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Author Topic: Prayer Beads.  (Read 9683 times)
treekisser
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« Reply #15: January 12, 2011, 03:06:35 pm »


Bump (and slight hijack, sorry  Smiley )

Haven't actually made a set of prayer beads, but I keep thinking of it and am also thinking of getting Eleanor Wiley's book, 'A String and a Prayer: How to Make and Use Prayer Beads'.

Question for everyone else who's already made one: how long did it take (and how many beads did you use)?
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« Reply #16: January 12, 2011, 04:49:06 pm »

Bump (and slight hijack, sorry  Smiley )

Haven't actually made a set of prayer beads, but I keep thinking of it and am also thinking of getting Eleanor Wiley's book, 'A String and a Prayer: How to Make and Use Prayer Beads'.

Question for everyone else who's already made one: how long did it take (and how many beads did you use)?

I made one last week using 108 beads...it took me longer to pick out the beads that I wanted to use than to actually make it. Grin I used Carnelian beads with small silver flower beads at every 27th bead. There is a white guru bead and carved image of Kwan Yin made of 'tridacna' attached. I enjoyed making it so much that I just placed an order yesterday for some beads to make a wrist mala. Good luck with yours! Grin
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« Reply #17: February 09, 2011, 08:58:37 am »


My stepmum has made me a meditation chaplet.

8 large silver beads (for dreams/lifelong goals)
16 amethyst beads (for short-term goals)
64 pearl beads (for personal strengths)
a silver moon charm engraved with my initial (for the self)

I haven't used it for its original purpose, nor any other, but I might now.
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« Reply #18: February 13, 2011, 03:04:16 pm »


1. Did you make your prayer beads on your own? -No.  I understand the benefits of making your own set of prayer beads (imbuing them with intent, using stones & beads selective to purpose or your affinity to them however there are awesome fair trade projects out there selling malas (that's the prayer beads used by traditions found in Buddhism & various branches of Hinduism) that appeal to my humanitarian roots as the proceeds go to supporting the Free Tibet movement.  I feel that empowers my connection to them more than anything.  Plus they are also very well made & reasonable. 
2. How did you decide what kind of beads to use? - I chose lotus seeds.  One, because of the sacred symbolism.  Two, because it is a very renewable resource so it appeals to my inner environmentalist (seeing a trend, eh? Wink ).  I'd recommended considering the ecological impact but really it comes down to personal taste.  The beads should "feel" good.  Smooth & they should roll well in between your fingers.  Most of all trust your intuition. 
3. What was the basic formula you used to create your prayer beads? - I went with the traditional eastern mala due to my affinity to advita vedanta & yogic principles to which I was formally trained in, so 108 beads with one specifically larger bead - the guru bead - which denotes when you have encompased the full mala.  I believe Dion Fortune also has a unique formal for the Servants Of The Light tradition. 

I used my beads for mantra use & had a very deep affinity to them.  Almost to deep I'm afraid as upon arrival of a place they broke & I wished I had taken heed because alot of horrible stuff followed.  'Friad I put to much stock in'em. 
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« Reply #19: February 20, 2011, 08:57:47 am »

I've noticed a recent trend in pagan thought where prayer beads are becoming more common. I see it fairly frequently on various websites in regards to Kemetic Reconstruction (specifically, HoN members). However, they're not the only people I've seen use this as an expression of faith. I'm interested, but frightened of the idea behind it. So... questions for those who utilize this practice!

1. Did you make your prayer beads on your own?
2. How did you decide what kind of beads to use?
3. What was the basic formula you used to create your prayer beads?
4. Did you base the outline on a Catholic rosary or use whatever you so desired?
5. Will any craft store have the basic supplies necessary for the project of prayer bead making?

1. While I have the beads, I haven't actually pieced it together yet. It's a long story and it will be made soon.

2. I read the book Pagan Prayer Beads: Magic and Meditation with Pagan Rosaries by John Michael Greer. He goes over a lot of different ways of making them and offers advice on how to decide to make your own.

3. To be honest, I can't remember, it's been so long.  Embarrassed I need to dig out the book and find the beads again.

4. I used an outline from the above mentioned book.

5. Most definitely. A craft store tailored more to beading may have more options in terms of variety of beads, but any craft store will have the basics.
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the witch formerly known as musinladi
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« Reply #20: March 01, 2011, 03:19:22 am »


1. Did you make your prayer beads on your own?
2. How did you decide what kind of beads to use?


how long did it take (and how many beads did you use)?

I did make my own set, and -- to answer Treekisser's question -- it took me about two weeks from inspiration to completion; although, to tell the truth, I'm still not exactly done with them, because I'm still writing the prayers. If we're talking strictly construction time, though, it took maybe an hour and a half, and that includes taking them apart and re-assembling them several times to get it right.

And I chose my beads for no reason but that they felt good between my fingers and had the right color tones.

3. What was the basic formula you used to create your prayer beads?

My beads pretty closely resemble an Anglican rosary in shape, and I've divided them into prayers to the God and Goddess in general -- in the tail of the rosary -- and a specific God and Goddess, who each have half of the circle. It's constructed of small beads, in groups of five, which stand for repetitions of shorter prayers, which are divided by larger beads which represent a slightly longer prayer.

I really like the rhythm of repetition that praying with my beads creates, and I constructed them with that meditative rhythm in mind. 

I also saw a pentacle rosary here (ctrl-f "pentacle rosary" to skip right to it) which is divided into five decades, each representing an element, and is intended to be used as a tool for energy raising. I don't do much energy work, myself, but I thought it was an innovative application for the ancient tradition, and worth sharing in case anyone else was inspired to use them.

