I keep my clear quartz crystals on the round table on the small verandah beside my workroom. I don’t have space for these crystals indoors, and it’s good for them to be in the fresh air while knowing the sunlight energises them and they can’t fade.
I re-arranged them recently and felt drawn to add in the various stones and pebbles I’ve collected over the years. They have just as much energy as clear quartz crystals, albeit it in slightly different form.
I decided this mandala was for earth healing – specifically here in North Cyprus. There’s a history of conflict in this island due to its strategic position in the eastern Mediterranean, and much blood has been shed on the soil of Cyprus, as recently as 1974.
So I trust in some way this formation of clear quartz crystals and stones seeps into the soil of Cyprus and works a healing of the many conflicts that have occurred on this island over many, many centuries.
I’ve spent the last few days creating this crystal mandala for Changing Worlds – upheaval leading to new forms of community and civilisations. Like I say in the video, no point in playing small, let’s tackle the big things of this world!
We got woken up in the early hours of this morning by our neighbour asking us to call an ambulance as his wife was very ill. Sadly, by the time the ambulance got here our friend and neighbour had passed away, likely from a heart attack. We have lost someone we treasured and who’s passing into the realms of spirit has left a big gap in our lives.
I want to pay tribute firstly to our friend: she was lovely lady who was kind, generous, sensitive, had a great sense of humour and of the ridiculous, always looked terrific, and who enriched our lives by her friendship. A few days ago, she popped in to visit us in the evening, and to gift us a glass ornament from Caithness in Scotland which she’d had for 30-odd years and which she wanted us to have as a thank-you for something we’d done which pleased her no end. We are so glad we had that time with our friend and that we have her gift to remind us of the good memories we have of our friendship.
Secondly, I created this mandala today to honour friendship and the loving ties with our friends. We have moved around a lot being Geriatric Gypsies, and in the process have met so many wonderful friends who have made our lives that much greater and richer for their presence. I include not just people I’ve met in person but also people with whom I’ve come in contact through the internet, Facebook and this blog. There are no limits to the global village in which we now live and where the tyranny of distance has dissolved so much in recent times.
Value your friends while you have them in your life. Feel the love for those who honour and hold you dear in their hearts. And send out love to all those who you hold dear in your life. Because, as this morning’s event shows, you don’t know what will happen each day and how quickly life can turn topsy-turvy.
This mandala evolved as follows:
The cover is a sarong which my long-term friend in Perth, Australia, gifted me recently. It represents the foundations and richness of friendship.
At the back is a large, clear-quartz cluster representing the energetic connections with our friends, whether we are in physical or energetic contact.
The two orange candles represent the joy and happiness of friendship.
In front of the quartz cluster is a very pretty glass container which was gifted to me by a young woman I treated with Reiki while I lived in Boonah in 1999. Sadly she died of a brain tumour which had been incorrectly diagnosed. On the container is a candle holder with the word “Love” to remind us of the power of love in friendships. And resting on the glass container is a small bear and a little book of quotes about friends which were gifted to me by friends I made while living in the UK, upon my return to Australia.
In the centre is the glass dome our friend gifted to us prior to her passing. In front of that is a sphere of Girasol quartz. This was one of the first crystals I bought on US Ebay and it reminds me of Jupiter, and the serenity this planet and the Girasol engender in me. Whatever happens, friendship extends beyond Planet Earth into the realms of Spirit.
The feathers represent the energies which can move through time and space, without the limits of the physical realms. Friendship can help lift us to a better version of who we are.
The crow feathers remind us of the mystery of life. The two coloured feathers are from Rainbow Lorikeets to remind us of the laughter, support and communication we encounter in friendships. The white feather represents the higher energies which can flow in friendship exchange.
The two raw rose quartz stones embody the power of love. The two blue/turquoise stones include chrysocolla, emotional support. The pink and white calcite and pink pollucite with lepidolite represent again the healing power of love. The Kullie Rose quartz from the Himalayas embodies the heights we can reach when we work with the power of love, while the Angel Aura quartz reminds us of the angelic energies supporting us in the unseen realms.
