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Why are there 108 beads on a mala?

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In India, for chanting we use Mala which contains 108 beads. Now, this question might have crossed the mind of many people that why Mala has a 108 beads, why not some other number. Is there a some reason behind choosing the specified number or choose it randomly. I have done some digging on internet and find out some knowledgeable and shareable stuff.

◾Scientific Reasons:
There are lot of reasons and stories associated behind it. These are following:

Reason 1
It is taken from the number of time the breath taken by human being.

In 24 hrs, human being breath 21,600 times.
In 12 hrs, human being breath 10,800 times.

It is believed that from 24 hours, 12 hours should be taken out for daily work and remaining 12 hours should be utilized for Prayer and Meditation. It means 10,800 breath should be used for Prayer and Meditation. As prayer and Meditation is used to uplift the spiritual power. But due to the busy schedule, it is not possible to do Prayer and Meditation for 12 hours. So, they eliminate the last two zeros from 10,800 and remained 108 to be used for Prayer and Meditation. That's why, 108 beads used in Mala.

Reason 2:
We have 12 Zodiac Signs and 9 Planets.

Zodiac Signs:
Now, when we multiply 12*9 then we get 108. It represents the movement of whole Universe. Thats, why Mala has 108 beads.

Reason 3:
In Hindu Methodology, we have 27 Nakshatras, each with 4 padas.

# Name Pada 1 Pada 2 Pada 3 Pada 4
1 Ashwini (अश्विनि) चु Chu चे Che चो Cho ला La
2 Bharani (भरणी) ली Li लू Lu ले Le लो Lo
3 Kritika (कृत्तिका) अ A ई I उ U ए E
4 Rohini(रोहिणी) ओ O वा Va/Ba वी Vi/Bi वु Vu/Bu
5 Mrigashīrsha(म्रृगशीर्षा) वे Ve/Be वो Vo/Bo का Ka की Ke
6 Ārdrā (आर्द्रा) कु Ku घ Gha ङ Ng/Na छ Chha
7 Punarvasu (पुनर्वसु) के Ke को Ko हा Ha ही Hi
8 Pushya (पुष्य) हु Hu हे He हो Ho ड Da
9 Āshleshā (आश्लेषा) डी Di डू Du डे De डो Do
10 Maghā (मघा) मा Ma मी Mi मू Mu मे Me
11 Pūrva or Pūrva Phalgunī (पूर्व फाल्गुनी) नो Mo टा Ta टी Ti टू Tu
12 Uttara or Uttara Phalgunī (उत्तर फाल्गुनी) टे Te टो To पा Pa पी Pi
13 Hasta (हस्त) पू Pu ष Sha ण Na ठ Tha
14 Chitra (चित्रा) पे Pe पो Po रा Ra री Ri
15 Svātī (स्वाति) रू Ru रे Re रो Ro ता Ta
16 Viśākhā (विशाखा) ती Ti तू Tu ते Te तो To
17 Anurādhā (अनुराधा) ना Na नी Ni नू Nu ने Ne
18 Jyeshtha (ज्येष्ठा) नो No या Ya यी Yi यू Yu
19 Mula (मूल) ये Ye यो Yo भा Bha भी Bhi
20 Pūrva Ashādhā (पूर्वाषाढ़ा) भू Bhu धा Dha फा Bha/Pha ढा Dha
21 Uttara Aṣāḍhā (उत्तराषाढ़ा) भे Bhe भो Bho जा Ja जी Ji
22 Śrāvaṇa (श्रावण) खी Ju/Khi खू Je/Khu खे Jo/Khe खो Gha/Kho
23 Śrāviṣṭha (श्रविष्ठा) or Dhanishtha (धनिष्ठा) गा Ga गी Gi गु Gu गे Ge
24 Shatabhisha (शतभिषा)or Śatataraka गो Go सा Sa सी Si सू Su
25 Pūrva Bhādrapadā (पूर्वभाद्रपदा) से Se सो So दा Da दी Di
26 Uttara Bhādrapadā (उत्तरभाद्रपदा) दू Du थ Tha झ Jha ञ Da/Tra
27 Revati (रेवती) दे De दो Do च Cha ची Chi
When we multiply 27 Nakshatra * 4 Padas then we get 108. This number is considered Holy number. 108 number is also used before the name of Saints and Mahapurush. It means they have attained the Spiritual knowledge.

But by the time, it losts its true meaning and just become a number.

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1 comment:

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