how to pray on mala prayer beads
Mala prayer beads are commonly used by Hindus and Buddhists, and they're usually made from 108 beads. Malas are used for keeping count while reciting, chanting, or mentally repeating a mantra or the name of a deity. The mala, or rosary, is used to count mantra recitations while helping to focus awareness and concentration. The goal is to feel the mala beads with the fingers, recite the mantra and visualise the deity at the same time - involving body, speech and mind.
The mala is generally held in the left hand and used with gentleness and respect.
One bead is counted for each recitation of the mantra, starting with the first bead next to the "guru" bead. The guru bead is the bead that is usually larger or more decorative. The first bead is held between the index finger and thumb, and with each count the thumb pulls another bead in place over the index finger.
Recite one mantra; move your thumb and forefinger along to the next bead; recite the next mantra; then repeat.
After completing a full circuit of the mala, the practitioner flips the mala around 180 degrees (this takes some practice) and continues as before, in reverse order. One avoids passing over the "guru" bead, as doing so is symbolically like stepping over one's teacher.
Please don't wash your mala or wear your mala whilst bathing as this can weaken the mala thread. To clean your mala, gently wipe the beads using a slightly damp cloth and carefully dry using a soft microfibre cloth.
More information can be found here: http://www.buddhistmala.com/Mala_Manual.pdf
Mantras can be sung melodically, chanted in monotone, or said silently in your mind. Meditation and yoga are for helping us rise above the mind’s chatter. What we meditate on now creates our future life.
Prayers For Your Mala:
Hare Krishna Mantra - Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare
Om Mani Padme Hum
The Mani mantra is the most widely used of all Buddhist mantras, and open to anyone who feels inspired to practice it -- it does not require prior initiation by a lama (meditation master). A powerful mantra used to embrace and be blessed by the essence of compassion.
So Hum/Ham Sa: Sometimes called the So Hum breath the mantra is meant to be mentally repeated in harmony with the breath. “So” is the outbreath and “Hum” or “Ham” is the inbreath creating a circle of breath and mantra where one links to the other. The translation of this mantra is “I am that I am” meaning the devotee is without form, without quality, without past, present or future. He or she simply “is” in the awareness of the Divine. This is a very powerful mantra.
Om shanti shanti shanti
Shanti (Pali: Santi) simply means "peace". It’s a beautiful meaning and also a very beautiful sound. The shanti is repeated three times, as are many chants in Buddhism. In Buddhism as well as in Hinduism the threefold Shanti is generally interpreted as meaning the Threefold Peace in body, speech, and mind (i.e. peace in the entirety of one’s being).
Hindu teachings typically end with the words Om shanti shanti shanti as an invocation of peace, and the mantra is also used to conclude some Buddhist devotional ceremonies.
Om: Om sometimes written as AUM is said to be the root of all letters and words. Representing the most important of all mantras it is the representation of the Supreme Being. The past, present and the future are all included in this one sound. Meditation on this sacred syllable is said to lead to liberation.
Om Sri Ramaya Namah: Om and salutations to Rama, the bestower of happiness, inner peace and balance. May your radiant warrior energy, inner focus and personal integrity reside within me.
Om Sri Maha Lakshmyai Namah: Prayer to the Lakshmi diety. She bestows wealth and abundance of a material and spiritual nature. She is almost always pictured as a beautiful woman standing on a lotus blossom with her arms open and giving.
Mala Prayer by Linda Blanchard, 2003
May the Buddha be my guide
As I seek the Middle Way
Along the Path of Awakening.
May the Dharma be my source
To find Buddha within and without
That I may improve my practice.
May the Sangha be my company
As I discover my way
Renewing my commitment to practice,
So that I may know The Four Noble Truths:
That within and without there is suffering
All beings share this condition
That suffering has a cause
Grasping at illusions
That suffering may cease
Seeing clearly, letting go
That there is a path to the end of suffering
And that is the Eightfold Path:
Right view or understanding
To have passed through illusion
Until there are no views.
Right thought and resolve
Practice skillful means: harming none,
Reflecting both before you act and after.
Rather be silent than harm others
Shun gossip, abusive, divisive or deceitful words.
Do not take that which is not given
Avoid killing, and the abuse of sex.
Do not trade in death , drugs or another's misery
Make your living honestly, living within your means.
Practice: not to exhaustion, nor harshly
Practice: not casually, but steadily, focused.
With awareness always in the moment
Of how your actions relate to the Path.
Focused meditation, avoiding desire, ill will
Torpor, restlessness, or doubt.
May I follow the Eightfold Path.
May I know the Four Noble Truths:
Suffering, cause, cessation and path.
May I be guided by the Triple Gems:
Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
The nature of all things is one
Form is emptiness,
Nothing separates us
Guided by Buddha within and without
So that I may know Enlightenment
So that all may know Enlightenment.