What is a Japa Mala?
Mala beads are a string of beads used to count mantras (Sanskrit prayers) in sets of 27, 56 or 108 repetitions. The large meru (mountain) bead provides a starting and ending point on the mala for counting the repetitions. Mala beads are an ancient tool that was developed to keep the mind focused on the practice of meditation.
Mala beads are seen in other cultures and religions and are also known as prayer beads, rosary beads and worry beads. Over two-thirds of the world’s population employ some type of prayer beads as part of their spiritual practice. The use of beads in prayer appears to have originated around the 8th century B.C.E. in India.
Mala beads are typically made out of different materials, and the properties of the beads are said to have specific energetic effects. Different spiritual practices and religious traditions historically have used beads of a specific material.
Mala is a Sanskrit word meaning garland. Japa means recitation, and it is traditionally used as an adjective and combined to form Japa Mala (prayer beads for meditation). Japa mala was adopted into other languages as the use and popularity of prayer beads spread. When the Romans invaded India, they mistook japa for jap, the Latin word for rose. Upon returning to Rome, mala beads were referred to as rosarium and later became known as rosary beads in English.
Using a Mala
A Mala is a string of beads used to count mantras (Sanskrit prayers) in sets of 108 repetitions.
A mantra is a word or series of words chanted aloud or silently to invoke spiritual qualities. Chanting is used as a spiritual tool in virtually every cultural and religious tradition. In the yogic tradition a mantra is a Sanskrit word that has special powers to transform consciousness, promote healing or fulfill desires.
The practice of chanting a mantra is used as a form of meditation. Sitting in a comfortable position, with the eyes closed, the mantra is repeated silently or aloud. The mind is focused on the mantra, the thoughts are let go of and the breath is slow and dee
Hold your mala in your right hand and use your thumb to “count” each mantra by touching the bead during the recitation and then lightly pushing the bead away on completion and moving to the next bead.  The index finger is extended and should not touch the mala.  The large meru (mountain) bead should not be counted or touched by the thumb and is used as a starting and ending point of the recitation.  If you have a wrist mala of 27 beads you will need to repeat this 3 more times.  Continue by pulling the beads and going backwards until you again end at the meru and continue until you have done 108 repetitions, or multiples of 108.
To empower the mala and the mantra used, japa (mantra meditation) should be practiced each day for 40 continuous days.  When the mala becomes empowered it can be worn or lightly placed on oneself or others to transmit the energy of the mantra as well as the energetic qualities of the mala.  When you use a new mantra with a mala, this energy becomes replaced, so it is recommended to use a new mala with each mantra if possible.
When not in use, store your mala in a special, clean and preferably sacred space.  The best place to store a mala is on a personal alter or statue of a deity.
Choosing a Mantra
A mantra is either given to you by a teacher or chosen by yourself.  When selecting a mantra, be clear on what your intention is, and use your intuition over your intellect.  You may want to try out each mantra for a few repetitions to see how it feels to you and choose the one that feels like it fits best for you.
The Power of Mantra
A mantra is a word or series of words chanted aloud or silently to invoke spiritual qualities. Chanting is used as a spiritual tool in virtually every cultural and religious tradition. In the yogic tradition a mantra is a Sanskrit word that has special powers to transform mind, body and spirit. Translated, mantra means, “that which when reflected upon gives liberation.” Mantras are unique mystical formulas of sacred syllables, which were originally revealed to the Rishis (seers or sages) in the deepest states of meditation. Mantras were one of the earliest components of yoga and are quite possibly the first type of meditation that was developed.
There are three main types of mantras, Bija (seed), Saguna (with form), and Nirguna (without form). The Bija mantras can be used individually, but are most often incorporated into Saguna mantras to invest them with a special “seed” power. The Bija mantras correlate to the 7 chakras and to the main Hindu deities. The Saguna mantras invoke the forms of the individual deities or personalized aspects of God. It is said that the recitation of the Saguna mantras gives rise to the actual form of the particular deity, thus manifesting its power.
The Nirguna mantras originate from the Vedic texts and are thus the oldest mantras of the three types. As no deities or personalized aspects of God are invoked with these mantras, they are very difficult to interpret and are considered to not have a specific form or meaning to them. These mantras are said to have their identification with all the creation, and contain the fundamental truths in yogic philosophy. It is said that the mind must be very strong to be able to concentrate on the abstract Nirguna mantras, and thus they are not recommended for beginning students.
