Sunday, January 23, 2005

Bhutanese Monks

The museum in my town brought these Bhutanese Buddhist monks over to display their culture and art. I went last Thursday night with my parents to watch them perform some traditional dancing and it was very mesmerizing. I really liked the chants that I was hearing so my parents bought me a c.d. of chants done by the Lama of the group. I've been listening to it when I meditate and before going to bed ever since! Ha Ha.

Then, yesterday Lori and I went down there to watch them work on the sand mandala. If you haven't seen one of these things, well, they are stunning pieces of art work. They are intricate designs of various symbols and shapes to depict life and death, birth and rebirth, as well as symbolizing a Buddhist temple in general. Anyway, we sat and watched this young monk work on the mandala for about an hour. It was mesmerizing to watch him work with his fingers, letting the sand gently and slowly sift through his fingers.

It is amazing to watch and if you ever get the chance to see Tibetan or Bhutanese, or Nepalese monks do this you should. It was like a form of meditation just sitting there watching him work on such a beautiful design. It kind of reminds of the trance like state I sometimes go into when working on my paintings.

Speaking of which, I have some more paintings that are now drying that I will show on here soon. Lori and I also ran around to various cafes in town looking for ones that will display some of my artwork and showcase it a bit. I got an appointment with one guy who said they are looking to "freshen up" one of the walls, so I think I have a good chance getting my stuff up there. Hehe, how exciting!

Anyway, I digress. We had a great and relaxing time with the Bhutanese monks, Which was needed because the morning had been a rough start for both of us so we needed some relaxation. Nothing like Buddhism to relax you.

---End of Transmission---


Maurice said...

Sounds wonderful. I have been told by various people that I am manic. I have been trying to get into meditation (an approach called mindfulness) and although i have fallen asleep both times (not quite the intention) I do think there is something of value in this to a person like me. I keep saying that i am too busy to meditate and when i do my mother in law reminds me of a saying (can't remember who by) which is:

"I try to meditate for one hour a day. Unless I'm busy, in which case I meditate for two" (or something to that effect)

Good luck with the paintings!

james said...

Yes, indeed. Meditation is good for what ailes a person. Sometimes I only medidate for 15 minutes but every little bit helps. And yes, mindfulness is the key to living. If we can just remain mindful of what we are doing and why we are doing it, we can find a lasting peace.

Mathieu said...

Mindfulness... I believe Robert A. Heinlein called that 'never whistle while you're pissing', id est : keep your mind on what you're doing.

I've never been priviledged to see a Mandala in the making, but I did see one in an expo in Paris, and it was breathtaking, knowing how it was made.

I have an uncle who's a buddhist, and a Yoga teacher. He's also the one who taught me how to forge steel. A well-rounded soul. He has tapes of tibetan munks singing in high harmonics, you know, when they hold that basso note and there is a high-pitched melody running over that, shaped just with their lips and tongue, by killing the lower harmonics.

Incredible to hear.