Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Using Prayer & Meditation Beads

13 Moons Pagan Prayer Bead Set by CellDara
I currently offer two sets of Prayer/Meditation Beads through my Etsy Shop.  In addition I have beaded "stretchy" bracelets which were designed to serve this function in addition to looking good... My designs, whether bracelet or string, were all meant to be inspirational, pretty and functional.  However, since creating them it's come to my attention that many individuals are unaware of both how and why to use beads for prayer and/or meditation.

Personally, I use my set for a number of different reasons.  They serve not only to help my mind focus on devotionals and prayers during ritual, but also as a way to set and focus on goals, expel worry and encourage positivity.  It's for this very reason that I felt it was important to include beads in my shop and why I have always encouraged my students (when the opportunity arose for me to have them) to find a set which spoke to them.  Whether my designs speak to you or not, prayer beads of some form can serve as a beneficial tool for any and everyone, so it's a good idea that you learn to use them.

Prayer beads have a long history, in fact, no one really knows who the first person or culture to use them was.  Most research I have done points to the Catholic Church using them some time during the Middle Ages. But I've found a good deal of proof that the practice of using small beads or pebbles, either on a string or otherwise, was practiced throughout the world by numerous cultures dating well back before written record, so who knows.  In truth, I'm not sure it matters.  Who decided to use them and why 10,000 years ago, or 200 years ago, doesn't affect why or how they can be used today or how they can benefit you and me.  It does however speak to the idea that there is no "right" or "wrong" way to use beads, so long as it's working for you.

Amethyst Meditation/Prayer Beads by CellDara
With this in mind it's important to know that just about any beaded necklace, chain, bracelet, etc. can serve the purpose of prayer/meditation bead.  While many religious and/or philosophical traditions have set rules as to how prayer/meditation beads should be designed, how long they should be, or what they should be made of, in the end such things are irrelevant.  The ONLY thing that really matters is that you connect to the beads in some way.  Maybe they're made from your great-grandmother's favorite necklace, or maybe they're made from a stone whose energy is needed in your life at the time, or maybe you just saw them on a shelf in a store and thought "Wow, I love those!"  No matter why you connect with your beads, all that matters is that you do.  So don't worry about how many beads you have or need, don't worry about the pattern or bead size or shape, just concern yourself with finding a set that speaks to you, a set you want to keep with you.

Once you've found a set that you like, your next goal is learning how to use them. And like any new habit or practice, this takes time.  Don't expect to pick them up and "master" their use in one sitting. In fact, you'll probably want to try them out in a number of different situations to see what feels right for you and your practice.  Of course their original uses all seem to be similar as they were used either to keep track of devotional prayers or meditative thoughts of some sort.  But in fact they can be used for a number of activities today, depending on your beliefs, practices and mindset.

I have no doubt that a few clicks of your mouse will find you a thousand different bead related prayers, songs, meditations, poems, etc, etc, etc...  Maybe even a few that will work for you. But in my experience it's best not to use someone elses material - so I'm not going to be providing you with a step by step prayer like some may. Instead, I've put together a list of suggestions on how you may wish to use your beads in your own life. Keep what works, toss what doesn't. That, of course, is the beauty of life and practice...

Traditional Prayer/Meditation Use:
As I said above, beads were traditionally used to help practitioners keep track of their devotionals or other forms of meditation or prayer.  This is still the most prolific use of beads in spiritual practice today, as it's a common practice by Catholic, Hindu and Buddhist practitioners.  This usage can easily be adapted to fit with your own personal beliefs and practices regardless of your connection to these faiths.

To use the beads in this manner simply grasp the first bead between your thumb and pointer finger, and recite (either aloud or silently) your prayer, devotional, thought or positive statement.  Once finished, move to the next bead and repeat the process.  Depending on your purpose you may want to repeat the same thought/prayer over and over, one bead at a time, all at once, or you may use different thoughts/prayers as you progress, or you may even wish to work your way through the beads as your day progresses...  The point is to help your mind focus, and keep track of your prayer/thoughts as you move forward.

