Mala Shop

Sunday, August 4, 2013

About Favorite Malas

My Favorite Mala - Amethyst, Rhodonite, and Rose Quartz

I've restrung my main mala over and over again.  It started out over ten years ago as 108 hand-carved, slightly irregular 7mm amethyst beads. I bought them individually at the local bead shop -beautiful beads but overpriced. The shop had to pay the rent, after all.

It was made following a dream I had of an amethyst mala with citrine and fluorite markers. The marker beads I bought were very odd shapes - rectangular boxes, ovals, and flowers.  

It worked very well for me. During one Bodhichitta retreat (focusing on practices of compassion), the wire finally began to fray.  Time for a restring.

I waited awhile. Months. The next incarnation of my mala was with clear quartz crystal and dark amethyst 10 mm rounds.
It just never felt right.
I couldn't get into using it.
It looked right, it was simple and elegant, clean even - in total keeping with the idea of unadorned malas used in traditional practice.
But it felt cold and detached.
I think I was trying to hard to be traditional.

I know somebody out there is wondering what this "feeling" of stones means.  To find out for yourself, go out to a natural place and pick up rocks.  Some will attract you, both because of their shape and the look of them (their mineral compositions and formations), and some you may pick up and later discard. Some feel nice and some don't. Many rocks are friendly. Those, you keep.

Stones do have a great deal of energy, all on their own. It's something you have to play with and not force. And I don't think books are the best place to learn about this. Just be a kid and pick up rocks some sunny day with no goal in mind.

Over the years I've strung a ton of malas with rhodonite and rose quartz in them. To me, and according to many stone books, they symbolize love and compassion. Rose quartz is more embodying the feeling of love, and rhodonite is associated (funny word, right?) with altruism and love going outwards.

I simplify the idea and combine them in malas that evoke love and compassion - two of the four immeasurables.

So I went out on a limb and combined them with my amethyst beads, making the mala you see above.
Guess what? It works.

It works wonderfully.
It feels soothing and loving and clearing, all at the same time.
I don't have to think about it, it just sits in my hand counting mantras.
It's a very grounding practice.

So I thought I'd share it.
I know that favorites is something we all play.

So now to you, what's your favorite mala? And why?
(If you'd rather leave your comment anonymously, that's certainly alright.)

Big smiles to you.  Be well!