Healing Imagery

The use of imagery in healing by Suchinta Abhayaratna, Th.D. – Extracts

The famous psychologist Carl Jung writes in his book, Man and His Symbols, that symbols and images can express complex concepts that may not be adequately expressed in words, and make them relevant across cultural barriers, far beyond their point of origin.

Jung writes, …a word or an image is symbolic when it implies something more than its obvious and immediate meaning. It has a wider unconscious aspect that is never precisely defined or fully explained. Nor can one hope to define or explain it. As the mind explores the symbol, it is led to ideas that lie beyond the grasp of reason.

Jeanne Achterberg writes that imagination is a mental process that is “the communication mechanism between perception, emotion and bodily change.” Jung, C.G., Man and His Symbols, (NY: Dell Publishing, 1968), 3 – 4

It is “the world’s oldest and most effective healing resource, affecting the body intimately on both seemingly mundane and profound levels.”Jeanne Achterberg, Imagery in Healing (Boston: Shambala, 1985)

Dr. James Oschman, a pioneer and researcher of Energy Medicine writes that, “…looking at a symbol, or even thinking about (visualising) a symbol results in considerable neural activity involving measurable electrical and magnetic fields.” According to him, writing or drawing the symbol can activate sensory and motor pathways and therefore bring in many more electrical and magnetic fields. Viewing, visualising or writing a symbol can trigger specific patterns of electrical and magnetic fields in and around the body that can be healing. It is also possible that some of these energy fields might be beneficial to a nearby person.

Dr. Judith Cornell describes the mandala as “a concrete symbol of its creator’s absorption into a sacred center.” In its most elevated form, the sacred circle (mandala) mirrors an illuminated state of consciousness through a symbolic pattern – making the invisible visible. It is meant to draw creator and viewer into an encounter with animating sources of numinous (spiritual) energy. The Navajo call this center “a spiritual place of emergence” for sacred imagery. By focusing on it, both mandala artist and mediator can open to the divine energies of deities and to the contents of his or her own spiritual and psychological self. When a practitioner wilfully illuminates and embodies a sacred image from within the psyche while in a meditative state, spiritual transformation, physical healing, and the integration of personality fragments can result.

 For Cornell, the creation of a mandala is about healing and self-realization.

All the pictures are from Judith Cornell’s book.



Every Mandala you make will bring you closer to the truth of who you are! Based on Dr. Judith Cornell’s Mandala Luminous Symbols for Healing program, this is a week by week themed mandala making program with the intention of making joyful and light-filled discoveries.

Events are on Thursdays and Saturdays. Event timing is flexible depending on participants’ time zone. Pls enquire at the contact from below! Thank you.




Read more about MANDALAS @ THIS LINK