Morning Routine:
One of my favorite things to do with beads is to set my intention for the day with them.  Having a small business, a home to care for and a family of 5 can create an environment where it's difficult to remember to focus on remaining positive and healthy.  And although I am very organized, there is always a monkey wrench tossed in from somewhere. So it's important for me to set my intentions, first thing, and get my day off on the right foot.  This is why before I do anything else, before I even get out of bed, I take the time to work with my beads.

Give this a try by keeping a set of beads by your bed.  Before you have the chance to think "ugh, I don't want to get up" reach for the beads!  Take a deep breath and hold your first bead between your fingers while focusing on one of your emotional or spiritual goals for the day.  Create a simple affirmation out of it "I will remain positive today, even in the face of stress."  Move to the second bead and repeat the process - "I will take time to smell the roses."  And then the third, and so on and so forth...  This allows your brain to focus on the positive FIRST and means that you will always start the day off on the right foot.

Staying Present & Grounding:
Amethyst Om Stretchy Bracelet by CellDara
Use your beads to help you remain in the present, rather than getting so caught up in what will come or what was.  This works especially well if, and after, you've established a morning routine, but it can be used even if that doesn't work for you.

Make sure your beads are on you at all times if you want to try this.  Wear them as a bracelet or necklace, keep them in your pocket or even pin them to the inside of your scrub top is need be.  Then whenever you feel yourself getting worked up because your project is due and you're running late, or because your boss is angry over the day's numbers or because your kid just threw up in the back seat, reach for your beads.  Focus entirely on how they feel in your hand.  Roll them between your fingers and/or hold them in your palm and focus on how they feel. Take a few deep breaths and review your positive thoughts for the day - or create some.  "I will take on all of today's challenges with a smile."  "I am healthy and fulfilled in my life."  Then, after a few moments allow your brain to return to the world around you and take it on full force knowing that you have the tools to handle it.

Many people today practice affirmations.  And there is no question to their benefit.  Using beads to help you keep track of your affirmations is not only easy, but has the ability to help you by focusing your mind fully on the task at hand by engaging your physical body as well as your mental & spiritual bodies.

When using beads during affirmation use them just as you would for prayer or devotion.  Place the first bead between your thumb and first finger and affirm your intention.  Then move to the second.  If you have a long strand with a pattern to the beads, you may wish to use this pattern to dictate how many times your affirm your intentions or when you move on to a second and third affirmation.  However if you have a smaller set (some are as short as 4 -7 beads) you may wish to finish the entire set before moving on to the next affirmation.

End of the Day:
My first practice with beads was as a part of my bedtime routine.  This is a practice I have since allowed to fall away as it simply didn't work as a part of my routine. However, it's still one that I suggest everyone try as you never know what might work for you.

My nightly practice was very similar to what I imagine many of the original users would have done.  I ran each bead through my fingers repeating my nightly prayers, focusing on keeping those around me safe, asking the gods & elements for a rest full night, sound sleep, healthful blessings, etc.  However, in doing some research for this post I found a nighttime routine which I feel is much more worthy of being passed on.  This one comes from an article appropriately entitled "How to Use Prayer Beads" from crystal-cure.com.

It says: "When you are in bed and ready for sleep, pick up your beads and let their texture resonate in your body. As you rediscover each bead passing through your fingers, let yourself feel grateful for your day. It's also important to recognize the pain we might have caused or experienced. By acknowledging the truth of who we are, we can change and grow. As you approach sleep, breathe in and out with an awareness of your body. As you breathe in, focus on your toes, and on the exhalation, relax them. Continue breathing and moving up your entire body until you reach to the top of your head. It's perfectly okay to fall asleep while you are moving up the entire length of your body."

Worry Beads:
This website also included the idea of using beads as a source of calming at times of worry or stress.  I touched on this above, but I like the idea of replacing worry stones with your beads if you'll be carrying them.  I see no need to carry both a stone and your beads.  Of course if the practice of carrying a stone is foreign to you, then maybe adding the beads could be of pure benefit.

Like using them for grounding or to help you remain in the moment.  Using your beads in place of a worry stone, or as "worry beads" is the simple practice of rolling your beads in your hand or between your fingers at times of stress and allowing your mind to focus, only for a moment, on how they feel and (if you use them for affirmations or setting intentions) on the intention that you've put forth.  Allowing our mind to focus, even momentarily, on something positive, at times of stress, has been shown to improve brain function and overall positivity.