I don't have any prayer beads at the moment for the simple reason that most pagan prayer beads I've seen look like they were made for an art project by twelve year old girls. The truth hurts.

Hehehe. I felt the same way about many I came across. This was part of my reason for creating my own. The symmetry and order that many pagan prayer-bead sets seem to avoid are meaningful to me. Taking time to make my beads even, measured and beautiful was a way of sanctifying them.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2011, 04:49:38 pm by SunflowerP, Reason: fixing quote code » Logged
fiamma
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« Reply #21: March 06, 2011, 11:17:16 pm »

There's also a "generic" pagan book, called Pagan Prayer Beads: Magic and Meditation with Pagan Rosaries, that might be helpful, as well as a few books about how prayer beads are used in a variety of faiths.

I didn't see the mentions of this book before. Not picking on you here, Jenett, just commenting on the book itself.

This might be a tiny bit of a thread jack, but since it has to do with prayer beads...I have to say that I found this book beyond useless and utterly irritating and frustrating to read. As far as I'm concerned, anyone looking at this book would be far better off spending their money on a book on general beading techniques. I'm just glad that I borrowed it from a library instead of paying any money for it. That it was not my own copy was the only thing that kept me from throwing it repeatedly against a wall-and even that was pretty precarious.

The pages and pages of descriptions of how to go shopping for beads were wasted space. One anecdote told you to be spontaneous- and then goes on for nine pages about just how to do it so that you can make a perfect set of prayer beads for a really fussy kid who loves elderberry tea. And that's just one anecdote.

The authors display a really irritating and obvious sense of contempt for people who don't share their taste in aesthetics- for example, people who prefer a symetrical aesthetic are deemed "conventional", people who like to follow the crowd and they really kinda beat you over the head with it.

There's nothing at all about writing your own prayers, and only a very few sample prayers at all included, and those are meant to go with a couple of sample sets of beads for which they provide instructions.

They include supposedly traditional information on things like the meaning of numbers in a couple of ancient cultures. I can say that the included information on the associations of numbers to the Ancient Greeks is absolutely wrong, and they don't give any information as to where they derive the associations from.  A lot of their associations for gemstones also left me thoroughly baffled.

I know I had a lot of other strenuous objections to this book, but it's been nearly a year since I've read it and those are the ones coming to mind. Hope folks don't mind me voicing my views on this book and how useful I didn't find it for making prayer beads.
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« Reply #22: March 07, 2011, 12:14:56 am »

I didn't see the mentions of this book before. Not picking on you here, Jenett, just commenting on the book itself.

Not feeling picked on, 'cause I wasn't the one who mentioned it. (I've seen it come up in passing in searches, but I haven't had a copy directly in my hands.)
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« Reply #23: March 07, 2011, 12:39:37 am »

Not feeling picked on, 'cause I wasn't the one who mentioned it. (I've seen it come up in passing in searches, but I haven't had a copy directly in my hands.)

Um...sorry, I haven't slept nearly enough in the last few days. I can't brain today :-P
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« Reply #24: March 07, 2011, 12:58:48 am »

I've noticed a recent trend in pagan thought where prayer beads are becoming more common. I see it fairly frequently on various websites in regards to Kemetic Reconstruction (specifically, HoN members). However, they're not the only people I've seen use this as an expression of faith. I'm interested, but frightened of the idea behind it. So... questions for those who utilize this practice!

1. Did you make your prayer beads on your own?
2. How did you decide what kind of beads to use?
3. What was the basic formula you used to create your prayer beads?
4. Did you base the outline on a Catholic rosary or use whatever you so desired?
5. Will any craft store have the basic supplies necessary for the project of prayer bead making?

Newbie here jumping in head first. 

I actually just made a set of beads last night.  Deciding what beads to use took a while, but I have a rather large craft box full of bits and bobs when it comes to beading.  I used hematite and carnelian for this particular set, along with an ankh and sun charm.  It is similar to a Catholic rosary in layout, but not in structure.  I have the ankh charm, a section of three beads (for the three aspects of the Goddess), then the sun charm which is double holed.  I then have 3 sections of thirteen beads, each separated by sections of 3 larger beads.  Aesthetically it is very pleasing, has a nice weight, and feels very comfortable in my hands.  As for the prayer...it's something personal that I came up with after a bit of soul searching.

I am planning on making a set for my roommate (who is also pagan), from rose quartz and sandalwood beads.

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« Reply #25: March 10, 2011, 03:48:11 pm »

I've noticed a recent trend in pagan thought where prayer beads are becoming more common. I see it fairly frequently on various websites in regards to Kemetic Reconstruction (specifically, HoN members). However, they're not the only people I've seen use this as an expression of faith. I'm interested, but frightened of the idea behind it. So... questions for those who utilize this practice!

1. Did you make your prayer beads on your own?
2. How did you decide what kind of beads to use?
3. What was the basic formula you used to create your prayer beads?
4. Did you base the outline on a Catholic rosary or use whatever you so desired?
5. Will any craft store have the basic supplies necessary for the project of prayer bead making?

1. No, I did not. I bought all of my sets from a fellow HoN member that I talk to with some regularity, and I love them to death.
2. I only picked the beads on one of the sets (for Set, heh), and I went with what worked as far as color, what I've heard he's like in UPG, and what I personally 'felt' was right.
3. Almost like a rosary, I think, but with large beads in sets of four (like we HoN peeps are apt to do, seems).
4. I'll have to ask her, they resemble rosaries, so probably.
5. Depends on the store. Our local craftstore has -some- of the supplies, but almost no beads.

I'm hoping to star making my own prayer bead sets soon, but first I need to get the technique down, which is easier said than done, at least for me.
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