What Are Mandalas?

In the trend of coloring as a form of relaxation, one of the most popular types of patterns to color is the mandala. Mandalas are usually circular geometric patterns. Some people find the drawing and coloring of a mandala as a form of meditation. As they focus on coloring in the patterns of the form, they relax, their mind grows quiet, and they may enter into a spiritual space.

A mandala is a spiritual symbol in Buddhism and Hinduism. It’s a symbolic representation of the universe with an inner and outer world. The word mandala comes from Sanskrit, an ancient Indian language. Literally mandala means “circle.” The circle is seen as a magical form, without beginning and end, just as the universe is believed to have no end.

The Sanskrit word mandala indicates everything that is round or circular. In tantric traditions, it often refers to a sacred space, which can be round or square or any other form. Deities are invited to enter this space by uttering powerful words (mantras).

The prototype of the mandala is a square with four gates containing a circle with a central point. Often the mandala is also in an outer circle. This basic form can be found in many ancient mandalas, but there are many more variants. The mandala can also be filled with all kinds of patterns: geometric figures, Buddhist saints, flowers, you name it.

The mandala is used as an object to focus your attention on while meditating. Because of the symmetrical shape, your attention is directed to the center. People in the Western world often used a freer form of the mandala, which is more reflective of the inner self and the unconscious self. Regardless of what mandala you use, coloring it can be very meditative and relaxing.

Why coloring mandalas is for everyone

You don’t have to be Buddhist to color mandalas. It’s an activity everyone can enjoy:

  • Children: Because the mandala isn’t a literal representation of reality, children can fully enjoy their creativity. They don’t have to worry about choosing the right color green for the trees or what color blue the sky should be. The mandala can have all the colors of the rainbow. Or just their favorite color. Coloring a mandala is an excellent way to end a busy class and help children unwind.
  • Adults: Everyone has had those days when your head overflows and your thoughts just seem to keep running in circles. Coloring a mandala for an hour may help you calm down. By focusing only on the pattern and colors, your mind may become wonderfully empty. You come to rest for a little while.
  • Elderly: For the elderly, coloring mandalas may help you keep your memory in shape. The repetitive nature of many mandalas allows you to create beautiful symmetrical patterns, but you must concentrate to ensure that your colors are symmetrical (if that is, indeed, your goal). Remaining focused on a creative endeavor of this sort may keep your mind sharp.

Finally, you may not think at first glance that coloring mandalas is something that can be done in a group, but it’s a great activity to do with friends or relatives. Make a photocopy of a mandala that everyone can work on at once and go to town. Or give everyone their own copy of the same mandala and see how people come up with different colors and patterns for the same design. You can also just pass out different mandalas and enjoy being creative together.

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Mandala has come from the Sanskrit language that means CIRCLE. It shows the performance done by rites and also is a symbol of meditation and people seeking peace. It is alone considered the most unique diagram ever existed in the universe that has some other meaning inside it. It is used as a representation of the universe, a consecrated area that serves as a receptacle for the gods and as a collection point of universal forces.


Man who is also called a social animal, when ponders over the real meaning of mandala enters into the state of mind in which he/she sees everything around his/her surrounding from the perspective of the mandala. Along with this, he/she moves towards the progress of learning new concepts associated with the mandala. Every other thing will be automatically moved towards the center of mandala, and will be guided through the cosmic processes of disintegration and reintegration.


Mandala speaks about a nonexistent royal residence that is seen from human eye through the reflection of Mandala. Each item in the royal residence has its own essentialness, sometimes speaking to a part of intelligence or helping the mediator to remember a core value. The mandala’s motivation is to help change standard personalities into illuminated ones and to help with mending.


Mandalas are framed in the forms of a symbol and a representation. Some of the mandalas are symbols of different religions while some are representations of them. A symbol in a mandala expresses an obvious meaning. Although there is no need to explain instances present in the paintings like circles, moons. It’s quite obvious as to what it stands for. Whereas nonartistic person would never know the real meaning of the mandala as compared to the person being immersed into drawing mandala with its true meaning.


