The Magick of the Mala
The Witching Hour: 9:37pm
No Filter (Feat. Madison Love) – Black Coast
For someone who has never like traditional prayers…that you say before bed….and end with an Amen…over the years, I have had to find other ways to pray. For me, ritual magic and chants have been my go-tos since I was around sixteen years old.
I started chanting as a practitioner of Nichiren Buddhism at the age of Fifteen by recommendation of my friend Amy Hatch, who I have known since I was three. Amy convinced me to come to the community center and chant with her once a month. Soon, I began to bring this practice home, becoming a member of the SGI Youth, and getting my very own Gohonzon. Chanting became my obsession, and helped me to gain a spiritual foothold, come through some difficult times in my life, and also helped me focus and channel my energy and determination. I noticed these benefits quickly, and saw my life and attitude transform very rapidly.
After years of exploration with different religions and practices, I have noticed that chanting is still one of the best ways that I connect to spirit, focus, and have success over obstacles. When I was younger, I didn’t really understand why it was so effective, but I kept doing it because it delivered results. Now, I know why!!!
Here are some reasons that chanting is a wonderful way to connect with spirit:
- Raises Energy and Sets Intention in your Environment
- Reflects Determination to Spirit and Self
- Grounds, Centers, and Focuses
Lets start with number one!!!
When we are feeling lost, alone, depressed, vulnerable, or generally unenthused we tend to spend a lot of our energy draining our environment. Maybe we find ourselves spending too much time lost in thought, complaining, asking for favors; when we could be using our energy solving our problems. However, when we have low energy, all we can focus on is that deficit and filling it. There is no better way than chanting to do that. To raise energy for spirit to communicate, singing, drumming, and ringing bells have always been a staple that delivers results. These vibrations start movement and motion, and allow spirit to flow in. Chanting does just the same thing!!!
What you chant sets the intention of the prayer, and calls for the spirits or powers you are raising energy for to use that energy on your behalf. So, whatever mantras you recite, feed those powers in your favor, and helps you to feel them working for you, and around you immediately. This is wonderful for a beggining spiritualist, because achieving this kind of energy raising and connection is more difficult in a silent or meditative practice, and when quick results are needed, a meditation into self can slow your progress tremendously.
On to number two!!!
When you are chanting, you are not only raising energy and setting intention, but your presence in prayer is a respected action by spirit. The longer you chant, the longer you are experiencing the energy of the powers you are calling. To yourself, you can feel the energy, understand what it is like to be in the presence of those powers, and start to appreciate that and find comfort that they are working for you. To spirit, you are showing a great degree of desire, determination, and willpower to take time out of your day to raise energy for them. This creates a mutual bond between yourself, the divinity you are calling to help you, and to the spirits whom are sent to answer your prayer. This kind of practice builds a sense of commitment between both parties. Your commitment to your cause, and their commitment to opening the way for that cause and lifting your burdens or removing obstacles. While prayers may just be for general thanks and acknowledgement, the energy you raise is a karmic credit for you and a display of genuine desire that cannot be disputed by yourself or the spirits. After all, if you sat there for an hour saying the same thing over and over…wouldn’t you feel silly if you went and did something else? If you wanted it enough to chant for it, then you know you are getting it done. Spirit will make sure it happens!!!
And….on to number threeeee!!!!!
Chanting, as with any ritualistic or religious practice, helps you to focus, center, and cleanse your energy. It helps to gear your chants towards goals that you want to accomplish, not matter how big or small, charitable or selfish. (I usually write mine down.) When you do this, you become zoned in on your desires. With every mantra recited, you recognize the energy you are giving, and every utterance is a tiny sacrifice for your goal. It is extremely motivational!!! While you are chanting, this focus begins to clear all of your doubts and fears from your mind. They come into your mind as you chant, and you think to yourself “This will not defeat me, because I am determined.”. When you leave from your prayers, these intentions are set for your day, and your energy is aligned with your environment, keeping you grounded and driven throughout your day. I usually do this twice a day. When I wake up, and when I go to sleep. This means, that I am always focused on my goals, feeling that they are taken care of, and constantly cleansing out any negative attitudes or fears I may have.
So…how do you start chanting!?
There are lots of ways, and as I have grown, I pick out chants to do in 40 day cycles. Mostly I work my chants with Hindu deities, or revert to my traditional “Nam Myoho Renge Kyo” from Nichiren Buddhism.
When you chant, usually most religious practices have a system of counting your prayers. Catholicism has a rosary, Hinduism has a mala, and Nichiren Buddhism has Juzu beads, which are held for convictions, not necessarily for counting chants.
Currently, I use a Mala that I had custom made for me. If you are looking into chanting, I would recommend a custom made Mala by my friend Akiba Michaels. I asked her a few months ago to make my Mala custom for me, and she did everything she could to bring me this wonderful piece. (Pictured below is my personal Made by Akiba Michels; snowflake obsidian, ruby, sapphire, wood). It is a part of my personal and daily practice and is handcrafted to be a statement jewelry piece as well. While not everyone wears their mala who chants, I love to wear mine, and having it made out of stone helps me to carry the energy of my prayers with me everyday. If you are looking for a mala to start, or want a professional crafted and sanctified spiritual tool, I recommend her work highly!!! You can find her through her facebook group here!!!
This style of Mala is usually used for counting Hindu mantras, which are most often done 108 times daily in a ritual setting.
If you would like to get started chanting, I am including my personal prayer regiment for the first 40-days of this year in an attachment!!! (Prayers for January 2016)
Whatever you practice, I hope your prayers echo loudly into the universe this year!!!
Dream Big, Change the World!!!