Hindu Prayer Beads (Mala)

  • Hindu Rosary
    "The antiquity of the Hindu rosary is confirmed by its frequent inclusion with ancient Hindu deities represented in sculpture and painting. Held in a hand, the rosary is meant to symbolize some aspect or attribute of the particular deity, but its meaning is not the same in all cases. Rosaries are included in the depiction of the Hindu deities […] "

    Rosaries of India » Traditional Jewelry of India
    Oppi Untracht (2008) Thames & Hudson, Inc.

  • Hindu Beads
    "Prayer beads are central to the life of many Hindus. Prayers are repeated along with the names of favorite gods for hours daily, causing one nineteenth-century observer to note that 'the pious Hindu…computes his daily prayers as if they were so many rupees added to his capital stock in the bank of heaven.' Two basic types of prayer beads […] "

    History of Prayer Beads » The History of Beads: From 100,000 B.C. to the Present
    Lois Sherr Dubin (2009) Abrams Publishers, Inc.

  • Hindu Malas
    "In Hinduism, the world's oldest faith, prayer beads, or malas, are used for the repetition of a mantra or divine names through the devotional act known as japa yoga. Sculptures illustrating this type of practice have been found dating back to the Mauryan Shunga dynasty (185-73 BCE) in northern India. […] "

    Beads of Faith: Pathways to Meditation and Spirituality Using Rosaries, Prayer Beads and Sacred Words
    Gray Henry and Susannah Marriott (2008) Fons Vitae Publishing

  • Hindu/Buddhist Mala
    "Nearly two-thirds of the world's population meditates or prays with beads, and the Hindu or Buddhist mala is the great mother of rosaries. From India and the Himalayan kingdoms, it traveled east to China and Japan. It also traveled west to Africa and Europe, where it evolved into the Islamic subha, the Christian rosary, the Eastern […] "

    Dharma Beads: Making and Using Your Own Buddhist Malas
    Joanna Arettam (2000) Journey Editions; Tuttle Publishing

  • Hinduism
    "Most scholars believe that the use of prayer beads originated in ancient India with the Hindus. In India, sandstone representations dating from 185 B.C. show people holding prayer beads, and this practice apparently became widespread by the eighth century B.C. The strand of Hindu prayer beads, called a mala, was designed for […] "

    Religious Use of Beads » Prayer Bead Traditions » A String & A Prayer: How to Make & Use Prayer Beads
    Eleanor Wiley and Maggie Oman Shannon (2007) Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC