How to Create a Mandala for Self Healing
Creating Conscious Connection
The Creative in me honors the Creative in you!
A mandala represents your universe in Hindu and Buddhist symbolism. I learned about the use of a mandala for self-healing from David Crow in the Shift Network Intuitive Medicine Summit. He uses the form of a mandela for clarity and decision-making. We can use a mandala as a way to focus and sort out all the busy elements our mind tosses out into our day. It is a very powerful and clarifying practice to add to your personal expansion practice.
A mandala is a circle. For me, that means it has cycles within cycles and is constantly changing. The idea is that when you organize your ideas and action choices in the circle of a mandala, you will find them organically clustering in groups that help organize the clutter and create an awareness of priority and next steps. That clarity of purpose and priority helps guide your decision-making and clarifies your next steps.
The mandala uses images to express the energy and focus of a choice or an action. However, I had to begin by organizing my thoughts in words in the form of a mandala.
This mandala-making practice immediately helped me identify clusters of ideas and actions and choices that were then easy to prioritize. That grouping action alone began to simplify my focus and declutter my mind.
With the mandala in place, I could see what steps lead to what end result and see where that focus belonged in the over-arching objective. I had a 5 x 8 card handy and I drew a circle. At the top, I put “spiritual” because that’s the most important thing for me to do. I could add things like exploring the unseen world and all these other things I’m doing but the fact is my spiritual practice is at the top of my mandala.
It was when I created a section for my “body expression” that a lot of things began to lump themselves into one section of the mandala rather than evolving into a long list of things to address. I’m concerned about my eyesight and I’m concerned about my body posture.
But immediately all the details of how I was working with both of those physical plane opportunities went by the wayside and I was able to se that section as “self-care” – actually “active self-care.” I’m working on several aspects of my body but being able to lump all those choices and challenges into one category made me feel less overwhelmed. Whether it’s the food I eat or the expansion of my Qigong practice, the whole purpose of those details and choices is to help my body structure and my eyesight. Active Self-Care became the focus for another section of my mandala
Another important segment of my mandala was the experience of connection. I have friends that I talk with online on a regular basis. We are walking the path together and we support each other in our explorations and our insights. Those experiences are very nurturing and nourishing. Connection is another segment in my mandala.
The fourth area of my mandala is Service. My work in the world. For me that means a lot of creative internal exploration and finding ways to share what I discover with others.
To make the separate divisions in my mandala, I drew an “S” through the circle from one side to the other. And then made another “S” from top to bottom so my mandala looks like it is moving in cycles – which it is. For now, I have my mandala divided into four sections – Spiritual, Self-Care, Connection and Service.
As I created these larger categories for all the activities of my life, the details of how to accomplish them was simplified and clarified. I realized that I had four major choices or focuses in my life – My spiritual exploration/expansion, the well-being of my body, my nurturing connection with others who are walking this path beside me and on my path of service. All the details, all the clutter, fit into one of those categories. That realization immediately quieted my mind. It focused my intentions. Everything I do has one of four purposes – the deepening of my spiritual path, the well-being of my body, my connections with others who walk along this same path, and how I serve in the world.
A mandala eliminates long lists of actions and clusters them into a focus of moving forward in one particular overarching area. It makes your life seem clear and simple and focused.
I will keep exploring the use of this mandala because I like how it simplifies the details and keeps me from getting mired down in them. I have a feeling that whatever question or intention or problem comes up will go immediately into one of these over-arching categories. And thus be simplified as it is absorbed into a specifically focused direction.
Sort yourself out by using a mandala. Draw a circle and begin to think in terms of over-arching categories. Your life as a human. Your life as a spiritual explorer and whatever categories are priorities to you.
You might have a separate mandala for Service alone. That would help me focus my choices and prioritize in that area. If you are not clear about how to organize your mandala, cluster the details together until you identify the larger umbrella that will encompass all the detail in that focused outcome. Or write all the things that you are concerned about on separate small pieces of paper and begin to move them into over-arching groups. My list for body care is fairly long because I am making changes and experimenting. Move these concerns, these worries, these potential choices into the larger picture of your Life Mandela.
If you are artistic perhaps create a picture for each segment of your mandala. Or maybe your mandala is just words like mine is. Notice how the simple act of moving the details into larger like-minded clusters eases your mind. If I have a long list under body care, even doing one of them is addressing that larger area of focus.
How many divisions do you have?
When a new worry or choice or action comes along, look to see what larger category of your mandala it fits into. It will immediately seem less overwhelming.
For instance the podcasts I do go into three categories of my mandala – they nurture my own spiritual path, they are part of my Path of Service and they address my desire for connection.
The mandala helps me see my life as inter-connected. The mandala simplifies my focus – less detail, more overview. And in so doing keeps me deeply focused on each step I take.
The mandela is a visual meant to be observed and considered and absorbed as a meditative practice. I experienced a huge quieting of my mind as I placed the smaller pieces into a larger context that made me feel less overwhelmed, and I began to realize that when I work on one thing it is working on the others. Everything is connected and everything is moving so every action affects the whole. Keep your eye on the whole…
DEEPER SONG AFFIRMATION
I look for the similarities of the details of my life and simplify them in a medulla of my whole life.
