Shiva Blue Lace Agate Wrist Mala

It’s been a long time since I made my last wrist mala. A month and a half of attending service at the Buddhist Temple of Chicago inspired me to make another one, this one in honor of Shiva, the Hindu god of creation and destruction.

Shiva the Ascetic metal and enamel icon pendant
27 5mm blue lace agate beads
3 7mm hematite beads
1″ red cinnabar dahlia bead
Waxed linen

I first became familiar with Shiva through my sister, who studied Hinduism and was fond of Ganesha. I originally bought a Blue Moon Beads set of 4 pendants that featured Ganesha, Lakshmi, Parvati, and Shiva. The Shiva icon was a portrait of a man covered with blue ash with half-lidded eyes and a snake around his neck. In the Hindu faith, Shiva has 1008 names and is often featured as both an ascetic yogi and a householder. He is associated with people for whom meditation is a large part of their practice and a single touch from him is supposed to bring enlightenment. While I still have the icons of Parvati and Lakshmi, Shiva seems to have disappeared for the time being. I ended up swinging by the Gallimaufry Gallery in Lincoln Square to pick up the pendant for this project.

The blue lace agate (calming, throat chakra) was an easy choice for Shiva’s mala. In japa mala, there are traditionally three spacer beads representing the wearer and both of their parents. I picked hematite for these three for its associations with grounding and protection and for their contrast with the lighter agate. For the djore, I opted to keep the red cinnabar dahlia (associated with transformation, healing, , also for the contrast with the two gemstone beads.

Once the beads were laid out, I used the waxed linen to string them, pulling both ends through the third hematite and red cinnabar beads, double-knotting and trimming them at the ends. The diameter of the mala is slightly larger than previous ones I attempted to string on beading wire, eliminating the need for a clasp. The linen, easily knotted, is also more durable than wire.

Sometimes, the best projects are the ones that sneak up on you and are finished — from concept to completion — within the shortest period of time.

~ by blackmoodcraft on June 20, 2014.

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