Without delving too deeply into the history and belief structures behind them, malas are basically used as an aide in meditation.
As I’m an avid yogini, one aspect of my practice includes not bending, balancing or moving. In fact, a big part of yoga is staying perfectly still. For an extroverted over-committer like myself, that’s an incredible feat.
Mala beads can be used as a way to keep count of how many breaths or times a mantra (or prayer) has been recited.
Essentially, even the ancient Buddhists and Hindus — historically accepted as religions that first adopted Eastern forms of meditation — understood the significant challenge of just being and created the idea of an energy focus by way of stringed beads.
So, mala beads are sort of imperative for anyone with a regular meditation practice.
Naturally, the first place I thought of was The Spiral Beadery & More (4327 N. Western; 525-5454).
The shop is not just chock full of all the beads you could ever imagine, but it also stocks incense and essential oils. Such items are tied to the culture that sometimes surrounds mala beads, yoga and meditation.
Some people with regular practices prefer to construct a home altar, usually with just about all the things you’ll find at Spiral Beadery.
But it’s not just Eastern-leaning beads. Spiral also features jewelry that you don’t have to make, like gauges and plugs. It offers creative projects such as jewelry for wine glasses — great for parties to help keep drinks separate — and stringing classes. shop, OKC!
Alas, the sweet little beadery, which has shared its creativity with Oklahoma City since 1998, has decided to close shop.
It’s bittersweet, for sure. But if you’re on the hunt for a specific kind of bead or unique creation, now is the time to shop. Everything currently is 50 percent off, and the store’s Facebook page is updated regularly with new offers. The Spiral plans to finish out the month.
Maybe you’re hooked now, and angry with me because I’ve sparked some sort of arts-and-crafts desire. Head to Ahimsa Studio & Beads (219 W. Main, Norman; 321-4222). Similar in chill vibe and definitely touting a selection of mala beads, Ahimsa also offers stringing classes for those who want to do but don’t know how.
Another great stop, equipped with classes and in-store demonstrations if the beads are purchased in-shop, is Elements Beadery (6704 N.W. 39th Expressway, Bethany; 787-2323).
Whether it’s mala, seed, German glass or pearl beads, take a little time and treat yourself to a piece of jewelry that’s extra personal. Let’s