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How To Use Mala Beads In Yoga

Sianna Sherman Is On A Quest To Help Every Woman Discover Her Inner Deity Deepen Your Physical Mental And Spiritual Practice With Knowledge Of Mythic Feminine Power In Siannas Four

Fumbling with mala beads during mantra meditation can feel awkward for beginners. In this video, Sianna Sherman demonstrates how to move your hands more methodically during your practice.

and join @yogajournal and @siannasherman using #YJGoddessProject to create an inspiring female collective, sharing experiences in real time.

Want more Goddess Yoga knowledge and inspiration? Here are some of our favorite stories:Goddess Yoga: Defeat Fear With Sword BreathGoddess Yoga: 5 Heart-Opening Practices Dedicated to Lakshmi

One Thing Is Guaranteed Your Mind Will Wander When It Does Simply Return To The Beads

When your mind wanders, you have the choice to judge yourself and think things like “I’m the worst meditator, I’m never going to get the hang of this.” These things only keep you in a place of self judgement.Or, you can acknowledge you’ve had some thoughts, let them go, and return your focus to your Mala beads, your breath and your mantra.You’ll be challenged consistently in your practice with a wandering mind. It doesn’t mean your a bad meditator — it just means you’re human.Meditation isn’t about eliminating the thoughts. Rather, it’s about creating space between them, allowing yourself the room to connect to your higher self.  

Mala Beads 101: Meanings Benefits And How To Use Them For Meditation

Disclaimer Policy

Mala beads, once used for religious practices, is now becoming popular as a fashion accessory. I see it hanging almost everywhere and worn by people from all walks of life.

Did youknow that malas are not simply beautiful ornaments worn on the body, but can bea very useful tool for helping you with emotional and mental balance?

The meaning behind mala beads is deeply rooted in symbolic and spiritual practices. In this post, we share the basic 101 of mala beads so the next time you wear your mala, you’ll better understand its tradition and how to use them.


Significance Of Prayer Beads And How To Use Them For Meditation

how to use prayer beadsSignificance of Mala Prayer BeadsHow To Use Mala Prayer Beads?

  • Before starting the meditation, you need a quiet and comfortable spot where you can meditate peacefully.
  • It would be best if you kept your spine straight and eyes closed in order to start meditating.
  • Before starting take, a few deep breathes and inhale as much as air possible to fill your lungs and align yourself. Inhale and exhale a few times in a slow calm rate.
  • You can also use a mantra for chanting or thinking while mediating. In case you don’t have any, you can meditate silently focusing on your breath.
  • Hold the mala in the right hand between the middle and index finger. The top bead is called the guru bead from where you need to start using your thumb.
  • Use your thumb to count the beads and gradually pull them downwards as you recite your mantra. You can do this 108 times chanting your mantra or as directed by your yoga or mindfulness expert.
  • You can continue this practice until you get used to it and discover spiritual elation and calm.

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How Should I Choose A Mala For Myself Or As A Gift For Someone

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Choosing a mala for yourself is as simple as following your intuition and choosing the one you are spontaneously drawn to. Once you’ve chosen a mala based on your intuition, then investigate the meaning of the gemstones and intention with which the mala was designed.  Often you’ll notice that the one you selected has the qualities you may be working on or trying to cultivate into your life. The mala that you are attracted to is the one for you; it’s as simple as that. 

When choosing a mala for someone else, think of what they are going through in their lives. Are they going through a break-up, a grief, or starting a new job? Look for the mala that would be the best one for helping them get through their life event or cultivate the energies they are trying to amplify in their lives. 

Malas: How To Make A Mala Diy And How I Was Introduced To Them

Malas are a string of 108 beads, usually with one more “guru bead” at the base to hold them all together.  They sometimes have a tassel or a pendant dangling below.  They’re beautiful as jewelry but even more gorgeous when used spiritually.  In this post, you will learn how to make a mala with step-by-step instructions and photos to illustrate each step.  Keep reading in our next post for how to use and activate your mala .

