Why use a mala?
It’s a question we get asked almost everyday. After all, it is perfectly fine to meditate without one. And when it comes to jewelry and crystals, there are many other options such as crystal pendants.
If you are deciding between a mala and a ‘normal’ piece of jewelry, the advantage of a mala is that is is about more than just decoration or looking good. Many of our customers feel a true spiritual connection between themselves and their malas and believe that their malas remind them to stay present, focused and grateful. Not only that, malas have powerful practical benefits – they aid in meditation and can give you superhuman memory and concentration.
One of the main reasons you should use a mala is to concentrate the mind when meditating. One of the hardest things about meditating is preventing your mind from wondering. That’s where malas come in. According to yoga instructor and Devacrafts consultant Karen Wood, the repetitive movement of your fingers of the beads help ground you and keep your mind focused, yet relaxed.
Not only that, meditating with a mala can help you attain superhuman memory and concentration, similarly to the Tibetan monks who are known for their exceptional mental abilities. There are many reasons for this:
- Meditating with a mala increases blood flow to the brain: Some research has suggested that meditation can increase blood flow to the brain, which can help improve cognitive function and memory. For example, a study published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience found that participants who engaged in mindfulness meditation had increased blood flow to the hippocampus, a region of the brain involved in memory and learning.
- Meditating with a mala reduces stree and anxiety: High levels of stress and anxiety can interfere with your ability to concentrate and remember things. Meditation can help lower stress and anxiety levels, which can in turn improve your memory and concentration. This is because meditation activates the body’s relaxation response, which can help reduce the effects of stress on the body and mind.
- Meditating with a mala improves sleep quality: Poor sleep quality can negatively affect your memory and concentration. Meditation can help improve sleep quality, which can lead to better cognitive function. This is because meditation can help relax the mind and body, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night.
How to choose the right malas for you
If you’ve spent any time exploring our mala collection you’ll realize you have many options in terms of the design and material used to make your mala. Confused by which one to choose? Use that magical intuition of yours: if one mala design grabs you more than another, go with the one that resonates. All our designs have expansive and multifaceted energies, and they all carry many gifts. This means buying malas should be a simple and intuitive process: very often, the first design to catch your eye is the design which holds the most magic for you. Don’t over think it.
Another question you might be asking yourself is – ‘where should I buy my malas’. There are many options, from Amazon to eBay to smaller websites. Devacrafts is not the only option, but we believe we offer a more personal, spiritual buying experience than big companies like Amazon.
- We offer unique and propriety designs mala designs based upon our team’s years of experience as meditation teachers, crystal healers and Tibetan Buddhists.
- We use only the highest quality natural stones and crystals and hand-inspect each one during production.
- We are (as far as we know) the only specialty mala shop on the internet which offers free shipping worldwide, with no minimum order quantity.
- We are focused on a remorse-free buying experience and accept returns within 30 days of purchase, no matter the reason.
- We are focused not on making a profit but on making an impact. With every product purchased, we plant a tree in Nepal through our partnership with the Eden reforestation project.
Click here to explore our unique and magical mala collection.
Step-by-step guide to meditating with your mala
Our malas not only to look good but can also help you find balance and achieve mindfulness. If you are experiencing difficulties with your mind wandering off during meditation, a mantra and a Mala provide help you stay grounded in the moment.
1. Get comfortable. Choose a quiet and comfortable place to sit. You can sit in a chair with your feet firmly planted on the ground, or you can sit on a cushion on the floor with your legs crossed. Make sure you are comfortable and will not be disturbed during your meditation.
2. Hold your mala in your dominant hand and drape it over your middle finger. The mala should hang down, with the guru bead (a larger bead that is often present at the top of the mala) resting in the palm of your hand.
3. Select your mantra. Don’t over-think this: sit down to meditate and relax your mind. Often the appropriate word, quality or feeling will naturally come to your mind. If your mind needs guidance, you can start with an affirmation-based mantra. Affirmations are positive statements that can interrupt negative thought patterns, transforming them into a positive believe. For example, you can repeat to yourself “I am grounded” or “I am supported”. This will help you take on beliefs that can help you face challenges in your life.
4. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths to center yourself and bring your attention to the present moment.
5. Begin reciting your mantra. You can either silently repeat the mantra to yourself or say it out loud.
6. Roll the Mala beads. As you recite your mantra, use your thumb to move from one bead to the next on the mala. Some people prefer to move their thumb clockwise, while others prefer to move it counterclockwise. The direction you choose is up to you and what feels most comfortable for you.
7. When you reach the guru bead, do not pass it. Instead, turn the mala around and continue moving your thumb in the same direction. This will allow you to complete 108 repetitions of your mantra, which is a common practice in Hinduism and Buddhism.
8. Continue meditating with the mala. You can meditate for as long as you feel is appropriate by continuing to roll the Mala beads and repeating your mantra until you feel ready to end your meditation. To finish, take a few deep breaths and slowly open your eyes.
One common mistake that beginners make when meditating with a mala is forgetting to reverse the direction at the guru bead. When you reach the guru bead, which is a larger bead that is often present at the top of the mala, you should turn the mala around and continue moving your thumb in the same direction. Some people believe that failing to turn the mala around at the guru bead can bring bad luck, so it is important to be mindful of this practice.
Don’t worry if your mind wanders; when you catch yourself straying, simply bring your focus back to your mantra and Mala. Just bring yourself back to your focal point.