Mayan Tzolk’in:

One of the theories among Eastern and Mesoamerican societies, the Mayan human progress would in general used to present schedules in a structure like a mandala. It is somewhat related in structure and capacity to the Kalachakra (Wheel of Time) sand works of art of Tibetan Buddhists. The tzolk’in the wheel has 260 sections, astonishing and made on the grounds that the Mayans perceived that are schedule year having 365 days in length. The consideration of the particular number 260 could anyway identify with the long term pattern of the precession of the equinoxes. Provided that all of this information is true, this would demonstrate an astounding familiarity with the incredible patterns of time by the culture. At last, the image was presumably utilized for ceremonial purposes, and to quantify the time span number of 9-month spans like pregnancy, the development season of certain yields, and customs and practices that were being performed at an event held on all 260 day in a year, for example, in spring and fall season of the year.

This Mayan symbology has even advanced into New Age imagery as the Dreamspell schedule, created by José Argüelles. They are always portrayed as a true Mayan mandala, beacuse it is “roused by” components of the Tzolk’in the span of time.

Aztec Sun Stone:

The Sun Stone of the Aztec development was once accepted to be their likeness in aTzolk’in schedule, however, it is currently thought to be a stately portrayal of the whole universe as observed by the Aztec strict class, to some extent and it also resembles “mandala.”

The most punctual translations of the stone is identified with its utilization as a schedule in old times. In 1792, two years after the stone’s uncovering, Mexican anthropologist Antonio de León y Gama composed a composition on the Aztec schedule utilizing the stone as its basis. Some of the circles of glyphs are the glyphs for the times of the month. The four images remembered for the Ollin glyph speak to the four past suns that the Mexica accepted and says that the earth had been revolving through them.


1. Meditation

There exist cultures in old times that incorporate mandalas for calming themselves from world atmosphere. According to them, they feel mediated after drawing mandalas. Recent researches on mandalas found that not only these arts were a great source for calming one down, but also were used to suppress the stresses. It was found that as people are too busy drawing they used to forget about stress, leading them to calm. Nowadays, people use mandalas widely for destressing themselves for the worldy atmospheres, healing, escaping from depression, art therapy, and for prayer purposes. As indicated by certain examinations, mandalas are likewise said to decrease agony and stress, ease misery, lower circulatory strain, support the resistant framework, and even advance rest. Despite the fact that they may sound oversimplified, getting yourself in drawing mandalas not only uncertainly empowers you but also helps you discover inward harmony, ponder, and find yourself!

2. Entertainment and Shapes

As I previously said above, mandalas can be of any type . They are sometimes just circles inside circles. So, to take part in drawing excellent mandalas, you don’t need to be an expert, or have a distraught attitude towards yourself thinking that you can’t draw. The easiest way to calm yourself is that you should simply starts your mandala by drawing different circles to lower your blood pressure, reduce your uneasiness, and increase your productivity. Trust me you will be calm after drawing mandalas and your problems will vanish when you draw mandalas!

3. Find Inner Self

You definitely know since connecting with yourself in drawing mandalas is a kind of your inner reflection. Also, anything that includes intervened and artistic practice empowers you to find yourself. Mandalas and aesthetic practices are some known arts being practiced every day by people having art as their passion and hobby and all customary individuals find themselves at a peace and in relaxed state whenever they feel lost in their own world!

4. Fun and Leisure

In spite of the fact that the primary thought process to participate in attracting mandalas is to get self-finding and other worldly experience, you can likewise can also draw them for no particular reason and recreation. Additionally, you don’t have to think a lot before drawing them and can begin drawing circles and finally you can get on the way towards making your own mandalas. Standard rehearsing done before will make you draw an awesome mandala, and once you realize how to draw mandalas, you at this point can likewise make your own mandala. In short, making mandalas are entertaining!

5. Tackle your life difficulties

At the point when you feel wrecked and lost in your everyday life, participating in drawing mandalas can assist you with improving and have a away from your life difficulties. You find solutions to all your unsolved inquiries, accomplish a positive viewpoint, appreciate things around you, and perceive how the sorcery occurs in your life!

