Affirmation Mala Anatomy
affirmations, Stones (Rocks - Minerals - Gemstones)

How do affirmation malas work?

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You provide the healing power

You are the one you’ve been waiting for; you have always been your healer. More often than not, it is ultimately doubt that gets in the way, making it difficult to trust in one’s ability to create positive change in one’s life. How do we build trust? With practice, determination, perseverance, and proof.

Affirmation malas provide the support

There are many ways and many tools to help us along our way as we dedicate ourselves to change, each unique and equally valuable. Working with an affirmation mala is only one way, but a comprehensive way at that, as it integrates the:

  • mind with repetitive thought and speech
  • emotions as drivers for meaningful intention and inspiration
  • body with physical holding and movement of the beads

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How we perceive the world is integral to our experience of it. It is powerful to learn we do not need to change circumstance to change our mind. And in consciously changing our mind, we intentionally direct our experience. What experience are you hoping to create in your life?[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][vc_single_image border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” style=”vc_box_shadow_circle” image=”1997″ img_link_large=””][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”3/4″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Welcome Experience

When you feel clear on what it is you are ready to welcome in your life, it becomes easier and easier to let go of what stands in the way. We broadcast our message to the world around us every time we declare our intention and allow ourselves to imagine the experience of what we are creating.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][vc_single_image border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” style=”vc_box_shadow_circle” image=”1957″ img_link_large=””][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”3/4″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]


The benefit of using an affirmation mala is it allows people to dedicate time and energy to the practice of setting one’s intention. In spending time enough to run the rounds of one’s mala once to three times a day, one can fall into a groove, a kind of surrender to what one is creating.

Over time, what might have started out as just words becomes more intimate. We start to imagine, what does this really look like — my intention? How does it feel to imagine it as true? We can even start to refine our intention, changing our words slightly here and there to better reflect what is truly in our hearts. Most importantly, we start to feel our intentions.

This is the magnet — our emotions — when it comes to Law of Attraction; this is where we start to sing to the world, and hearing our song, the world sings back to us. The longer you stay with the sense experience of what you are intending to create and welcome in your life, the stronger your magnet.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][vc_single_image border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” style=”vc_box_shadow_circle” image=”1958″ img_link_large=””][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”3/4″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]


When we run our fingers over the same mala time and time again, we leave an energetic imprint on the stones, just as they leave an imprint on us. They become a carrier for the energy we have summoned. The more we use our mala, the more energy it carries towards our intention.

For this reason, the mala can be used both during recitation for counting repetitions, and also as a tool for staying in touch with the energy behind your intention when worn around the neck or wrist.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row]

How to use your affirmation mala: Guru bead
Stones (Rocks - Minerals - Gemstones)

How to Use An Affirmation Mala

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You are your healer

Your affirmation mala is a tool, not a fix. You are your healer; you are the instigator of change in your life. Working with a mala is an act of self-love; it is an act of saying what you think and how you feel matters and is worth your energy, attention and time. When you commit to spending time with your mala, you are in effect committing to your ideal, to your ability to change. To this end, a mala can be used to:

  • help you dedicate time to your intention
  • count recitations of a chosen affirmation
  • cultivate positive emotion during breathing meditation

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About Affirmation Malas

A mala (/ˈmɑːlaː/) is a string of beads used to assist the counting of sacred prayers. They are also known as rosary or prayer beads. The term mala comes from the Sanskrit for “garland”: mālā.

An affirmation mala, as designed by Starfire Healing Works, is a string of beads used to assist the counting and cultivation of one’s sacred intentions. They are not religious objects; and you do not have to be religious to use them.

Starfire’s affirmation malas are comprised of 108 semi-precious stone beads used for recitation, plus an additional three spacer beads (including clasp if appropriate) and a guru bead. Spacer beads (which include the round magnetic clasp, if appropriate to your piece) are fixed every 27 beads. The guru bead comprises both the head and the tail of the mala.

You will notice Starfire’s affirmation beads are split, half of the counting beads one stone, the other half another. This split represents the give and take inherent to life, the ways in which we give to ourselves and give of ourselves. They are a reminder that all of life has both a yin aspect and yang aspect; they are inseparable, and go hand-in-hand.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

How to use your affirmation mala

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State your intention

You may hold your mala in either hand; and you might experiment seeing if the practice feels any different to you when you hold the mala in either your receiving (non-dominant) or giving (dominant) hand. Choosing a hand, drape the mala over your second or third finger, using the thumb to move the counting beads.

Start reciting your affirmation or prayer by counting off from either bead adjacent to the guru bead. For each recitation, slide one bead under your finger until you reach a fixed bead.

As you slowly work your way around the garland, allow yourself to be affected by what you’re declaring:

  • Is it what you really mean?
  • How do you feel when you say it?
  • Do you need to adjust your choice of words?

Find the words that feel just right– words that leave you feeling empowered, open, loved and loving. Feel free to adjust as you work your way around the mala.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Reflect on your practice

When you come to a fixed marker (i.e. spacer) bead on the garland, pause your recitation and allow it to be a wake-up call or reminder:

  • Are you still practicing?
  • Has your mind drifted?
  • How are you feeling?

