Every Bead A Prayer

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“What is a teacher? I’ll tell you: it isn’t someone who teaches something, but someone who inspires the student to give of her best in order to discover what she already knows.”
~ Paulo Coelho, The Witch of Portobello

 

 

You may remember that at the very beginning of my Retreat preparation I made a mala, with one bead for each of my students, and one for each of my support team.

Twice a day for the month before the retreat I prayed that mala, sending love, healing and energy work to each person. Setting my intent for them to find their way and to receive everything they needed for their Highest Good during our time together on retreat.

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Soon my fingers knew every bead. And so did my heart.

There was Helen and Paul and Margot. This one was Cherie. The next one was Brooke…

When we all came together I kept holding space and praying that mala until just before the end of the retreat.

Then I broke down the string of beads, took each one, and made it into a mala of its very own.

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I was up late into the night working on them after everyone had gone to bed. It was the first thing I did in the morning after my meditation, trying to get them all finished so that I could present them on the last day.

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Finally they were all done, and I held each one up to be blessed.

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It was with mixed emotions that I lifted all the malas up over my head to wear them one last time before I handed them over to each student.

 

I had carried them all with me, and now I was letting them go.

They are still in my heart, and I’m so very proud of them. It has been my absolute pleasure to be their teacher. I know that they will shine much positive energy and love out into the world.

Here’s me, on the final morning. Thoroughly exhausted, emotional, and bursting with love for them all.

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The Glorious Journey of Our Love Mala

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“The best teachers have showed me that things have to be done bit by bit. Nothing that means anything happens quickly–we only think it does. The motion of drawing back a bow and sending an arrow straight into a target takes only a split second, but it is a skill many years in the making. So it is with a life, anyone’s life. I may list things that might be described as my accomplishments in these few pages, but they are only shadows of the larger truth, fragments separated from the whole cycle of becoming. And if I can tell an old-time story now about a man who is walking about, waudjoset ndatlokugan, a forest lodge man, alesakamigwi udlagwedewugan, it is because I spent many years walking about myself, listening to voices that came not just from the people but from animals and trees and stones.”
~ Joseph Bruchac

 

Do you remember, back in February, when I decided to make a mala, and to pray every bead twice a day for a month? The idea came to me because my friend Liz was going through a difficult time, and I wanted to find a practical way to support her. My first bead – a pearl – I marked for her, and then I chose a bead for 106 other people, and the 108th as a bead to represent everyone not specifically mentioned in the previous beads. The keeper bead, at the beginning and end of the mala, is the stone I kept for myself.

My intention for that thirty days was to use my meditation and prayers to aid in your emotional support and healing. I strung each bead onto the mala with an intent for you to know forgiveness and self-love, for ending guilt, regret, fear and shame and embracing love and flow and abundance.

Each day I held every bead, one at a time between my fingers, and prayed my mantras and then a specific prayer for each bead – each person. I wore the mala every day, all day, so that I carried you with me. Soon my fingers knew each bead by name. This one Wendy, this one Jess, Jacob, Holly, David, Satisha, Kim, PJ, Joanne…

Each night when I finished my meditation I lay the mala on a large quartz and green tourmaline cluster beside my bed. Each morning my fingers reached out in the dark, found the mala, and my prayers and meditations began again. After which the mala was placed over my head so that I could wear it all day.

The very first day I wore the mala I took you all out for breakfast at a favourite cafe near my farm. Later we swam in the ocean. The water was so clear that I could see tiny fish darting above the sand below my feet. A stingray shuffled past. A dolphin greeted us from a rolling wave.

Over the next thirty days this mala came with me as I swam in rivers, watched koalas in the eucalypts, walked rainforests and paddocks, visited farmers markets and dined with friends. I felt that you were with me on every step of my daily life. You came to coffee shops to sit and write with me and my friends, you came to conferences and dinners and even to a theme park where I took you on a crazy ride and then ran in the rain. You’ve been hugged, and you’ve enjoyed laughter and quiet times. You’ve been held during the day when I sensed you needed extra support. You’ve had all kinds of weather, and you even came dancing with me at Bluesfest.

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Finally on Good Friday I took the mala off and laid it on the earth here at my farm, under the shade of the magnolia tree that Sokli, my fairy friend, so loves. I placed a grid of stones around the mala. A stone given to me by my Aboriginal Auntie, a citrine point, a selenite fish-tail, and a rose quartz. In the centre of the grid I placed a large phantom smoky quartz. All of these stones gave energy to the mala as it rested on the earth during the lunar eclipse and Blood Moon on Easter Saturday.

On Friday I shall gather the beads up from the earth and begin the process of unstringing the mala and passing beads on to those people who want them now that my prayer cycle is complete.

The bead that stood for everyone? I am going to string another mala using that bead and then give it away to one of my readers. Stay tuned to find out more details once that new meditation mala is complete.

I’ll begin another Love Mala soon to pray for a group of you for thirty days. Theme as yet to be decided. I promise to update you when I start allocating the next group of names to these beads.