As each mantra invokes a precise power, they can be used for very specific purposes: spiritual development, the healing of diseases, and for the attainment of worldly desires. When combined with the user’s intention, mantras can become even more targeted and empowered. The mantras are said to increase in power in direct relationship to the number of times repeated. A mantra is fully empowered by becoming “seated” in the heart after 125,000 repetitions, achieving what is called Mantra Siddhi.
The practice of chanting a mantra is considered the easiest form of meditation. Sitting in a comfortable position, with the eyes closed, the mantra is repeated silently or aloud. Pay careful attention to the speed and rhythm of your chanting, the correct pronunciation, aim, and esoteric meaning of the mantra. Allow the mind to be focused on the mantra, letting the thoughts go and maintaining a slow and deep breath. A Mala (string of beads) can be used to count series of 108 repetitions of the mantra.
Like prayer and affirmation the repetitious use of mantra can have powerful effects on the mind, body, spirit and emotions. Mentally, mantra meditation increases concentration, and improves memory and focus. Physically, mantra meditation lowers the heart rate, reduces blood pressure, and activates the relaxation response to allow healing and rejuvenation to occur. Mantra meditation builds self-confidence and self-empowerment, reduces stress and balances the emotions. Spiritually, mantras are said to dissolve one’s bad karma, produce jnana (wisdom) and are considered one of the many yogic paths towards self-realization.
Types Of Mala
One Mukhi Mala
Description : One Mukhi Mala made with 27+1 beads of one mukhi rudrakshas (half moon shaped) are made in silver pendant form and strung in red thread. As we know even wearing one face one pieces have the properties of removing any problems related to fianances (wealth),so the power of mala is immense as it contains 28 beads of one face. Wearer never feels shortae of wealth in his/her life. Ek mukhi brings power of Dharna to the wearer and enlightens his super consciousness. The wearer of One Mukhi Rudraksa gets his mental structure changed and he begins to feel renunciation from the worldly affairs and naturally inclines towards God. All forms of ill-effects related to wealth are dispelled. It boosts the concentration and will power of the wearer.
Two Mukhi Mala
Description : Two Mukhi Rudraksha Mala boost memory power and concentration. A two-faced Rudraksh has two natural marked lines. Vaishnavas consider the 2 Mukhi Rudraksha as a symbol of Lord Vishnu. It boosts the power of creative intelligence when garlanded. The wearer feels it by realizing success in his work,constructive resources, wisdom and knowledge. It vanishes anger,evil thought. It is believed to be the manifestation of Lord Shiva and Goddesses Parvati. The person wearing this Rudraksh stays in sound health - mentally and physically.Goddess Lakshmi also showers her blessings on the wearer and the wondrous radiation power keeps the mind in balance. This Rudraksha is helpful in maintaining marital harmony. The wearer of Two Mukhi Rudraksha Mala leads a sacred and peaceful life and the wearer's family also finds peace and unity.
Three Mukhi Mala
Description :  Three Mukhi represent Agni Dev. Three Mukhi Rudraksha bead is one of the most sought after Rudraksha beads due to its memory enhancing powers. This mala improve memory power and concentration. It improves the power of creative intelligence when garlanded. The wearer feels it by realizing success in his work,constructive resources, wisdom and knowledge. It also helps to bring out hidden intelligence of a person. Good for students and help to improve the memory. Effective for asthma, and for cases in which a person often has fever. The wearer of this mala is blessed with improved memory and wisdom. The Rudraksha mala increase the spiritual level and improve knowledge
Four Mukhi Mala
Description : Four Mukhi Rudraksha represent Lord Brahma. Wearing this mala improves spiritual knowledge. Those who are doing meditational practices find a deeper meditation while using this mala during practice. The wearer gains power of creativity. Recommended for mental disease, paralysis, lack of confidence, Blood circulation, cough, backache.This mala is a very effective for scientist, researches, scholars, artist. Its vision and contact instantaneously bestow the achievement of the four aim of the life. It governs logical and concrete structural thinking. So holding it always brings positive thinking in the mind
Five Mukhi Mala
Description : A Rudraksha with five faces represents Lord Shiva/ Rudra himself. Its name is Kalagni. It is said that it bestows all sorts of salvation & achievement of desired objects. It is said that it also monitors blood pressure & is also used for Japa.
Rudraksha mala is said to have many healing properties. Rudraksha is said to be rich with shakti and calms the kundalini, thus making it easier to rise. Rudraksha is said to open the heart chakra. They are good for meditation and protection. Legend says that Siva awoke after a thousand years of meditation and began to shed tears of worldly compassion. These tears crystallized into seeds and there grew the first Rudraksha tree.
