Opening ceremonies: Tuesday, 9/15 at noon
Laying of the colored sands: Wednesday, 9/16 through Friday, 9/18 from 10 a.m. to 6p.m.
Closing ceremonies: Saturday,9/19 at 1 p.m.
A Green Tara Sand Mandala for Prosperity and accomplishment will be constructed by the monks in the main lobby of the St. Ambrose University Library. Opening ceremonies for the Mandala will take place at the library on Tuesday, September 15 at noon.
During the ceremony the lamas consecrate the site and call forth the forces of goodness. This is done by means of chanting, music and mantra recitation. From all the artistic traditions of Tantric Buddhism, that of painting with colored sand ranks as one of the most unique and exquisite. Millions of grains of sand are painstakingly laid into place on a flat platform over a period of days or weeks to form the image of a mandala. To date the monks have created mandala sand paintings in more than 100 museums, art centers, and colleges and universities in the United States and Europe.
The lamas will begin the exhibit by drawing an outline of the mandala on the wooden platform. On the following days they lay the colored sands. (Sept. 16-18 from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.) Traditionally most sand mandalas are destroyed shortly after their completion. This is done as a metaphor for the impermanence of life. The sands are swept up and placed in an urn; to fulfill the function of healing, half is distributed to the audience at the closing ceremony, while the remainder is carried to a nearby body of water, where it is deposited. The waters then carry the healing blessing to the ocean, and from there it spreads throughout the world for planetary healing.
The closing ceremony will begin at the SAU Library on Saturday September 19 at 1:00 P.M. and move to the Marquette Street Landing where the sands will be poured into the Mississippi River. Please join us for this exciting event!!