White Mala Beads

Pacifying mantras are often at recited using white colored malas. Materials such as crystal, pearl, shell/conch or nacre are preferable. These are said to purify the mind and clear away obstacles like illness, bad karma, and mental disturbances.

Using pearls is not practical, however, as repeated use will destroy their iridescent layer. Most often, pearl malas are used for jewelry.Increasing mantras should be recited using malas of gold, silver, copper, and amber. The mantras counted on these can “serve to increase lifespan, knowledge, and merit.”

Gold & Silver Mala Beads

Increasing mantras should be recited using malas of gold, silver, copper, and amber. The mantras counted on these can “serve to increase lifespan, knowledge, and merit.”

Mantras for magnetizing should be recited using malas made of saffron, lotus seed, sandalwood, or other forms of wood including elm, peach, and rosewood. However, it is said the most effective is made of precious coral, which, due to a ban on harvesting, is now very rare and expensive.

Rudraksha Wooden Japa Mala Beads

Mantras to tame by forceful means should be recited using malas made of Rudraksha beads or bone. Reciting mantras with this kind of mala is said to tame others, but with the motivation to unselfishly help other sentient beings.

Malas to tame by forceful means or subdue harmful energies, such as “extremely malicious spirits, or general afflictions”, are made from rudraksha seeds, or even human bones, with 108 beads on the string. It is said that only a person that is motivated by great compassion for all beings, including those they try to tame, can do this.

Sources: Tibetan Handicraft Society in McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala and Wikipedia

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