Sometimes it can be easy to let our mind go on auto-pilot as we repeat an intention outloud. The uncounted spacer bead reminds you: The power is not in the words; but in what they symbolize for you. Are you allowing yourself to be affected by your practice?[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][vc_single_image border_color=”mulled_wine” img_link_target=”_self” image=”1956″ img_size=”medium” img_link_large=”” style=”vc_box_shadow_circle”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][vc_single_image border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” image=”1959″ style=”vc_box_shadow_circle” img_link_large=”” img_size=”medium”][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Allow yourself to dream

After streamlining your intention over 108 counting beads, and cultivating positive emotion thrice along the markers, you come back to the guru bead upon completing one full round of the mala. This symbolic bead, also known as the mother bead, represents your creation and all of possibility. When you reach this fixed bead, pause or stop your affirmation recitation. Allow yourself to flex the faculty of your imagination:

  • What experience is it that you really value?
  • Can you imagine that experience as realized in your life?
  • What would that look like? Feel like? Sound like?
  • How would you feel and act living that possibility?
  • As you imagine your intention realized, is there anything you can do or change to make it any more beautiful, any more real?

Should you choose to continue recitations after reaching the mother bead, turn or flip the mala around to proceed counting in the opposite direction. This symbolic act of not ‘stepping over’ the guru bead stands to remind you the value of your inner work.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Benefit from practice

Ideally, you would go around your mala three times a day, for a total of 324 recitations. For some, that can feel daunting; but try it once and you’ll see what internal shifts can happen when you dedicate that much time concentrating on your intention. If you are crunched for time, you can complete one round of the mala, or simply count off to one of the marker beads.

The more you use your mala, the more your intention wears off on the beads, and the more the energy of the beads wears off on you. For this reason, you may choose to wear your mala on your wrist or around your neck after recitation as an added benefit of practice (remove before bathing). As a carrier of the energy you have been building, your mala is both a physical and energetic reminder of your important and powerful inner work.

When out of use, stow your affirmation mala in a safe and respected place, such as in a pouch or on an altar.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_single_image border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” image=”1958″ style=”vc_box_shadow_circle” img_link_large=”” img_size=”medium”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

How to use your affirmation mala

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A practice of give and take

Starfire’s affirmation malas were designed to be yin-yang balanced. That means, like all things, there is a give and a take:

  • What quality would you like more of in your life?
  • What would you like to express in your words and actions?

Holding the mala in both your hands, or alternatively, wearing it around the neck, you have one gemstone supporting the receiving side (non-dominant hand) and another supporting the giving side (dominant hand). You may choose which gemstone property you would like to support which aspect: That which you give yourself, or that which you give of yourself.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”32px”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”” block_with_background=”” add_default_margin=””][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Breathing In

Become the magnet

As you breathe in, imagine you draw in the qualities of the stone and/or your intention through your non-dominant side. You might imagine yourself like a magnet, with the whole side of your body drawing this quality in. As you draw it in, you may imagine it flowing into the area of your mala’s focus, e.g. root chakra in the case of the adjacent black obsidian and moonstone mala.

State your intention

Add a statement appropriate to your intention with the breath if you would like. For example, if I draped black obsidian over my non-dominant side, as with the above moonstone and black obsidian affirmation mala, I could say “I breathe in spaciousness,” as I simultaneously imagine my root filling out into and being held within this boundless and protective space.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text block_with_background=””]

Breathing Out

Become the vessel

As you breathe out, imagine drawing in and channeling the quality of your intention or appropriate gemstone through and out your dominant side. How would you like to meet the world? What would you like to give, to express, or to become in effect? Can you allow yourself to imagine that quality naturally flowing through you?

State your intention

As you breathe out, you may couple this body experience with words, such as “I breathe out calm,” when moonstone is draped over the dominant side for example. Allow yourself to be affected by your imagination of this quality. How would it feel to resonate with calm, for instance? Can you find that quality in your body, mind, or memory, in order to draw it to the forefront of your experience?[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

how to cleanse stones energetically
Stones (Rocks - Minerals - Gemstones)

How to Cleanse Stones (Rocks, Minerals, and Gemstones) Energetically

“To experience dis-ease is to experience a total or partial disconnection from wholeness, a loss of awareness of the innate and universal source of perfection. The members of the mineralogical kingdom have been used for centuries to act as catalysts and to assist one in becoming re-united with that source.” –Melody, Love is in the Earth (32)

Rose quartz and clear quartz stonesChoose a stone

You don’t have to be a specialist in mineralogy, petrology, or gemology to appreciate the countless benefits of working with stones. I think I was first introduced to them by my Reiki Master/Teacher in 2003? 2004? We’d go down to the shop in San Francisco and try holding the different tumbled rocks in our hands, feeling out which felt most appropriate for what we needed at the time. There’s a lot of intuitive connection people can find with stones. Not only can one feel drawn to a particular type of stone, but even to a particular one within a collection of that stone (e.g. one specific piece moonstone within a bin of moonstone pieces). You might consider feeling out and choosing the piece that is particularly appropriate for you and what you’re going through.