Mandala art permits you to save your reasoning and empower your way to talk to people. Making mandalas is a fun, energizing, straightforward, lovely, and stress-alleviating movement. A mandala is a type of process that holds profound implications inside it and permits you for self-disclosure, love, intern.


Mandalas are of different kinds. With the evaluation of science and technology, there are variations done in mandala also. People used to do mandala art as their jobs. They sell their artworks also. Following are the easily available Mandala types nowadays

  1. Kalachakra Mandala
  2. Lotus Mandala
  3. Mantra mandala
  4. Buddha Mandala
  5. Sri Yantra mandala
  6. Tantric Mandala
  7. Manjushri Mandala
  8. Triple Yin Yang Mandala
  9. Galaxy mantra Mandala
  10. Aum Mandala
  11. Buddha Nirvana Mandala
  12. Green Tara mandala
  13. Conch Mandala


How about we start with an extremely essential one that is called Outer Mandala. This mandala speaks to the universe or the outer world. These kinds of mandalas are fundamentally utilized for contributions. Offering an external mandala is a standard practice in Buddhism for expressing gratitude toward individuals of other religions.


There is another sort and type of mandala called Teaching Mandala. The training mandalas done by people in old times are the representatives of teaching mandala. Each shape, line, and shading in this mandala speaks about various parts of Buddhism. A priest figures out how to make mandalas while making use of his devout training. The training mandala can be perceived as a bright, mental guide that depicts the Himalayan culture.


A Healing Mandala is more instinctive than an educating mandala. Mending mandala are made with the end goal of reflection, convey certain insight. The recuperating mandala can be utilized for centering and thinking.


Architectural Mandalas are an actual copy in three measurements axes that portrays divinity in mandala. These mandalas are constructed in 3D axes, particularly x,y and z axes.


Mantra mandalas are those class of mandalas which have some Buddhist gods or Buddhism image in the middle and are also encompassed by some other mantras. Mantras mandalas are words or expressions that are recited so anyone can hear their meaning and are drawn inside as objects of contemplation.


The utilization of mantras and mandalas is most often connected with customary Hinduism and Buddhism. Numerous mantras and a few mandalas are held to have started as a powerful disclosure from the divine beings or spirits with which they are related. Mantras and mandalas work as methods for “centering” on the psyche, i.e in reflection and representation, and in this manner they help the searcher of peace and calm along with a given profound way.


Buddha mandala shows the lessons of the Buddha Dharma and the perpetual hover of Samsara. There are eight beams of the wheel which speaks to The Noble Eightfold Path appeared by the Buddha and the portrayal of shrewdness. There is an edge that represents the significance of training and contemplation.


Offering Mandalas are an emblematic contribution made by Buddhist professionals of the whole universe and introduced to the strict instructors, Buddhas, and divinities, .These mandalas are contributed by these professionals at different times.

A particular object that is also used in ceremonies and also called mandala plate is utilized despite the fact that the level of any object that is clean and of soothing environment is always worthy. Mandala plates loaded up with rice and multi-layered are likewise generally kept in a perpetual holy place.


Sanctuary mandalas are built from a level metal mandala plate and afterward three or four rings of metal, that are regularly engraved, embellished or are companion worked and finished off with a little copy of a wonderful castle or a Dharma wheel.


Mediation mandalas are those which are utilized to do the reflection to get yourself a higher awareness of world, setting your mind to a sacrosanct space.


Hindu Mandalas will be mandalas that are advanced with the Hindu religion. To a Buddhist or Hindu, a mandala speaks to a universe inside the universe. It is viewed as a sacrosanct work of art with otherworldly essentialness.


Component mandalas speak about water as something that has a white circle, the earth with a yellow square, fire with a red half-circle, and air with a blue triangle. These overall shapes likewise relate to the four different regions in mandala drwaing. In the old Indian Ayurvedic Medicine, the premise was framed by the components of Water, Fire, Earth, Air, and Space. Later on, this framework was joined in Tibetan Medicine. These five components and their energies additionally live inside us. They are associated with our chakras and furthermore corresponded to feelings, colors, body types, ailments, thinking styles, and character for instance.

