Mala 101


Hey yoga family! Thought you might be interested in day 2 of May’s meditation month. Decided it might be nice to look at using a mala. Having been raised catholic the first thing I thought when I first saw a mala was that it is just the same as a rosary and indeed it pretty much is. A mala is a string of beads like the rosary that is used for prayer and contemplation. A Hindu mala will normally have 108 beads as that is seen as a sacred number in Hinduism. As well as the small beads the mala will be joined together by one large bead ( typically called the ” guru bead”). This bead is never counted; when you get to it you know you’ve done 108 rounds of a mantra, so either stop -or if you are continuing for a set no or period of time stop at the guru bead, mentally bow to the guru, flip the mala around and go back the other way.

Why do people use mala’s? Well for me I  really enjoy the focus that meditating with a mala brings. You don’t need one to meditate but it does help especially if you are new to meditating. Beads are beautiful to touch and serve as a ‘kinaesthetic cue device’- it’s easy to get lost doing a mantra but the beads bring focus and the flow of chanting and twisting is meditative in itself. 

Try making your own mala- you don’t have to have 108 beads- some have 27 ( one fourth of 108) or 36 ( one third). Baba Ram Dass got his students to make a mala using thread from the blanket of Neem Karoli Baba’s blanket- instructions below!

What to chant? I have included a beautiful chant from Deva Premal and Miten 21 day Meditation challenge– if you are interested in meditating it’s a great way to ‘ get in’ and of course the bonus is its free during this 21 day period afterwards you can purchase if you wish.



Translated it means:


Om is the name of that inside of me which is aware of the oneness of all things


So beautiful.


Oh course you don’t have to start chanting Sanskrit. Many people will have grown up with a prayer close to their hearts; like the ‘ Hail Mary’ or ‘ Lords Prayer’ – say something meaningful to you-  it could be Bob Marley’s  ‘One Love’. The repetition, the focus, the clearing of other thoughts as you are just in the moment with the mantra of your choice will make the difference. Play, enjoy, love- and let me know how you get on!








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This entry was posted by Bessie on Wednesday, May 8th, 2013 at 4:15 pm and is filed under Meditation, Pictures, Yoga . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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