Our mala beads make a perfect, thoughtful and loving gift this Christmas. Our mala beads are made of wood, with an attractive tassel and a larger guru bead. They can be worn to enhance any look, giving a contemporary, summery and new age vibe. Mala beads also have a long history of use in prayer and ritual as this blog post explains.

Beads and prayer

Beads have been used for prayer and ritual as far as the 8th century BC. The word 'bead' comes from an old Anglo-Saxon word for 'prayer.' Many religions, including Catholicism and Hinduism, use strings of beads in worship and reflection. Like the Rosary, mala beads are used in mediation and for the reciting of prayers. There are 108 standard mala beads in each of our strings, a number that some believe represents God (the number 1), complete practice (the number 0), and infinity (the number 8). 

Mala beads for meditation

woman with eyes closed wearing ambarya black tourmaline mala beads

Mala beads can be used as a tool for meditation without any religious association. Mala beads can help you stay focused during meditation by running the beads through the fingers, creating a point of focus. Some people also repeat a mantra on each bead. This helps to keep track of how many times the mantra has been repeated. 



The symbolism of 108 beads 

There are 108 main beads in our mala strings. 108 is a significant and symbolic number. In the Sanskrit alphabet, there are 54 letters, and each has a masculine and feminine association; 54 is two times 108. The number is also associated with the 108 energy lines in the body that connect at the heart chakra. In Pranayama, the yogic practice of controlling the breath, taking just 108 breaths a day is said to enable enlightenment.

Astrological and planetary symbolism of 108 beads

There are also astrological associations with this powerful number. There are 12 houses in the zodiac and nine planets, and 12 times nine equals 108. The sun's diameter is believed to be 108 times the diameter of earth, and the distance from the sun to the earth is also 108 times the diameter of the sun. The distance between our planet and the moon is also 108 times the diameter of the moon.

Mala beads as a bracelet

Ambarya hematite bracelet

A smaller string of mala beads has 24 beads. Of course there are 24 hours in a day. The number 24 has other symbolic references and is a harmonious and stable number. Wearing a mala bead bracelet is a more discreet way of wearing mala beads, but it can a bracelet can be easily accessed during times of stress, or continue to be worn during meditation.  



Mala beads Christmas 2021

Over the last two years, the pandemic has impacted sharing and spending time with those we love the most. There has been stress, strain, isolation, loss of income, and fear for many of us. The usual ways we connect have been severely disrupted. We've missed family and friends; their birthdays, anniversaries, births and weddings. It will be the second year in a row that we may not get to see the ones we love for Christmas. Our mala beads are a perfect gift for those you love this year. 

Who would most appreciate mala beads?

Mala beads are a thoughtful way to give the spirit and energy of a person you love. Purchase them for a family member or friend who already practices meditation, or has expressed interest in starting the practice. They make a thoughtful present for those prone to anxiety. For added meaning, meditate with the beads before passing them on to the recipient. In every bead, you can place love, hope and positivity. Because they can be worn, mala beads also appeal to those who wear a Boho or hippie style.

Mala bead materials

rose quartz crystal

Our mala beads are created from crystals, with each available in both the 108 string set and the 24 bead bracelet. If you are buying mala beads as a gift, use the crystal meanings to help you select the most suitable crystal. Or, simply go with whichever feels like the right choice for your intended recipient. The available crystals are:



  • Amethyst
  • Black Tourmaline 
  • Clear Quartz
  • Citrine 
  • Garnet
  • Green Aventurine 
  • Mookaite 
  • Moss Agate        
  • Rainbow Fluorite        
  • Rose Quartz      
  • Red Jasper 
  • Tiger Eye   
  • Lapis Lazuli
  • Pyrite
  • Hematite
  • Smoky Quartz
  • Bloodstone
  • Rhodonite
  • Botswana Agate
  • Dalmatian Stone
  • Howlite
  • Moonstone
  • Amazonite
  • Sodalite
  • Unakite      

    Each set of mala beads purchased as a gift will be accompanied by an attractive card outlining the key properties of the crystal.

    Ambarya mala beads

    Our mala beads are created with exquisite quality by skilled artisans who have practiced the art of bead making for generations. The techniques these artisans use originated from within the distinct civilization of the Indus Valley. This civilization lived at the base of the Himalayas right through to the Arabian Sea, in modern-day Pakistan and northern India. The people of the Indus Valley had a particular process for handcrafting mala beads, with only a handful of craftspeople working with this traditional method today.

    Ambarya supporting families 

    At Ambarya, our mission is to source and sell high-quality accessories made by people who are facing poverty and disadvantage. By paying these skilled traditional artisans a fair wage, we can help prevent exploitation and ensure that the rich cultural practices of these minority groups are not lost. When you purchase your Christmas gifts from us, you can know that you are helping support families and communities to thrive. 

    With these mala beads, you will be giving a gift of hope to not only the recipient but to the fellow global citizens who created this beautiful piece. By choosing them as a gift, you can help create a better 2022 for all of us.