DEEPER SONG PROCESS
- Identify the major categories for your life. For the moment make lists.
- Under those categories list of all the things that you need or want to do. Notice what overlaps into other categories.
- As you gain clarity, begin to group those details in larger groups.
- When all the things you are focusing on begin to fall into the larger groups, draw a mandela that incorporates these elements of your life into a larger, more inclusive form.
- Notice how the details of your life are simplified into a few evolving and gradually shifting cycles that you can focus on one at a time.
- Work with that.
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===REFLECTIONS OF A DEEPER SONG PODCAST===
The Backpack Journey
A Deeper Song Adventure
This is a journey you will take over and over again. I call it the Backpack Journey because the lighter the load we carry, the further and faster and more energetically we can move forward.
Come, let’s go adventuring.
Cara Lumen, spiritual philosopher and Founder of the Deeper Song Community is a cosmic explorer who consciously travels into the unseen world to serve as a bridge to help us expand our relationship with the spiritual world. She shares what she learns and guides us to the next level so we can sing a deeper song.
In this episode we explore
The Backpack Journey
To Sing a Deeper Song Consider:
Work With What You Have
I don’t go anyplace anymore, so I never get to wear the wonderful and numerous crystal necklaces that I collected over the years. After having them in a drawer for a really long time, I took them out and hung them like sun catchers in my window. I sit beside their lovely energy all day. But just as I was about to order a small stone from Etsy, it occurred to me to wonder why I am not wearing all these great crystal necklaces just around my house by myself. So I picked one, vigorously applied my silver polishing cloth and began to wear it. I’m tuning into the great insights and messages and guidance that has been storing up in these crystals for these past 40 or 50 years. It is time for me to listen to them. They are a part of my life journey and it is time to actively invite them to participate in my life. It feels extremely good to honor and work with these stones that have been in my life for so long. What have you put aside that you could welcome back into your life?
Honor the Process – Let it Unfold
Unfolding takes patience. It cannot be rushed. I got a new insight for my podcasts and I have no idea what to do with it yet. I must let it unfold.
My body is going through all sorts of uncomfortable adjustments. I think it’s unfolding toward strength. I certainly hope so. It’s a bit cranky in the process. I just keep focused on the forward motion however small the shift.
Things unfold in their own good time. Be patient and give them room to change.
Make Aware Choices
I am becoming more aware that listening to the news of the world is NOT helping my body. I get to stop. There is nothing I can do on the physical plane and a lot I can do on the inner plane that does not require knowing the details of the news and the choices that are or are not being made.
I happen to like the intelligence and expansive vocabulary in the conversations that I hear on CSNBC but my body’s reaction to the topics is saying I need to listen less and dream more…
Monitor your choices and don’t let the non-useful ones have any room in your life.
Small Choices Can Make a Big Difference
It’s interesting how a very small choice can bring such deep pleasure. One night as I was preparing my wonderful protein drink, it occurred to me that I would like to have a prettier cup to drink it from. My first thought was to order one online. And then I stopped and thought “look in your own cabinets.” And there was a lovely china cup that I had not been using. It is a pattern I really like. As I drank, I paused to admire and reflect on the beauty of the cup. So now my nightly protein drink is an even greater treat because of the lovely container I am using. Interesting how small choices can make such a big difference in a simple experience. What small choices can you make that will bring you pleasure?
===DEEPEN YOUR SPIRITUAL PRACTICE===
Release Your Limiting Beliefs
One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself is to get rid of your limiting beliefs. The beliefs that say “I can’t “or “I shouldn’t”. So many of our beliefs come from the fears of others – our parents, the decade in which we were born, where we were born, our siblings. And then they are the choices we made or did not make…. What beliefs have you picked up that actually belonged to someone else?
Notice what you learned from your family – how they taught you to experience life, what they believed was possible for themselves and what they believed about you.
Re-examine every belief that shows up in your life to make certain it is aligned with what you believe you deserve and what you believe is possible. Begin by questioning what was expected of you because of the year you were born.
For instance, I was born in 1932, in the depression so there were not many babies born during that period. Women of that period were not expected to go to college or have a job. They were supposed to get married and raise babies.
(I got my BA in 1954 and went back to school in my 40’s for my MBA and I lived in both New York City and the San Francisco area to develop my holistic career. I actively bucked the trend and I’m rather proud of myself for doing all that.)
A lot of our choices were made in response to the culture of the time we were born in. I still have a hard time dealing with men my age who feel their superiority the way they were simply brought up to see themselves.
Currently, I have to check out my beliefs around the process of aging. As I sit here in this senior center, there is great evidence of decline. And I have to be careful how I view that as a potential or a possibility for my own path. What do you want to do? What work do you want to do? What gifts do you want to share? How do you want to impact the world? Start there. See what you can figure out what to do to make it happen.
