Practicing + Creating (Jessica)
I have been creating with my hands for a really long time, as long as I can remember. From an early age, my parents and grandmother (my three parents) strongly encouraged me to use my hands in ways that allowed me to express myself - be it through playing the piano, by needlepoint, or by making friendship bracelets for those I loved. Most of my time growing up was devoted to these practices.
As life began to... accelerate, I guess you could say, I found myself focused on the practice of music, and so I created fewer physical expressions. Until recently, I think that I had forgotten how much I loved the practice of using my hands to create something that could be worn and that represented love - a constant reminder of a higher, elevated intention.
The yoga practice has taught me much about practice, and so much about the world. It has allowed me to connect with the world in ways that I could not imagine, and that I continue to explore every day, looking at the world and all of its beings with wonder and amazement.
For many, a mala is a tool used for meditation practice.
For others who choose to physically wear a mala (around the neck or the wrist), it becomes a reminder - of a mantra, of an elevated intention, of what it is that we wish to practice in our lives, with love and devotion. There are moments during the day (that I am sure that we all experience) where we perhaps feel less aligned with our most elevated intentions, as the rhythm of life is complicated. I cannot count the number of times in a day that I use a mala to reconnect with my intention - it grounds me and reminds me of what it is that is truly important, and to not lose my way.