Growing up in America, specifically a Roman Catholic dominated area, I was exposed to rosaries. I still have the one gifted to me for my first holy communion. It is still in the white purse with the never opened prayer book and a saint card, sitting in the attic of my childhood home. My parents where paper Catholics as adults and they attempted to pass Catholicism onto myself and my sister. I never took to it, though I do use some of the practices, like candle burning, incense, and now prayer beads. Yes, I know these are all common to a lot of religions not just the domain of Catholicism.
It took many years to be comfortable with prayer beads. I always associated it with being Catholic, not pagan. After reading and learning about history and different religions I came to understand that it is another practice widely used in many religions.
Why would a Pagan, or a Witch use prayer beads? My answer is to create the right atmosphere for your mind to practice magik, receive messages, or to calm your mind. Using a set of prayer beads to put your mind on magik is easy. Before you do any work, grab your prayer beads get comfortable. Stat with holding a bead, then thank each deity, spirit, entity that you work with. If you only have one that you work with, start by thanking that diety. you can then move on to naming all the epithets they may have, listing accomplishments they have, or thank them for the gifts they have given you.
If you have several ingredients in a spell, you may also use your prayer beads to focus on the aspect of each of the ingredients needed for your work. For example, a love spell is what you are going to do today and you are using red candles, rose petals, jasmine incense. You may use just four beads of your prayer beads to focus on each ingredient. Pray to each ingredient, seeing each, feeling each becoming that ingredient for the time period spent holding a bead. Some people may find this redundant, as they do this already when they do their work. That is ok. Others may find this as a useful key to unlocking greater efficacy of personal work.
How does one make prayer beads? The method is easy.
1. Decide on the number of beads in a set.
2. Decide on the number of sets.
3. Acquire beads and material to string them together.
The colors and types of beads may also be a consideration. In the picture at the beginning of this article is my homemade prayer beads. I chose to keep the traditional number of 5 sets for a rosary, however, I use seven beads and not ten normally used. The skulls where a bead I liked and I found hematite separator beads to go in between the sets of skull beads. I could not find a suitable metal pendant and had to make my own using a bottle cap. The Santa Muerte pendant was ordered from Frater Setnakh.
Prayer bead may be as simple as a strand of beads, they do not need to emulate any other template. The most important thing is to make it work for you.
Until Next Time,
May your Roots never rot, and May your growing never stop.