The Minneapolis Institute of Arts - Museum Home Page
The Art of Asia
History & Maps
Explore the Collection
Yamantaka Mandala

A mandala represents an invitation to enter the Buddha's awakened mind. Tibetan Buddhists believe there is a seed of enlightenment in each person's mind that can be uncovered by visualizing and contemplating a mandala. The complex symbols and exquisite combination of primary colors are considered a pure expression of the principles of wisdom and compassion that underlie Tantric Buddhist philosophy.

The Mandala The Mandala

A mandala, or circle, is a representation of the Buddhist universe. These cosmograms represent in symbolic color, line, and geometric forms, all realms of existence and are used in Tantric meditation and initiation rites.

The Meaning of the Mandala The Meaning of the Mandala

The Yamantaka Mandala is a cosmic blueprint of the celestial palace of the deity Yamantaka, Conqueror of Death. Discover the symbolism and meaning of the Yamantaka Mandala.


Follow the process of the making of a mandala from preparation to creation to preservation

The Story
The Story of the Mandala

Read about Tibet's history and culture, and the monks' 1991 visit to The Minneapolis Institute of Arts

The Preservation

How did this object come to be a part of the museum collection? Get the technical details about the Mandala's preservation

dala Video

Watch the creative process and consecration ceremony in this short video documentary