Their symbolism allows us to apprehend the cosmos reflected in each of us. The mandala reflects the interconnectedness of everything in the Universe, giving us insight into our spiritual nature. It frees us from unhelpful ways of thinking that prevent our inner growth, creating well-being in our body as well as the heart and mind.
Mandala-like designs have been created by man since the beginning of time, across all cultures and religious systems. Examples include Stonehenge, Carnac in France, Native American dream catchers and medicine wheels, Buddhist traditional mandalas often formed in sand or natural materials. Their central point is often referred to as the “seed” or “drop”. The eye travels outward from this point, a safe place of stillness. The map of the mandala opens out like the petals of a lotus to reveal multiple petals of reality, representing different aspects of the psyche in liaison with aspects of the cosmos. Moving your eyes over the symbols of the mandala relaxes you further and allows you to reach deeper within.
In the Mandala Workshops, students provide the canvas or art paper they wish to work with, and creative ideas; all the other materials are supplied. The mandala starts from a meditation and some basic instruction is provided at around symbolism. It is essential to wear old clothes as while paints used are water based acrylic, they can stain clothing.