These mandala was utilized to clarify the connection between the sicknesses and their therapies.


Figure Mandala is a divinity mandala that effectively puts pictures of the real iconographic figures in the correct areas around the mandala community and outskirts.


Mathematical shapes Mandalas are those that speak to the four head exercises and the four components of earth, firewater, and air. The Medicine Buddha and Vaishravana Riding a Lion both ordinarily have square-molded mandalas.


Envision mandalas are referenced in the ceremonial writings. These, nonetheless, are viewed as just relevant for use by the best educators and the best understudies.


Beginning Card Mandalas are little artworks, by and large, the size of a story tile, made in sets and utilized in Buddhist and Bon customs and inceptions. The mandala cards are utilized as the focal sanctuary object for commencements and ceremonies. They are regularly made for those events when enormous quantities of inceptions are given at one time such as the Vajravali and Mitra Gyatsa assortments of commencements.


  1. Allow for around 30 minutes to one hour for the creation cycle.

  2. Take a couple of seconds to inhale profoundly to permit you to get focused.

  3. Simply beginning off with a spot! It is dull and intelligent as they contain both mathematical and natural structures and that is every one of that must be thought of. They can be a theoretical or individual picture that may resound with the maker.

  4. Draw a cross through the speck to make 4 quadrants and afterward again to make 8 equivalent fragments. This helps keep the example uniform when drawing. On the off chance that doing a zendala just draw around a plate or saucer and, at that point section the circle haphazardly fit to be loaded up with designs in each fragment.

  5. Once you have made your speck, ruminate over the hover to quieten yourself and interface with your internal identity.

  6. Ensure you are sitting in an agreeable position and appreciate this otherworldly practice to help your own advancement in whatever part of your life you feel will profit you.

  7. Once you have finished your mandala, you might need to protect it for future contemplation reference. The mandala you have made is a portrayal of your internal identity and utilizing it as a point of convergence may help in you increasing comprehension of this sacrosanct space as you contemplate.



Many times, people who have an eating disorder, (especially when this illness is active over a long period of time), feel that it is so difficult to change. Mandalas gives a Hope. They empower the person to see her pain, stay in touch with it, learn from it, and then release it by learning a new way to overcome the fear of feeling his/her own emotions and to grow safely by building healthy relationships with others.


People were asked to do mandala writing and related treatments are offered by numerous medical care suppliers and in non-emergency clinic settings around the globe as an approach to supplement malignant growth patients’ therapies. In a therapy session, done by teams of doctors in the hospital, it was found that 220 members have participated in this mandala expressions workshop to date. The associate director of the HKCF’s Wellness and Holistic Health Center, Wang Pin-han, says it is predominantly ladies who are attracted to this course – 94 percent of wellbeing program participants are female, and that applies to this workshop, as well.

Some patients state that it helped quiet and calm their considerations, as the action gave a much-needed diversion from the pressure, feelings of torment identified with their ailment. Others state this type of inventive articulation prompted self-disclosure or self-recuperating in them.“A ton of them said they had seen their infection or life from an alternate point,” Wang adds.


In short, mandalas are not help used for curing of different diseases. But in addition to that many people consider this as their source to make money. The mandalas are not new, but people in older times also use this for calender purposes. Many kinds of research on mandalas show that it is helpful for the treatment of down syndrome disease also. So, have a healthy habit of making mandala everyday for calming your mind.

