Photolope

Blog

Buddhist Sand Painting

 The sand mandala is a Tibetan Buddhist tradition involving the creation and subsequent destruction of mandalas to symbolize the transitory nature of material life.

The sand mandala is a Tibetan Buddhist tradition involving the creation and subsequent destruction of mandalas to symbolize the transitory nature of material life.

image.jpg
 As more colors are added to the designs, the mandalas take on a multi-dimensional appearance.

As more colors are added to the designs, the mandalas take on a multi-dimensional appearance.

image.jpg
 Losang Samten is one of only 30 people worldwide qualified to teach the art of Tibetan sandpainting. A former Buddhist monk, in 1988 he was sent to America by the Dalai Lama to demonstrate the art form of the sand mandala. That marked the first time a sand mandala had been created in the West.

Losang Samten is one of only 30 people worldwide qualified to teach the art of Tibetan sandpainting. A former Buddhist monk, in 1988 he was sent to America by the Dalai Lama to demonstrate the art form of the sand mandala. That marked the first time a sand mandala had been created in the West.

 The sand is added to the mandala using funnels and scrapers called chak-pur.

The sand is added to the mandala using funnels and scrapers called chak-pur.

 Overhead view of a section of the Yamantaka mandala, a cosmic blueprint of the palace of The Conqueror of Death.

Overhead view of a section of the Yamantaka mandala, a cosmic blueprint of the palace of The Conqueror of Death.

 At the completion of the mandala, a dismantling ceremony is held to return the sand to nature, signifying the transitory nature of the material world.

At the completion of the mandala, a dismantling ceremony is held to return the sand to nature, signifying the transitory nature of the material world.

 During the dismantling, the deity symbols and mandala geometry are removed in a specific order.

During the dismantling, the deity symbols and mandala geometry are removed in a specific order.

 The sand is swept up into a vase, wrapped in silk, and transported to a river (or other moving body of water) where it is dispersed back into nature.

The sand is swept up into a vase, wrapped in silk, and transported to a river (or other moving body of water) where it is dispersed back into nature.