Learn to Carve a Mani Stone

Nick Durnan

Nick Durnan, a stone carver and contributor to our ‘Exploring the Heart of the Celtic Spirit’ festival in 2017 will be teaching workshops in the art of carving “Mani” stones.

I visited Nick at his studio where he showed me some of the beautiful and naturally weathered stones he has previously carved. He explained how the mantra ‘Om Mani Padme Hum’ could be inscribed or carved in relief form. The mantra or prayer is a powerful invocation to the embodiment of compassion – Chinrezig, and it is said that all the teachings of the Buddha are contained within it.

MORE: The meaning of Om Mani Padme Hum

Nick has himself attended a local Buddhist sangha for many years and was commissioned to carve a life sized statue of the reclining Buddha for the Jamyang Buddhist centre in London. He explained to me that such statues are required to be carved in very specific measurements of ‘64ths’ and he showed the practice model now in his garden. The full size statue has been gilded and resides in the gardens at the Jamyang centre.

During the workshop, Nick will explain the meaning and philosophy of the mantra ‘Om Mani Padme Hung’ and the carving will then take the form of meditative ‘practice’ on the Mantra.

The workshop will be suitable for beginners and experienced carvers alike and all participants will be able to take their own carved Mani stone home with them.

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