The mandala is a powerful symbol and tool.
If you have had the opportunity to observe or design one, you will surely have already felt its soothing power. This circular and colorful representation can be defined and interpreted in a thousand and one ways, just like yoga and its practice. which is often compared to a diamond with a thousand facets.
What is a mandala, where does it come from and what are its powers?
Immerse yourself in the infinite world of this unique drawing!
Origin and meaning
The word mandala comes from Sanskrit and means “circle, center, unity, totality.”
Although the circle symbolizes the divine in Buddhist and Hindu traditions, this fundamental form representative of life has appeared in various cultures since the beginning of time.
“We know that the patterns of the circle and the spiral appeared simultaneously in all prehistoric cultures. Humans associate them with an eternal movement, to a cosmic order, to an egg from which life arises: they recognize the cosmic cycles of day and night, or seasons, which inspire respect and fear. In short, the circle takes shape in the representations at the same time as the religious and cosmic feeling arises. “Ghislain Bédard
The mandala as we know it, that is to say enriched with geometric shapes, comes from Hinduism, which also describes these forms with the term yantra, meaning “support”. The mandala appears here as an important tool of Vedic tradition and Tantric Hinduism, since it defines bridges with the divine. The mandala can thus be perceived as the graphic representation of the sung mantras, which establish this same connection with the Great All.
As long as one observes, the mandala is present everywhere, from the infinitely large to the infinitely small; in other words “everything is mandala”: the Earth, the Sun, the Moon, crystals, flowers, atoms, fruits, rosettes from stained glass windows, the wheel of the zodiac, the human body, etc.
The circle, represented in color in the mandala, is therefore theexpression of the essence of life in all its forms.
A therapeutic tool
According to medical studies on the use of mandalas, these can preserve or restore psychic order. Through the refocusing effect, beneficial effects are very rapidly manifested in individuals suffering from depression and even depression. Impressive results also appeared in elderly people who no longer communicated with those around them.
Indeed, mandalas push the patient to describe both by drawing his inner emotional state (refocusing) and to open up to the outside by testifying his feelings at a T moment.
It was Karl Jung who introduced the mandala to psychology, after experimenting with its introspective and calming effects in a personal capacity: “Every morning I drew a small circular figure, a mandala that seemed to correspond to my inner state of the moment. I only gradually discovered what the mandala really was, the self, the integrity of the personality, which, when all is well, is harmonious.”
These benefits also benefit children; this is what teachers who use mandalas in their classrooms have noticed. “Working with mandalas helps them establish their identity. Studies have shown that at different times, children of the same age group create the same mandalas.”
Mandala and creativity
The mandala is a way to anchor and refocus yourself, that is to say to dive inside you, and to go to meet your intuition. It helps you meditate,encourages relaxation and opens the mind.
“It increases your receptivity, and helps you better understand the world around you, connecting your heart and mind for a better balance. By coloring a mandala, you increase your understanding of yourself and the world”Josette Juillerat
The opinion of Amélie, Amazon Art therapist
In art therapy I find it interesting to work the mandala in the long term, to carry out it as a daily/seasonal ritual. Because each reveals changes through symbols, colors. It is a real “tool” of introspection. I like this quote from the psychotherapy Suzanne Fincher: has a quote that I like from a psychotherapeute: “The mandala calls the action of the Self , the web of life that is our support and support. By drawing a mandala, we create our own sacred space, a place of protection, a center on which to focus our energies. When we express our inner conflicts in the symbolic form of the mandala, we project them out of ourselves. Simply drawing inside a circle can provide a sense of unity. Suzanne Fincher
The mandala is therefore a simple and accessible tool for all to refocus and relax. Its very strong symbolic charge and its quasi-hypnotic colors immerse you in an inner universe open to infinity. Practice without moderation!
To go further: a few tips to create your own mandala
– Mandalas, Blanche Paquette and Jean-François Malherbe (extracts)
– Harmony and Consciousness, Josette Juillerat (therapeutic art and mandalas creator)
Thank you to the adorable Veronika Durisova for her image of Mandala. Discover the artist’s work on his website.