Creating a personal mandala (sacred circle) is an active form of meditation that opens our heart and mind as one. Through direct revelation we are able to make the invisible visible by shifting our consciousness and connecting with our inner wisdom.
History of the Mandala
The Sanskrit word mandala means sacred circle in the Hindu tradition. Mandala's are a meditative and healing art form that is intertwined with the concept of chakras (spinning wheels). Chakra's were sensed by the yogi's of India as invisible wheels of energy within the body during deep meditation. Yoga means "to yoke with spirit". As ancient Yogi's toned vocal sounds to improve their flow of life-force energy, they became aware of spinning wheels of energy within them. They chanted mantras that resonated within each chakra to reach higher and deeper levels of consciousness. The mantra “aum” was felt to be the primordial sound of creation. Yantras were drawn as visible manifestations of these archetypal mantras, which evolved into the meditative art of personal mandalas.
Mandalas can be seen in the cosmic order of nature. Sacred circles such as Stonehenge were inspired by observing the sun, moon and stars. The Medicine Wheels of North America were ceremonial stone circles used for personal and collective healing. The Dharmachakra of Buddhism is organized in a sacred circle that encompasses the four noble truths and eightfold path. To this day Buddhist monks create intricate sand mandalas that are dissolved soon after completion. They provide a path for meditation and blessing along with honoring the impermanent nature of life.
Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung (1875-1961) experienced "sacred circles” in his dreams as a way to heal the mind and soul. He was fascinated by the mandala's ability to tap into the collective unconscious and awaken the unconscious self. Mandalas were a major source of inspiration as he developed his theory of archetypes. He eventually identified mandalas as the archetype of wholeness.
Dr. Rajita Sivananda (Judith Cornell Ph.D, 1941-2010) was inspired by Carl Jung as she pioneered new methods to use mandala's as a spiritual and healing practice. Her radical awakening, as a result of a cancer diagnosis in 1979, inspired her to use black paper and colored pencils to create personal healing mandalas. Her process became a synthesis of Eastern and Western traditions, blending the sacred art and the spiritual science of the mandala with theories in quantum physics, raja and kundalini yoga plus transpersonal psychology. She wrote the award-winning book: Mandala - Luminous Symbols for Healing.
The black paper symbolized the unmanifested self and the seven prismacolor pencils (white, violet, blue, green, yellow, orange, red) represented the chakra body as a rainbow of light. Dr. Cornell taught non-judgment, non-attachment and unconditional love. She saw the mandala as a spiritual path of active meditation that required no artistic skill.
In 2007, Laural Virtues Wauters attended her first retreat with Dr. Cornell at Mount Madonna, CA. She returned several months later to begin her training as a Mandala Facilitator. Laural is one of the few Mandala Facilitators certified by Dr. Cornell before her passing in 2010.
Creating a personal healing Mandala
No artistic experience or ability is needed, this is a process of stepping out of judgment and ego and draw from our heart as we access our inner wisdom. Each Mandala is inspired by our personal intention. The actual mandala process begins by tracing a white circle onto a black sheet of paper. This white circle is the "container" for the Mandala. A white dot placed within the circle represents our beginning point. This dot is the "seed" of intention. Enter into quiet reflection and sit comfortably. Become aware of your breath and release worry, anxiety or fear. Allow what you sense to flow onto the paper. When you feel complete meditate on its message and write it on the back of the paper.
Laural is available to facilitate classes, talks or book signings.
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