Mandala and Zen doodle coloring as meditation

Mandala coloring has become very popular these years.  Many best selling books are actually these coloring books for adults. Modern people have too much stress and the coloring provides a mindless, relaxing escape and  a creative outlet. It let you be a child again and play freely. Zen doodle, or Zentangle is similar.  With abstract lines, shapes, and repeated pattern doodling, it takes our mind off daily worries and responsibilities. 

zen doodle coloring

What is Mandala coloring, Zen Doodle and Zen-tangle?

These are just a few popular methods of creating a spontaneous, patterned drawings and a starting point for coloring experiments. No matter how you name it, the therapeutic function is the same.  Some people call it color therapy or color healing. It is a type of art therapy everybody can perform and enjoy.

Traditionally, Mandala is a Buddist or Hindu ritual of drawing "Cosmos" or "Universe" with charts, diagrams, and geometric patterns. It can be a circular or square shape. Each symbol represents a part of the universe. 

Zen doodle or Zentangle is a modern invention similar to Mandala drawing. You "doodle" and draw any shapes, lines, or patterns. Let it flow out of your mind, through your hand and pen onto paper. No planning required. It might look like a tangled mess, but there are no judgments. You draw and color whatever you feel like at the moment.  It is your own spiritual ritual and reflection of your inner self. It can release buried emotions and lead to self-discovery. At least, doodling and coloring are fun activities even kids can enjoy.


Ways to start your Mandala or Zen doodle drawing


Yo do not any fancy tools. Any pen, pencil, marker, crayon, water color or acrylic will work. Any paper, blank notebook or sketch book is fine. If you have kids in your house, you probably have tons of art supply around. If you like to preserve your artwork for longer, get acid free paper and higher quality art supplies. 


There is no set technique for Mandala or Zen doodle drawings. If it is easier to start by following rules, you can start at center, adding layers and spiral out. It does not have to be symmetrical or geometric, but it certainly can be. Allow any shape, lines or pattern to flow through your hands. It might help to do some meditation or deep breathing before you start to clear your mind, or focus your thoughts on your challenge and intentions. 

Coloring and drawing ideas

You can pick out all the colors attracting to you first, so you define your color palette first. Or you can just color as you go, following your heart. Any subject can be drawn on the paper. The popular ones include Nature, Flowers, Animals, Sea creative, Fairies, Dreams, Geometric or Abstract patterns. Even kids coloring book can be a great starting point for very personalized art and self expression. There is no limit in what you can do.

Free Download

Starting from a blank paper and a pen allows the maximum amount of freedom of artistic expression. If it seems too scary, you can download our free PDF Mandala coloring pages by clicking the button below. It has 5 Mandala designs in pdf file, ready to print and color. Have fun!