Beads and Religion


Many people around us wear prayer beads for different reasons. Some for fashion, some for religion and others just because. After reading Russell Simmon's "Super Rich", I became curious to understand the different types of prayer beads. Russell has a collection of prayer beads of all religions, and I kind of want to do the same. Not that I have an altar or anything but because I like things that have a strong meaning behind them. Here a quick list of prayer of beads and what they mean.

Misbaha are Muslim prayer beads used to keep count while saying the prayers of  Tasbih of Fatima, including the 99 names of Allah,   The string of prayer has either 99 or 33 beads.
Through history, its been said that the 33-bead masbaha represents, to Christians, the 33 years of Christ's earthly existence, and the 99 beads represent the 33 years multiplied by the three manifestations of God the Father, God the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Interesting right?
Hindu or Buddhist Mala
Tibetan Buddhist Beads also known as Mala are used to chant and recite  mantras and for meditation. A mala has 108 beads, one which is a large bead (the mother guru/focal bead). The beads are held on the left hand and used as counters for Buddhists, Hindus, and yoga practitioners to repeat their mantra or a name of a deity a certain number of times. When using the mala one recites from the guru bead, clockwise around the mala. There are a few said reasons why this string has 108 beads. Check this summary out:
6 x 3 x 2 x3 = 108 (6) senses of a human being, (3) times:  past, present, future, (2) conditions of heart, mind or intention: pure or impure, (3) disturbing emotional states or "kleshia":  like, dislike, indifference. 
I found these reasons too: The chakras are the intersections of energy lines, and there's said to be 108 energy lines converging to form the heart chakra. There are 54 letters in the sankrit alphabet and each has a masculine and feminine shiva and shakti. 54 x 2 = 108.
900Catholic Rosary
The rosary is an important tradition in the Roman Catholic Church that combines prayer and meditation. The string has 33 beads which represents the 33 years of Christ, and is divided into 5 sections of 10 beads, representing the Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be To The Father, Apostle's Creed and Hail Holy Queen. A crucifix is attached at the end of a Rosary, which signifies the death and resurrection of Christ.
BLOGGhislaine LeonComment