The Ritual of Saying Goodbye

//The Ritual of Saying Goodbye

The Ritual of Saying Goodbye

There is a tribe in Thailand that has no words for hello and goodbye. I like that.

For the past month I have been present to the fact that the community I have been a member of for the past eight months will have its last day together on Saturday, May 3. So I wanted to create a token to give to each member as a parting gift.

Now that this project is finished and the end is near, I understand in my gut, in this moment, why Tibetan monks spend countless hours creating intricate mandalas with colored sand, only to then ritualistically destroy them. To symbolize the impermanence of life.

I spent many hours happily making these mandalas and I would love to present them to the group and then burn them all. But that probably won’t happen.

I will keep mine, maybe even frame it, not because it is a work of art, but because it is a work of heart. For a month, each of the fifty people whose names are written on each mandala has been alive and present to me in this process. They are not only written in ink, but etched in my heart—even those who dropped out.

Time will pass, I will lose touch with most of them, and some will become good friends. And my mandala will remind me of the precious time I spent with them all. Some day I will burn it


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By | 2016-10-22T08:21:12+00:00 May 2nd, 2014|Expect Nothing|2 Comments


  1. Banko May 2, 2014 at 6:18 pm - Reply

    Thanks for sharing .. Lovely, Lovely, Lovely!

  2. Michael Levine May 5, 2014 at 11:57 am - Reply

    Beautiful presentation, generous gift! Well done on completion of your course and all your service. Thanks for sharing your journey.

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