These are just some of the ways you can use your prayer beads throughout your day and in your life.  Not all of these will work for you, no doubt.  But if you can introduce just one beneficial practice it can open the doors for others.  Beads need not be fancy, but remember to find a set you enjoy.  If you don't like them, you won't use them.

I'd love to hear from anyone who has a bead practice!  Make sure to comment and let me know how you use your beads!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Grand "After-Fire" REOPENING!!

For those of you who remain unaware, my family and I experienced a house fire on August 12, 2015. Because of this, I was forced to temporarily close my shop.  It's now time to reopen!  And I could NOT be happier!  Although none of the items from my shop sustained any fire damage, they were being kept in an area where smoke was an issue. For this reason ALL cloth, personal care and herbal items have been discarded and all remaining jewelry items have been fully cleaned.

I have made the decision to discount their prices a full 25% to reflect the fact that they were present within the smokey environment!  ALL new prices will be posted as of November 2nd.

HOWEVER, in honor of my GRAND REOPENING!  I am offering an ADDITIONAL 25% off all returning Jewelry Items, AND a full 50% off all Digital Items with use of my AFTER FIRE REOPENING COUPON CODE (found below) from today through November 1st!

Place your order - with 50% off code: AFTERFIRE50 - today! And look for new items (at full price) starting in early November!

Monday, September 28, 2015

SHOP NOTICE - 9/28/15

On August 12th my family and I experienced a small tragedy with the lost of our home and belongings to a fire.  Although people in our area have been extremely generous, it is taking us some time to get our lives back to a new-normal. People have been kind enough to donate clothing and furniture of all kinds, but it is taking some time to get our home together, create new routines, and start to get back to a point where we all feel normal again.

Due to a combination of smoke and water damage many of the items previously featured for sale in my shop have been destroyed. However, I hope to reopen with new items in time for Samhain/Halloween. Digital items remain available for purchase.

All of you, my loyal customers, will be the first to be notified when my shop is reopened with items ready for purchase!

Thanks to everyone for their understanding and support throughout this hard time!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Featured Retail Items for the Week of August 3rd

Each and every week I hand pick 5 amazing items from my Retail aStore to feature both in my shop, and on my CellDara Facebook Page. I will now be featuring them here as well.  Get a peek into some of my favorite items, and maybe find some new favorites of your own!

This week's featured items are:

The Deck of
1000 Spreads
The Deck of 1000 Spreads: Your Tarot Toolkit for Creating the Perfect Spread for Any Situation
Price: $20.38

Spreadcrafting—the art of creating your own spreads—is the hottest trend in tarot today.

The Deck of 1000 Spreads is an utterly unique spreadcrafting tool for tarot readers of all levels. Each oversized, color-coded card features a spread position (such as "situation" or "outcome") and a description of this position. Mix and match the cards to customize a spread for any tarot reading imaginable—or retool the classics. Crafting an infinite array of spreads is easy with this groundbreaking system that can be used with any tarot deck.

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Sterling Silver Moon Phase Lunar Goddess Pendant
From Moonlight Mysteries
Price: $39.99

Beautiful sterling silver lunar goddess pendant. Made of high quality .925 sterling silver. Measure approximately 1 3/8" (34mm) long by 1 1/8" (28mm) wide.
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First Aid Essential Oil Set
From Edens Garden

This collection provides a natural medicine cabinet of powerful essential oils. They are the strongest, natural substance available for protecting, healing and restoring the body and mind. Set Includes 14/ 10 ml of Lavender, Lemon, Peppermint, Tea Tree, Oregano, Frankincense, Ginger, Eucalyptus, Birch, Palmarosa, Wintergreen, Stress Relief, Breathe Easier and Four Thieves. All oils are 100% Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade in a dark glass bottle and includes a euro dropper lid for easy use.

Includes an informational "101 Ways to Use Essential Oils" insert with helpful ways to optimize the therapeutic benefits of essential oils. Whether they are inhaled, diffused, applied topically, added to bathwater or used in body massage these powerful essential oils can bring life-enhancing qualities to everyday.

