…..'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'…..

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

MenoSundays; Life Lived Lovingly

Most of you by now know that I am fond of creating mandalas; of late they have been produced in rather basic style on Voo-voo the Vaio. Some years back, though, it was hand to paper and up on the wall.

I tell you this because mandalas are quite widely known these days, but what is less well-known is that they are 'living prayers', or 'active meditations'.

मण्डल /pron. "mundle-uh", with no specific stress on any syllable (unlike the general usage of "maan-daala" or "mun-daala") is Sanskrit for 'circle'. One of the very many words for circle, to be precise. Another word with which you will be familiar is चक्र /chukruh (not "chaakra" or "shaakra"!) The word again means circle, but is specific to a circular depression, a cupping, if you will.

The use of the circle in reference to the spiritual world can be found all over the globe. Here in the Bonny Land, some of it highly sophisticated, but often kept simple. Even as Christianity took hold, the circle remained, making crosses of these regions very distinctive. It does not take much to understand that the circle is a symbol of completeness, of the wholeness of things and of the eternal movement of life, the universe and everything.

As decorative mandalas developed in India - and particularly within the Buddhist and Jain movements - they became almost entirely associated with spiritual pursuit.

Try it! Draw a circle. Gaze into it and allow the blankness of the paper to become a place for emptying the mind. With the freed up mind, allow the hand to begin filling the circle with pattern. Don't judge, don't assess, don't second guess. Simply flow around and within the circle. You may be surprised!

This image is one of my hand-drawn ones from 20 years back. It is the Heart Chakra, represented by the twelve- petaled lotus and the Sanskrit letter यं  - "yunm". That is a nasal 'm' in the same manner as used in OM. This letter becomes a chant for the heart and for Love of the capital kind. Why not have a go at humming "yunm" as you practice working within the circle? Go on. Give it a go.

Nothing to lose, lots to gain.


  1. Very very pretty Yam-Aunty..and well preserved.
    Hugs madi and mom

  2. We think we will show this to mom on a day when she is feeling more peaceful than today. She said something about her sister getting under her skin but we can't see her.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

    1. Hari OM
      Oooohhh, tell mum that mandalas are one of the best ways of 'processing stuff'!!! It's amazing what comes out in graphic form that cannot make appropriate words! (But I know what it can be like with sisters, and they don't have to be seen to be 'needles'!). Yxx

  3. It is interesting how we are all drawn to circles.

  4. They are amazing. Love you lots!

  5. Good evening, YAM
    Such a beautiful way to empty one's mind! So many different ways to become more in tune with self and universe.


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