Six Mukhi Mala
Description : Six mukhi rudraksha represents Lord Kartikeya. Six Mukhi Rudraksha works very well on emotional traumas and it removes the ill effects of misunderstandings from any relationship. Brings understanding and appreciation of Love, Sexual Pleasure, Music and Personal Relationships. This mala is a saviour from worldly sorrows. It helps you fulfill dreams and lead a very luxurious life. Increases will power, Enhances vocal power. Those who want to prevent themselves from evil powers towards them are benefited from this mala. This bead enriches the career path and helps you achieve immense professional and academic success. A Six face mala aslo improves art and artistic sense. It teaches us how to love and appreciate others. So those wearing it will find themselves a well-known person within the society.
Seven Mukhi Mala
Description : Seven mukhi Rudraksha represents Goddess Mahalaxmi, Good health is blessed to him/her who wears Seven Faced Rudraksha Mala.Its ruling planet is Saturn. Wearing Rudraksha in multiple number weather same face or different faces will increases the effect. So this mala is a high energies provider in relation to those people whose Saturn Planet is in Bad posotion. It should be worn by those suffering from miseries pertaining to Body, Finance and mental set-up. It will stabilises the saturn planets thus removing the dreadest condtion cuased by imabalance Saturn planet such as loss of money, sickness, mental problems, stress, unsuccessful in jobs or business. By wearing Seven Faced Rudraksha man can progress in business or career and live life happily. The wearer of this Rudraksha reaps the positive benefits of huge financial gains, good health, fame, peace, freedom from diseases and mental stress
Eight Mukhi Mala
Description: Eight Mukhi Rudraksha represents Lord Ganesha and its wearer becomes unaffected by all miseries - physical or mental. Mala is made with top grade general size eight face rudraksha. Wearing the mala will increases twenty eight times of energies of eight face.So any obstacle is removed instantly.It helps to flourish business, jobs etc. Eight mukhi Rudraksha Mala helps to overcome obstacles & brings success in all directions.Eight mukhi Rudraksha is recommended for the Business community & Individuals facing regular obstacles in life. Wearer of this Mala is blessed with strength of character and mind, wisdom, a long successful life, happiness, good health, prosperity and increase in confidence. Recommended for writers and intellectuals, the Eight Mukhi Rudraksha also helps in increasing concentration.
Eleven Mukhi Mala
Description : Eleven Mukhi Rudraksha is the symbol of Ekadash Rudra (eleven forms of Lord Shiva). Hanuman is the eleventh form of Lord Shiva. The 11 Mukhi Rudraksha is regarded as very auspicious in religious rituals and is worn by sages and saints during their meditation. Its very rare to get mala of 11 mukhi beads. Instant and quick result seen in improving wisdom, right judgment, powerful vocabulary, adventurous life and success.Good for improving the spiritual path andd knowledge. It is said that the wearer of an Eleven Mukhi Rudraksha gets the same merits as those obtained on sacrifice of a thousand horses or gift of a thousand cows. The husbands and the women who wear Eleven Mukhi Rudraksha are blessed with great luck and a long life. Eleven faced Rudraksha is a symbol of Lord Hanuman and so the wearer is blessed with learning, virtues, cleverness, fearlessness, healthy life and wisdom.
Siddh Mala (1-14 Mukhi Rudraksha + Ganesh & Gauri shankar)
Description : This is the most powerful healing mala. This mala is used to sublimate the malefic effects of Nav Grahas such as lack of peace, poverty, lack of harmony, financial problems etc. People who want to reach the top level with success and have multidimensional ambition wearing of all 1 to 14 Mukhi Rudraksha with different numbers in a mala described as Srimad-Devibhagawatam is considered auspicious. Gives immense power to the wearer & help him to get rid of all the problems. You may get everything and dream comes reality.
According to Puranas, a person who wears Rudraksha from 1 to 14 Mukhi becomes Lord shiva Incarnate. Rudraksha with different mukhi which represent different Gods and Goddess when brought together in a mala give blessing to wearer in varieties of subjects such as wealth, health, power of intelligence, happiness, prosperity etc. That means these mala are having multidisciplinary action.
Gauri Shankar Kantha
Description : This is a very auspicious Kantha made of 32+1 beads of Gauri Shankar Rudraksha and is strung in accordance with the ancient scriptures. This powerful combination expands the universe of consciousness and brings the wearer in direct connection with the divine. Gives divine grace and protection to the wearer. In Ancient Puranas it is stated that the wearer of 32+1 beads of Gauri Shankar Rudraksha becomes Lord Rudra Incarnate.Most popular Kantha worn by holy Saints and Gurus of India.There is unity and harmony in the house where this Kantha is kept. Most popular Kantha worn by holy Saints and Gurus of India.
