When we decided to open a yoga studio we sat down and contemplated what was important to us, and community was number one on our list. We named the studio Mala, after the rosewood beads that we each wore (and still do) for so many years.
We love the idea that the practice is the steady thread on which you place the beads of experience that comprise your lives. Malas represents the threading of each individual to the practice, and that although we each have our own sticky mat, we are connected to one another.
Malas or japa malas are traditionally made out of rudraksha seeds, rosewood, or sandalwood, but can also be made out of gemstones. A typical mala is made up of 108 beads, or a smaller number divisible by 9. There are many reasons for the number 108 (read some of them here!). There are 108 earthly desires, 108 energy lines that converge to form the heart chakra, the number is divisible by both odd and even numbers, and more!
We use our malas for meditation, and the longer you meditate with them the more power they absorb. When your malas break they say that you’ve worked through some karmic pain, so take it as a good sign! (And you can always restring them!).
How do you use your mala beads? Let us know in the comments!