The fifth (and final) day with the Drepung Loseling monks in Library Hall

August 18, 2010

Well over 8,000 visitors came to Library Hall this week. What a buzz the monks have created in Library Hall.

On this last day, the crowd watched in anticipation as the mandala’s final grains of sand fell from the chakpur just before 6 p.m….

The finale was understated and subdued. As soon as the final grains fell upon the slate, the monks went about wrapping up their sand painting tools.

And then the mandala was complete…

Ten monks. Five days. One mandala of compassion is completed in Library Hall.

The mandala sat on display for nearly an hour before its impermanence was demonstrated to a crowd of well over 500 people.

The demolition begins with four distinct erasure lines through the mandala's "gates," dividing the painting into quarters.

It was further sliced into eighths.

Then the delicate swish of a brush melded the mandala colors.

And the final erasure of detail into swirls of color and light was arguably as beautiful as the original mandala.

The mandala was swept into a ceremonial urn to be carried to the Yampa River for the water ceremony.

Over five days, the community completed five different versions of our community sand painting. Each one was swept away — a grand total of 23 pounds of colored sand.  Number four was polished off by Stacy Bodden’s preschool group.  Stacy and her husband Josh of The Deep Steep Tea Co. also keep the monks in strong black tea that they mixed with milk and sugar all week.

The young team that polished off #4.

For the final rendition, kids took the creative and construction lead  the sand painting…making for a strikingly different design than we’d seen in the past four days.

Kids let their collective imaginations run wild.


~ by steamboatlibrary on August 23, 2010.

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