A visiting monk from the Drepung Loseling Phukhang Monastery carves patterns into the colored sand of the mandala he and five of his colleagues built in December 2012 at Pacific Unitarian Church in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Some of the incised patterns will be filled in with more colored sand (in the containers behind him). Others add texture to the mandala.
Here the central square section of the mandala is nearing completion. The mandala’s skeletal outline, which the monks drew in grease pencil as the first step of the construction process, is visible on the table.