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malas (again)

Posted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 8:12 am
by TrimePema
some questions...

ivory:
Gyatrul Rinpoche mentions that elephant ivory is best, however it is obviously not trustworthy as most of it is blood ivory or even if it "isn't" it most likely is. so what about fossilized stegodon ivory or mammoth ivory? that involves no killing and is related to elephant... i've also heard that other types of ivory are more for specific deities and practices and so on.

diamonds:
which types of diamond would be good? obviously an earth mined diamond and not a lab made one. what colors, though? white, black, yellow, blue? does it matter at all? i imagine cut doesn't matter except triangular ones would be best suited for wrathful practice as per lama gongdu...

also, does anybody have a source for a quote on benefits of using a diamond mala? they are all over the place in visualizations...

conch:
only white conch or is pink good too? what about clam, is that considered killing? conch are also alive.

coral:
one lama told me what matters here is whether it is genuine or not (actually from the sea). the color is mostly irrelevant (the natural color anyway), and one can dye it to whatever color is good (usually red here).

amber:
color? there are 14 or so different colors of amber. i've heard amber is also good in general because it is so light.

bodhi seeds:
only the natural, unpolished, fully grown seeds from temal region nepal? or others, too... does it matter?

crystal:
color? only pure clear, no inclusions, or only natural or are synthetic rainbows okay? is himalayan crystal considered more pure for practice (not to be superstitious, this actually comes from a quote of I think Atisha saying in Tibet it's good to offer water instead of traditional offerings since the water is extremely pure).

rudraksha:
only the 6 face/mukhi?

vajras:
to make a mala out of 108 vajras, which material would be good? best would be diamond but what about something actually doable like a sterling silver or iron?

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 10:34 am
by Fortyeightvows
Diamonds, silver, ivory...Are you rich?

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 3:10 pm
by PeterC
Just buy a Bodhi seed mala and be done with it

And don’t by a “mammoth ivory” mala. The wall between illegal elephant ivory trading and legal mammoth ivory trading is very porous

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 7:11 pm
by Josef
None of this matters.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Tue Dec 11, 2018 11:58 pm
by Sennin
A diamond mala sounds fly.
Bling! Bling!

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:29 am
by pemachophel
"None of this matters."

Depends on Your Teacher and what practice you are doing. There are terma practices where there are very specific instructions on exactly what kind of mala to use as well as all the various other samaya instruments and substances involved. Especially when it comes to the lay-tshog/activities where you are trying to achieve certain very specific siddhi.

If you're just doing basic mantras and not involved in accomplishing certain activities, I agree that this is not so important.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:57 am
by Josef
pemachophel wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:29 am
"None of this matters."

Depends on Your Teacher and what practice you are doing. There are terma practices where there are very specific instructions on exactly what kind of mala to use as well as all the various other samaya instruments and substances involved. Especially when it comes to the lay-tshog/activities where you are trying to achieve certain very specific siddhi.

If you're just doing basic mantras and not involved in accomplishing certain activities, I agree that this is not so important.
That is of course a caveat. For the most part however, and especially in the beginning things like worrying about what kind of mala one has can become an obstacle.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Wed Dec 12, 2018 2:30 am
by 明安 Myoan
Regardless of the mala material, one can also bless it according to FPMT as follows, to make even fuller use of it.
Mantra for Blessing the Mala
OM RUCHIRA MANI PRAVARTAYA HUM (7x)

Recite this seven times, then blow on the mala. This increases the power of the mantras you recite more than one sextillion times (ten million times one billion). This is according to the Sutra Unfathomable Celestial Mansion, Great Increasing Jewel.
:buddha1:

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 1:13 am
by TrimePema
Josef wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:57 am
pemachophel wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:29 am
"None of this matters."

Depends on Your Teacher and what practice you are doing. There are terma practices where there are very specific instructions on exactly what kind of mala to use as well as all the various other samaya instruments and substances involved. Especially when it comes to the lay-tshog/activities where you are trying to achieve certain very specific siddhi.

