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Switch to Forum Live View Choosing the right mala beads
10 years ago  ::  Feb 25, 2008 - 1:37PM #11
Dharma66
Posts: 18
Any Mala should be blessed before you use it. The Tibetan Nun's Project has some beautiful ones as does Dharma Shop. If you order one from either of them it comes already blessed. However, malas aren't required to offer prayers. I didn't get my first one until I had been practicing for 2 years. The important thing to remember is that Buddhism isn't about following a set of rituals or prayers. The prayers are a tool to help us be mindful that's all. It's easy to get caught up in ritual and forget that we are to apply the Teachings in our daily lives away from the meditation cushion or altar. Good Luck
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10 years ago  ::  Feb 27, 2008 - 1:05PM #12
tenzinmomo
Posts: 1
Dear friend: I would like to suggest a practice to you, regardless of your tradition. I always used a 27 bead mala: it was convenient to wear and use whenevr there was a lull in my day when I was teaching. When I turned 54, I realized that it was ma multiple of 27 on the road to 108. I went to a bead store and found 54 beads that appealed to me. I made a simple mala and have used it for over ten years now.
  I   recommend making your own mala to all practioners now. As your practice is your own, so should the mala reflect your tastes and love of meditation. I am not talking about making jewelry but constructing your own promise of practice, giving it special meaning to you.
   As western Buddhism grows, we need to take tradition and make it our own. Wiuth good thoughts for your practice and hopes for mall living beings,
Tenzinmomo
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10 years ago  ::  Mar 18, 2008 - 1:23PM #13
Lady_Literati
Posts: 3
[QUOTE=tenzinmomo;317437]Dear friend: I would like to suggest a practice to you, regardless of your tradition. I always used a 27 bead mala: it was convenient to wear and use whenevr there was a lull in my day when I was teaching. When I turned 54, I realized that it was ma multiple of 27 on the road to 108. I went to a bead store and found 54 beads that appealed to me. I made a simple mala and have used it for over ten years now.
  I   recommend making your own mala to all practioners now. As your practice is your own, so should the mala reflect your tastes and love of meditation. I am not talking about making jewelry but constructing your own promise of practice, giving it special meaning to you.
   As western Buddhism grows, we need to take tradition and make it our own. Wiuth good thoughts for your practice and hopes for mall living beings,
Tenzinmomo[/QUOTE]
This is exactly what I did! I made my own as I can't afford to purchase them from anywhere. Not everyone has that luxory. Also, The beads do not have to be blessed-its not a Catholic rosary-its a tool and nothing more. Creating your own brings you closer to your mindfulness and your practice, as well is gives you a sense of closeness that you wouldn't get if you simply purchased overly expensive ones online somewhere.
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10 years ago  ::  Mar 19, 2008 - 6:12PM #14
Lostsocks
Posts: 14
I have a small 18-bead wrist mala, that I wear at work because it is more pragmatic, and a larger 108 bead one I keep at home.

I chose them because they were nice simple wooden ones and I don't like anything too garish.

:) the choices were purely practical basically, the mala is a tool to help your practice, so pick something that is going to be useful for you
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10 years ago  ::  Mar 19, 2008 - 8:08PM #15
Lady_Literati
Posts: 3
If you want to make your own Mala beads, here is a site that gives the perfect instructions!

Make Your Own Mala Beads

and here is another one of his posts on how to make your own Mala bead bag if you know how to crochet or know someone that does!

Its a pdf, btw

Make Your Own Mala Bead Bag

Hope these help!
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9 years ago  ::  Dec 25, 2008 - 11:29AM #16
destinationom
Posts: 1
There are 108 beads on a mala because there are 108 main nadis (or subtle channels) that reach to the extremities of the body so that when you repeat a mantra of focused attention on the beads that you purify the body after 108.
Also in a mathematical sense the number 9 is the only number that creates a complete circle when multiplied...it is a little hard to explain here but if you take a piece of paper and write 9x1 all the way to 9x5 on one side with their answers and then on the opposite side multiply 9x6 all the way to 9x10 you will see that the answers in column A and column B are mirror images of each other and using a pen you can follow 1-9 on each side to see they create circles. It is the number in the sequence that contains all!
So there are various practices: Most Buddhist/Hindu faiths use 108 beads and using the number 9 will divide their "wrist malas" into 18 (x6 = 108) 27 (x4 = 108) 36 (x4=108) 54 (x2 = 108) or 108 itself...you will find some form of this number. BUT...
In the Tibetan faith you will find 21 (but they still use a 108 bead mala). The reason being that in the Tibetan tradition many practices are said to be most beneficial if repeated 21 times.
Now there will also be many other variations depending on lineage holders and visions masters have had but all in all they will still form some total of 9 (21 = 2+1 = 3 x3 = 9)
To answer you bead choice:
It really depends on you personally. There are woods: sandalwood, and rosewood you will find but in addition to this there are others. SEEDS: bodhi seed (the tree Buddha sat under), lotus seed, plum seed, etc.  BONE: Tibetans often use a bone mala made of Yak Bone. SHELL: Conch shell is a dense bead from the ocean said to contain the eternal sound of Creation. STONES: so many to choose from often geared towards a chakra.

Hope this helps.
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2 years ago  ::  Sep 23, 2015 - 12:28AM #17
Hal1982
Posts: 1

This is an interesting questions. I've been getting into yoga recently and i'm thinking of learning how to meditate. So found the following good resources on mala bead necklaces and meditation:


www.gaiamtv.com/article/how-use-mala-bea...


www.malamuse.com/How-To-Use-108-Mala-Bea...

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