Many people associate the word ‘mandala’ with intricately designed, attractive pattern-like images that can feature a variety of different styles and colors. Whilst mandalas are a very popular choice for wall art and even tattoos, few actually know the true meaning and symbolism behind them.

Originating from Buddhism, ‘mandala’ means circle. Symbolizing wholeness and forming a Buddhist’s ideal view of the universe, mandalas represent the idea that life is never ending. Due to this symbolism, mandalas often have strong spiritual significance to many individuals around the world, making them a cultural influence that has lasted for thousands of years. If you want to know more about the ancient mandala and the effects they’ve had on today’s modern lives, keep reading!

What actually is a mandala?

With so much emphasis constantly placed on what a mandala symbolizes and represents, few sources go into detail about what a mandala actually is.

Whilst mandalas may be primarily constructed out of a variety of shapes such as triangles or semi-circles, they always have an overall circular design in which all shapes concave towards. This inherent circular design present in all mandalas reinforces its ‘circle’ meaning and symbolizes the universe coming together in the middle as one.

Harmony, unity, and wholeness are the main emotions felt by those who experience spiritual significance through mandalas, which is why they’re a hugely positive symbol that many find calming or relaxing.

How to use a mandala

Most people associate mandalas as simply being designs to be admired and looked at. Whilst this is true, if you really put your mind to it you can use a mandala to your advantage in a variety of different methods.

Meditation is one of the most relaxing, beneficial activities you can do, and mandalas are often used during the meditation process. The appearance of mandalas has been specifically designed to absorb the mind’s thoughts and allow your mind to wander, which is exactly why focusing on a mandala during meditation is said to both relax and inspire you.

But if you’re new to meditation and think you’ll find it difficult to fully absorb your mind into the mandala on your first attempt, it’s a good idea to try a more conventional activity involving mandalas first. This will get you used to the concept and appearance of mandalas, and will likely give your mind an easier route into the meditation process when the time comes.

Coloring Book for Me and Mandala is an innovative coloring book app specifically focusing on the creation and design of mandalas. Offering an endless array of color combinations and intricate designs to choose from, you’ll be able to take mandalas at your own pace and learn their true beauty before engaging in serious meditation. Learn more about this app to discover its full range of benefits.

Whilst mandalas have increased in popularity in recent years, few actually know the meaning and symbolism behind them. But now you know where they originate and how they’re used, you now have the power to take advantage of a mandala’s wholeness and work your way to developing a more unified, relaxed mindset.

photo via simmons

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