Kate Middleton and Justin Beiber are designated fans. And so are hundreds and thousands of non-royal people around the world. We are certainly not talking about fashion!
Wondering what it is?
Mandala coloring books!
You’ve probably seen them everywhere now! It is in the front line of the supermarket, at the bookstore, near the cashier at a petrol station, and in any crafts or gifts box of the festive season — the list is endless. For an art form that wasn’t even mainstream until a few years ago, mandala art has taken huge strides and overpowered a lot of space in the printing and wellness industry.
Whether people are buying them for the good old nostalgia of picking up a coloring pen or their stress-relief effects – the art form has certainly created a strong niche for itself in the market.
In this blog post, we are going to dive deeper into the art form and its origins. We will understand the various benefits of mandala art and how scientifically proven they are. We will also help you build your personal mandala art kit.
So, whether you are overwhelmed, stressed, or just want to have some fun being creative, this is the perfect blog post for you to get started. Let’s dive in.
What Is The Meaning Of Manadal Art?
Mandala in the Sanskrit language means ‘circle.’
But of course, it has much deeper meanings.
To be very precise, a mandala is a geometric pattern of different shapes, symbols, and patterns. It is a symmetric form of art. Every mandala design begins from a clearly identifiable center that holds it together. Generally created in a circular shape, these geometric patterns repeat themselves to create an aesthetically pleasing design.
A quick history of the mandala art form shows that humans have been obsessed with these circular patterns for as long as you can imagine. Nature is full of different circles – the sun, moon, cycles of different seasons, the movements of wind, etc. Every culture on Earth has a connection with circular patterns – be it the way they design buildings and houses, their dance forms, or agriculture cycles.
Various cultures and philosophies look at the circle of mandalas as a way of exploring one’s inner self. In Buddhism and Hinduism, each circle of the mandala represents a different stage of life.
With that being said, mandalas are not confined to having a circular shape. They can be star-, square-, or elliptical-shaped too. In the mandala art, each shape signifies a different meaning. Let us look at some of the most prominent shapes used in mandala art and their deeper meanings:
- star: represents freedom and spirituality,
- circle: represents the cycle of life, unity, and integrity,
- square: represents balance and stability,
- upward triangle: represents the movement of the soul toward the divine, and
- downward triangle: represents creativity and the pursuit of knowledge.
What Are The Benefits Of Doing Mandala Art?
While mandala art has existed for thousands of years, its introduction into the realm of well-being and therapy is credited to Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung. The founder of analytical psychology (the connection between one’s conscious and unconscious self), Jung spent years creating different mandalas that he believed represented his inner state of being.
In his own words, Jung drew a small circular drawing every morning, which represented his state of mind. He later went on to discover that the mandala art that he created every day was a symbol of self and the wholeness of his personality. He wrote a detailed account of his experiences and the benefits of doing mandala art coloring in his book titled ‘Red Book.’
Over the years, several studies have detailed the importance of mandala art coloring. In 1967, Rhoda Kellog researched and documented various mandala art benefits for children. The study found that children as young as two years of age could draw circles in the form of sunflowers, mandalas, and squiggles without any help or intervention from adults. Therefore, drawing mandalas becomes a crucial part of a child’s sense of self.
Mandala art has been marketed across the world as something that helps initiate self-reflection and deal with stress. It is also touted to have meditation-like benefits for the human mind. Let us dive deeper into these mandala art benefits and find out whether they have supporting scientific proof.
Benefits Of Mandala Art
1. It enhances self-reflection and awareness.
One of the primary science-backed benefits of mandala art is its ability to enhance self-awareness among people.
To study the benefits of mandala art, a group of scientists from the School of Computing and Communications, Lancaster University, created a study using brain-sensing technology. After discussions with various mandala experts, a coloring exercise was created to test the mental state of the participants using a headset and a display palette to showcase their level of mindfulness.
The study found that mandala art coloring significantly improved self-awareness and reflection. It helped participants focus on their positives while making them more accepting of their shortcomings.
