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Tibetan Buddhist Monks to Spend Week at IUP Creating Sand Mandala

Ten Buddhist monks will be at IUP from October 24–31, 2011, to create a sand mandala and to perform Tibetan chanting and dance. The monks will work more than forty hours on the mandala, pouring hundreds of thousands of grains of colored sand to complete the design.

This group has traveled throughout the United States creating such mandalas at universities and top museums, including the Smithsonian.

A mandala is an abstract representation of the universe. Once the mandala is done on October 31, it will be left on display for an hour and then swept up.

The mandala will be made in the Ohio Room in the HUB. When you come to watch the monks make the mandala, be sure to take advantage of all the supplementary activities that are also offered: you can use the same instruments as used by the monks to participate in the community sand art; or you might create a “peace flag” to be hung from the ceiling of the Ohio Room (more than 3,000 such flags will hang from the ceiling by the end of the week); if you like doing puzzles, then work on the three mandala puzzles available; or, if you like to color, then fill in one of the mandala coloring patterns.

The opening ceremony for the mandala is Monday, October 24, from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. The concert of Tibetan music and dance is on October 29 from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. The closing ceremony, in which the monks sweep up the mandala and pour the sand in a local creek, will be Monday, October 31, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

A full schedule of events is available on the Mystical Arts of Tibet Outreach page. More information about the performance may be found on the Lively Arts website.

Contact Stuart Chandler (chandler@iup.edu) if you have any questions or would like to bring a group to see the mandala.

This event is sponsored by: Committee for the Studies of Culture and Religion, The Lively Arts, Department of Religious Studies, Office of International Education, Center for Student Life, Six O’Clock Series, Asian Studies Committee, Asian Studies Club, Religious Studies Club, and Student Cooperative Association.

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