Mandala (Sanskrit: ‘circle’) is a spiritual and ritual symbol, representing the Universe.
The term is of Hindu origin, but is also used in other religions, particularly Buddhism.
In various spiritual traditions, mandalas are used as a spiritual teaching tool, and as an aid to meditation.
In common use, mandala has become a generic term for any plan, chart or geometric pattern that represents the cosmos metaphysically or symbolically.
Monks created the symbols over 2500 years ago as part of their traditional spiritual training, and is still used as a focus for meditation today.
During meditation, the mandala is repeatedly contemplated.
As a meditation on impermanence (a central teaching of Buddhism), after days or weeks of creating the intricate pattern of a sand mandala, the sand is brushed together into a pile and spilled into a body of running water to spread the blessings of the mandala.
The reintroduction of mandalas into modern Western thought is said to be due to Carl Jung(psychoanalyst) in his pioneering exploration of the unconscious through his own art making.
Jung recognised the usefulness of creating mandalas as part of his psychological explorations and described them as ‘a representation of the unconscious self’.
The mandala appears to us in all aspects of life, the Earth, the Sun, the Moon , the circles of life encompassing friends, family and communities.
Mandalas symbolise the notion that life is never ending.
I create under the name Punctured Artefact
I like to feature symbolism within my work, either my tattooed leather art, custom tattoo design or flash art
I personally prefer the less floral/ ethnic inspired mandalas (as you can probably see from the images I have picked here)
Here are a few links incase you want to check out some of my work !
Heres a screen shot from my website featuring some of the designs, you can download
If you like posts about symbolism and its use in art, design, culture & tattoos – visit the symbolism section of my blog