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The Girl God
By Trista Hendren
Price: $17.09

A book for children young & old, celebrating the Divine Feminine. Magically illustrated by Elisabeth Slettnes with quotes from various faith traditions & feminist thinkers.

"This book will be one I treasure, for it is rare indeed—the articulation of the divine feminine for both children and adults, a bridge between our spiritual beginning and our spiritual future, a spark for the reawakening of humanity." ~ Elizabeth Hall Magill

The book also contains 36 quotes from various faith traditions as well as quotes and poems from Patricia Lynn Reilly, Virginia Woolf, Rumi, bell hooks, Georgia O'Keefe, Z. Budapest, Sojourner Truth, Gloria Steinem, Carol P. Christ, Rita Mae Brown, Alice Walker, Sue Monk Kidd, June Jordan, Judy Chicago and many more!

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Making Herbs Simple
Making Herbs Simple: Volume 1
Directed by Jerit Abart
Price: $24.95

We are so excited to bring you "Making Herbs Simple: Volume 1", where we teach you to identify the herbs in your own back yard. With close-up camera angles and a professional videographer, we introduce you to the wonderful world of herbs and how to use them. No herbal experience is needed for this video. We will take you step-by-step how to find, wash, dry, and store herbs. We teach you the hands-on steps of making poultices, tinctures and much more. This video is packed full of great information in an exciting way. We made this video for you.Shoshanna will take you into the wild, where you can identify herbs, learn what they are good for, and how to make a remedy out of them. Learn how truly simple it is to use herbs.

This fun and educational DVD can be enjoyed by the whole family. It features Shoshanna (Pearl) Easling, Debi Pearl, and Kristen Leonard.

"I just have to say that this is a really neat and informative DVD about basic herb knowledge. Most of it was stuff I had not learned before - as I'm relatively new to the world of herbs. I love the way Shoshanna teaches us all about these everyday herbs in a super easy way to understand.
My whole family has enjoyed watching this thing 3 or 4 times now - and we just got it in the mail last week!"

This product is manufactured on demand using DVD-R recordable media. Amazon.com's standard return policy will apply.

Friday, July 31, 2015

New Etsy Items - July 31, 2015

Four new items have been added to CellDara's Etsy Shop. Make sure to let me know what you think with a comment!

Amethyst Om Stretchy Bracelet
Just $15

Using more than 25 solid and a single "Om" charm this bracelet is perfect for your everyday wear!

Sized to fit most Adult wrists.

Customization Options: Due to the construction, the size of this bracelet can NOT be changed. However, the charm can be. If you have an alternative request please make it BEFORE purchase to ensure that I have the charm available.

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Moon Lover Necklace
Just $25

This necklace is a beautiful addition to any wardrobe. It features 4 Blue Sandstone Beads as well as 2 hand strung clusters of Moonstone chips and is finished with a lovely alloy Moon Charm!

This necklace measures 21" in length including the toggle clasp. Bottom Y section measures at just under 2" long.

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Amethyst Meditation/Prayer Beads
Only $20

Hand made using 2 lovely Alloy Charms and 21 Amethyst beads, these meditation/prayer beads are the perfect fit for your daily meditative and prayer practices.

Customization Options: Due to the nature and construction of this item, customization is limited to charms ONLY. Charm changes are dependent on the availability of alternative charms!

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13 Moons Pagan Prayer Bead Set
Only $18

These Prayer/Meditation Beads feature 13 Faux-Pearls (one for each Full Moon Esbat in a year) and 2 Alloy Charms (a Moon & a Pentacle). They're the perfect addition to your daily or Esbat practices.

Customization Options: Due to the nature and construction of this item, customization is limited to charms ONLY. Charm changes are dependent on the availability of alternative charms!

Jewelry ships $2 first piece, FREE SHIPPING on each additional piece.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Featured Retail Items for the Week of 7/27/15

Each and every week I hand pick 5 amazing items from my Retail aStore to feature both in my shop, and on my CellDara Facebook Page. I will now be featuring them here as well.  Get a peek into some of my favorite items, and maybe find some new favorites of your own!

This week's featured items are:

InnoGear 100ml Aromatherapy
Essential Oil Diffuser
 InnoGear® 100ml Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser 
Portable Ultrasonic Cool Mist Aroma Humidifier With Color LED Lights Waterless, Auto Shut-off Function for Home, Office or Bedroom Room

The first thing you will notice when you power on this diffuser is the plume of mist that rises up, formed by the inside water droplets vibrating.

