Mala Beads

I’ve decided to mine the area of spiritual and religious jewelry for posting topics.  As I sat down to consider this, I realized that there was much to say — anything from rosary beads to the spiritual uses of semiprecious stones might qualify.  But, one thing at a time.  I’ll enter this topic area with mala beads and the mala makers of Japa Mala Beads.

“Mala” is most simply defined as a string of beads used in praying or meditating.  Typically, a full mala is 108 beads and, therefore, long enough to be worn around the neck. The smaller ones, that can be worn around the wrist, typically consist of 27 beads — a quarter of a full mala. The beads are used to count prayers or mantras during meditation and to assist in focus.  Japa Mala’s website provides some useful information about how to use a malas.

We have seen mala bracelets worn as accessories for some time.  The newest wave of this trend started about 10 years ago.  However, malas are spiritual tools first; spiritual reminders second; and jewelry last.  I suspect, although I don’t know, that malas were initially worn around the neck or wrist as a way to simply carry them around.

Japa Mala provides a very nice selection of handmade malas — full and for the wrist.  They use a wide range of materials — both in type and scale — and have something to appeal to everyone.

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