What are Mala beads
Mala (literally means “garland” in Sanskrit) is a string of prayer beads commonly used by Hindus, Buddhists, and some Sikhs for meditation, the recitation of mantras, and other spiritual practice. As time has moved on, more and more people from all over the world have also began to wear and use malas, particularly yogis and those who choose boho style in their wardrobe.
Malas are made typically of 108 beads, a 109th bead often called a guru bead. The number 108 is an auspicious and spiritually significant number. But why?
- There are said to be 108 Indian goddess names.
- It is believed that there are 108 Upanishads, texts of wisdom from the ancient sages.
- Some say that one stands for God or higher Truth, zero stands for emptiness or completeness in spiritual practice, and eight stands for infinity or eternity.
- Chakras are the intersections of energy lines in the body, and there are said to be a total of 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra.
- In astrology, there are 12 houses and 9 planets—12 times 9 equals 108.
- The diameter of the sun is 108 times the diameter of the Earth. The distance from the sun to the Earth is 108 times the diameter of the sun.
But sometimes this number is halved—54—or quartered—27—for smaller malas like ones worn on wrists.
Malas are made from various types of materials, including gemstones, wood, seeds, and others. Often they have a tassel, and sometimes they’re knotted below the guru bead. There are pendant malas, too. Some malas are simply strung on a cord, and some are hand-knotted between each bead.
Each part of the mala necklace has its own spiritual and functional purposes.
Explore and choose your own type of materials depending on what you need right now, but keep in mind and respect the sacredness and the spiritual surrounding the mala beads. A mala necklace is a sacred tool even if it's being worn as jewelry and should be a physical reminder of positive intentions.
We hope our mala beads help you. Don’t forget to stay present and be mindful in your daily life.