Chattering Mind

Chattering Mind

It’s Six O’clock. Do You Know Where Your Prayer Beads Are?

“Honey, these prayer beads shouldn’t be in your car! They should be on your altar!” my friend Frances exclaimed the last time she drove around Brooklyn with me.

“Oh…yes. Well. I was hoping they’d enhance the car’s sacred energy,” I said distractedly. (I’d wrapped them around the emergency brake.) But in truth, I didn’t want the conversation to go much further. My altar, currently, is a window sill in the kitchen. Obviously, I’ve got to carve out more physical space for my meditation practice.


As I do that, you might check out this explanation of what prayer beads are for and how to use the various types. Mine are a short string from my Sufi teacher.

The site also provides links to sacred jewelry of all sorts; much of it skillfully made by founder LoriAnn V. Paul herself.

Comments read comments(9)
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Krista White

posted August 17, 2006 at 2:26 pm

I too have been encouraged to create a sacred space for meditation. My question is why is that necessary? I haven’t the space or the time to go to the same spot in space and time to meditate. So I do it where I can. The woods, washing dishes, waiting in line at the school to pick up my daughter. So it seems where ever I am at the time has to suffice as a sacred space. This doesn’t feel wrong to me as I don’t want to get too caught up in ritual and form thus losing the essence of what feels most important, my connection to the divine.>

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Wilhelmenia Bell

posted August 17, 2006 at 3:09 pm

Prayer is a good way to relax in a higher devine power than your own self being knowing that there is always a place you can go and allow God to enter in. A sacred place to belong and someone to tell all you troubles to and at the end of the day find peace along the way. God’s doors are always open day or night. Try him for yourself. For He will make things right. Amen.>

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Stacey-Robin H. Johnson

posted August 17, 2006 at 4:20 pm

I meditate and pray on the train in the morning. I find that to be the one place where I sit still and do nothing. I do wonder though about using beads and rosaries and such. Like how do these things enhance concentration. Nowadays, I kinda see them as yet another commodity of spiritual commerce. I’d like to know what other objects people use in their spiritual practice and why.>

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Priscilla Hudson

posted August 17, 2006 at 6:19 pm

I think that it’s wonderful that you allow the mundane to be sacred. As soon as we all learn that God is Omniscient then we will realize that anywhere and everywhere is sacred. The great thing about an alter is that it reminds us to make time for the sacred; but when we know that everything and everywhere is sacred, that “wherever we are God is and all is well”, then we will truly be living a scared life. Afterall, our bodies are temples for a living God, so how could not the car that we drive around in be our personal alter? It’s all good. It’s our intention, our thoughts that allow our connection with the Divine, not a so-called “sacred space” that we have set aside to honor God. God is. The “alter” is just a reminder for us to honor the Divinity that we always carry within us and is wherever we go.>

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posted August 17, 2006 at 7:57 pm

Well, I happen to take an opposing view of ‘altar spaces’. IMO, I believe that our souls are our altar spaces and are consequently with us wherever we are and go. Also, I am careful not to get caught up in mystical type worshipping. I, personally, think God wants us to come to him just as we are, without any pretenses, conditions, idols, etc. I do prayerfully meditate upon His Word, but I do so freely with any breath that I take, whether it’s in the grocery store, walking my dogs, while being on the computer, etc. All in all, this is just one reader’s thoughts on this subject, and I respect everyone’s opinions.>

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posted August 18, 2006 at 1:34 am

Kathryn, lovely words. Everyone’s words are beautiful here, just remember Kathryn’s as she was the last to speak. I think that whenever I can change a bit of reactive behavior towards someone or even just within, I have taken a spirtual step. Meditation helps my mind to slow down when I can pull myself away from creative tasks. It’s good for the health of the body as well. We always have the chance in every situation to choose the positive or negative action. Difficult to always choose the former but so fulfilling as a spirtual being.>

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posted August 18, 2006 at 4:25 am

I had a really beautiful ancestral altar in my home, but I found the upkeep (according to a specific spiritual practice) to be time-consuming and sometimes a little daunting. I’m considering creating another small personal one–just a visual reminder of my intentions. I’m just wary about anything that comes between me and God. I want that relationship to be most of all without pretense or needless ritual. My spiritual practice and personal rituals, I believe, will evolve alongside my spiritual development. But, I am always interested in how cultures and individuals connect to the Divine.>

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posted August 18, 2006 at 5:29 pm

Hi Stacey, Lovely website! I grew up in an orthodox/conservative jewish home in Springfield, Ma. It was all ritual and nothing more. It took years of hard bumps, really hard ones and listening to the likes of Maryann Williamson, Carolyn Myss, Wayne Dyer, Thich Nhat Hanh(and the list goes on) to evolve into ‘me’ today. I do notice that prayer and meditation have big value for me when it feels right. Most of the time, my real spiritual development comes with my commitment to change myself daily, to be better than the day before. By ‘better’ I mean more sharing, more listening, less judging, more caring. That is what I reach for, not always so easy to practice.>

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posted August 20, 2006 at 5:01 am

CM, Thanks for the link to I passed along LoriAnn’s article on the different types of prayers/beads (rosary, angels, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu). As for prayer beads themselves, I have to say that (which you featured a while ago) won my heart. They truly embody lovingkindness.>

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