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Time-Lapse Creation of a Sand Mandala

In March, 2010 the Buddhist monk and mandala master Venerable Ngawang Chojor began creating a Tibetan sand mandala in the Sackler Gallery. A mandala is a two-dimensional representation of a three-dimensional palace that exists in the mind of the artist and a place where Buddhist deities reside. The process, which requires great patience and focus, serves as an aid to Buddhist meditation. The ritual was captured by a stationary camera mounted on a floating platform directly above the mandala. Images shot at five-minute intervals were merged to create this time-lapse movie. On March 21 the mandala was consecrated, then swept up and dispersed, to signify the impermanent nature of existence. The mandala was created in conjunction with the exhibition "In the Realm of the Buddha."
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