This sanskrit symbol (aka OM) has profound meaning. It points to the sacred sound of the universe - and/as it represents the four 'states' of the atman, the alternating levels of relative consciousness. A is the waking state, U is the dream state, M is the deep sleep state. The Silence that follows (and in which the AUM takes place) is the fourth 'state' (Turiya avastha, or Turiyatita, as Ramana Maharshi often referred to it), that holds all other states. This fourth 'state' is the underlying reality that always is. While the previous three states come and go, the Absolute/Consciousness/Awareness remains. In short, AUM describes the different forms of Brahman/Existence; the alternating expressions of consciousness. It points toward the three ever-changing states and the fourth, the all-encompassing Existence, which holds it all. It is inviting recognition, remembering this Truth. Turiyatita means 'transcending the fourth' and points us to the fact that there are not really four states, but only one real transcendental state/supreme reality. The jnani (one who has realized the Self) is established in Turiya and detachedly witnesses the three other states (walking, dreaming and dreamless sleep) as pictures superimposed on it. The message is: stay as the witness. Om
The Bear is used as a symbol for, and as an invitation to embody, the qualities of the bear. It represents phases of retreat and hibernation, and it holds qualities of deep introspection. The bear holds the ability to create space to listen in...something that us humans also need from time to time. Let the bear serve as a sweet reminder of time alone, and phases of introspection and deeper observation. Bear Medicine is strong but gentle.
We use different Buddha beads and pendants with the intention to remind the wearer of their innate, divine and true Buddha Nature. The message is simple, yet we tend to complicate life. The Buddha serves to brings us back.
'When we no longer identify with external conditions, we are in the realm of equanimity. We are one with our true nature, which is completely indestructible, perfect and sublime as it is, forever. Our Buddha Nature can never be injured by what is going on right now in our lives, it can never be injured by any conditions such as illness, rejection or dying. Nothing from the outside can destroy it - it is like a diamond. A diamond symbolizes that which is precious, perfect, sublime, beautiful, and indestructible. In every moment we are absolutely perfect because our true nature, our Buddha Nature, is indestructible and cannot be conditioned by anything.' - Anam Thubten
The Butterfly is used as a symbol for the latent potential that is held within each and everyone of us. What might seem to be a chaotic dance of life is a well guided dance of existence, supported by the universe. From caterpillar to butterfly, we all may question what is to come, but we have the potential to mature and spread our wings if we are willing. Sometimes a leap is necessary in order to spread our own wings, with air all around we find our way... The Butterfly medicine is used to strengthen the sense of trust in the process and to motivate the necessary leap of faith. Let Butterfly medicine remind you of your innate beauty and the wings that you hold inside.
“There is freedom waiting for you, On the breezes of the sky, And you ask “What if I fall?” Oh but my darling, What if you fly?” - Erin Hanson
What may be perceived as chaos is only a matter of perspective. With time we most often can look back and reason our way to understanding why something happened the way it did. The chaos pattern is used in our work to bring one's awareness back to realization that what may seem chaotic in the moment will become clear over time. It is also used to remind us to hold faith, knowing that the universe is doing its job playing its game providing us with lessons to learn. The chaos pattern can help remind us to stay centered and dance along with the 'random' butterfly dance and the spins that life is taking with us. Observe who and what in you is not liking the randomness of life, and see where the 'need' to play along or control comes from. Also, if this is something that speaks to you, inquire about that within you remains the same, as all else constantly changes. Let the chaos pattern give you comfort and trust that the Universe is supporting you in every breath.
Chin Mudra is a symbol for the individual consciousness (jivatman) bowing down, surrendering, to the supreme consciousness (Source/Truth/Divine/God/Brahman) and represents the unity with all that is. The mudra itself is a psychic-neuro energy lock which helps redirect the energy from the fingers back up into the body, which has a powerful effect on meditation. The fingers host a lot of nerve endings, and when you touch the fingers in this way (index finger/individual - to thumb/Absolute), a circuit is created to redirect the energy. It is a mudra that is often used in concentration and meditation practices.
circular / round
We use the circular guru bead and charm on our malas, as a reminder of the cyclical nature of life and spirit, the form and formless. It symbolizes the natural changes and transitory nature of all existence. The round guru beads that we use are most often empty in the center, symbolizing the manifest (the ring) and the unmanifest (the space in the center), the form and formless... It points towards the beautiful essence that is found in emptiness, the core of our being. The reminder of the cyclical nature of life facilitates a conscious step away from the experience, from the personhood (and the drama), to gain a broader perspective and higher awareness. It puts things in perspective, and aims at facilitating compassionate detachment as we move through life.
The Cowrie shell is an ancient African cultural and spiritual symbol, and mythologically it is seen as a gift from the ocean goddess Mote as a sign of acceptance and abundance. This sacred treasure from the ocean is also said to bring forth goddess energy, as well as represent and improve fertility. The shells also has a history of being used during childbirth to help the process. It is a shell that empowers and holds blessings from the goddess. It can also serve as a reminder of the cyclical nature of life and spirit, as it holds the message from the tides and movements of the ocean.
crow / raven medicine
The Raven is said to be the gatekeeper to the void of Spirit, where there is no form or structure, but fluidity and constant change. The black feather is used to remind us of Raven medicine, which symbolizes the connection with the realm of Spirit. The Raven is a powerful navigator of the darkness and believes in magic. This bird reminds us to break through old paradigms and belief systems into a new, more expanded awareness of reality. It provides a sense of trust to stay on one's path, to keep focusing on expansion and evolution, and to bring more light into the sphere of earthly existence. The Raven reminds us of the illusions of 'reality' and helps us break through the veils of confusion. The Raven is fond of crossroads and is a great guide when we need a new direction in our lives. The Raven brings balance and teaches us how to journey into the void where all possibility lives. Raven further reminds us to trust our intuitive sense and teaches us that what we focus on becomes the intent for our life experiences.
