Laura's Reviews > Dharma Beads: Making and Using Your Own Buddhist Malas [With 3 Head & 3 Crown & 6 Separator & Red Elastic and 27 Carnelian, Tiger's Eye, & Sandalwood

Dharma Beads by Joanna Arettam
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Nov 18, 2011

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bookshelves: nonfiction
Read in November, 2011

I got this kit because I thought it might be a fun art project for my students wherein they would study the directions and select beads based on their interests. Following directions is one of the more interesting forms of expository texts!

I was rather disappointed that the authors did so little research. In the section titled "Prayer Beads of Other Religions", the Roman Catholic rosary is touched on. "Rosary comes from the Latin rosarium, which means rose garden, probably a reference to the flower-filled cloisters in a church or private residence where prayerful time could be passed in spiritual fullness and earthly beauty." Even Wikipedia notes that the rosary is a Marian devotion, based on an apparition of Our Lady of the Rosary.

But this is not a book about other religions; it's about Buddhism which brings me to my second gripe. I was hoping to learn knotting techniques which I could share with my students (there's less likely chance of beads flying across the hard hallway floors if the beads are knotted). Instead, there's a vague reference to knotting and knotting techniques without any references to point me in the right direction.

I like that the author allows that not all of us are going to use the malas for meditation. Music and a tea party were suggested for a bracelet-stringing party. That's a nice touch.

There are enough beads to string three 27 bead bracelets. I'm going to try one and see how it goes.
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