If you're just doing basic mantras and not involved in accomplishing certain activities, I agree that this is not so important.
That is of course a caveat. For the most part however, and especially in the beginning things like worrying about what kind of mala one has can become an obstacle.
I make malas. I sell them to people who ask me for them. Other than making this statement, I do not advertise. When finding materials I would like to clarify which ones are best and proper and which ones are mediocre, out of the best materials. That is why I am asking. Maybe I shouldn't make malas but people I've seen tend to buy all sorts of malas that are not necessarily so good for practice. At the very least it would be beneficial I think if they had proper ones. When they need certain malas for certain activities, either their Guru will give them a mala or the instructions to make it. Those malas are probably best made and only ever touched by the student and/or the Guru, anyway.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 2:34 am
by javier.espinoza.t
TrimePema wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 1:13 am
Josef wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:57 am
pemachophel wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:29 am
"None of this matters."

Depends on Your Teacher and what practice you are doing. There are terma practices where there are very specific instructions on exactly what kind of mala to use as well as all the various other samaya instruments and substances involved. Especially when it comes to the lay-tshog/activities where you are trying to achieve certain very specific siddhi.

If you're just doing basic mantras and not involved in accomplishing certain activities, I agree that this is not so important.
That is of course a caveat. For the most part however, and especially in the beginning things like worrying about what kind of mala one has can become an obstacle.
I make malas. I sell them to people who ask me for them. Other than making this statement, I do not advertise. When finding materials I would like to clarify which ones are best and proper and which ones are mediocre, out of the best materials. That is why I am asking. Maybe I shouldn't make malas but people I've seen tend to buy all sorts of malas that are not necessarily so good for practice. At the very least it would be beneficial I think if they had proper ones. When they need certain malas for certain activities, either their Guru will give them a mala or the instructions to make it. Those malas are probably best made and only ever touched by the student and/or the Guru, anyway.

I made mine. in not cheap but affordable and decent materials, and it took time for me to learn. i would say that tantric things should be done by oneself because there you can see what obstacles arise and how to overcome them.

you see, i roamed here and there for information, and found that in general the "The Encyclopedia of Tibetan symbols and motifs" of Robert Beer is a short and reliable source of information for this. i know there are things in blogs and stuff, but is better to look for something more serious in this, look for sources, etc.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:36 am
by Sonam Wangchug
Josef wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 7:11 pm
None of this matters.
Guru Rinpoche seemed to think it did, that's why he taught on this subject. Tendrel is a very important aspect of Vajrayana, to say none of this matters frankly sounds very Dzogchen of the mouth-ish.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 6:16 am
by Josef
Sonam Wangchug wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:36 am
Josef wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 7:11 pm
None of this matters.
Guru Rinpoche seemed to think it did, that's why he taught on this subject. Tendrel is a very important aspect of Vajrayana, to say none of this matters frankly sounds very Dzogchen of the mouth-ish.
As always. My interest in your opinion of my posts is non-existent.
Im well aware of tendril etc.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:21 pm
by Sonam Wangchug
Josef wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 6:16 am
Sonam Wangchug wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:36 am
Josef wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 7:11 pm
None of this matters.
Guru Rinpoche seemed to think it did, that's why he taught on this subject. Tendrel is a very important aspect of Vajrayana, to say none of this matters frankly sounds very Dzogchen of the mouth-ish.
As always. My interest in your opinion of my posts is non-existent.
Im well aware of tendril etc.
If you were well aware of the importance of Tendrel, there would be no grounds for brazenly saying "none of this matters." Tendrel can play a big part in accomplishing the practices of the Vajrayana, and yes, this can include what kind of mala one is using, that is why several masters including Dzogchen and Mahamudra masters have composed texts about malas. The point not being what I think about your opinion, the point being that it is misleading advice to the op, which is why I responded.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:35 pm
by Josef
Sonam Wangchug wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:21 pm
Josef wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 6:16 am
Sonam Wangchug wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 5:36 am


Guru Rinpoche seemed to think it did, that's why he taught on this subject. Tendrel is a very important aspect of Vajrayana, to say none of this matters frankly sounds very Dzogchen of the mouth-ish.
As always. My interest in your opinion of my posts is non-existent.
Im well aware of tendril etc.
If you were well aware of the importance of Tendrel, there would be no grounds for brazenly saying "none of this matters." Tendrel can play a big part in accomplishing the practices of the Vajrayana, and yes, this can include what kind of mala one is using, that is why several masters including Dzogchen and Mahamudra masters have composed texts about malas. The point not being what I think about your opinion, the point being that it is misleading advice to the op, which is why I responded.
If you had read the thread you would see that this has already been covered, responded to,and acknowledged.
And sure, plenty has been said about malas and thats all well and good but one can accomplish these practices with a simple mala. Fixating on the material can be problematic, and here we are debating malas of all things. But, since the op has already brought out these things there is no point in going over it again.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Sat Dec 15, 2018 7:24 pm
by Grigoris
Both of you have made valid points and there is no need to get personal... So chill. Thank you.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:08 pm
by StrangeGuy
TrimePema wrote:
Tue Dec 11, 2018 8:12 am
some questions...

