Eight Auspicious Symbols

Two Classes with Tiffani Gyatso (Recordings)

Very common in the Tibetan Buddhist world are the Eight Auspicious Symbols (Ashtamangala), used to decorate textiles, walls, altars, doors, ceremonial instruments and even to be painted over the floor.  The eight auspicious signs are: the umbrella, a pair of golden fish, the vase, the lotus, the white conch shell, the endless knot, the banner, and the Dharma wheel. 

In this course, Tiffani Gyatso will give an introduction to the history of how these symbols became integrated into Buddhism from India and how they are used today. Unlike other sacred symbols, these images can be found anywhere, even on the floor we walk on. Besides their history and symbology, we will contemplate on the secret benefit they generate when we put our eyes on them and when we make ourselves available to draw them and bring them into our homes or as a gift. 

This will be a short, inspiring and joyful course of two sessions. In each class we will focus on four of the symbols and choose one of them to draw according to the traditional proportions and to color according to the typical Tibetan painting style. 

This course is open to any person who is curious, and would like to learn more about Tibetan symbolism and who is ready to give up fear around knowing how to draw and simply have fun with colors giving a meaning to one’s personal self discovery. 

Materials required: 

  • Canson paper of any size
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Compass
  • Colored pencils (watercolor is best)
  • Print out of images included in course



PROGRAM SCHEDULE:

CLASS 1

After a general introduction on the Eight Auspicious Symbols, we will hear the stories, myths and hidden meanings of the image of the Umbrella, the pair of fishes, the Wheel and the Endless Knot. With the heart inspired by their sacred meanings, we will learn how to easily draw the Endless Knot and color it with water color pencils.

CLASS 2

Today we will learn about the last four of the auspicious symbols: the shell, the Victory Banner, the vase and the lotus flower. With the spirit of joy and beauty we will learn how to draw free-hand a traditional lotus flower and color it with water color pencils. In the end you will be able to contemplate a flower with much more meaning and have a beautiful and delicate art done by yourown devotional hands. 

Course curriculum

Instructor

Tiffani Gyatso

Tiffani Gyatso is an artist from Brazil who focused her studies on the sacred expressions of art from different cultures. She specialized in traditional Tibetan Thangka painting, which she learned in India at the Norbulingka Institute from the years 2003-2006 and later furthered her studies at the Prince School of Traditional Arts in London where she studied sacred Geometry of the Middle East. Today she runs her own art retreat center at the Atelier YabYum at the mountains of Brazil and guides art groups to India and Nepal.