Nichols College News

Tibetan Monks Invoke World Peace at Nichols College


In a unique Fischer Institute-hosted program, visiting monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery consecrated a site in Nichols' Conant Library for a sacred Mandala Sand Painting with approximately 30 minutes of chants, music and mantra recitation on October 13th. Students had an opportunity to practice the ancient art of sand painting using an outline with the Nichols College logo in the center and a kaleidoscope of colored rays emanating from the logo’s center.

The Tibetan monks also performed “Sacred Music, Sacred Dance for World Healing” on Saturday, October 15th at 7 p.m. in Daniels Auditorium with a large number of local residents attending. Buddhists believe that a performance of ancient arts establishes communications with the higher powers of good and brings about healing on environmental, social and personal levels.

An interpreter gave introductory comments to seven unique performances. The audience particularly enjoyed a large snow lion costume worn by two monks who made it dance through the audience rejoicing. At the end of the evening, the monks sang for world healing sending the smoke of incense into 10 directions and invoking peace and harmony.

The Closing Ceremony on Monday, October 17th, concluded with the distribution of some of the sands to the audience as blessings for personal health and healing. The remaining sand was distributed to a stream at the bottom of Healy Road, thus dispersing the healing energies of the Mandala throughout the world.

About Drepung Loseling Monastery
Drepung Loseling Monastery was established near Lhasa, Tibet, in 1416 as a spiritual institution dedicated to preserving and transmitting the ancient Buddhist scholarly and contemplative traditions. At its zenith, it was the largest monastery in the world, housing more than 10,000 monks. Following the Chinese invasion in 1959, Loseling was closed and most of its monks either killed or imprisoned. Some 250 escaped into India and the monastery in exile is now located in the Karnataka State in south India where there are some 2,500 monks in residence.