Sade Sati Rudraksha Mala
Description : When the Saturn transit in the twelth, first and second place from birth sign that is known as Sadesati, this is known as Vrahad Kalyani. Saturn remains for two and a half years in a sign, total traveling time period of three signs is seven and a half years. This Mala contains a rare 14 faced Rudraksha Bead & 7 faced Rudraksha beads.This Mala is a blessing for those who are undergoing a harmful Sade Sati (Saturn Cycle). This is known as Sadesati.Seven Mukhi and Fourteen Mukhi Rudraksha controls planet Saturn. By wearing these Rudrakshas man can reduce the malefic effects of Saturn.
Rudraksha & Crystal Combination Mala
Description : Crystal is a form of silicon oxide. It is very attractive and it has many qualities. The effect of a rosary gets enhanced it is made of Rudraksha and crystal. It is very much useful. It is used to perform Jap and in ritual activities. This mala has 108 beads alternating between five face rudraksha and quartz crystal. This mala is a favorite of yoga practitioners in general and naturally Shaivites in particular. Certain wrathful sadhanas in Tibetan Buddhism also incorporate rudraksha. This particular mala has genuine quartz crystal; a feminine, ethereal cold element, with the Rudraksha; a masculine earthy, hot element, which has been described as perfectly balanced and recommended by many gurus and sages.
Benefits of this mala given below:-
1. It renders prosperity to the family of the person who wears it and his enemy gets annihilated.
2. Wearing this rosary can save the person from cough, ailment caused by disorder of the wind within the system, fever and an incubus.
3. Performing Jap of Shiva Panchaakshari Mantra with this rosary proves to be useful and renders prosperity to the person.
4. A man, who wears it, can have peace of mind and it can subside his anger. The rosary saves the person from disorder in sleep and from eye problem.
Rudraksha & Pearl Combination Mala
Description : The seed of the rudraksha tree (Elaeocarpus granitrus) holds a very special place in Hinduism, and is credited to possess mystical and divine properties. Pearl is associated with various forms of the Goddess. Necklaces made of Rudraksha beads and Pearl are considered auspicious as well as powerful, and are supposed to have profound astrological benefits.This rosary(beads) gives peace of mind and acumen for discussion. Before use, dip the rosary on any Monday in raw milk and worship it with your favourite mantra. This rosary reduces the weakness of Moon and Saturn in the horoscope. It inspires creativity and brings wealth. It's effects are smoothing and cooling. The mala consists of 108+1 beads in total with equal proportions of rudraksha & pearl & is knotted between the beads. The rosary is worn in the neck
Crystal Sphatik Mala
Description: It is a white shiny and transparent stone also called Crystal, is also known as Shphatik in India. It is a transparent stone with lustre and is cool in nature.According to Astorlogy Crystal is related to Planet Venus. It is a substitute of Diamond beacuse it has the same qualities as the diamond.Using a mala (Rosaries) made from Crystal aids concentration, cols the body,and calms the mind. Wearing a crystal mals ensures a sound and undisturbed sleep. This Crystal Mala can be easily worn without hesitation. If it is worn, the mind becomes pacified and quiet. Person who wear it, becomes pacified and quiet and favorite of Lord Shiva. Crystal Mala (rosaries) are used to count mantras while worshipping Lakshmi, Durga, Saraswati and other Goddesses.
Haldi Mala
Description: This Haldi Mala (rosary) is made of bulbs of Turmeric which is considered one of the most purifying herbs in Ayurveda. It is used for recitation of Mantras during those worshipping ceremonies which are performed to bring success when you are in trouble because of some enemy. Turmeric Mala is used to perform Anusthan (special prayers) and destroy enemies and succeed in law suits. It is associated with fertility. It is considered auspicious for getting victory over enemies.For getting success in litigation matters also the same rosary is used. This rosary is specially used for chanting the Mantra of Bagalamukhi and Jupiter. The person also acquires a good amount of spiritual powers. In astrology the position of Jupiter is considered to be the most important foetor in determining whether a person will be able to get what he wants easily or that he will have to struggle through his life.