The Circle of Qi with Ding Ming-Tao is a free 6-part series that started this week. (Videos available) I have read a great many of his books. Check out the flyer and see if it calls to you. To register, send your email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Make Your Own Oracle Cards
I was considering buying a second set of oracle cards when I realized I could make my own version. It’s a form of communicating with my inner self. I can simply place words on separate pieces of paper and then draw them and use them to focus my ideas for the day. Words like creativity, inner peace, laughter, body love. Whatever is meaningful to me.
I made a long list of words and then I realized from my mandala work that I had four categories, Self Care, Spiritual Path, Connection and Service. That helped me expand the list of words that would help focus my attention and move me forward.
I got some blank index cards and a black marker and made my cards. And I am free to add words to explore as I am called to do so. I will put on my “Cara Cards” words that express what I need to explore next.
I gain great wisdom when I use my Oracle cards. It’s a powerful form of self-reflection. One word makes me look at all the areas of my life and see where it applies or what new direction it opens up. Or it might show me what I could focus on next. And it is easy to add a new word.
Here are some of the words I am using: Creativity, Inner Voice, Meditation, Tranquility, Serenity, Nature, Laughter, Rest, Body Care, Inspiration, Next Steps, Fork in Road, Future, New Path, Cosmic Consciousness, Light Bearer, Intuition, Self-love, Self-appreciation, Vision, Unseen World, Future, Ancestors, Healing, Release, Inner Song, Inspiration, Circle of Light Beings. Phoenix Rising. Individual Harp. Inner Wisdom. Inner Knowing. Laughter. Vision. Cosmic Connection, Fire, Water. Air, Earth, Curiosity.
I use my oracle cards as a form of communication with my inner self and for guidance from the Unseen World. I like this idea of making my own oracle cards. I can add whatever words I feel will move me forward.
What will you put on your self-made oracle cards?
===OUR EVOLVING FUTURE===
A Vision of “Next”
It’s a bit like we are riding the rapids, things are changing so rapidly. New doors are open and old paths are being shut off. It’s a bit hard to keep up.
We have to stay open and keep visualizing in order to have any clue about wise choices that will help us create our next. The world is changing so rapidly. The opportunities are shifting. We have to question everything. We need to explore or consider or at least experiment with some of these new opportunities that are showing up around our directions and choices and place of service. It is possible that very little of what we have put into our lives has any meaning right now. Unless of course, we’re talking honesty and compassion and inclusiveness. But all those beliefs about what is possible may have to go out the window. Because so much more is possible today that we never imagined a few years ago. Stay open. Stay curious. And go exploring.
=== DEEPER SONG ORACLE MESSAGE===
I didn’t get to draw am oracle card for us because the word “Laughter” popped in so loudly. It’s one of the words I chose for my self-made oracle deck.
Remember the belly-laugh occasion in your life? The problem is that there were not that many but they were always a powerful experience.
Living alone and staying home does not induce laughter. So what options are open to me to change that?
I think I will begin with laughing with delight. Surely I can do that. I might laugh at delight at the sun on my shoulders, or the wind in my hair. I might laugh at a successful completion of some step I am taking in my work. I can sit here by myself laughing in appreciation for the lovely and meaningful objects I have around me. At the very least, I can make a conscious effort to smile with satisfaction at something I have placed in my home. I could laugh out-loud with joy when I complete a strong podcast outline.
I could laugh a little as my cat, Sebastian, figures out ways to get my attention.
Finding reasons to laugh out-loud is a tad challenging. How can you and how will you add laughter to your life?
Check Your Foundation
It was a simple change. I put a different pillow on the seat of my desk chair and my whole body applauded. And it straightened in response. I changed my foundation. I changed my base. It was a small adjustment and it resonated far afield.
I began to look at other parts of my foundation to see what needed shaping or repairing or replacing.
I have changed my eating foundation thanks to my naturopath visit. I am working with the Nikken magnetic sleep system to support my body. But I need to change the foundation of my belief around my life and what is possible. That may require imagination and determination and a great deal of creativity. Examine the foundation you have built upon. Maybe you simply add on to your current foundation. And maybe you have to move your whole self to a new foundation. Give some thought to the ideals and concepts and beliefs that you were building your life upon.
Here’s the miracle. When I stood up from sitting on that different pillow, my entire body realigned!!!!!! I have been working toward this for months. And one change – a change in the foundation I was sitting upon, created a miracle!!!! What is the foundation you are building upon and how do you need to change it
===SING A DEEPER SONG ===
It was a small choice.
It was a small choice that created a shift in my very foundation.
It was a small choice that created a shift in my very foundation and my entire being grew stronger.
What else can I shift in my life?
– Cara Lumen, June 2021
We create our future with every thought we think, every action we take. Move forward mindfully as you sing your Deeper Song.
Come Sing a Deeper Song
I help spiritual adventurers explore the Unseen World so that we broaden and deepen our personal journey and turn to share our discoveries with others. We are guides and way-showers with our light held high.
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