Tibetan monks make special visit to SU

Tibetan monks make special visit to SU

SALISBURY, Md. - Salisbury University students, faculty, and folks from the community have an opportunity to participate in a great event as just about a dozen Tibetan monks from the Drepung Loseling Monastery in India made a special visit to SU to enrich locals with their culture and traditions.

Mantra chanting, Tibetan music, and dancing were all a part of the opening ceremony that took place Monday in Holloway Hall at SU.

The ceremony begins the week long stay of the Tibetan monks and their displays are not only teaching Salisbury University students and the local community about Tibetan culture, but it's also a blessing of SU hall.

"We believe that this space is not only owned by the humans. We also believe that there are invisible beings who share in the space, so we get authorization from them," explains Tibetan monk, Gheshe Londen La.

Monday afternoon just about a dozen Tibetan monks started drawing these chalk lines, which by the end of the week will be an intricate sand mandala.

It's a beautiful masterpiece created with millions of colorful sand grains, which are actually ground up precious stones.

"Those stones in substance contain a different kind of energy to bring balance and harmony to nature," says Gheshe.

It's a painstaking technique that Gheshe Londen la, one of the Tibetan monks visiting SU, says takes over 28 hours to complete.

Over that time, the presence of the monks and them sharing their traditions essentially gives folks in Salisbury a chance to see and experience another part of the world without leaving home.

June Krell-Salgado, the director for SU Cultural Affairs, explains, "They eat in commons with the students so the students get an opportunity to rub elbows with them. This is really a inter-generational event we have people of all ages of all segments of the community come to be with them."

And once the sand mandala is finished at the end of the week, it will be destroyed. A magnificent message that nothing is permanent, rather everything is in flux.

The sand being released back into nature is a symbol of peace and harmony

Ghashe says, "Sending that healing energy to the oceans, it then evaporates and then the clouds bring the rain, so that's global healing."

The monks will be working on the sand mandala all week and the public is free to watch either on campus or on the live web stream.

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