It has been an honour and a privilege to carry you with me. I hope you feel the love and care in these stones, and know how much you mean to me. (((HUGS))) Nicole <3 xoxo

Image from rambling mandie.com

Image from rambling mandie.com

Sometimes Life Gets In the Way of Blogging

Image from sodahead.com

Image from sodahead.com

“The easiest way to get touch with this universal power is through silent Prayer. Shut your eyes, shut your mouth, and open your heart. This is the golden rule of prayer. Prayer should be soundless words coming forth from the centre of your heart filled with love.”
~ Amit Ray, Om Chanting and Meditation

 

I’m late blogging today.

The Aunt of one of my close friends is in hospital. She had surgery last night, and is in ICU in a critical condition this morning.

When I heard the news last night, I retired early. I prayed my mala for all of you, and then I sat in meditation and prayer for my friend’s aunt for three hours.

Again, this morning, I repeated the process.

Last night I could barely feel this woman’s life force. By the end of my meditation I could feel her energy, but weak, like a flickering candle flame. Her surgeons and medical team did an incredible job. I do believe they saved her life.

This morning her energy is still weak, but underlying that weakness is determination.

Life force is an astonishing thing. It dwells so strongly in us all.

And underpinning that life force, always, is love.

A love so vast, so beautiful and inclusive, that it renders me speechless with awe.

Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers today.

Be gentle with yourself and others. Choose kindness.

Bless xx

 

Mala Update

Image from tumblr

Image from tumblr

“The inner voice is something which cannot be described in words. But sometimes we have a positive feeling that something in us prompts us to do a certain thing. The time when I learnt to recognise this voice was, I may say, the time when I started praying regularly.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi

 

I’ve been moved to tears by the many messages you’ve sent me about inclusion on my Mala of Love.

Truly, I was not expecting such an outpouring. So many of you asking not for yourselves but for those you love to be included on a bead. So many of you brave enough to finally put your hand up and say, yes, I’d like some support.

I have many more requests than I do beads.

So, what I propose to do is this:

I shall contact all of you. Be patient. That might take some time. I’ve had over five hundred messages. 106 of you shall be included on my first mala, and then one bead for my friend Liz and one bead to represent ALL OF YOU.

Thank you to everyone who asked that I include a bead for myself. I promise I will.

I will use the Keeper Bead for myself. The Keeper Bead is the bead at the beginning and end of the prayer or mantra cycle where your thumb and finger come to rest. It is both bead 0 and bead 109.

When I have finished this present mala cycle of one month, I shall make ANOTHER mala. I will allocate 107 places keeping bead 108 to represent all of you, until everyone who has contacted me has had the chance to be included in a month of  my prayers and meditations.

Once again, please be patient. It will take a good few months to pray for all of you individually.

But I shall. That’s my sacred promise to you.

Big love and hugs, Nicole xx

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Mala of Love

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“Prayer is not an old woman’s idle amusement. Properly understood and applied, it is the most potent instrument of action.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi

 

I meditate twice a day; once in the morning when I first wake up – at around 4am, and once in the evening before I go to bed. This has been my practice now for over thirty years. Still, I feel I am only just stepping into a place of truly understanding meditation. And there is so much more yet to learn and experience.

Anyway, I digress.

What I’d like to do on my blog this morning is make an offer. I usually meditate on a mala for at least part of my meditation session. A mala is a string of prayer beads.

Whenever I run a long retreat or course I make a mala with the intent of working for that group, with a bead for each person. Then twice a day I meditate on and pray for the students in my group. I do this for one month leading up to the course, and sometimes more. At the end of the course I gift them their bead.

My offer this morning is this: I’m about to make myself a new mala of 108 beads, that I will use for thirty days. I’m making this mala specifically to aid in emotional healing, and that will be my theme in my twice-daily meditations. It’s a mala for forgiveness and self-love, for ending guilt, regret, fear and shame and embracing love and flow and abundance.

Each day I’ll hold every bead, one at a time, between my fingers and pray my mantras and then a specific prayer for each bead – each person. I’ll wear the mala every day, all day, so that I carry you with me.

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Would you like one of those beads to be for you, or someone who you know?

That way I can hold you in my daily meditations, and you’ll know that someone loves you, and is thinking of you, holding an intent for healing, and sending energy and love to you.

There are 107 beads available, because I have already purposed one to my friend Liz.

At the end of the thirty days, I’ll send you the bead for the cost of the postage. Or if you’d prefer, I can make the bead into a necklace or your own meditation mala for you, although there would be additional cost for that to cover the materials and postage.

If you’d like me to include you, or someone you know, please contact me by leaving a message below, or over at my facebook page. I’ll then contact you within the next few days to let you know more.

I will be making the mala on Wednesday March 4th, and starting my prayer and meditation cycle on March 5th, concluding the cycle on Friday, April 3rd which is also Good Friday of the Easter Weekend.

Much love to you. Please know that I’m thinking of you, and that you’re never alone,

Nicole xx

Image from barefootbarn.wordpress.com

Image from barefootbarn.wordpress.com