Thursday, June 19, 2008

Sandpainting

everything comes to pass,
nothing comes to stay.
-matthew flickstein, journeying to the center

Tibetan monks spend days creating sand paintings of mandalas just to destroy them soon afterward as a metaphor for the fleetingness of life. At first i thought, "but these are so beautiful, shouldn't they be saved"? Until i remembered building sand castles as a child; knowing that the tides would eventually take my creation back into the sea.

Lord, help me not to cling to that which i cannot hold onto...

7 comments:

Roma said...

Wow, but this is way more beautiful than any sand castle I ever built ;-)

ROBERTA said...

i hear ya! can't imagine making something as beautiful as this....and not saving it......i guess that's why we are to live in the present - to truly enjoy this moment that we will never have again....i think even taking photos of these mandalas is not what the monks would want us to do.....it somehow defeats the whole premise - because now we are longing for something that no longer exists!

Rebekah said...

Thank you, Roberta! I needed to read this post, and the two before this! I need hope...the desire to risk (when all risk seems useless) and to cherish the present...when I long for my son so deeply! THANK YOU!

Monica said...

This beautiful piece reminds me of an experience I had while I was teaching on the Holy Names Univ. campus. One spring some Tibetan nuns were there. They, too, worked for a week on a beautiful mandala. Every free moment I had, I watched them. Then suddenly one day they smashed it to pieces. I came to understand why they did this, and I believe it was one of the most profound spiritual experiences of my life.
L,
M

ROBERTA said...

thanks monica for sharing something that was so profound for you....

Steve said...

Oh, to see this in person! Better yet, watch it being done.

Jan said...

Beautiful. Thank you. Am now praying this prayer, thanks to you.