Meditation is an ancient technique to calm the mind and has been shown in many different scientific studies to reduce stress and improve health and overall wellness. One of the easiest and most effective types of meditation is mantra meditation. This is also known as japa meditation and is basically chanting a mantra over and over again using a set of mala beads or a yoga meditation rosary. Using Mala beads to meditate has completely changed the way I practice meditation so I highly recommend you consider experimenting with this type of practice. Japa meditation is especially useful for those of us that might have issues with getting distracted while you’re meditating.
What is a mala?
A mala is a string of 108 beads that has traditionally been used in prayer and meditation for centuries. Mala beads are also known as Buddha beads, Hindu prayer beads, yoga bracelets, mantra beads, Tibetan rosary, japa beads or meditation beads.
You don’t have to use it only for mantra meditation. You can simply wear some japa beads as a reminder of an intention that you’ve set for yourself or something you’re trying to manifest. The beads of a mala are often made of semi-precious gemstones that have healing powers and energetic effects on the body and mind. Holding and wearing a set of meditation beads can help reduce stress and improve health.
How to choose mala beads?
When choosing a new Mala, think about what are you trying to manifest? What are you trying to create for yourself? You can look at the intentions of the gemstones such as rose quartz, believed to open the heart to love or a gemstone like turquoise, which protects you on a journey. When choosing a mala for a friend, consider the same aims. What are they looking for in their life? What adventures are they about to go on? Remember to let your intuition guide you and to let it be a fun and organic process.
How to use mala beads for japa meditation?
To use your Mala beads in meditation find a comfortable seated position and sit up tall. Take your stand of beads in your right hand with, the tassel towards yourself. Holding them gently in your hand, making sure not to use the index finger is that represents the ego turning each bead in your finger with your thumb. You then repeat a mantra or affirmation to yourself as you touch each bead. This mantra or affirmation can be said out loud or internally. It can be as simple as the word love or an affirmation such as I love the word grounding or a phrase. I am grounded. Whenever you’re looking to cultivate in your life, when you do get all the way around 108 beads, you’ll reach what’s called the guru bead. This is the larger bead between the tassel and the other beads. This represents the time for pause and reflection, honoring your practice, your intention, and your guru or teacher for your japa meditation practice. When you have completed 108 mantras, you can end your practice or continue with additional rounds. The belief in mantra yoga is that the more you chant your mantra, the more powerful it becomes.
How to care for a mala?
Your mantra beads are a beautiful reminder of the intentions that you’re setting for yourself and what you’re trying to manifest. Treat them with love and kindness and respect. You should store your mala beads in a clean and dry space like a mala bag or box. We suggest you occasionally wash it to read the dust and dirt from your japa meditation practice. The beads may get darker as you wear them, as they absorb your oils and your energies, which actually makes them stronger.