Nine Designs for Inner Peace, by Sarah Tomlinson (Destiny Books, 2008) is one of the most interesting books that I have read a long time. It’s sub-title is “The Ultimate Guide To Meditating With Color, Shape and Sound”. I wanted to share this on my Tarot blog because I think that it fits in well as an “added value” product.
Tomlinson studied Yantric painting in India with tantric master and artist Harish Johari, who revealed to her the healing power of meditation with Yantras. The gift here is an active meditation that promotes positive healing, as well as grounding and centering. The foundation of this practice is that each of the nine designs corresponds to nine qualities of body and mind that are essential to well being: radiance, nourishment, passion, intellect, expansion, bliss, organization, uniqueness and spirituality.
Basic elements include the geometric forms of the square, circle, and the triangle. These are the same elements that are common to the Tarot. The process of creating the Yantra is in itself a visual meditation as the practitioner works clockwise from the outer for to the inner form, finally reaching the central point of stillness (bindu), the source of happiness within.
Tomlinson suggests a few moments of silence when leaving the project, whether it is finished or not. In this way the practitioner honors the project, and the work they are doing. She also suggests framing the finished work, and placing it where it can be seen.
Each of the Yantras, and their accompanying mantra, is fully discussed. There are full color presentations of each Yantra, as well as a black and white version at the end of the book that can be copied and used as a model if one does not want to do the design themselves.
Two coloring techniques are discussed – gouache (a water based paint), and colored pencils. The instructions are in-depth, and easy enough for a beginner to follow.
As an added value for Tarot readings, I would suggest copying each of the Yantras in both black and white and color. Write a short (one page) set of instructions, and a listing of each of the Yantras, and their accompanying mantra. At the end of the reading (for those clients that you believe would benefit from this practice – and would be willing to spend the time doing it) discuss how they would like to use this technique. They may want to resolve or heal something, or they may want to open themselves up in some area. Whichever Yantra they wish to work with, give them a color copy, a black and white copy, a list of the Yantra/mantra correlations, an a set of instructions.
Whether you choose to use this technique for yourself alone, or whether you wish to offer it to your clients, this is a tool of empowerment that will open new doors of understanding.