Premium Essay



Submitted By tjohnson2264
Words 1436
Pages 6 Goux
1 June, 2015
The Mandala: A Comparison of Tibetan Buddhist and Native America Culture Early non-western thought often revolved around the concept of cyclical time. The circularity (a perfection that can never truly be attained in reality due the inevitable variation on the most infinitesimal level) was commonly represented in art and could often be intended to represent cyclical time or the cyclical nature of the world. Mandalas, which are literally translated as circles of essence, were used to represent a sense of order that seemed apparent in the universe at the time of ancient humans. Now, this thought should not be thought of as primitive, like most early western historians would inaccurately assume. The cyclical time and circular order of the universe seemed to be inherent in the common lives of early civilizations, and they simply applied their own form of logic to make predictions about the world around them. So, at its core, this can be considered quite advanced. The most renowned forms of mandalas are apparent in Hinduism and subsequently Buddhism; however, it is now clear that Native Americans also created such “mandalas” with similar social and religious applications. The Native American circles of essence were essentially medicine wheels (although many circular spiritual forms of art existed also). With this regard the Mandala will be related to the medicine wheel. In addition, the symbolism of such art is extremely similar and corresponds with similar contexts in which they may have arisen. While they may display some unavoidable differences, it is remarkable how similar these separate, but ideologically related, forms of art are. The first aspect that must be compared between these two is the religious aspect. Religion serves as both the basis and pinnacle for

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