Caring for Your Mala
A Mala is a wonderful way to keep your truth, objectives, and divinity alive in your daily life and rituals. Wearing a Mala allows you to have a tangible reminder of your connection with the Universe around your neck at all times, as well as to connect with sacred energy when using it for prayer or mantra meditation.
In the Mala and gemstone world, "Cleansing" and "Cleaning" are different words with different meanings. Cleansing means to cleanse the Mala of negativity and has a spiritual purpose, whereas cleaning just means cleaning it of dirt, dust, or grime.
It is important to make a calm intent when cleansing and cleaning the Mala. We suggest not to do these if you feel anger, frustration, or irritation at either yourself or someone else.
Once you are in a calm and collected state, and you feel positive, you can begin cleansing or cleaning your Mala.
You may want to cleanse and clean your Mala beads from time to time once you've activated them. The belief is that the beads absorb and store energy, thus you may wish to cleanse your Mala beads at certain intervals.
We advise against loaning or giving your personal Mala to others since you would be transferring energy.
Cleansing is an important part of caring for your Mala. It not only removes the negativity that has built up on it over time but also infuses the Mala with fresh and beautiful energy, which in turn makes you feel refreshed and new.
There are a few ways to cleanse your Mala. Some good and "safe" ways we recommend are:
- Placing the Mala in the moonlight
- Burning incense around your Mala
- Placing your Mala in a singing bowl and ringing the edges, or lightly tapping its side to excite the sound inside
There are also other ways of cleansing your Mala, but you have to research further if the gemstones that were used to string the Mala are sensitive to these cleansing processes:
- Place the Mala in a body of water if the Mala is made from genuine Rudraksha or other sacred seeds, but not for a long time. Just set your intentions and then remove the Mala from the water.
- You may also do this with gemstones that are not sensitive to water. We advise not to get the following gemstones wet: Selenite, Fluorite, Calcite, Moonstone, Kyanite, Kunzite, Angelite, Malachite, Lepidolite, Rhodocrosite, Hematite, Jade, Black Tourmaline, Labradorite, and Ammolite.
- You may also use sunlight in cleansing your seed or wood Mala Beads, but for gemstones, be careful as some stones should not be exposed to the sun or strong heat because their colors will fade: Apatite, Beryl, Calcite, Amazonite, Fluorite, Aquamarine, Beryl, Sapphire, Lepidolite, Pyrite, Sodalite, Spinel, Kunzite, Topaz, Tourmaline (Pink, Red), Super Seven, and Quartz-based crystals like Aventurine, Citrine, Smokey Quartz, Amethyst, Rose Quartz, Chrysoprase, and Agate. Clear Quartz can break when exposed to direct sunlight for more than two hours.
All of The Mala Tree's Mala Beads, gemstones, and products are cleansed and programmed using our signature three-way cleansing method.
You may also wish to clean your Mala from time to time.
For those who wear them every day, a Mala is much like wearing an old friend around your neck—it has seen you through the good times and bad ones. However if for some reason they start getting dirty, then proper cleaning can restore life back into this sacred spiritual tool.
A good all-around cleaning method is by just using a damp cloth to wipe off any dirt or oils from your Mala beads. Or try wiping in a downward/outward motion to take away negative energy toward the ground.
This method is good especially if your Mala is constructed using gemstones that are sensitive to water.
For a Mala necklace that was strung with water-SAFE gemstones (Clear Quartz, Rose Quartz, Amethyst, Smokey Quartz, Citrine, Agate, Carnelian (though NOT safe in saltwater), Rutilated Quartz, Jaspers, Tiger's Eye, Aventurine, Black Obsidian (no extreme cold or hot water)
Place the Mala in warm water. You can also add a mild soap if you wish, soak for some time (We clean our personal Mala this way for 1 or 2 hours). Hang it to dry.
You may also use water that has been charged with Feng Shui for cleansing, too! Just set out a glass bowl filled with fresh spring water overnight in the moonlight and pour it into another container in the morning for Mala cleaning use.
This is a tradition from ancient times when water was considered to be highly spiritual. Water has been used in purification rituals for thousands of years and we believe that we can easily transfer our positive intentions through the water.
Caring for the Tassel
A beautiful Mala is great for your spiritual practice but it can also get a little tatty after repeated wear. You may want to spruce up the look of your Mala by freshening up its tassel, and one way this might be done would be by wetting them slightly before gently combing it with your hand while they're still damp with water- as if giving it an extra blessing.
You can also use a mild soap and water mix to clean the tassel. Just allow it to dry fully overnight.
When a Mala Breaks
To put it simply, a broken Mala is a sign of good luck. Though it might make you sad at first, this tradition views the item as spiritually grew and completed with the intention set in motion or another place for new beginnings
It's considered an indication of karmic progression and something to be fully celebrated, as gemstones, sacred seeds, and the Mala itself have ways of releasing you when they are no longer useful. Your broken Mala may symbolize lessons learned or new beginnings - your energy was put into this piece so now it can do its job.
You have several options in case your Mala breaks:
One, you can store the broken Mala bead in a quiet place - perhaps an offering bowl, an altar, or a box to serve as a reminder of your journey. Don't forget to offer gratitude, and send love to the Universe as this marks a new period as well as a new beginning.
Another option is to wrap the broken Mala in a silk cloth and place it safely somewhere either in your house or outside. It can be wrapped out of respect for any negative energy associated with it so that you won't have to keep seeing it. By letting the tear go, you acknowledge its spiritual completion.
Now, it's time for new intentions and new growth. This is a new opportunity to set your intention for this new phase. You need a new Mala in this new journey. Set it with new intentions, get a new set of gemstones that resonate with your current state of soul.
You can also have a Mala re-strung for you. The Mala Tree can re-string the Mala you bought from us to ensure the spiritual process of Mala (re)creation. We recommend having the Mala re-strung for three cycles only.
These are some of the general guidelines to be followed when cleaning, cleansing, and caring for your Mala.