The knot is known in Sanskrit as Shrivatsa, but has been seen in many cultures over time with various different interpretations of its meaning. It is an ancient symbol representing the interweaving of the spiritual path, the flowing of time and movement within that which is eternal. It holds the message that all of existence is bound by time and change, yet ultimately rests serenely within the Divine and Eternal. It is also seen as a symbol for the endless cycle of suffering, death and rebirth, and points to the eternal nature of our spirit. It is a symbol of the link between the ancestors and omnipresence - and of the endless wisdom of the buddha. It also serves as a symbol for the interplay and interaction of the opposing forces in the dualistic world, leading to union and harmony in the universe.
The feather is used as a symbol of the wings that we all carry. So often do we find ourselves feeling 'stuck' and the feather holds the intention of bringing us back to the realization that we are all inherently free - and to use our wings! The bone feathers further improves the flow of prana, life force, and increases vitality. * The White feather - is used as a reminder of the energy of the Swan, who carries the message to surrender into the grace of the rhythm of the universe, to be at one with all plans of consciousness and to trust Great Spirit's protection. It helps us develop our intuitive abilities, and trusting our innate knowing. It tells us to relax and release resistance, to flow with ease and grace through life. It helps us accept whatever the future holds as it is presented, without trying to change Great Spirit's plan. * The Black feather - see Crow / Raven Medicine for more info.
flower of life
The Flower of Life is an ancient sacred symbol and visual expression of the connections of life that run through all beings. Its sacred geometry depicts the fundamentals of time and space, and whispers the secrets of the universe. It is a continuation of the Seed of Life, which holds the blueprint and patterns of creation as they emerged from the void.
The Flower of Life pendants that we have used on our No Mind Malas are original creations of Kate of @thesugarbush.
These pendants are made from the dried Protea flower, emptied of seed and sanded down by hand to reveal the magical Flower of Life mandala at its heart. These pendants have been treated with natural oils and wax to make its finish.
As the remover of obstacles and he who places blessed challenges on our path, Ganesha lends wisdom as he provides necessary lessons for our evolution. He is the elephant headed one among the devas. Ganesha's message is in a way ' get yourself out of your way'.
'Ganesha is the formless Divinity - encapsulated in a magnificent form, for the benefit of the devotee. As per Hindu mythology, he is the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Gan means group. The universe is a group of atoms and different energies. This universe would be in chaos if there was no supreme law governing these diverse groups of entities. The Lord of all these groups of atoms and energies is Ganesha. He is the supreme consciousness that pervades all and brings order in this universe. Though Ganesha is worshiped as the elephant-headed God, the form (swaroop) is just to bring out the formless (parabrahma roopa). He is, 'Ajam Nirvikalpam Niraakaaramekam.' This means Ganesha is Ajam (unborn), he isNirvikalpa (attributeless), he is Niraakaar (formless) and he symbolizes the consciousness which is omnipresent. Ganesha is the same energy which is the reason for this universe. It is the energy from which everything manifests and into which everything will dissolve.'
- The Art of Living
These coins have been used for centuries to attract abundance and prosperity, and ward of evil and disease. They were often worn by children (one coin added each year until the age of fifteen) after being first placed on a deity for blessing. The coins represent the element of metal, and symbolize prosperity and abundance.
Seeds and Beans hold a lot of energy, to say the least, and they are alive - thus also a symbol for the latent life force we all hold within awaiting to pour through. They symbolize the pure potential, and the ever-present latent life force, held within each being. Beans and Seeds symbolize the potential for rebirth, in each and every situation, in each and every breath. They hold potential, as do we. This is the reason we use Seeds and Beans on our malas, as a reminder to consciously stay receptive and to channel Life. The Seeds and Beans aim to remind the wearer of their innate potential and magical life force.
The Lava Rock has been through intense transformation through the exposure to extreme elemental forces, thus sharing an incredible endurance. It is also grounding and vitalizing. Lava Rock lends strength and courage, and provides stability while going through changes in one's life. The Lava Rock carries a very powerful message - that of perfect imperfections - with each and every bead appearing different and unique in both size and shape, each unique with its own scars and stories, yet beautiful - and perfect - as is. The message is to move beyond the story and appearances, to drop it all, and to dare to simply remain as we are - to just BE - perfect with all imperfections.
The Scarab beetle brings guidance and connection to the elements of the creative forces. It shows us crossroads and gives us peeks of an illuminated path ahead. It is an ancient Egyptian symbol of eternity as it serves as a guide of the cosmic universe and eternal wisdom. The Scarab helps us see beyond the ordinary, to find the magic in our every day existence, thus bringing optimism. It can be a tool to help us be creative in an entirely new way or expression. The Scarab is also a symbol of the heavenly cycles of rebirth and regeneration. It dispels negative energy and prevents depression, serving as a guide and providing confidence.
secrets from the depths
Sea Shell is used as a symbol of the tidal waves and the cyclical nature of existence and beyond, as is Mother of Pearl and Coral. It is used to help us feel trust in the perfect order of changes and transitions, providing the awareness that helps us stay equanimous throughout transitions in life. We use these messengers of the Sea, as reminders that we are a drop of the ocean, a part of the whole and never separate from it.
'In the drop, the sea is as small as the drop; in the sea, a drop is as large as the sea.' - Hazrat Inayat Khan
We use the (vegan) suede tassel as a symbol of unity - bringing together the Eastern (hindu) and the Native American (indian) philosophies, traditions, and arts - honoring their wisdom by uniting the east and the west, both coming together in our heART.