Meditating with Mandalas

 Reverie in Blue and Yellow
Reverie in Blue and Yellow / 2013 / Terry Long

We live in hectic, stressful, and troubled times, so it makes great sense to stop once in a while, breath slowly, calm down, and take time to find yourself again. Meditation is a great way of doing this, and can lead to a much calmer and less stressful way of living. Mandalas have been used in Hinduism and Buddhism for this purpose over many centuries. As a young child, I would meditate on clouds, and there were many of those to chose from in England where I grew up. Clouds move, so having something none moving, purpose made, with a round and balanced design seems to work better. It’s a kind of meditational target to focus on, and should be placed at eye level for easy viewing. There is this misconception that you have to clear your mind before you start to meditate. You meditate to clear your mind, reflect, and find a balance in your life again. You can find some useful tips and procedures on meditating at this link…


The mandala above was created in Tibet during the 15th century, and sold recently at Christies for $62,500. You can find out more about it here…

nair16th-mandala       Tibetan Mandala (51.5 x 44.6 cm)

Nairatma Mandala – Hevajra Mandala
Central Tibet, 16th century (second half) Photo courtesy of


Reverie in Blue and Yellow No.2 / 2013 / Terry Long

Music can be an excellent aid in meditation, and when played along with viewing the mandala, becomes a very powerful combination. Claude Debussy is the composer I often turn to for both meditation and therapeutic music, and it was Debussy’s Reverie that I played while creating the mandalas above with the medium of painting with light. Several LED lights were used to paint with, and by using a combination of sections and layers, I was able to build some complexity into the detailed parts of the design. The individual exposures ranged between 15 to 25 seconds at f22.

Untitled-2 copy

Close up of the central part of the mandala 

You can learn more about painting with light at this link…

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