“Carl Jung discovered mandalas in early midlife as he was working deeply with his dreams. He started sketching circular drawings in his notebook every morning, seeing them as cryptograms of his self. He often drew images in the center of his mandalas.” Susan Tiberghien in One Year to a Writing Life goes on to say, “Often in my journal, I draw a very simple mandala…placing an image from a dream or from my surroundings in the center and letting my imagination fill the space around it. Sometimes I draw the image multiple times, letting it circle around the center, and other times it fills the entire mandala. I call my mandalas soul maps and I give them titles” (9).Drawing my inspiration from this idea, I determined to open my journal at random and do a mandala with the first image I ran across. I opened it to the words: “…an image of three feathers,” and somehow that was exactly the most satisfying image I could draw in those moments.
In an e-mail to my Linfield friend, Samantha Jordan, I wrote:
“It is the nature of us as women and humans to compare ourselves to the crowd; and many fears come with being young and far away from home and childhood. However, your writing springs from your eternal soul as an artist, which is always bound to be outside the flicker of the social campfire, investigating the shadows.
“Yes, it is scary out there,and there probably aren’t any of your classmates there because it is a land outside of time and space.It is a soulspace where you have to do your writing and art no matter what. Just doing it has intrinsic value unrelated to the outer world happenings.
“Your journal and your art are deeply personal. They are the soil of your deepest roots, flowing with the deep green waters of your memories, dreams, and reflections.
“In that place, no one and nothing can touch you, and you are inviolate.”