Why we cleanse stones

Once you’ve decided on a stone, there are a number of ways you can work with it (I’ll leave that for a later post). As a precaution before working with it, it’s always best to cleanse your stone energetically. You might think of this as an energetic dusting, dusting off any attachments people have had to the piece, or any anger, fear or grief that had inadvertently accumulated on the stone. Your intention in cleansing the piece is to refresh its natural vibration, welcoming its wisdom and inviting its participation in supporting your efforts towards manifesting that which is in the greatest and highest good for all.

Depending on the method used, cleansing your stones can be as fast as 15 seconds to one week.

When to cleanse stones

In addition to clearing the stones when you first get them, you will likely want to ‘refresh’ their energy as you continue to work with them. Some examples:

  • Daily: For pocket stones that are carried with you throughout the day, gemstone jewelry, or stones you sleep with under your pillow.
  • After a healing session: For stones used in healing work or pendulums after use.
  • Monthly: For gridding stones or those kept on one’s altar.

I might also mention here certain stones, like selenite or kyanite, never accumulate so-called ‘negative energy’; for this reason these stones do not need to be cleansed.

How to cleanse stones energetically

smudge is a way to cleanse stones energetically

A sage smudge-stick can be used to cleanse both objects like stones and people, as well.

You might choose to work with a particular element’s assistance; alternatively, you can couple or double or more your efforts with combining multiple techniques. No matter what you choose to do, it’s important to include your firm intention to cleanse the stone of any energy that no longer serves its greatest and highest good. You might hold your stone in your non-dominant hand before and after the cleansing and ask yourself, “How if all does this stone feel different?” It’s fine if nothing comes to you; but it’s always worth inviting to mind what you notice.

Wood element

  • Smudge (sage is ideal). This method is safe and beneficial for all stones.

Fire element

  • Sunlight: Leave your stone in direct sunlight for one day (best done outdoors, as opposed to through a window). Note: This method is not appropriate for all stones, such as opals.
  • White and/or gold light: This is a largely intentional method, in which you are using your intention and concentration to direct white light and/or gold light directly from the universe (or via your third-eye) to the stone. Imagine the light surrounding and penetrating the stone, transmuting any lower-vibrational energies. This method is safe and beneficial for all stones.

Earth element

You can use selenite to cleanse stones energetically

Higher-quality selenite may be clear; however, opaque selenite works just as well for cleansing stones.

  • ‘Dirt bath’: Bury your stone in earth, leaving it to rest and purify over about a week. Obviously, one would want to clean off the dirt before using, which makes this method less ideal for stones in jewelry, etc.

Metal element

  • Quartz: Use a tumbled quartz bed to rest your stone upon for cleansing. Retrieve after 12-24 hours. This method is safe and beneficial for all stones.
  • Selenite: Use a selenite wand to transmute the lower-vibrational energy accumulated on your stone to higher-vibrational energy. You can also lie your stone on top of the selenite as you would do with quartz. This is my favorite technique, using the wand to draw and embed Reiki symbols into the stone. This method is safe and beneficial for all stones.
Cleanse stone in a rolling stream

If you use moving water to cleanse your stones, be sure to place it in an anchored net bag to prevent your friend from washing away!

Water element

  • Running water: You can place your stone in a running stream or river to cleanse it, retrieving it after one to two days. Certain stones may benefit from energizing in the sun after this kind of treatment.
  • Salt/water: You can either bury your stone in sea salt for up to 24 hours, rinsing with pure water and charging it afterwards. Alternatively, you can soak the stone in saltwater placed in a glass bowl/jar and let it cleanse and charge over 24 hours by the full moon and sunlight. This method is not recommended for softer stones, which can dissolve and/or be marred by the salt crystals.


  • Level one practitioners: You can hold the stone between your hands and direct Reiki to clear and charge the stone in the name of its greatest and highest good. Channel Reiki until you feel a shift, and/or for three to five minutes.
  • Level two+ practitioners: Open the Reiki channel, directing Symbol 2 followed by 1 into the stone, intending to clear it of any lower-vibrational energy and to charge the stone for its greatest and highest good. As I mentioned above, I love coupling this with my selenite wand, clearing my Reiki stones in between treatments.

Thank your stone

The more we connect with life, the more we find it in all things. After you’ve taken the time and care to clear and charge your stone, you might express gratitude for its being and its age-old wisdom; you might welcome its willingness to work with you in the name of your greatest and highest good. The more you connect with your stone out of love and appreciation, the more it beams back these qualities to you in your work together. Remember, they’ve been around a lot longer than you — they have so much to offer to those who ask respectfully!

Your Practice

This week, for fun, look at pictures of rocks online or visit your local rock shop. Do any call to you? What catches your eye? Feel free to share in the comments!