Mala Shop

Monday, February 25, 2013

The Long Drive Home

"We're All Buddhas" J. Grant Brittain



Today I get to drive down through the great Central Valley of California from San Francisco to San Diego.  I've taken almost a week to attend meditation classes and see friends in the city.  It's been a wonderful time, full of slightly acidic hipster coffee and gigantic views of the city.

It's so beautiful here.

Driving home will be a great time to relax and talk about whatever comes to mind with my dear husband.

He took this photo of me years ago.  His photography shop is JGrantBrittainPhotos. Even though he's an experienced professional, he didn't manage to focus the camera quite right in this shot.  LOL.  Kidding.

It's a beautiful, sunny day in California.  I hope you enjoy your day, wherever you are!
Bless you.

Laura

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

What's in a Mala?



For over twenty years I've had the time to paint, carve, sew, photograph, or create whatever I dreamed of.  It just never happened.
Unless I was in a class, working with other people, part of that exciting sharing environment, I didn't create much at home. A painting now and then, a collage, projects here and there. But even though I've had the time and space, studied art in college, and have a complete mental backload of creative projects that really mean a lot when I look at them, I've realized through this mala-making job that I am not motivated to create simply for visual or conceptual reasons..  

This came to mind as I strung a mala, thinking about the simple fulfillment of connecting with a customer who wants one, about the constant flow of malas going out of my hands and into the world. (Sure, this is hyperbole, but since it's a philosophical post, it fits.)

Simplicity
The Shakers had it right about creativity: "making something well is in itself, 'an act of prayer.'"
Form follows function. A beautiful, simply made chair has it's own elegance and sacred nature.

In my own esthetic I am totally devoted to making beautiful, useful items. The malas have few adornments, since that is the Tibetan ideal in prayer beads. Other things I create are more decorative, but the malas are simple.

I am motivated to brighten up those little spots of life that might need the colors of a rainbow of stones, the cohesiveness of the curve of a mala, the stability of stone and wood. 
Ahhh. 
Stones, shells, and wood remind us in a deep way of nature. Nature reminds us, of course, of our true nature.

It's all about coming home.

Be well.