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05 October, 2007

Constructing a Mandala

Found on the web site, we thought it a wonderful presentation. Be sure to visit the site.

The monks of the Namgyal Monastery [wiki], of Dharamsala, India, and its branch in Ithaca are constructing two types of mandalas [wiki] at the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University, a Kalachakra Sand Mandala seen in the slide show above and a Thread-cross Mandala seen in a photo gallery on this page. Construction of such mandalas has the purpose of providing temporary dwellings for housing Tantric Buddhist deities. The monks will continue to work until the mandalas are completed approximately Saturday October 6th. This tradition was originally reserved for the monastic environment, but in recent decades the Dalai Lama has allowed the construction of sand mandalas in public places as a cultural offering and to promote preservation of Tibetan traditions.

The sound heard with the slideshow is from the monks creating vibrations in the copper chukpu or funnels that then precisely place the sand into the mandala.

For more information about related events go to

You can read this article on the web site, which includes a photo gallery.

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