In Asia, malas are often made from the round seeds of plants that are frequently found in nature. They are available to everyone and therefore affordable. Particularly popular are the seeds of the lotus blossom, the Rudraksha tree or the well-known Bodhi tree, under which Buddha meditated. These seeds come from plants that have a mystique surrounding them and thus add a special touch to meditation.
Seeds of the lotus flower for a mala necklace
Lotus flowers have the ability to let dirt roll off them. In many parts of Asia, they therefore symbolise purity, faithfulness, creativity and enlightenment. The light, brown speckled seeds of the lotus flower carry this symbolism and are therefore often used for malas. Hand mala and necklace made of lotus seeds can be combined especially beautifully.
The seeds of the sacred Rudraksha tree are known for their divine protection and are traditionally used as mala necklaces in India. They have a distinctive surface texture that has a vitalising effect on the fingertips during meditation. Rudraksha beads come in many sizes and are often combined with gemstones to make a mala necklace.
Mala made from seeds of the Bodhi tree
Buddha meditated under a Bodhi tree and found his enlightenment there. Which seed could be better suited for a mala necklace? Malas from the Indian Bodhi tree are light or dark brown and relatively large. They are worn less as jewellery and more as meditation accessories.
Hand mala or necklace?
Malas made of plant seeds are available as a bracelet with mostly 21 beads or as a mala necklace with 108 beads. While the hand mala is more decorative, the neck mala is also used for meditation. For this, a mantra or prayer is spoken 108 times for each gemstone bead in succession until the guru bead or tassel is reached again. A set of hand and neck mala made from the same seeds is also beautiful.
Buy a mala necklace made from seeds of lotus blossom, Rudraksha or Bodhi tree
You have to pay attention to this: The beads of the necklace should all be of the same size so that the mala gives off an even appearance. Different sizes can cause irritation during meditation. Also, all the seeds should be smoothly polished so that they feel good and you don't hurt yourself or get caught. Finally, the plant seeds should stay in place and not form gaps over time.
Meditating properly with plant seed mala
Choose a mala necklace that you like or that supports your meditation (e.g. the seeds of the Bodhi tree under which Buddha became enlightened). Then find a mantra or affirmation that suits you and your intentions. Sit upright in a quiet place, close your eyes and relax.
Now take the mala necklace in your right hand and hold the first bead between your middle finger and thumb. With each bead of the mala, recite your mantra or affirmation.
Then, with your thumb, draw the next bead onto your middle finger for the next recitation.
When you have recited vyour mantra 108 times for each bead and have reached the guru bead again, you are finished or start the next round