This is perfect for small to medium sized rooms like a bedroom, dining, bathroom, especially if they are air conditioned or in winter which makes the air dry. Keeping your living space humid helps prevent colds/flu and congestion.

Run your hand through the mist - it's cold. The oil isn't burned like a traditional diffuser meaning the aromatherapy benefits are retained in the oil.

Now hit the light button. The diffuser transforms through 7 colors like a personal rainbow. Hit the light button again and it stays on the color of your choice.

Three Settings toggled by the Mist button (Green/Red/Off):
* Green - intermittent mist (Mist 30 seconds and Pause 30 seconds)
* Red - continuous mist
* Off - You may use it as a color changing light without mist
Auto shut off when water runs out.
Keep essential oil 100% natural without burning or heating.

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• Unique salt candleholder is made from Natural Himalayan salt crystals hand mined in the Himalayan Mountains
• Once lit the candleholder will emit a calming Amber color
• Heating the salt with a tealight candle releases negative ions into the air, creating an effect similar to an ionizer, purifying the surrounding air • Due to the natural variation in Himalayan Crystal salt, weight, size, color and shape may vary
• Candle Type: Tealight ( not included)
• Material: Himalayan Salt Crystal
• Finish: Natural

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White Sage
Smudge Stick 3-Pack

Product Details
3 pack of approximately 3 inch bundles.
For smudging rituals.

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Fit Spirit Green Yoga Starter Set Kit

Smart performance results for the exceptional yoga. Take your yoga experience to the next level with Fit Spirit's professional-quality yoga starter set combo set B. Featuring five of our most sought-after yoga accessories, this starter set provides everything you need and more to master both basic and advanced yoga techniques. Choose your favorite color and conform alongside these accessories to build a stronger and more stable yoga routine. This combo pack includes one yoga mat, one form block, one yoga strap, and two must-have sizes of our microfiber yoga towel. Find the comfort and convenience your yoga routine desires and let your Fit Spirit soar. 

NBR Yoga Mat Maintenance Details 
Your Fit Spirit yoga mat is made to transform your daily movement and way of life while improving your physical aesthetic. Just as maintaining your health should be a part of your lifestyle, so should maintaining the products you use to support your health. To continue using your mat to the best of its ability, we encourage you to perform simple routine maintenance to keep your mat in pristine condition. The positive energy you give to it will channel back to you during your practice.

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Goddess Athame Ornate w/ Sheath 

This athame displays a winged goddess on its pewter sheath, which perfectly accents the scrollwork and goddess that compose the athame's ornate hilt. Cannot ship to MA or CA. 13"

Thursday, July 23, 2015

New Items July 23rd

I've added three awesome new pieces to my EtsyShop this week! Check them out... Make sure to comment & let me know what you think!

Spiral Goddess Necklace
Only $20

Featuring a solid spiral charm & Goddess charm set, this necklace makes a simple yet lovely statement piece for any Witch!

Chain length measures at 21" including a large easy to use toggle clasp.

Design hangs at 2 1/2" in length.

Customisation options: Length in chain can be altered. No customisation to design is available.

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The Witch's Cat Earrings
Available for just $8

Take your protector with you and add some magic to your wardrobe at the same time!

Earrings feature a single Black Agate stone bead each and hang right at 2" in length.

Made using Stainless Steel Earring Hooks

No variations or customisations are available for this item.

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Witch's Baubles & Bubbles Bracelet 2
For just $30

A fun and lovely mixture of charms & beads of all sorts. It's magickally beautiful!

Charms include:
*Cauldron                         *Triquetra
*Whimsical Moon             *Besome
*Star                                 *Tree
*Stag                                 *Wing
*Cat                                  *Chalice
*Athame                            *Spiral Hand
*Rose                                *Conical Hat
Beads are of various materials including polymer, glass & stone.

Bracelet length is 8 inches, including toggle clasp. Length can be slightly altered prior to shipping upon request.

Charm Customisation also available upon request.

Jewelry ships $2 first piece, FREE SHIPPING on each additional piece.