Kamal Gata Mala
Description: Lakshmi is also called Kamalvaasini - i.e. one who sits on a lotus.Kamal gatta mala is also known as dried lotus bead mala.Lotus Rosary or Kamalgatta Mala is used for wealth. To banish this curse that could be haunting a house for generations one must try this mala. This is why for the Sadhana and Mantra chanting of Lakshmi we use a special rosary made of seeds of lotus which is called Kamalgatta mala. The Goddess is easily appeased if one uses this rosary for the chanting of her Mantra and she bestows upon him wealth and comforts.Mantra invoked on a lotus Malas abounds in spiritual wealth. Since lotus is symbal of Lakshmiji the godess of wealth
Navgrah Mala
 Description: These gorgeous Navagraha Malas imported from India are 54 beads consisting of nine semi precious stones and pearls separated by silver beads.Navagrahas are the nine main "influences" in Vedic astrology or Jyotish. each stone representing a planet of our solar system.This Mala is highly effective in warding off the malefic effects of all the nine planets (navgrah).Under such conditions, this Mala is very useful as all the semi-precious stones required to pacify the malefic effects of all the nine planets are studded in this single Mala itself. When you use mala beads of this type, you are propiating all of the 9 planets to bring positive changes to your life. Sometimes more than one planets are adversely placed in ones horoscope or at times the correctness of the horoscope is doubtful due to non-availability of authentic data.
Rudrani Mala
 Description : This Rudrani Mala contains 108+1 Beads and the Beads are strung in a silver or golden wire with caps. The Length of this Mala is about 35 cm; The colour of these tiny sized Rudrani Beads is Orangish. Rudrani is said to be the female part of the Rudraksha.
Sandalwood Mala
 Description : Sandalwood mala is made from genuine naturally fragrant sandalwood and will never loose its aroma. This genuine sandalwood mala is used for japa (repeating mantras or prayers). Different kinds of malas have different properties. There are two kinds of Sandalwood bead malas. The white one is used for peace. The red one is used especially for the attainment of general prosperity. It is used in the worship of the Goddesses Durga, Laxmi and Tripura Sundari. Sandalwood has traditionally been regarded as one of the purest substances and is valued for its cooling properties, its medicinal value as well as lovely fragrance.
Tulsi Mala
 Description : Tulsi Mala is regarded as the Best for worshipping of Lord Vishnu, Ram and Krishna.Tulsi wood, which is in the family of basil, is the most sacred of all wood in the Hindu tradition.One Hindu legend relates that Vishnu spawned Tulsi from the turbulent seas in order to help all mankind.According to Ayurveda, it is very useful in the throat disease. It is also used for purification of the Body.Tulsi is Nature's gift to mankind; it is a great natural healer. The wearer of this Mala gains health and peace.The mala must be worn inside so as to touch the body. According to scientists the place containing tulsi plant becomes pollution free. The oil of the leaves is capable of destroying bacteria and insects. The leaves have mercury traces and are hence nowadays used in cancer curing Ayurvedic medicines. Tulsi rosary cures a person from high fever, diseases of mind and from the ailment caused by disorder of the wind within the system.
Agate Mala
Description : Agate is a semi precious opaque gem. Agate is a symbol of protection, courage and success. For removing the bad planetary effects,a person should wear the Agate mala of the colour which belongs to the planet. It attracts good fortune by eliminating bad luck. A person should wear the Agate mala of the colour which belongs to the planet for removing the bad planetary effects. It compels truth, promotes good manners, happiness, intelligence, brings prosperity, longevity, fertility, and good health.Just put it under your pillow at night to relieve insomnia and bring good dreams. It aids upset stomach, lungs, depression, lethargy, throat, skin, tumor.It helps children overcome their fears, learn to walk earlier and maintain their balance.Agate is a symbol of protection, courage and success. It has a calming effect during times of stress, giving a sense of strength and courage.
Black Agate Mala
should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Saturn or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope.This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Capricornus (Makar Rashi) and Aquarius (Kumbha Rashi) with wonderful results.
Blue Agate Mala
should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Saturn or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope. This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Capricornus (Makar Rashi) and Aquarius (Kumbha Rashi) with wonderful results.
Coral stone Mala
should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Marc or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope.This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Aeries (Mesh Rashi) and Scorpions (Vrishchik Rashi) with wonderful results.
Green Agate Mala
should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Mercury or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope.This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Gemini (Mithun Rashi) and Virgo (kanya Rashi) with wonderful results.
White Agate Mala
 should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Venus or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope. This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Taurus (Vrashabh Rashi) and Libra (Tula Rashi) with wonderful results
Yellow Agate Mala
 should be used to pacify the malefic effects of Planet Jupiter or to strengthen this planet in ones Horoscope. This mala can be worn by persons having their zodiac signs as Sagittarius (Dhanu Rashi) and Pisces (Meen Rashi) with wonderful results.