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What are Mandalas
Mandala is a complex abstract design which is usually circular in form.
Generally speaking mandala is a diagram, a chart or a geometric pattern that symbolically represents cosmos. It is originally meant to represent wholeness and potrays organizational structure of life. The meaning of word “mandala” in Sanskrit is circle. Mandala is a spiritual and ritual symbol in Hinduism and Budhism representing universe.
Mandalas have historical and religious importance in Hinduism and Budhism in which mandalas are drawn with certain meaning and description. The circles and corners represent cosmic truth and spiritual aspect of human experience.
Facts about mandalas
In Hinduism a basic mandala is called “yantra”. In Budhism a mandalas represents the entire universe in which th MOUNT MERU is depicted as the axis mendi is the center.
In Budhism mandalas are commonly used as an ais to maditation.
In Budhism architectural mandalas are often applied as a blueprint or plan to design Budhist structure including temples and stupas.
In Persian islamic philosophy mandalas represent the whole universe and the center is the source of devine light and the source of love. We have been seperated from our source as the rays of sun. The light always shows us the right path to grow and find a way back to our source.
In western psycological interpretations mandalas were related to unconscious thoughts of inner state at a moment. The pioneering work was done by Carl Gustav Jung. Creating mandalas helps to integrate and reorganize inner life. American art therapist Joan Kellogg continued Jung’s work to create a diagnostic tool termed as “MARI card test”.
Mandalas are also part of archeological discoveries which are helpful to describe the eastern concepts and traditions of mandalas.The greatest discovery is of the five giant mandalas in the valley of Manipur India that has been protected and declared as historical monument and site by the government of Manipur. I covers the area of 2,24161.45 sq. meters comprising of square mandala with four patelled flowers or rayed star and is called as Maklang “staf fort” by locals.
In science circular drawings are often used in phylogenetics for example evolutionary trees are used to depict numerous species can be easily shown on circular tree where the images of species are shown on the periphery of the tree. Such diagrams are called “phylogenetic mandalas”.
Types of mandalas
There are three main types of mandalas:
Teaching Mandalas: These are symbolic for which each line, colour or shape of mandala represents a different meaning. Teaching mandalas serve as colourful mental maps for its creator.
Healing mandals: These are made for the purpose of meditation. Their purpose is to deliver wisdom, evoke feelings of calm and focus concentration.
Sand mandalas: Sand mandalas have been used by Budhist monks as a religeous and traditional element. The intricate of sand mandalas is made with colored sand using a variety of symbols that represents the impermanence of human life. Some common symbols used within mandalas include eight spokes, triangles, bells etc.
Importance of mandalas
Drawing and working with mandalas serve as a mindful exercise and has many psycological and clinical affects. Clinical studies have shown mandalas to boost the immune system, lower blood pressure, promote sleep and ease depression. Mandalas serve as sacred symbols to promote meditation, prayer, healing and as an art therapy for both adults and children.
Mandalas for adults
For adults coloring mandalas in not just a pass time activity using paper, crayons, color pencils and markers, it has countless health benefits also. Some of which have been listed below:
To reduce stress and anxiety
The fear center of brain called as “amygdale” get relaxed by coloring mandalas which has the same effect as by maditation to reduce the thoughts of restless mind. This generates peace of mind and quietness which relaxes the mind after a long day at work.
Improvement of motor skills and vision
Coloring requires communication between two hemispheres of brain and choice of colors generates the thinking process.
To improve sleep
Exposure to electronic lights at night reduces the levels of sleep hormone melatonin. Coloring is an alternative electronic free bet-time ritual that wouldn’t disturb the level of melatonin.
To improve focus
Coloring requires focus of mind but it is not so much to become stressful. It opens up the frontal lobe of brain which controls problem solving and organzing. This allows you to put everything else aside and live in a moment generating sense of accomplishment and fun.
And above all coloring does not requires special skills and expertise and serves as an uplifting way to unwind after a stressful day of work. Coloring is surely to do this trick.
Mandalas for kids
Coloring mandalas can serve as a vital educational tool in preparing children for school. It can become a favorite pass time and fun activity of kids. It is helpful in in improving creativity, imagination and self expression. Coloring mandalas is the best activity when children want some quiet and fun time. They won’t get bored and will spend hours filling various shapes themes and structures with colors of their choice giving each art work of mandala a colorful and artistic flair. Coloring mandalas has many advantages for children aside from just taken as a fun activity:

