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The Ultimate Guide to Mala Beads

Mala beads necklaces

At Lovepray Jewelry, we make the prettiest most wearable mala beads and bringing serenity and peace in your everyday life gives us purpose. Mala beads are the perfect way to integrate peace into your daily routine. If you’ve never heard of this meditation tool, you can use it during your mindfulness and meditation practice to help center yourself. We believe that putting value into our products like Mala beads, also known as Mala prayer beads, is the best way to enhance your use of them.

What is the History of Mala Beads?

Alright, so really, what are Mala beads? If you’ve never heard of them, you’re in for quite the story. Mala prayer beads were first created in India 3000 years ago and were a spiritual tool used by yogis for thousands of years. It’s intended to help keep your mind from wandering too much during meditation by providing a tactile item for you to hold onto, if fact ‘Mala’ is a word that means “meditation garland” in Sanskrit!

What do Mala Beads Consist of?

The Mala is a simple bead string that’s intended to act as a guide during your meditation, but there are a few key elements that make the Mala what it is.

Traditionally, Mala necklaces have 108 beads on the strand (plus the Guru Bead) to be used in devotional meditation, mantra and prayer. The number 108 was selected because it is a sacred number in Hinduism, Buddhism, and yogic tradition.

Many malas have a Guru Bead, an element that cannot be missed, because the tassel attaches directly to it. We like to use pendants to represent the tassel because they are more durable than tassels, for our heavy meditators who love their malas.

Another element to Mala prayer beads is overhand knotting. It helps make the Mala stronger in it of itself and also acts as a utility for Japa Meditation. This is one of the reasons that Mala beads were first created. Japa Meditation is a special style that uses beads to count in order to overcome spiritual darkness by harnessing the body’s and mind’s energy for self-transformation.

And lastly, some malas have a tassel which represents the connection between you, the divine, and others. It represents oneness and how it brings us all together.

How to use Mala Beads?

After all the above, you’re probably wondering just how to use these Mala beads. Unless you’re familiar with Japa meditation or other meditation that utilizes tactile tools to help you focus, this will probably be a new process. Below are some ways that you can incorporate your Mala prayer beads into your practice the next time you’re feeling the need to meditate.

Get to know your Mala beads

Do this before you start! Since you’ll rely on being able to feel your Mala with your eyes closed and during meditation, you’ll want to know all the elements of your Mala beads well. This goes back to the “elements of the Mala beads” section. Remember the tassel or pendant? This is the endpoint of the Mala. If you start on one side of the pendant and go all the way around, you’ll know you’re done when you reach the tassel. You’ll also be able to feel the Guru Bead between the tassel and the necklace loop.

Start with the tassel or pendant in your preferred hand. You can do this in your dominant hand or whichever hand is most comfortable for you. Face the tassel towards you, so you always have a sense of where you are in your Mala prayer rotation.

Turn each bead in your fingers individually. Make sure you turn each bead, but try not to use your index finger. Index fingers are thought to represent the ego, so do your best to switch it up (as uncomfortable as it may be). We recommend trying to use your thumb to turn the beads. The hand knotting between the beads will help you move between them. Don’t try to go too fast at first—just get used to the sensation.

Add breathing to each turn of the Mala bead. When you reach each bead, inhale and exhale, in and out. Once you’ve done this, move onto the next bead and repeat. Feel the rhythm that your body is creating. All your fingers and your breath to become one and in sync.

What is a mantra?

Integrate your mantra or prayer. A mantra is a word or phrase that is repeated during your practice. As you breathe and turn each bead, repeat your mantra or prayer. Yes, this means that you’ll be repeating is 108 times if you have the full-sized Mala prayer beads. While this might seem like a lot, you’ll soon find a groove that will allow you to slip into a peaceful meditation.

Find the Guru Bead. After a while, you’ll find your Guru Bead which means you’ve officially “finished” your practice. Take a moment to pause and reflect. Thank your guru, mantra, and yourself. Soak in the mindfulness that you have created in this moment.

Try not to go over the Guru Bead. If you decide that you’re not quite done meditating, that’s quite alright, but make sure that you meditate back in the direction of the beads that you can from. Ideally the deal is to not go over the Guru Bead.

Top Reasons to Purchase Mala Beads

If you read this far, you’re probably thinking about getting your own set of mala beads. Mala beads are an incredible investment for a number of reasons.

Firstly, they add another layer to your typical meditation ritual. Adding a tactile element to your ritual will help you to stay engaged if you’ve started to become a bit bored with your routine. That said, the Mala bead technique isn’t so vastly different from yoga or meditation in general and won’t require you to learn anything too new.

Mala beads will also help slow your respiration through the breathing technique. The Mala bead technique is predicated on the breathing that you create from bead to bead. Thus, your respiration will be regulated and transformed.

And finally, they help you focus on your practice in a new way through repetition of your mantra or prayer over and over. Do you ever seem to lose your intention for your practice during yoga? It happens to all of us! Fortunately, Mala prayer beads can be a way for you to bring your focus back to your intention every single time.

Final thoughts

So, now that you’re fully briefed on the history of Mala beads, are you ready to add them to your practice? Whether you want a short 27 bead bracelet or you’re looking for a full 108 bead mala necklace, this can be the perfect way to either switch up or enhance your meditation. Lovepray Jewelry is your one-stop shop for any and all Mala prayer beads and bracelets that you could possibly want.

When you buy from us you support small business, made in San Diego, cruelty free, and fair trade.

Visit us at Lovepray Jewelry and learn more about the stylish options that can help you center yourself. Don’t miss out on other collections by Lovepray Jewelry too. Pair the benefits of essential oils in your meditation with our aromatherapy mala bracelets.

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