Meditation Malas Whether you like to repeat mantras or meditate in your own chosen way, mala beads can offer a valuable point of focus, and aid in creating a peaceful atmosphere for your personal restorative moments. You don't need to be following any specific spiritual tradition in order to benefit from including a gemstone mala in your life. I draw artistic inspiration for these contemporary meditation beads from the ancient decorative Buddhist malas from Tibet that were often given as gifts to Chinese courts and called "Chinese court necklaces". I match the stones and crystals carefully to create an energetic combination in the mala that will benefit its chosen keeper in an individual way. All of the malas I create are one-of-a-kind. Whilst these malas are made with Tibetan Buddhist bead count (108 beads), all Spirit Carrier malas are dedicated to the Highest Good of All – you may bless the mala for your own purpose to use it in your own personal way of meditation, in your yoga practice or when working on your own affirmations. HOW TO MEDITATE WITH A MALAMeditating with a mala gives you a specific starting point and an end point for your meditation. Traditionally you would handle each counter bed with your thumb and your middle finger, but if using your index finger makes it easier for you, by all means find the most comfortable way, what feels natural for you personally.Choose a mantra or an affirmation to repeat mindfully at each counter bead (below are some suggestions). Begin from the counter bead nearest to the 'guru' bead which is the large decorative stone or crystal tassel. The larger divider beads at 27 bead intervals are meant for a pause, a silent meditation. When you come to the end of the 108 counter beads, you may choose to end there or carry on for longer. Traditionally the 'guru' bead is never crossed over, so when you come to the end, you would return the way you've just come from, back to the bead you started from.If you're working on any specific issue in your life, create an affirmation to support it in your meditation, such as 'All is well', 'I am at peace', 'I honour my truth', 'I am grateful' or similar, to repeat at each mala bead. Or you can choose mantras such as 'Om Mani Padme Hum' for compassion, 'Om Benza Sato Hung' for purification, 'Om Shanti' for peace... You might like to find a mantra from any world tradition that resonates with your particular moment, perhaps the Hindu mantra 'Om Namah Shivaya' which could be translated as "I honor that which I am capable of becoming."A NOTE ABOUT SPIRIT CARRIER MALA SIZESThe gemstone malas come in three sizes depending on the counter bead diameter, either 8 mm, 10 mm or 12 mm. The smallest counter bead size of 8 mm makes for a shorter, lighter weight mala. Together with the medium size of 10 mm these two sizes are the most suitable to be worn as necklaces if this is your preference. The largest counter bead size of 12 mm makes for a longer, heavier mala and is most suited for sitting meditation.