In the beginning, I was simply walking in the woods...

aster on my path
like the sun with purple rays
circle bright and whole

After that moment, during the late spring, summer, and early autumn of 1995 I drew a series of mandalas that incorporated circle images from some of my dreams.

The material on the following pages is drawn from my journal. I began journaling sporatically in 1981. During 1988 I experienced an outpouring of pictures and words, and I had the first of a series of mandala dreams.

Beginning June 6, 1995 and ending sometime that September, I drew forty pictures, all in circle form. Many, although not all, were mandalas. In some of these I sought to symbolize dreams I'd had that seemed mandalic to me.

This process was sparked again by a dream I had in July of 1996. I began a series of ten pictures in which I eventually incorporated the new dream with the other mandala images.

My very first mandala, I realize now, was a circle of stones I created in the woods where I take walks. One of the round pictures I drew in 1995 recalls this stone circle, built in the fall of 1989:

I had to carry heavy stones up a steep hillside and through tangled undergrowth to construct it, but making that stone circle felt very important. (At that time, the career in church ministry I had planned for since high school had come to an end after only six years.) I buried two smooth stones from the shore of a lake in the center; and I would sit quietly inside the circle from time to time.

The buried stones seemed to me like a yin and yang of phallus and womb. This bringing together of masculine and feminine imagery occurs in this mandala, too:

On the first page of the journal in which I did many of these drawings, I wrote:

Everything living dreams of individuation, for everything strives toward its own wholeness.

óCarl Jung from Memories, Dreams, Reflections