MM12 The Yoga of Seeing Mandalas
The Yoga of Seeing Mandalas
For those of you who like to practice meditation and visualization or have mystical longings, here are some suggestions to increase your abilities to see mandalas and see THROUGH them. By now, you have realized that mandala making is not “art for art’s sake” but a sacred activity of spiritual expansion.
• Remember that, after the Blessing ceremony, your mandala can now function as an intermediary with spirit. It is an extension of your consciousness, just like your retina is an extension of your nervous system.
• Allow yourself to enter a meditative state where your vision is not longer focused on a physical two-dimensional object but can shift to “soft vision”.
• Many wisdom teachings talk about “softening the vision”. The usual outward-oriented “looking” is when we reach out and grab objects with our eyes: it is a vision of efficiency, wanting to use and manipulate the outside world. By contrast, in “soft vision”, the eyes are more acting as receivers than as grabbers: the flow of photons becomes a river of light awakening the third eye and bringing perception of realities/frequencies more subtle than the physical world.
• Your eye is a mandala looking at your mandala. The human neuro-physiology of vision is mandalic in structure and function. The iris is a mandala and the retinal cones, responsible for color vision, have a circle geometry: they respond well to mandalas because their receptive fields are circular.
• Vision is a bridge because it encompasses both 3D and higher, spiritual dimensions. Seers and psychics SEE transcendent realities. And mandalas are expressions and reminders of this direct seeing, beyond the appearance of physical flatland.
• To practice soft vision, sit in front of your mandala and focus in the front and in the back of it. Let your vision be very gentle, like a soft wind, a breeze slowly going back & forth, sweeping the space freely, with no purpose of looking at specific elements… It is like a visual massage… You may want to synchronize your own breath with it…
• You can also work on increasing your peripheral vision by slowly shifting your focus from the center of the mandala to the periphery and beyond. This is done without moving the eyes sideways but simply by increasing and decreasing the field of vision. Again you will find a gentle rhythm to do so. Eventually you will be able to see both the center and the periphery.
• By practicing soft vision, you are opening up the mandala and its various planes to stretch, expand and reach out all around. You are co-creating a space where two things can happen: spiritual realities can project and contact you and you can project some inner subconscious aspect of your consciousness that you need to be aware of.
• Visualize yourself as very small and step inside your mandala as if you were navigating or flying through it. Feel yourself exploring the landscape of your mandala as if you were discovering a new world. Climb and run and turn around this new playground. Meet the many characters inhabiting your mandala: talk to them and hear their stories…
• See your mandala in 3D and multi-dimensions, as if certain elements were popping up or expanding and decreasing. Realize that there are mirror reflections and fractal effects that extend and continue the patterns to many more levels of the universe.
• With your inner eye, experiment with spinning and rotating your mandala in various directions. Try going clockwise and then counter-clockwise. Or one circle one way and the others the other way…
• With your soft vision, explore entering the very center of your mandala and possibly going through it.
In the Hindu tradition, the student is given a mandala to gaze at daily until, soon or later, he/she succeeds in going through the center and across to another level of perceptual awareness. This usually happens when the student learns how to completely still the mind and starts to “see with the heart”.
• At the culmination stage of mandala practice, you and your mandala have become One. The mandala as you is now the self-contained and fully radiant Source-of-All. Namaste!