Since Zentangle inspired mandalas are so much fun to do, I figured teaching them would be even more fun! Having struggled my way through some mathematical renditions, and moving past my desire for asymmetry, I finally got to the point of being excited to teach an easy way to do a mandala without the stress of fussing with math.
I wanted to be really prepared to teach this process in as streamlined a way as I could. So what did I do? In my effort to be thorough, I totally complicated it. I was trying to control the hell out of it so my students would get how to do this. FInally, after a week of putzing around with a "system", and getting to no place that I could get a handle on, I realized something. The thing I was trying to control was the process of letting go and letting it be. OK. duh. That is what the mandala was trying to show me all along.
So today was the class, I loaded up my supplies and decided to just allow. I began the class by telling my story of how hard I had worked to get a system of teaching this, but that the mandala itself showed me that there was no way to plan this adventure. I asked them to float with me as we all began together. They made the same marks that I did. It was as if we were all in a carnival funhouse, stepping each step together, with me at the front of the line.
This was the fun of the mandala. As with the Zentangle process, "one stroke at a time," not knowing where the next step will lead, we circled our way around our papers and watched as the lines danced out from the center. Just as in the funhouse, even though there may be a leader and a follower, there is still the same sense of surprise and awe when each new step is taken.
I hope they had as much fun as I did...