Mandalas and Zentangles
I came across something on the web that claimed that Zentangle and colouring, particularly Mandala colouring, could be considered forms of meditation. I thought that this was different and decided to investigate and try for myself.
Mandalas have been used in meditation since the ancient times, particularly in the East. In meditation mandalas can provide a focal point, either by simply gazing at the circular design, or by colouring and drawing mandalas. This combines the calming meditative effect of the small hand movements of drawing and colouring with the focussing effect of the mandala. Colouring is an effective meditation practice because it combines rhythmic movement and colours.
Similar thinking is behind the idea of Zentangle.
“Zentangle is a method of drawing using simple repeating patterns. Just as beautiful as the designs that are created, is the state of relaxed focus that comes from the practice of Zentangle. Like yoga or meditation, this relaxed focus decreases stress, increases mindfulness, and enhances creativity.”
When I think about this it makes sense. Frequently I have to attend boring, conference calls at work and often I find myself doodling on my notepad. Often it is the same shape or images repeated, such as a box or an eye.
So I decided to give it a go and chose one of the new colouring books aimed at adults and spent many happy hours reliving my childhood whilst colouring the mandala and ‘doodling’ the Zentangle image. I think that this technique could be something that I'd like to develop to see if I can improve and achieve some of the traditional benefits of meditation.