  1. It helps improve the hand writing of children and reduces the possibility of incorrect grasp of pencil.
  2. Coloring activity promotes hand and eye coordination and motor skills helpful for students at early age.
  3. Mandalas have specific patterns and designs that require skills and talent of children to be expressed and promoted.
  4. Coloring mandalas teaches kids the value of patience.This is the value which is of primary importance for children going to the higher levels of studies.
  5. Coloring mandalas requires attention. This activity promotes the ability to concentrate and focus.
    6.Coloring mandalas allows children to truly express themselves and attain relaxation.
  6. Letting children to finish coloring a mandala develops a feeling of sense of accomplishment for a job well done by him or her and boosts his or her confidence level and self esteem.

The trend of colors as a form of relaxation is one of the most popular types of patterns to color the mandala. Mandalae are mostly circular geometric patterns. Some people consider drawing and coloring a mandala as a form of meditation. As they concentrate on coloring the patterns of the form, they relax, their minds become still and they can enter a spiritual space.

What exactly is a mandala?
A mandala is a spiritual symbol in Buddhism and Hinduism. It is a symbolic representation of the universe with an inner and outer world. The word mandala comes from Sanskrit, an ancient Indian language. Literally Mandala means ‘circle’. The circle is seen as a magical form, without beginning and end, just as the universe is assumed to have no end.

The Sanskrit word mandala refers to anything that is round or circular. In Tantric traditions, it often refers to a sacred space, which can be round or square or some other shape. Deities are invited to enter this space through powerful words (mantras).

The prototype of the mandala is a square with four gates with a circle with a central point. Often the mandala is also in an outer circle. This basic shape can be found in many old mandalas, but there are many more variants. The mandala can also be filled with all sorts of patterns: geometric figures, Buddhist saints, flowers, you name it.


The mandala is used as an object to focus your attention while meditating. The symmetrical shape draws your attention to the center. People in the western world have often used a freer form of the mandala that is more reflective of the inner self and the unconscious self. Whatever mandala you use, it can be very meditative and relaxingly colorful.

Why colorful mandalas are for everyone
You do not have to be a Buddhist to paint mandalas. It is an activity that everyone can enjoy:

Children: Because the mandala is not a literal representation of reality, children can fully enjoy their creativity. They do not have to worry about choosing the right shade of green for the trees or what a blue shade the sky should be. The mandala can be any color of the rainbow. Or just her favorite color. A mandala colored is an excellent way to complete a busy class and relax the kids.

Adults: Everyone has days when your head floods and your mind seems to keep turning. Painting a mandala for an hour can help you calm down. Focusing solely on patterns and colors can leave your mind happily empty. You relax for a while.

Elderly: For the elderly, the mandala color can help you keep your memory in shape. The repetitive nature of many mandalas allows you to create beautiful symmetrical patterns, but you need to focus on making sure that your colors are symmetrical (if that really is your goal). Staying focused on such a creative effort can keep your mind sharp.

Finally, at first glance, you may not think that mandala coloring is something you can do in a group, but it is a great activity to do with friends or family. Make a photocopy of a mandala that everyone can work on and go to town at the same time. Or give everyone their own copy of the same mandala and watch people come up with different colors and patterns for the same design. You can also just hand out different mandalas and get creative together.

What is a mandala? History, symbolism and use
A Tibetan monk constructs a sandal mandala.
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes • Last updated: 18/12/19
If you’ve ever studied spiritual Asian art, you’ve probably come across a mandala. The mandala, which in Sanskrit means “circle” or “discoid object,” is a geometric pattern with many symbols of Hindu and Buddhist cultures. Mandalas are believed to reflect different aspects of the universe and are used as meditation tools and prayer symbols, especially in China, Japan, and Tibet.

The basic shapes of mandalas are circles closed in a square and divided into parts, all of which are arranged around a single central point. They are usually made on paper or fabric, painted on the surface with threads, glued from bronze or built of stone. Although mandalas are unusual as a stand-alone work of art, in addition to their bright appearance, they have a symbolic and meditative meaning.

