Shepherd, Sherry Renmu

Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 11, Number 2, 2002

KEY WORDS: initiation, sand, clinical example, sandplay therapy, numinous, Self, Tibetan, Buddhism, Native American tradition.

ABSTRACT: Sand, as substance and symbol, has a rich history. This paper follows the movement of sand through element, image, literature, initiatory rites, sacred rituals, and the practice of sandplay therapy. Sand, as a foundation of transformational initiatory experience, has a place in the ceremonies of Tibetan Buddhism, esoteric Shingon Buddhism, and the Navaho Native American tradition. Utilized ritually, sand can constellate a meeting between the everyday mind and the archetype of the Self. This movement toward wholeness in the personality can provide a ground for awakening to Spirit.