SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Tibetan Buddhist monks visiting Santa Barbara ended their stay in a special way.
On Sunday, they dismantled a sand mandala that they spent the last week crafting.
The mandala remnants were then carried from the Alhecama Center on Santa Barbara Street to the Friendship Fountain at Stearns Wharf.
The monks then dispersed the pieces into the ocean.
The ceremony symbolizes sending passion and purification throughout the earth's oceans.
Head monk Losang Yonten says that the mandala symbolizes life, a beginning, a middle and an end.
"In the beginning you have to work hard, you put in a lot of energy, and you make it beautiful and attractive. Each single items, the detail, and in the end you dismantle. That is the impermanence. That is, all our life is impermanence," Losang said. His words translated by Thepo Tulku from the Santa Barbara Summit for Tibet.
A small amount of sand was released into the wind from La Cumbre Peak.
The monks were in Santa Barbara to celebrate Peace Week.
Losang said his favorite part of Santa Barbara was the weather and the kind people.
The visiting monks will now travel to San Luis Obisspo to create another mandala.