How To Use Mala Beads For Yoga And Mantra Meditation

Mitov Mitrovski

Yoga and meditation are practices that have been around for hundreds of years. Many people enjoy them not only because they enable them to relax but also clear their minds and find solutions to some problems that have been bothering them. It does sound like a great activity that can actually help you a lot, doesn’t it?

If you are thinking about entering this world, there are a few things you should know. In this article, we will introduce you to mala beads as one of the tools that enable you to focus. Besides, we will also provide you with some tips on how to choose the right mala for you, but if you want to learn more about this tool and are interested in reading some appealing texts about meditation with beads, visit this website.

Choosing A Mantra To Use With Your Mala Prayer Beads

There are many mantras you can choose to use with your Mala Prayer Beads. Some come straight from the ancient times, whereas others have a modern-day touch. You can also choose to create your own mantra, speaking the words that have meaning to you during your practice. Another option is to recite your intention, such as devotion , bliss , peace , clarity , etc. based on the type of mala bead your prayer beads are made of.

Here are some examples for you to choose from.

  • “This too shall pass” mantra for strength.
  • “I am capable of wonderful things” mantra for empowerment.
  • “Om namah shivaya” matra for self-confidence.
  • “Om hreem shreem hara hara swaaha” mantra for attraction.
  • More Stories On The Importance Of Mala Meditation

    In Buddhist tradition, a story from the Mokugenji Sutra, written around the 4th century B.C.E. tells of how King Haruri sought counsel from SIddartha Gautama Buddha. He asked how he could share the Buddha’s teachings and wisdom with his people.

    According to the story, Buddha replied:

    “King, if you want to eliminate earthly desires and put an end to their suffering, make a circular string of 108 beads made from the seeds of the Mokugenji tree. Hold it always to yourself. Recite: “Namu Buddha – Namu Dharma – Namu Sangha.” Count one bead for each recitation.”

    The Mokugenji tree is also known as the Goldenrain tree from the Soapberry family.

    Uses Of Yoga Prayer Bead Mala For Japa Meditation

    Mantra and Yoga

    In additional to the poses, Mantra is probably the main Yoga practice that characterizes yoga as a whole within its many different variations. All Spiritual yogic paths use mantras and have special mantras of their own. Special mantras and chants pervade the primary yogas of knowledge , devotion and service in which asana do not have an important role. Yet even in hatha yoga, and modern variations of Yoga where asana can be very important, mantra remains significant and is the main method employed to prepare the mind for deeper yoga practices.

    The Yoga Sutras and its tradition of raja yoga emphasizes the role of the Pranava, , as the main means of connecting with the Divine.  The Yoga Sutras stress the importance of chanting and meditating upon Aum, which is the essence of all mantras.

    All Hindu and Spiritual Yogi’s seeking Spiritual advancement will use Yoga Mala made from Rudraksha seeds.Photo Credit:

    The practice of yoga usually begins with the chanting of mantras–which may be mantras to the guru, to the aspect of the Divine one worships, or to the higher self–in order to create the proper atmosphere for teaching, or mantras to sanctify the ground on which one sits. Mantra grants sanctity and concentration to yoga, which otherwise easily descends into another form of physical exercise or a seeking of personal empowerment.

    Mala: A Piece Of Jewelry What Are They Really For

    Malas are traditionally used to aid in meditation or chanting. The practitioner uses the mala to track how many recitations they have completed. The main body of a mala is made of 108 beads and a Guru bead; the 109th bead is often of a distinct size or colour, and a tassel. Sometimes a mala may include additional decorative beads. An authentic mala is hand-knotted, and every knot in between each bead is there to help you keep count while reciting, chanting, or mentally repeating a mantra. Even though rudraksha are known to be the oldest prayer beads in India, Nepal and Bali, many other beads are often used. In India for example, they also use sandalwood whereas in Nepal and Tibet, they use bodhi or lotus seeds.   

    Traditionally, Japa is the repetition of a mantra or a divine name in a meditation practice. However, a Japa practice can also be as simple as chanting Om or taking a full breath cycle for each bead on the mala. You can also softly recite an affirmation or an intention in your own words or in your mind. 

