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Power Beads (Mala or Energy Beads)
New June 2
Question: The mother of one of my Sunday School students (4th grader) has asked me about the new "power beads" that are the latest craze among the children. Apparently they are being marketed as the answer to all your needs, e.g. a certain color or type of stone for healing. I told her that new agers believe that crystals have power and that this is not a Godly thing, that He is our one and only source. However, I think she is looking for some printed material that she can take to the school principal (church school) to get the power beads addressed and "outlawed." Do you know of something or have materials on "power beads"?
Answer: You are right! This new fad clashes with God's guidelines and promotes faith in "other gods" and forces. The most persuasive arguments come from websites that promote this new fad. For example, The Bead Site tells us that ""Mala is Hindi (from Sanskrit) for 'a string of beads' or 'a garland.'" It explains that "the prayer strand is a Hindu invention, from which it passed into Buddhism (an offshoot of Hinduism) and Islam, eventually reaching Christendom." (Webmaster Peter Francis, Jr., explained to us that he is not "promoting" Power Beads but " merely reporting on them.")
Another website, Tiger, Tiger, also offers beads from China as well as from Burma and other parts of the world. But it tells us that Power (or Mala) Beads are rooted in Tibetan Buddhism:
Wrist Malas, Good Fortune, & Power Bracelets
Lately popularized as 'Power Beads' or 'Power Bracelets', Tibetan Buddhist wrist malas have been used for centuries as a way of having one's prayer beads close at hand at all times. The Chinese style with beneficent figures or characters are known as 'Good Fortune' Bracelets. Mala is the Nepali word for necklace, literally, 'string of beads'.
Finally, the website Timeless Charms ties the Power (or Mala) Beads to a broader, more blended version of Eastern or New Age spirituality. Notice how it fits the Global Spirituality taught in our public schools and envisioned by UN leaders and globalist educators:
"Power Bead Bracelets (sometimes called prayer or mala beads) THE HOTTEST CRAZE THIS YEAR !! Using the oldest powers on Earth. Trendy stores are selling out within hours! ... Hollywood celebrities from the East and West are wearing them as seen in major magazines. Thought by many to be the bracelet for the MILLENNIUM. Centuries ago spiritual researchers of the East found that certain stones possess different powers. When these stones are worn they are said to emanate their amazing powers to the wearer. Now YOU have the opportunity to help awaken your inner spirits to live a more compassionate, enlightened, and balanced life. A traditional genuine stone Power Bead bracelet has small beads and one larger bead (said to represent Buddha). They are strung using elastic cording so one size fits all. These Power bracelets are worn by men and women, making them the perfect gift for anyone. You can wear them together for 'inspirational blossoming' or separately for a new deeper focus of guidance."
The same site lists the supposed powers of each stone and bracelet. As in animist and earth-centered cultures -- past and present around the world -- those who own or wear the magic charm can simply trust a magical charm to supply whatever they need or want at the moment. No need for God's gracious healing, wisdom or strength. No need for forgiveness to feel good about oneself. The charm's link to universal love and power supplies it all. Look at some of its promises:
BLACK ONYX - Will Power and Courage
AVENTURINE - Success
WHITE ONYX - Intuition and perception
ROSE QUARTZ - True love
YELLOW JADE - Inner Beauty
LAPIS - Heightening inner senses
TIGER'S EYE - Creativity and mind power
INDIA AGATE - Self-acceptance
TURQUOISE - Better health and spirit
NEVADA LAPIS - Harmony between heart and mind
WOOD JASPER - Harmony of spirit
RHODONITE - Open Mindedness
ROCK CRYSTAL - Strength and long life
SODALITE - Self-esteem
RED JADE - Passionate love and desire
WOODEN BUDDHA (with Tassel and Lettering) - Harmony in life
RIVERSTONE - Helps overcome fears
BODHI SEED - Good Luck
YELLOW QUARTZ - Balance caution and fear
There are several reasons why Power Beads are far more dangerous to a child's faith today than they would have been twenty years (see Bewitched by Harry Potter). One reason is simply that the pantheistic spirituality behind the Power Beads is reinforced through popular movies, music, television, games (see The Dangers of Role-Playing Games), books, and Multicultural Education. Keep in mind, the key purpose of the latter is not to help children understand the truth about other cultures but to use the revised history and myths of other cultures as needed models for the new global spirituality and ethic. Superstitions, beliefs and practices once considered outside Biblical boundaries and forbidden by God have now become far more "normal" and acceptable than Biblical Christianity.
Finally, remember Deuteronomy 8:9-13 and consider the warning in Deuteronomy 8:10-20. A nation that pursues "other gods" and fails to give God credit for His blessings and love will no long continue to enjoy His protection:
"When you have eaten and are full, then you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you. Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments... lest when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them... your heart is lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God.... [ T]hen you say in your heart, My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth.
"[I]f you by any means forget the Lord your God, and follow other gods, and serve them and worship them, I testify against you this day that you shall surely perish.As the nations which the Lord destroys before you, so you shall perish, because you would not be obedient to the voice of the Lord your God."
But to those who trust and follow Him, God promises a place of spiritual safety, no matter what happens all around us. To understand the joy, peace and confidence of being "hidden in Christ", click on Armor of God and follow His guidelines. Remember His promise to those who love and follow Him:
"At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him." (John 14:20-21)
K. DeVita sent this information: This site, Care and Use of Your Mala, (under 'Meditation Supplies') "seems to be along the same lines as the Mandalas which my son was asked to create....another way to focus on spiritual energy." Ponder these paragraphs in the light of God's Word:
"What is the purpose of a mala? The purpose of the mala from the Buddhist or Hindu traditons is for counting during recitation of sacred mantra, such as, "Om Mani Padme Hum," or "Om Tare Tam Soha." Of course, one can use it for any sacred prayer from any spiriutal or religious tradition.
"What does mala mean? Mala (ma-la) in Sanskrit, the ancient sacred language of the Vedas, Upanishads, Rig Vedas, and great Buddhist literature roughly means, "Rose" or "Garland." A more direct translation is "garland from above," or "heavenly garland." In the Hindu and, sometimes certain Buddhist traditions, it is also called a "japamala." In the Mahayana Zen traditons they are also called, fozhu and ojuzu, which in other languages expresses roughly the same meaning".
K. DeVita also sent information that ties Mala Beads to Feng Shui.