The designs and patterns by Jay Sandifer may look like Mandalas, but they are not.
They are designs and patterns meant to be appreciated as works of art reflecting the art of work.
In many spiritual climates, the purpose of mandalas is generally associated with the meditation practices of Eastern religions such as Hinduism and Tantra Buddhism. Because of this, mandalas are not typically found in Judeo-Christian worship practices.
The artist, Jay Sandifer, embraces the incredibly profound and often challenging teachings of the Christ. The artist firmly believes true spiritual fulfillment regarding purpose, destiny, peace, and power only comes from one place, the Gospel. This explains why the designs and patterns of Jay Sandifer are not mandalas.
The Gospel is explicit. It is narrow. It is not all inclusive. The Gospel does not include eastern religious philosophies. It is selective in nature through the free will and choice of each individual.
Christ does not exclude people. People exclude Christ. Christ welcomes all. However, not all welcome Christ. Here is the reason: The undeniable, direct and clear teachings of Christ provide a backdrop of standards which require a faith to focus on only one God. This seems hard for many people because they would have to admit, accept and embrace a unique intolerance.
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Also ....with all respect, the word mandala simply means circle in the ancient Sanskrit language. Some have extended its definition liberally to include 'sacred' circle.
There is nothing inherently bad, evil, good or holy about a circle. A circle is simply a shape and symbol with cultural meaning attached. The circle, or any other symbol is a visible representation of an invisible reality. It is like the sacraments of worship: an outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible reality and truth.
Again, the intriguing ideas and purpose of the mandala are not wrong in and of themselves. It is not wrong to be inspired by design. People have been and currently are inspired by design and/or nature every day …all over the planet.
I want to share a thought with you. Here is it: The design, pattern and creation is not necessarily wrong, it's what (or who) is encountered and attributed on the other side that really defines its purpose.
Here is a simple question: if you are using mandalas for meditation, why?
Is it for fun? Just because?
Maybe your answer is something like this: I want to center myself and find peace. Balance will come to me and I can become one with the universe.
-Or- if you want to be really spiritual, your answer may be like this: I want to transcend my consciousness in order to tap into the other side.
This might very well bring me to my point. What is the other side? Who is on the other side?
Jesus Christ says, “There is only one way to God. I am the way.” Jesus says, “I am the (only) way.” He says, “No one comes to the Father (God) any another way (John 14:6).”
WOW! Jesus, what a bold and challenging thing to say! I’ve read through the Gospels several times. It is my discovery that Jesus says many bold and challenging things, perhaps that is why he was murdered in his early thirties.
Design is Everywhere
“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” - Steve Jobs
Design is everywhere.
Natural designs may be observed and admired in trees, flowers, mountains, sunrises and the oceans and deserts of the earth. The earth is full of design and pattern.
There are also man made designs, homes, door knobs, cars, kitchen cabinets, etc. Everything we see today came from what we once couldn't see …at least not with our natural eyes. Everything we see today has essentially been designed. Designs are designed.
Designs Are Created
The Design Process
The design process can also be explored. Experimentation can also yield or produce and make designs. Innovators and inventors are using their God0given imaginations to explore and experiment with materials and resources they make available.
Sketches are the way many designers in the past have expressed their creativity. Drawing is a great way to begin to put form to creative ideas. Sometimes these ideas are deeply embedded in our souls and spirits. They may lay dormant for years deep with us, or they may suddenly shock us with a surprise voltage of ‘do-this-now!’
Sketchbooks & Journals
Sketches and ‘doodles’ are what I use to explore the design process. I most often start with simple lines, dots and basic shapes. I start from the center and expand the process out from a central point of focus. In my sketches, the lines and shapes of my designs often create patterns.
Designs Create Patterns
Designs create patterns, but remember …patterns also create designs.
In many instances the pattern (or blueprint) precedes the design.
It seems quite circular in concept. Think for a moment with me.
An original design emerges from the artist. The design has its origin from a pattern which has been pieced together internally …thought by thought, inspiration by inspiration, and revelation by revelation. The end from the beginning so-to-speak.
This design can then become a type of pattern for other designs.
As Steven Jobs, the creator and founder of Apple Technology Company, Design is also about function. Design is about how things work.
Designed to be a Sign & Wonder
My art is designed to be a sign and a wonder. My designs are intentionally made to bring an awareness to the Juedeo/Christian God of The Holy Scriptures. My designs work when those who see my designs and patterns become more aware of the amazing detailed and often delicate creation of life which surrounds us. Embedded within my designs and patterns are symbols and deep meanings inspired by the Bible.
Over the course of history, writing has proven to change lives. I write to continue the legacy.