What is a mandala?
The mandala is a spiritual and ritual symbol in Asian cultures. This can be understood in two different ways: externally as a visual representation of the universe or internally as a guide to several practices taking place in many Asian traditions, including meditation. In Hinduism and Buddhism, it is believed that by entering the mandala and moving toward its center, you will go through the cosmic process of transforming the universe from a world of suffering to a world of joy and happiness.

Tibetan mandala. Sold for € 320,000 at Sotheby’s (December 2018).

A brief history of mandalas
Sidharta Gautama, a pioneer of Buddhism, was born in a region now known as Nepal. Although the date of his birth has not been confirmed, historians believe it is about 560 AD. E. Clearly, Gautama left his kingdom after learning of human suffering, where he sought enlightenment through meditation and thoughtful action. He began to publish his philosophy in different parts of India, where he gained devoted followers and eventually founded the first sangha, a community of Buddhist monks.

Traveling along the Silk Road, an ancient network of trade routes connecting East and West, these Buddhist monks brought Buddhism to other countries. They carried mandalas with them and brought the practice of drawing these spiritual compositions to other parts of Asia, which appeared in regions such as Tibet, China, and Japan in the 4th century. Although mandalas are rooted in Buddhism, they soon emerged in Hinduism and other religious practices. Spiritual artisans were often devout laymen commissioned by the patron. They worked while sitting on the floor with a picture on their knees or in front of crossed legs.

Types of mandalas
There are different types of mandalas that are found in different cultures and are used for different purposes - both artistically and spiritually. Below are the three main types of mandalas and how to use them.

  1. Mandala training
    Teaching mandalas are symbolic, and each form, line, and color represents a different aspect of the philosophical or religious system. The student creates his mandala based on the principles of design and construction, designing the visual symbolism of everything he has learned. Teaching mandalas for their creators are colorful mental maps.

  2. The healing mandala
    Healing mandalas are more intuitive than a teaching mandala and are designed for meditation. Healing mandalas are designed to provide wisdom, evoke a sense of calm, and direct attention and concentration.

  3. Sand mandala
    Buddhist monks and Navajo cultures have long used sand mandalas as a traditional religious element. These intricate designs use a variety of symbols made of colored sand to reflect the instability of human life.

Symbolism in mandalas

Chakrasamvara mandala. Sold for $ 4,750 through Bonhams (June 2016).

In their intricate circular patterns you can find common characters in all mandalas. Traditionally, they involve the presence of the Buddha’s mind in an abstract form, usually depicted as a circle, tree, flower, or gemstone. In the center is a point that is considered a symbol with no dimensions. This is interpreted as the beginning, the beginning, of contemplation and devotion to divinity. From here, the point is surrounded by lines and geometric patterns that symbolize the universe, and surrounded by an outer circle that represents the cyclicality of life. Some of the mandala symbols are:

The Circle of Eight Spokes: The circular nature of the circle is an artistic representation of a perfect universe. The eight spokes represent the eight paths of Buddhism - the practice leading to liberation and rebirth.
Bell: Bells mean the openness and emptiness of the mind that allows for the entry of wisdom and clarity.

  • Triangle: When facing upward, triangles represent action and energy, and when facing downward, they represent creativity and the pursuit of knowledge.
  • Lotus flower: A sacred symbol in Buddhism, the symmetry of a lotus depicts balance. As a lotus reaches up from underwater into the light, so too does a human reaching for spiritual awakening and enlightenment.
  • Sun: A popular basis for modern mandala patterns, suns tend to represent the universe, often carrying meanings related to life and energy.

How Mandalas Are Used

Mandalas are used for a variety of religious traditions, meditation, and modern contexts. The traditional Tibetan mandala, found in Buddhism, depicts the enlightened state of Buddha through sand art. Patterns are formed on the ground using metal and a small tube to create the exact texture and organization of the grains. Creating this can take weeks, and shortly after it’s complete, it is destroyed to align with the Buddhist belief that nothing is permanent.

Buddhist monk making a sand mandala.