2. It promotes emotional well-being.
In the same study, researchers also found another interesting benefit of mandala art coloring. Participants in the study reported that mandala art promoted emotional well-being and allowed them to express their feelings freely.
Using metaphorical meanings, like associating colors with different emotions, helps people become more aware of how they are feeling. It allows them to externalize those emotions and work on them much more effectively.
3. It is a form of self-care.
Mandala art can be your personal moment of self-care. You don’t have to think about anything else, not even the outcome of what you are creating.
The importance of mandala art is immense in a world where we are so overwhelmed with continuous stimulation. While creating your mandala, all you have to do is brew your favorite cup of coffee, sit near the window, and draw. It allows you to detach from your phone, social media, and the outer world as a whole.
Using mandala art as your regular escape can become the perfect safe space for you to deal with your emotions safely.
4. It reduces stress and anxiety.
Looking to find an easy and accessible way to calm yourself?
Try mandala art!
Yes! As per a study by the American Art Therapy Association, doing mandala art coloring for just 20 minutes reduced the stress and anxiety levels in participants. It takes your mind off the stressful events and induces a state of mindfulness that allows you to focus on the present moment. This dissipates the stress and tension, effectively calming your mind and body.
5. It increases concentration and focus.
We live in times when our concentration spans are worse than a butterfly.
In the middle of this, mandala art is a lifesaver.
See, mandalas are complex designs that require your utmost attention and dedication. Creating a mandala is a slow process that needs you to be extremely patient at every step. When you practice making mandala art regularly, it aids your focus and ability to concentrate on a task at hand.
Therefore, in times of instant distraction, the importance of mandala art increases manifold.
Getting Started – Build Your Own Mandala Art Coloring Kit
Now that we have hopefully convinced you about the benefits of mandala art, it is time to get started.
Unlike other forms of art, making mandalas is easy and accessible. The designs are easy to figure out, the materials required are not costly, and the best part – when you finally finish a design, it is going to feel like a personal achievement.
To get started with the practice of mandala art, the first thing you need is your personal mandala art kit. Building your kit doesn’t have to be a mammoth task in itself. In fact, it is pretty simple. All you need to do is gather the initial materials and tools.
We have created a list of the most essential items you need in your mandala kit. Let’s get started with creating your kit now!
Creating A Mandala Art Kit
1. Drawing Paper Or Sketchbook
A couple of high-quality drawing paper or a sturdy sketchbook is one of the most essential parts of a mandala art kit. Try looking for thick sheets of paper that do not get stained easily. Moreover, getting acid-free paper will ensure that your mandala designs can survive for a longer time.
2. Fine Line Pens And Markers
The next important part of your mandala art kit is fine-line pens and markers. Fine-line markers and pens come in different sizes and shapes. Good quality pens will allow you to create smudge-free and precise designs. For starters, invest in a basic set. As you gain confidence, you can buy sets that have size and color variations.
3. Compass And Protractor Set
Since drawing mandalas is a lot about shapes and geometric patterns, having a compass and protractor in your mandala art kit is a must. They allow you to achieve perfect symmetry and draw precise shapes. Equipped with these tools, you can create aesthetically pleasing and well-balanced designs.
4. Easy designs and mandala art tutorials for beginners.
After assembling the basic items in your mandala art kit, you might be wondering where to start. Fortunately, multiple easy mandala designs for beginners can help you easily begin your creative pursuits.
If you are looking for mandala designs for beginners, here are some of our best picks.
If you want a step-by-step mandala art tutorial, here are some of the best YouTube channels that you can check out:
Mandala art therapy is all the rage currently, and for mostly good reasons. The wide-ranging benefits of mandala art make it a great activity to add to your self-care routine. It can help you deal with stress effectively while promoting emotional well-being and improving your focus.
However, with that said, it is important to dissociate between mandala art and therapy or meditation. While the benefits of doing mandala art coloring are therapeutic, they still cannot be equated with professional art therapy.
Professional therapy is important, and it is now available right in the comfort of your home. To learn more about the top online therapy platforms, click here.
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