Tibetan monks to share artistic tradition of mandala sand painting in Spartanburg

The Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg invites you to have a transformative experience with the Tibetan monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery. From Monday, Sept. 30 to Friday, Oct. 4, the monks will create a unique mandala sand painting in the Chapman Cultural Center Theatre lobby. The opening ceremony takes place at noon on Sept. 30.

Mandala sand paintingThe mandala will be constructed in the Tantric Buddhist tradition, using a metal funnel called a chakpur to create large circular designs with colored sand. Each day, the Tibetan monks will painstakingly add sand—grain by grain—to a circular design that symbolically represents universal consciousness. The experience is meditative yet intense, aiming toward cultural, artistic, and spiritual enlightenment.

The demonstration is free for public viewing daily 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. (until 3 p.m. on Thursday). A concert of sacred music and dance will be performed Thursday, Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. Concert tickets are $10 per student and $20 for the general public.

Deconstruction of the mandala begins at noon Friday, Oct. 4 and includes a walk to a nearby source of natural running water. Some sand will be distributed among the audience, while the rest will be ceremoniously poured into the flowing water. This symbolizes the impermanence of life and the return to cosmic awareness.

This weeklong program is presented by Wofford College, Converse College and Chapman Cultural Center and is supported by a grant from The Humanities CouncilSC.

In recent years, the Mystical Arts of Tibet performance Sacred Music Sacred Dance, featuring the famed singers of Drepung Loseling Monastery, has taken the world by storm. Their two-hour stage performance combines multiphonic chanting, music and dance into an unforgettable experience. The pieces are drawn from authentic temple dances, performed for thousands of years in Tibet. The ancient rhythms and colorful, intricate costumes delight audiences of all ages. On previous tours the monks have shared the stage with Philip Glass, Kitaro, Paul Simon, Sheryl Crow, Michael Stipe, Patti Smith, Natalie Merchant, the Beastie Boys and many others.

For more information about the demonstration and related activities, visit the Chapman Cultural Center’s website or call (864) 542-ARTS.

Via: Chapman Cultural Center