Source: The San Francisco Chronicle
On April 2, 1999, The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the Buddhist nuns of Khachoe Ghakyll Nunnery in Kathmandu, Nepal created a sand mandala at Holy Names College in Oakland. The five-foot diameter mandala was created to represent compassion and the recent gender breakthrough of Tibetan Buddhist nuns to create sand mandalas and to earn the Geshe, the equivalent of a Doctor of Divinity. To become a Geshe, a nun must study for about 25 years in meditation and the creation of sacred art. Cheryl Gipson, organizer of the event in Oakland, said, "The mandala itself is sacred space...It's creating very blessed and pure energy that will leave an imprint on anyone's mind that sees it or hears it. It's a representation of the enlightened mind."