A Sacred Art by the Tibetan Lamas
The monks begin by consecrating the site
of the sand mandala with approximately 30 minutes of chants,
music, and mantra recitation. This event is visually and
acoustically striking and draws large audiences and media
Drawing of the Lines
Immediately following the Open Ceremony,
the monks start drawing the line design for the mandala.
This is very exacting work that takes about three hours to
Constructing the Mandala
Throughout its creation, the monks pour millions of grains of sand from traditional metal funnels called chakpur.
The finished mandala is approximately five feet by five feet in size, and takes three to five days of work.
The monks conclude their creation of the mandala with a consecration ceremony. In some cities, several
thousand guests have attended the closing ceremony. It is very colorful and of great interest to the media.
Closing Ceremony and Dispersal of the
the closing ceremony, the monks dismantle the mandala, sweeping
up the colored sands to symbolize the impermanence of all that
exists. When requested, half of the sand is distributed to
the audience as blessings for personal health and healing.
The remaining sand is carried in a
procession by the monks, accompanied by guests, to a flowing
body of water, where it is ceremoniously poured to disperse the
healing energies of the mandala throughout the world.
Mandala Construction Process: