The word Mandala means “circle”.
A Mandala represents wholeness, a cosmic diagram reminding us of our relation to infinity, extending beyond and within our bodies and minds. Mandalas are circular designs symbolizing the notion that life is never-ending. Many mandalas have spiritual significance to an individual or group of individuals. Hindus were one of the first people to use mandalas as a spiritual tool, but the mandalas most individuals are familiar with, are ones made by Buddhists.
Mandalas are said to affect the cognitive process in numerous ways. Specific arrangements of colors, along with vertical and horizontal lines, can have profound visual and psychological effects. This can be seen in its most basic form as optical illusions such as these.
Mandalas are used for meditation purposes allowing the individual meditating to become one with the universe, however, just looking at a mandala will likely not bring you to this state of mind without staring deep into it. The creation of a mandala, on the other hand, can have significant meaning for many individuals regardless of religious or spiritual orientation. “All roads up the mountain lead to the same spot”, so they say. Mandalas can be created by individuals to symbolize their journeys through life. Mandalas can also tell a story of where an individual has been.
In some cases, they will reveal the individual’s path in life. Groups can create mandalas that will reveal what they should be doing in order to grow and develop as a group.
A very beautiful type of Mandala is the Buddhist Sand Mandala, which, after spending weeks at a time making it, it is swept up and effectively destroyed.
The idea is that every grain of sand, as it is being created, is filled with the blessings from those who create it, observe it and see it happening. Those grains of sand are then released into a river, which carries it to the ocean, and the ocean spreads the sand to the entire world. It is in this way, that each mandala touches the hearts of billions of people, in a deeply spiritual way.
A very popular trend nowadays is Mandala coloring books! They help calm your senses and allow you to focus on forms of geometric harmony.
So what are you waiting for?! Go make or color a Mandala!
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