Mandala art can be beautiful and interesting but it is also very therapeutic. Mandala design and coloring mandala art relieves stress, encourages deep reflection and helps you heal emotionally. Psychologists, psychoanalysts and therapists began using mandalas as analytical and therapeutic tools many years ago.
Mandala Stress Relief
Mandala coloring and drawing is a proven stress reliever. Even though people often think of coloring as a childhood activity, it is actually a form of artistic expression for people of all ages. You don’t have to be an artist to do it, though. The finished mandala patterns don’t have to be works of art. That is not the purpose of mandala coloring. It is just about relaxing, letting your hair down and enjoying yourself.
- Download and print out a few coloring pages for free from What’s Your Sign or Coloring Castle. Both sites have a nice selection of simple to more intricate mandala coloring pages.
- Purchase a mandala coloring book through Amazon. They cost anywhere from $5 to $20 but the booklets often contain 48 to 50 mandala coloring pages.
- Draw your own mandala design from scratch. This may seem a bit intimidating at first but, nobody is going to critique you if you don’t want them to. Draw it, color it, wad it up and throw it away, if you like. Nobody else has to even see it.
Dr. Carl Jung explained, “My mandalas were cryptograms concerning the state of the self which was presented to me anew each day … I guarded them like precious pearls …”
Colored pencils are used most often, they offer the sharpest points for greater detail, but you shouldn’t hesitate to try something else. You can use anything you like. Go with charcoal for black and shades of grey. Color them with pastels if you feel more comfortable with softer colors. If you’re feeling bold and artsy, use oil or water color paint. You can even use your kids’ crayons if you want to, or buy your own box.
The whole point is stress relief, relaxation and self-expression. You color your mandalas with anything you want to.
Mandala Therapeutic Value
Dr. Carl Jung, a Swiss psychologist during the first half of the 1900’s, was a huge supporter of the use of mandala for therapeutic benefits. He found that the circular patterns emerged naturally in his own personal “doodles”, and in drawings made by patients during art therapy, when they were making great progress. He was familiar with Indian philosophy and mandalas in Hinduism. His own philosophy was that the circular mandala design represented “self” or the entirety and wholeness of one’s mental state or personality.
Dr. Jung said, “I sketched every morning in a notebook a small circular drawing, … which seemed to correspond to my inner situation at the time.”
Dr. Jung believed that the desire to make circular drawings means that you are entering a period of great personal growth or are about to make a big break-through.
Mandalas for Emotional Healing and Mental Clarity
The point of meditating with mandala art and coloring or creating mandalas, is to clear the mind by forcing it to focus on the mandala design. It is sort of like distracting yourself from everyday distractions. Concentrate on the design to quiet the mind. If you begin to get distracted, thinking about what else you need to do, simply focus on the mandala until you quiet your mind completely.
Choose a mandala design or mandala symbol with a specific goal in mind. This will help you make progress in any area you feel needs further exploration.
- Yin Yang symbols can help you achieve greater balance in your mind and in your life in general.
- A butterfly mandala design can assist with renewal and moving forward.
- Star mandala patterns encourage deeper, more spiritual exploration.
- Chakra colors in a mandala design help you focus during chakra meditation.
Drawing your own mandala design from scratch is the most therapeutic way to use mandala. While you are drawing and coloring your mandala patterns, you will find yourself drawn in and highly focused. After you finish, you will be surprised to find that you feel less stressed and more in control. This is achieved naturally, without you having to actually concentrate on the stress release or emotional healing exercise. You may even experience one of those wonderful “Ah hah” moments when something you’ve been struggling with is suddenly crystal clear and things just begin to fall into place.