A mandala (Sanskrit: मण्डल, romanized: maṇḍala, lit. 'circle', is a geometric configuration of symbols. In various spiritual traditions, mandalas may be employed for focusing the attention of practitioners and adepts, as a spiritual guidance tool, for establishing a sacred space, and as an aid to meditation and trance induction. In the Eastern religions of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Shintoism it is used as a map representing deities, or especially in the case of Shintoism, paradises, kami, or actual shrines. A mandala generally represents the spiritual journey, starting from the outside to the inner core, through layers.