Saturday, February 24, 2007

Mandalas, inspired by Teri & the Tibetan Buddhists

A couple of weeks ago, I was inspired by Teri's Mandalas to draw a mandala a day. I'd never tried it before but had always been intrigued by this ancient art form. I believe it was the Tibetan Buddhist monks who started it all, creating huge and intricate sand mandalas which are then swept away, as a kind of meditation on the impermanence of life.

I don't do anything fancy like that. I just draw them in my lined moleskine diary with no specific aim in mind, not even the aim for them to come out looking like "art" or to make a good drawing. I do find it very soothing and absorbing to draw them and, like Teri mentions on her mandala blog, I really enjoy the spontaneity of not knowing what's going to happen when I start. It's very freeing and therefore it really doesn't matter if I end up not liking how it turns out.

I did a bit of reading about mandalas and discovered that Jung used them in his work, believing that they are the ultimate expression of the self (he wrote about this in his book Memories, Dreams, Reflections). This idea intrigues me though I don't draw them with that intention or aim in mind. What I did want was a different way of "documenting" or capturing my day to day life in my diary other than in words, and the idea of drawing mandalas really captured my imagination. It may be that when I look back on these one day, I will learn something or see something about myself that I'm not able to see now. Who knows. In any case, I just really enjoy doing them.

Here are a few of my favourites from the last ten days or so.


Teri C said...

These are really wonderful Tammy and I am so glad you tried them and found them as much fun as I do. Be careful, they are addicting!

changapeluda said...

oH wow, i really really really like these!
the whole you described them before i scrolled down and saw was just really really lovely.
and inspiring And addictive...woo hoo.