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The Creation of a Sand Mandala by the Monks of Gaden Shartse Monastery

September 15 - 21, 2013

Mandala literally means “that which extracts the essence.” On the tour the monks create two-dimensional sand mandalas which are of the most intricate and labor-intensive type; requiring incredible amounts of concentration. At times the execution of the design even pivots on the placement of a single grain of sand. Each sand mandala’s cosmic diagram represents the dwelling place of a particular deity. The intricate and multi-layered mandalas are where iconography, placement, color and form combine to create a vision which represents the entire universe. As unique as its creation, the ritual of dissolution is profound; and in graphic fashion it expresses the core teachings of impermanence. From Monday, September 16 through Friday, September 20, come and watch the monks of Gaden Shartse Monastery work on their sand mandala.

While at BVU, the monks will also execute a full stage performance featuring sacred sounds, dance, and life from the roof of the world. Long hidden behind the Himalayan mountain ranges, the ancient Tibetan culture remained virtually untouched by the outside world for thousands of years. This incredible performance, filled with elaborate costumes, rich sounds, and movement, will transport you into the heart of their sacred land. The performance includes Tibetan multi-phonic chanting (often referred to as throat singing). The deep, vibrant chords representing the essence of the secret tantric teachings fill the room and transform both the environment and the audience with their powerful energy. The sacred dances of Tibet are not simply a performance; they are an ancient, spiritual ritual created to transform negativities and obstacles into positive and harmonious conditions. The origins of these dances have their roots steeped in the secret path of tantric Buddhism. This performance will be held in Schaller Memorial Chapel.

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