As it relates to modern context, mandalas are used in a variety of ways. In yoga, mandalas represent the same ancient ideals; signifying a sacred space to shut away external influences. Often, mandalas are positioned around the studio and sometimes even drawn during meditation periods. Similarly, mandala art is used in healing circles, a practice that derives from Native Americans. The circles are often associated with the restoration of the body, mind, and heart.

Mandalas have also been found in dream catchers as a means to protect the individual sleeping. A popular item in Western cultures, you can easily identify the shape and patterns of a mandala within most dream catchers.

A spiritual symbol in Asian art, mandalas have since become a popular, meditative element for a variety of different cultures. In Hindu and Buddhist cultures in particular, mandalas and thangkas serve as a representation of the universe and a guide on the path to enlightenment. We’ve since seen the geometric design appear in yoga studios, dream catchers, healing circles, and other meditative practices. The habit of creating and collecting mandalas is a transformative practice that is intended to restore inner peace and wisdom within.

What is a mandala?
What is a mandala?

Once you know what a mandala is, you will start seeing them everywhere!

Mandala is a Sanskrit word that means “circle” or “center”.

We often associate the word mandala with a circular pattern whose colors, shapes and patterns come from the center. Mandalas can be precise, carefully measured, geometric and completely symmetrical, or, conversely, smooth, organic and asymmetrical. Mandalas are often drawn in circles, but they can also be drawn in squares.

Hindu and Buddhist traditions
In the Hindu and Buddhist traditions, mandalas are the object of meditation that helps in spiritual development. The images depict the universe, and the symbols reflect the spiritual journey of a person, the cycles of birth-life-death and the interconnection of all living things. Hindu tradition focuses on self-realization as oneness with the divine. Buddhist tradition emphasizes the potential of enlightenment (Buddha nature), and the paintings depicted in the mandala illustrate the obstacles that must be overcome in order to develop compassion and wisdom. According to this tradition, mandala drawing follows strict rules.

Mandalas - rose window, yin yang, ferry spiral, labyrinth, Mayan calendar
Mandalas are found in all cultures.
Here are some examples:

Operation of ferry coils and nodes
Christianity - windows-roses, pink, halos
Chinese Yin and Yang symbol
Hindu jantros
Native Americans - Medicine Club, Dream Catchers, Indian Shields
Navajo sand paintings
Tibetan Sand Mandalas
Calendars follow time cycles. that is, the Gregorian, astrological and Mayan calendars.
Mandalas are found in nature: snowflakes, flowers, shells, nautilus.
Mandalas in nature
Snowflakes, flowers, and seashells such as the nautilus pictured above are examples of where mandalas occur in nature. Cyclic lunar and seasonal patterns are also considered mandalas.

Personal mandalas are contemplative designs for personal comprehension and healing.

Personal mandalas
The Swiss psychiatrist Carl J. Jung introduced the West to the practice of creating mandalas for self-expression, discovery and healing. In the daily creation of mandalas, Jung found that shapes, colors, and symbols reflect his mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being at the time he created them. He noticed how his mandala drawings had changed, changing his mental and emotional state. Reflecting on these mandala drawings, Jung came to the conclusion that our subconscious and conscious always strive for balance. Jung, working with his clients, allowed them to draw mandalas. He noted that the creation of mandalas helped to calm patients experiencing chaotic psychological states. Jung also identified universal patterns and archetypes that were updated in his mandalas and those of his clients.

There are no rules for creating mandalas for personal pleasure and reflection. Either way, you can draw symmetrical patterns or fill the circle with shapes and colors. It totally depends on the person drawing the mandala.

I invite you to study this practice of creating personal mandalas.

Benefits of creating mandalas
Participants in the competition to create 100 mandalas in 100 days experienced this for themselves.

Creation of mandalas:

Relaxes body and mind
Develops a sense of happiness, inner peace and general well-being
Relieves stress, anxiety, anxiety, shock, fear and depression
Boosts creativity and improves focus
Boosts self-esteem and self-acceptance
Promotes a sense of connection with yourself and others
Improves sleep
It’s fun!