    Significance Of Mala Beadsmaterials And Gemstones

    Historicalmala beads were made with organic materials such as wood, seeds, or animalbones. Sandalwood and Bodhi seeds are examples of traditional mala beads.

    Increasingly,malas made out of precious and semi-precious gemstones are becoming morepopular as these gemstones are known for their healing properties. Forinstance, Amethyst is prized for its effect on mental and emotional clarity,while Tiger Eye is known for grounding, strength, and protection.

    Traditional Yoga Mala Vs Modern Inspired Jewelry

    Healing Mala Beads Knotted 108 Bead Mala Yoga Meditation ...

    Mala is considered a sacred implement that itself needs to be honored. Wearing a mala, it is not a matter for public display or a fashion statement. While a person can wear a protective mala at all times, they usually keeps special sadhana malas away from public contact, viewing or touch.

    As Yoga has changed and been re-branded for mass appeal, practitioners of Yoga have started to make their own jewelry . These inspired jewelry make use of the cheaply available mass produced gemstones by Chinese factories to add some consumer appeal. In this way the designer of the Yoga Mala can add elements from Native American, Wiccan and other new aged philosophies making it a multi purpose Prayer Bead

    Opinions vary from traditionalists to modernist as to the purity and power of the new aged yoga jewelry compared with the Yoga Mala.  The modern jewelry can extend the purpose and use with a variety of additional intention qualities with the use of specific gemstones over and beyond the purely spiritual aims of Japa Meditation.

    In the end, this has to be the personal choice of the person who chooses their Mala, stick with the traditional or personalize the Mala with additional purpose.  Either way, the Mala must remain sacred and be treated with respect.  If using the Mala as a show piece of fashion jewelry – it should no longer be considered a Mala used for meditation.

    Article For Step by Step Instructions on how to use Yoga Mala for Japa Meditation

    Malas: How To Use Choose And Activate Your Mala

    Malas are a string of beads used for meditation.  They help with concentration by giving you something to focus on, but they also can have a more spiritual side.  A mala can help you to manifest some sort of wish or goal or help you find a new connection with a mantra, affirmation or even your breath.

    How To Choose A Mantra For Your Mala Meditation

    A mantra is defined as a word or phrase that is repeated often or that expresses someone’s basic beliefs. You choose a mantra during your meditation practice to enter the silence of your mind and achieve deeper awareness. The repetition of the mantra can allow you to escape your thoughts and feelings that fill your mind each day, allowing you to disconnect your mind and thoughts from your physical body. One of the most commonly used mantra is “Om” , which represents your universal consciousness.

    Looking for some inspiration for your mantra meditation? Check out 3 Sanskrit Mantras to Boost Your Meditation Practice 

     Another option is to follow a guided meditation that has music and mantras for you to recite. Deepak Chopra’s Chopra Center for Wellness website offers free guided meditations with specific intentions. You can also find thousands of free videos and audio recordings available online or on YouTube. 

    What Do Mala Prayer Beads Do & How To Use Them

    Mala Prayer beads aren’t just a fashion statement. They bring an abundance of power to your yoga practice, which dates way back to ancient times. Traditionally, 108 mala beads were used to count mantras . These mantras are a set of words preached out loud or spoken silently that allow you to connect with the spiritual world.

    Although Mala Prayer necklaces were originally specific to cultural and religious, they are now commonly used today to enhance one’s meditation practise or yoga journey.

    What Are Rudraksha And Why Are They So Magical

    • Rudraksha Beads
    • Rudraksha Fruit
    • Rudraksha Tree

    While some modern mala necklaces or bracelets are made entirely of gemstones, traditional malas beads are made of more environmentally friendly materials like rudraksha, sandalwood or bodhi.

    Unlike gemstones and crystals , rudraksha are 100% sustainable. They are seeds found in a vibrant blueberry-like fruit of the evergreen Elaeocarpus ganitrus trees, also known as rudraksha trees. This tree flourishes in Southeast Asia and can be found in the Himalayas across India and Nepal as well as in Indonesia where the volcanic soil is favorable to its growth.

    Rudraksha literally means “the tears of Shiva” in Sanskrit and you’ll often see rudraksha mala necklaces worn by Lord Shiva in images. 

