The Tibetan Buddhist monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery return to the
Jepson Center September 13-18 to create an exquisite sand mandala painting a
s part of a
“We are incredibly honored to again have the Tibetan Monks of Drepung Loseling
Monastery visit here and share their uplifting and unique art and music,” said Lisa Grove,
Director and CEO of Telfair Museums Grove, “The community has truly embraced their
ancient art and ritual; so much so their tour is viewed as one of Savannah’s most popular
On Tuesday, September 13, the mandala sand painting begins with an opening
ceremony, during which the lamas consecrate the site through chanting, music and mantra
recitation, and draw the outline of the mandala. On the following days, they will lay down
the colored sands, this year creating the Akshobya Mandala, also known as the
“Unshakable Victor” for conflict resolution and peace.
Visitors may watch the monks at work during normal museum hours in the Jepson Center
Atrium Wednesday through Saturday. On Sunday, September 18, the mandala will be
destroyed as a metaphor for the impermanence of life. The sands are placed in an urn,
with half distributed to the audience at the closing ceremony. The remainder will be carried
to the Savannah River and dispersed to the ocean for planetary healing.
Tuesday, September 13, 5-7 p.m. Opening ceremony: the monks begin with a ceremony
and chants, after which they draw the mandala. Admission is free.
September 14-17, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mandala sand painting: visitors may watch the monks
create the mandala sand painting in the museum atrium during normal daytime museum
hours, other than lunchtime. Admission is free.
Thursday, September 15, 6 p.m. Lecture: “Meditation: A Tool for Conscious Living” by
the Tibetan Monks of Drepung Loseling. For the first time at the Jepson Center, the monks will present a lecture on meditation. Admission is free.
Saturday, September 17, 1-4 p.m. Free Family Day: Hands on activities include
community sand painting sessions at 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. in which children may participate in
the creation of a sand painting using the tools of the monks. Admission is free.
Sunday, September 18, 2-3 p.m. Closing ceremony: Chants, destruction of the mandala
and procession to the river. In a moving closing event with polyphonic chants and music,
the monks ritually destroy the mandala. Afterward, sand is distributed to the audience. At 3
p.m. the public is invited to join the monks for a procession to the Savannah River to
release the mandala to the ocean to spread healing throughout the world. Admission for members is free, non-members $5.