The Spirit of the Mandala:
Meaning, Metaphor and the Quest for Self
Mandalas have been the focus of meditation, contemplation and admiration for years too numerous to count. Since before the dawn of recorded history, humanity's intimate connection to the mandala has been a vibrant link to our universal ancestry. It is a sacred diagram that displays the structure of the spirit and the interwoven nature of the cosmos. Many have studied their design, their inherent centrality, as a path toward achieving an ideal centrality in their own selves. Such interaction with a mandala is a process of approaching enlightenment. Its elements are the essence of life, the myriad layers of existence, of being, of living, so that each mandala is but one of an infinite number of possible manifestations of the self. Its creation is the gathering of intangibles, the construction of an architecture of peace and order within a swirling, chaotic world. It is a pulse point on the universal collective consciousness. The mandala represents the center of the universe and the outward-expanding awareness of the human experience. It is a quest to rediscover that center, the nucleus, the focal point for all things. The journey's conclusion, our eventual return to that center, is inevitableonly the path may vary.
is the most archetypal form, its shape is simple yet within its
potential resides all that is possible. It is symbolic of the
universe without and within, the space that stretches away from
us and toward the deepest recesses of the self. It is simple,
efficient and beautiful. It is ancient yet constantly reborn.
It is the cycle of days, years and eons; it is birth and death
and rebirth; it is the sun in the sky and the droplets in the
clouds; it is the primeval source of man, and by extension, consciousness;
it is knowing, forgetting and remembering; it is the ring of
fire around which our ancestors sat and the horizon which marked
the boundaries of their world; it is the mandala inscribed in
the galactic core. The circle is the complete geometry of the
spirit, of the cosmos, and of the unity of the two. It is the
gate, the heart, the breath. It is within us all.
Welcome to mandalaZone. All the images you will see in the gallery are my original, hand-drawn creations. My mandalas are usually based on a structure of four (and multiples thereof), representing the four cardinal pointsall contained within the eternal geometry of the circle, the sacred receptacle with no beginning and no end. New mandalas will be added about once a week. In the mandalaZone alcove you may view a collection of exclusive, commissioned mandalas. For some very informative links on mandalas and other interesting topics, as well as access to several excellent webrings, feel free to stroll through the reading room at your leisure.
You can also visit the Minis page for thumbnails of all mandalas in the mandalaZone gallery and the alcove.
Essays on Mandalas,
Spirituality and the Universe...
A map is a document of location, a covenent of security and place. It can comfort us, by showing us exactly where we are, or if we are lost it can show us the way home. The mandala shares this purpose, this powerful reason for being. Every mandala is a map of the entire universe, with all its fleeting moments, eternal truths and infinite possibilities. It is a cartography of cosmic structure, a visual representation of the potentiality of form, the variability of circumstance, the endless expressions of beauty that can emerge from the pulsing heart of being. It is as if we could stand outside of the universe and draw a diagram of the relationships we see, the interwoven threads of cause and effect that stretch from the origins of time and space into the unimaginably distant future. It is a vision of such beauty and complexity that we can never hope to fully grasp it, deep and rich beyond our capacity to understand. And for all the apparent chaos that we see around us, to all appearances it remains invariably out there—around us, enveloping and even isolating us. But whatever the mandala's pattern, however chaotic its flow, there is always a central point, a bindu, to which its strength and stability are anchored. And this central point is the "You Are Here" label that situates you in the world. (continue)
An extremely kind article about my work by the wonderful Marlis Ladurée, painter of stunning mandalas, writer of beautiful words...
The black and white mandalas by Peter Patrick Barreda with "mandalaZone" are strongly loaded with powerful energy. They reflect our times and our modern civilization by showing clearly and distinctly the extremities of the palette: there is no longer the nuances of colors, but one has the clear black and white. (continue...)