    • Rudra: one of Shiva’s vedic names
    • Aksa: teardrops

    It is said that Shiva emerged from a long meditation on mankind and began to cry tears of compassion. When his tears reached Earth, they transformed into divine seeds for the benefit of humanity, to help them be more at peace and alleviate their suffering.  

    How To Choose Use And Cleanse Your Mala Beads

    Explore the realm of mindful possibility with your own set of mala beads.

    Ashley Wray

    Simply stated, mala beads are a set of beads traditionally used in prayer and meditation. More than just jewelry, malas are powerful and culturally-rich tools for meditation. We don’t believe you need to be religious or have a spiritual practice to wear mala beads—you can simply wear them as a reminder of personal intention you’ve set, or when seeking a calmer mind, body, and spirit.

    Whether you’re looking for your first mala or you want to deepen your relationship to your existing piece, below you’ll find some of our favorite bits of mala wisdom.

    How Do I Use A Mala In My Meditation Practice

    • Find a comfortable seat and hold your mala necklace or bracelet in one hand. 
    • Close your eyes if it feels comfortable.
    • Start off with three deep, clearing breaths. 
    • Once you are ready, simply start turning each bead between your thumb and middle finger. 
    • Stop at each bead to recite your mantra. 
    • If you are using a bracelet, simply stop whenever you feel like you’ve reached the state of peacefulness you desire. 
    • If you are meditating with a mala necklace, you’ll be reciting your mantra 108 times and then when you reach the Guru bead, you take a pause to give thanks to your Guru or to dedicate your meditation to someone. And you can also start all over if you wish to meditate longer. 

    If meditation is not yet part of your practice or some days you are running out of time, you can simply wear your mala necklace or bracelet as a reminder to reconnect to your breath. Wear them close to you. During your day when you inadvertently reach to your neck or wrist and feel your mala, you can use these tiny moments to serve as a reminder to come back to your breath and become aware of the present moment.

    Why Should You Use Mala Beads For Meditation

    Besides being beautiful and energized with the gemstones’ unique properties, using a mala during meditation can help focus your mind and your breath as you move through your practice. The act of rolling the beads between your fingers is a physical reminder of the intention you set at the outset, and prompts you to return to your breathing and refocus your attention when your mind wanders—and it will wander.

    Think of your mala beads as a tool that can help guide you into a deeper meditation practice. When you’re not actively meditating with your beads, wear them around your neck or wrist as a reminder of your intentions.

    See also 

    Use Mala Beads With Japa Yoga And Meditation

    Meditating With Mala Beads

    Mala Beads are best used with meditation. This style is a type of yoga called japa.

    Japa literally means “muttering” in Sanskrit. In this style of yoga, you repeat the same mantra throughout your session. This could be as simple as a syllable like “om” or could be a short mantra or affirmation such as “I am calm”. This repetition can either be aloud or in your own mind as you go through the japa meditation.

    Hold your mala and start next to the guru bead. As you hold each bead, repeat your mantra. Don’t forget to breathe with each repetition as well! Go to the next bead and repeat.

    If your mala bead has spacers or markers on it, this makes it easier to keep mental track of where you are in your repetition. As traditional mala beads have 108 beads, you will recite 108 times. When you reach the guru bead again, do not repeat your mantra on the guru bead. You may end your meditation session, or simply turn around and go back the other way to repeat your mantra 108 more times.

    Practicing meditation with affirmations and mala beads is about the best way to have a comprehensive and intentional practice.

    RELATED READING:The Best Mala Beads for Fertility and Feminine Energy

    Everything You Need To Know About Mala Beads

    This post is brought to you by Mala Kamala, a woman-owned small business based out of Australia . She makes the most gorgeous mala beads, her packaging is fantastic, and her passion for what she does shines through in each piece she creates. Thank you for supporting the companies that support YBC.

    Mala beads are gorgeous jewelry pieces that combine fashion and function. Obviously they look great , but they’re also excellent for meditation and a way to easily keep track of how many mantras or breaths we’ve done. But I’ve learned that there’s so much more that meets the eye when it comes to malas, so I thought I’d share my findings. 

