Tibetan Sand Mandala Completion/Closing Ceremony

Posted in Event, Music, Photography by daybf on November 8, 2009

Tibetan monks came to Cal Poly and spent four days creating a sand Mandala in the University Union. This was particularly fun for me to see, because I took a Buddhist art history class, learned a lot about different Mandalas and only saw videos of monks making sand mandalas. Mandala literally translates to “essence container” in Sanskrit and is generally used as a meditation aid in Buddhism. A Mandala can be a diagram of the universe, enlightened vision of a Buddha, and a place of Nirvana and peace.










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Mai-Chi (a Graphic Design student at Cal Poly) created this Mandala for anyone to add sand to throughout the four days.



The closing ceremony included music and chanting:

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When finished, the Mandala is destroyed to symbolize the impermanence of all that exists. Everyone at the closing ceremony was given a vial of the sand.


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Once they ran out of vials, they began putting sand in ziplock bags to ensure that everyone in attendance could take home sand.






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After the ceremony they walked to Santa Rosa Park creek to release the sand. The idea is for the water to carry the healing energies throughout the world.

_MG_4536_1My vial of sand 8D:


Here’s to happiness and good health!

Photo info-I solely used my new Canon EF 50 mm f1.4 lens. I still haven’t used it that much, but am loving it. I didn’t need flash in the poorly lit (at least in photography terms) University Union?-unheard of!


5 Responses

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  1. contoveros said, on November 8, 2009 at 8:28 pm


    You have provided a great service with your recording of such a beautiful event. Photos are worthy of magazine gloss coverage.


    Michael J

  2. nataliarose said, on November 10, 2009 at 11:00 am


    Your photos look fantastic! I’m really glad you were there to see this/photograph it, I’m sad I couldn’t be there too. You’ll have to tell me more in January. :]


    • daybf said, on November 15, 2009 at 6:43 pm

      Yeah I’m really glad I went too-it’s amazing to see in person compared to watching videos of it in Buddhist Art History class. I’m sure you’ll have plenty to share with me in January also-you’ve been all over!

  3. sbernstein said, on November 12, 2009 at 7:24 pm

    nice pix! Looks like a fun event. Like the detail shots…amazing.

  4. Mariko said, on January 26, 2010 at 12:47 am

    So colorful! I love the close-ups of the mandala and the happy monks handing out sand (:

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