Meditation has become a lot more widespread over the past few years, with more and more people turning to the practice as a way to deal with the stress and anxiety that is a part of daily life.
Apps like Headspace, Insight Timer, and Calm are a great way to learn meditation practice in the comfort of your home or wherever you happen to be. The problem is, by using an app to meditate, you are taking your phone with you into your meditation space. As for most of us, our phones represent a lot of the things that we are anxious about; whether that’s work or our social lives, this presents a bit of a problem!
Mala beads are one way to get around this issue.
What are Mala’s?
Mala’s were first created in India over 3000 years ago and are used in the Hindu and Buddhist faiths, as well as by yogis. The word ‘mala’ means ‘meditation garland’ in Sanskrit.
Mala beads are a string of 108 beads and one ‘head’ stone. They are used as an aid to focus in meditation practice. Typically you would recite a mantra as you touch each bead. You can measure your progress by keeping note of how many beads you have touched before you lose concentration. The 109th ‘head’ or ‘guru’ stone is then used to symbolize a connection to the divine and as a way to give thanks to all of the teachers who have led us to where we are today.
By using mala beads, you have no need to use timers or apps to help you with your meditation practice because you can use the beads as your guide.
Some people also feel that the beads become charged up by each meditation practice’s power, so there is a lot of benefit to carrying them with you. This is especially true if you are trying to use your meditation practice as a way to manifest things.
How To Choose Your Mala Beads
Mala’s can be made out of a variety of different materials, all of which have different meanings. It is a good idea to think about which beads speak to you personally, as these will likely be the ones that give you the best results.
Shivoham always includes Rudraksha in their mala’s because of the deep sense of empowerment their founder Shivjyoti has found through being in contact with them. The Rudraksha is a seed that is commonly used as a prayer bead in India and is thought to benefit the wearer by acting as a protector against negative energies and providing stability and support.
How Should You Use Your Mala Beads?
Generally, if you are using mala beads, you will use mantras, which is a word phrase or sound used to help focus your mind and help with your meditation.
You hold the mala in your hand, and each time you recite your mantra, you turn a bead using your thumb and middle finger. If you lose concentration, that’s OK! With love and kindness, return your concentration to your beads and continue making your way around.
Eventually, you will find yourself at the guru stone, which dangles from the mala. This signals a time for reflection and gratitude. Never continue going past the guru stone. Once you reach it, turn around and go back the other way.
You can wear your mala as a necklace or a bracelet, as a way of taking your meditation practice with you wherever you go.