    Yoga Mala Beads Explained + How To Use Them

    Yoga mala beads are hanging everywhere – or at least I see them hanging everywhere.


    Whether it’s around a yoga teachers neck, displayed in a yoga studio, hanging as a decoration, or on my social media feed,  these beautiful babies have become a mainstream “thing”.


    And once anything becomes the it thing, we all want to have one.


    Aside from a yoga mala looking beautiful and acting as an accessory, they have a much deeper meaning that stems from symbolic and spiritual practices. So while it’s great to flaunt a mala, it’s even better to know the meaning behind this piece of tradition & how to use them!


    Malas + Mantras – What’s the Deal?


    A yoga mala is a strand of sacred beads strung onto a thread to form a necklace. This necklace is then used in prayer to keep focused on the repetition of a mantra.


    Your next thought is probably – what is a mantra?


    A mantra can be absolutely anything you want it to be.


    If sticking to the theme of tradition, there are many Sanskrit mantras that can be applied to your personal life and then integrated into a meditation practice. Or it can be something you make up. Either way – the goal of a mantra is to help aid in concentration and the practice of meditation. Don’t be discouraged if a meditation practice is not in your daily regimen, it’s not in mine either .


    Pin now, read later!



    Once I learned the back story of yoga malas – I said sign me up, where can I buy one!





    You are feeling overwhelmed by life.






    Mantras + Malas












    How To Use Mala Beads For Mantra Meditation

    A common way to use mala beads is to track a mantrameditation. During mantra meditation, you would recite repetitively a singlesound eg. “ohm”, affirmations, or a traditional Sanskrit mantra.

    Start your mantra meditation

    • Choose a mantra: See our examples below or use your own
    • Sit in a comfortable position: I usually take an easy cross-legged position on a meditation cushion or bolster
    • Take a few rounds of deep breaths: Relax your mind and body before you start
    • Start repeating your mantra with the aid of your mala beads
    • Hold the mala in your right hand and between the thumb and middle finger.
    • Start at the guru bead and use your thumb to move the mala one bead at a time
    • Repeat your mantra in your head each time you move a mala bead
    • After 108 repetitions, you will come back to the guru bead
  • Inhale deeply
  • Exhale and open your eyes gently
  • It may sound slightly crazy to repeat something for 108times, but imagine you are repeating a positive affirmation every day for 108times before you start your day. What would you think will be the effect onyour mindset and emotions?

    Mala Beads For Pranayama Breathing Practice

    Besides mantra meditation, mala beads can also benefit yourpranayama practice. The beads can be used as cues for breathing to help youfocus better during your practice.

    Using mala beads for pranayama is similar to mantrameditation, as you move your fingers to the next bead, breathe in and then out.

    Each round of inhale and exhale should coincide with themovement of one bead. Continue until you have completed 108 cycles of breath.

    How To Select A Mantra For Japa Meditation

    Mantra means “word” in Hindu and it’s exactly that. A mantra is a word or phrase that you focus on during your meditation. Some people believe that only certain words can be used as a mantra for meditation, but I believe that you can focus on any word or phrase that bring positive or calming energy to you. If there’s a certain area of your life you’re looking to improve, you can choose a mantra related to that. If you’re stuck for an idea, here are some mantras you can try:

    Om– This is one of the most well-known mantras, the one common folks think of when they imagine monks meditating. Om is a sacred sound and used as a mantra in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism. In Hinduism, om refers to the self or soul and the divine truth or reality . It can be used on its own or is often used at the beginning of mantras.

    Sat Nam– This Gurmukhi mantra translates to “Truth is my name.” When spoken in the mind, the “Sat” should be held eight times longer than “Nam.” This mantra will help you find your intuition and can invigorate sexual energy if focused on daily.

    Neti-Neti– This Sanskrit phrase translates to “not this, not this” or “neither this, nor that.” This mantra is good for negating something in your life, whether it’s a situation, a feeling, or something you want to change.

    If you’re interested in a more secular meditation, you can pick any word that resonates with you and your goals. Common words like love, freedom, and peace make wonderful mantras.


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