A friend suggested I add some green and yellow to my original photo of a black honeybee here in North Cyprus and, once again, I found myself working with crystals in a circle. The green stones are Peridot chips, which represent positive thinking, creativity, self-confidence, your inner sun radiating positivity. Around the Peridot chips are citrine chips for abundance, creativity, regeneration, the sun within us shining out, augmenting the energies of Peridot.
In relation to this, a reader asked me about the difference between a crystal mandala and a crystal grid. I guess it’s up to your own choice. A grid, to me, implies a structure such as a square or rectangle while a mandala always signifies a circle. But that’s my choice, others may feel differently. I think it’s important to work with what has meaning for you. For example, I don’t feel comfortable with altars in my house, due to a lousy time at a Catholic Convent when I was a young girl. I now prefer to have Sanctuary Spaces in my home as the term “sanctuary” has a great significance for me – a place of retreat from an often inharmonious world.
As for mandalas and their significance in my life: the first piece of halfway decent art I ever created in my life was when I was 49 and I attended a mandala workshop in February 1996. Prior to that, in November 1995, I had felt drawn to have a Tarot reading with a particular reader at a mind, body, spirit fair. I felt very drawn to her energy but felt disappointed when she said I’d go to a short art course and end up drawing colours for people.
The reason why? At the Convent we never painted anything. We, as good little Catholic schoolgirls, were taught embroidery and knitting to prepare us for lives as good little Catholic wives. So when I got to grammar school and was introduced to poster paints, I really had no idea what to do with them. My art was appalling and I’m sure I got a 53% pass mark out of sheer sympathy on the part of the art teacher. But what I did love was when we had art classes looking at particular artists, because they awakened me to the beauty of art.
I never even thought about the Tarot reading when I went to the 2-day workshop in Brisbane with a friend. In fact, I panicked when we all got seated and if I’d been near an exit, I probably would have scarpered. But I’m so glad I didn’t because at the workshop I created a mandala which, for me, was quite extraordinary – it’s the one on the right. And I found that my forte was symbols rather than real life. I never looked back. I created mandalas for friends. I got orders for mandalas. I saw colours around people and drew what I called “Soul Symbols” for them.
And I taught mandala art which really opened me up to the power of mandalas as circular art which people find inspirational. It’s as if working with a circle connects people with their inner voice, their inner wisdom, their inner light. I tell people to put their pen, pencil or whatever they want to use in the middle of an empty circle on a piece of paper, take them into a creative visualisation, then guide them to open their eyes and start drawing whatever comes to them.
And no-one, absolutely no-one (after the first look of horror at a blank space), has failed to draw some wonderful, beautiful images which have meaning for them. Some people don’t like to look at the meaning of art designs, but for me the important part of mandala work is that the art speaks to the artist, it has a message. And when we create mandalas, we are all artists.
I rather think that the circle has meaning for us because so much of life is circular – we start off as a round blob before fertilisation. Our cells are circular. We live on a round planet with round planets around us. We see round trees, round limbs, round spinning chakras or energy centres in our bodies, sitting in circles of friendship, round particles of sand, round atomic particles (although admittedly they’re too small for us to see), round blood cells, and so on.
For me, when you embark on creating a mandala, you’re going within into your centre, to your heart and soul, to your soul’s connection with spiritual energy, from whence you start weaving patterns and symbols of creation which feed out through your heart centre, along your arms and out through your fingertips. We can access inner wisdom and bring it into being when we focus on a circle and surrender to the mystery of creation and spell-weaving through our art.
So if you’re at home and want to experience the power and wonder of mandala creation, find a quiet space, take some deep breaths and relax, draw a circle (I use whatever is round – plates, saucepan lids, etc.), put your pencil/crayon/pen in the centre of your circle, close your eyes, let go of any tension or expectations, imagine your heart opening and symbols pouring in which then float out of your heart, down to your fingertips and, when you open your eyes, onto the circle on your piece of paper. Let go of control. Don’t think. Just let the images flow and see what you create in your circle.
Most of all – relax and have fun. Remember the joy of drawing and painting when you were a kid.There is no right way. It’s not a test. It’s a journey into your inner world and bringing that inner world out into concrete form on your piece of paper.