ivory:
Gyatrul Rinpoche mentions that elephant ivory is best, however it is obviously not trustworthy as most of it is blood ivory or even if it "isn't" it most likely is. so what about fossilized stegodon ivory or mammoth ivory? that involves no killing and is related to elephant... i've also heard that other types of ivory are more for specific deities and practices and so on.

diamonds:
which types of diamond would be good? obviously an earth mined diamond and not a lab made one. what colors, though? white, black, yellow, blue? does it matter at all? i imagine cut doesn't matter except triangular ones would be best suited for wrathful practice as per lama gongdu...

also, does anybody have a source for a quote on benefits of using a diamond mala? they are all over the place in visualizations...

conch:
only white conch or is pink good too? what about clam, is that considered killing? conch are also alive.

coral:
one lama told me what matters here is whether it is genuine or not (actually from the sea). the color is mostly irrelevant (the natural color anyway), and one can dye it to whatever color is good (usually red here).

amber:
color? there are 14 or so different colors of amber. i've heard amber is also good in general because it is so light.

bodhi seeds:
only the natural, unpolished, fully grown seeds from temal region nepal? or others, too... does it matter?

crystal:
color? only pure clear, no inclusions, or only natural or are synthetic rainbows okay? is himalayan crystal considered more pure for practice (not to be superstitious, this actually comes from a quote of I think Atisha saying in Tibet it's good to offer water instead of traditional offerings since the water is extremely pure).

rudraksha:
only the 6 face/mukhi?

vajras:
to make a mala out of 108 vajras, which material would be good? best would be diamond but what about something actually doable like a sterling silver or iron?

Probably a mala is not that important, it’s only a tool on the way so to speak. I would get the mala you feel happy with, like do you get positive vibes from it? Regarding Rudraksha I have heard over and over again that for Rudraksha one should get a 5 mukhi one, because it’s been said that other mukhis can have not the desired effects as they emanate/ amplify certain energies you might not want. So maybe Bodhi seed mala is good, you can get good & cheap ones on amazon. I got mine there and got it “activated” by a Lama later on.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:37 pm
by javier.espinoza.t
Maybe for practitioners of Kriyayoga is more important that for a Atiyogin. I would say in general it is like that, from a more "external" to a more "internal" view.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:17 am
by TrimePema
javier.espinoza.t wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:37 pm
Maybe for practitioners of Kriyayoga is more important that for a Atiyogin. I would say in general it is like that, from a more "external" to a more "internal" view.
guru rinpoche is very clear about mala materials and their importance. ati doesnt negate tendrel. many commentaries likewise mention mala materials.

from an ati view, you dont need a mala ever.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:05 pm
by javier.espinoza.t
TrimePema wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:17 am
javier.espinoza.t wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:37 pm
Maybe for practitioners of Kriyayoga is more important that for a Atiyogin. I would say in general it is like that, from a more "external" to a more "internal" view.
guru rinpoche is very clear about mala materials and their importance. ati doesnt negate tendrel. many commentaries likewise mention mala materials.

from an ati view, you dont need a mala ever.
Yes it is. It is good that dzogchen practitioners use according, and yes atiyogins have no need. My master used mala after all so it is useful even at the top level.

Re: malas (again)

Posted: Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:51 pm
by Sennin
TrimePema wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:17 am
javier.espinoza.t wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:37 pm
Maybe for practitioners of Kriyayoga is more important that for a Atiyogin. I would say in general it is like that, from a more "external" to a more "internal" view.
guru rinpoche is very clear about mala materials and their importance. ati doesnt negate tendrel. many commentaries likewise mention mala materials.

from an ati view, you dont need a mala ever.
Yeah, speaking on tendrel. I connect more with unpolished natural bodhi malas (with the eye) because it's cool how the color will change the more you use them. A good mala along with a good vajra and bell are essential meditation tools.