With the bamboo swaying higher & higher along the Buddha walk, the garden beds bursting with colour and fragrance and the incredible growth of the 5000 rainforest trees planted over the past few years, the beauty of the Castle gardens is an ever changing canvas.
Delight in the exquisite, mystical statues, walk the ancient labyrinth, and surround yourself with the tranquil beauty of the rainforest.
And all this before you even enter Nature’s treasure trove of incredible crystal beauty.
The family owners of Crystal Castle are continually scouring the world for items of beauty and spiritual significance. Marvel at the tallest pair of amethyst geodes in Australia, recently unveiled in the courtyard of the newly renovated Castle buildings. Simply turn around to be soothed and healed by the liquid symphony of the new giant Rose Quartz fountain.
Witness the Tibetan Monks creating Healing Sand Mandalas this holidays. When Tibetan Lama, Geshe Tenzin Demchok visited this area he fell in love with the spirit and tranquility of the Crystal Castle and its gardens. He offered to return to Byron after completing his exhibition for the Sydney Powerhouse museum to create three further Mandalas.
These exquisite patterned Mandalas have a deep spiritual significance. They are created as tools for gaining wisdom and compassion, for healing the sick and for spreading long life and peace throughout the world. Each Mandala will be approximately five feet by five feet in size, and will take up to five days to complete. Created in ritual space, the designs are based on sacred geometry from ancient Tibetan scriptures and filled with millions of brightly coloured grains of sand.
Tenzin is the Lama of the Dakpa Khangsten Drepung Loseling Monastery in southern India, where he has 500 monks under his guidance. The monks’ tour is supported by the World Maitreya Karuna Foundation a charity whose mission is to preserve endangered cultures worldwide. During his stay at Crystal Castle Tenzin will also be conducting healing ceremonies and performing traditional music and dance. See our website for further details.
Appreciate ancient art in actionAppreciating the Sand Mandala as a work of art, we need to see beyond our western definition of art with its emphasis on innovation, self-expression and permanence. In Tibetan art, the intention of artist and witness and the collaboration in the execution of the mandala is what is highly valued.
The monks begin the sand painting with a ceremony of chants, music and mantra recitation to bless the site. The drawing of the line design for the Mandala is very exacting work. Then begins the pouring of millions of grains of brightly coloured sand from traditional metal funnels called chakpur. The monks conclude their creation of the Sand Mandala with a consecration ceremony to request the continuous blessings of the deities invoked. And finally, after days of work, they dismantle the Mandala, sweeping up the colored sands to symbolize the impermanence of all things and distributing the mixed sand to the audience as blessings for personal health and healing.
The Tibetan Culture is one of the most ancient of our planet but since the Chinese colonization of Tibet it is severely endangered. Many Tibetans today live a fragile existence in the refugees camps of India and our generation could be the last to witness this ancient artistic culture in its full richness, integrity and splendor. Don’t miss the precious opportunity to be part of this healing and empowering event.
Yet more exquisite artwork has been recently created at the castle. Using voluntary donations from local visitors gathered at the Castle’s welcome hut, award winning artist Peta Laurisen has created a stunning mural spanning one whole wall of the Castle courtyard.
‘Journey to Shangri-La’ is a magical journey with a distinctly Asian flavour and has been painted in Peta’s specialty style, trompe l’oeil. From the French for ‘trick the eye’, trompe l’oeil is an art technique that creates the optical illusion that the objects in the painting are in three dimensions.
The painting features a grand archway inspired by the famous Ankor Wat temple in Cambodia with a winding stairway leading up to the Tiger's Nest Monastery, one of the holiest monasteries in Bhutan, perched on a high granite cliff. A beautiful tiger stands guard at the entranceway, raising awareness of the plight of this majestic animal, which is alas on the brink of extinction.
Peta has worked closely with the Crystal Castle’s creative director Sono King on the mural design which reflects the Castle’s love of Asia and deep respect for its diverse cultures and spirituality.
And the painting has some mysterious secrets. Can you find the ancient symbols carefully hidden within it?
Enter our new bookshop and you will find powerful and inspirational reading material by local, Australian and international authors such as Byron Katie, the Dalai Lama, Louise Hay, Dan Millman, Doreen Virtue, Gitama Day, Deepak Chopra, Barbara Hand Clow, Ramtha, Melchezidek and Sanaya Roman. The shop also has a fabulous range of Angel,Crystal,Art and Tarot cards.
“When you are alert and contemplate a flower, crystal, or bird without naming it mentally, it becomes a window for you into the formless. There is an inner opening, however slight, into the realm of spirit.”
Eckhart Tolle describes the power of crystals in the introduction to his book A New Earth
Tolle, a German spiritual teacher who has become well known through his association with Oprah Winfrey, is just one of the astounding collection of authors whose books are now available in our new bookshop.