How are Mahi malas blessed?
Bali is not mistakenly called the “island of the gods”. This island’s connection to the spirit world has not been broken, even in modern times. For a Balinese person, life is an offering full of ritual and prayer. There is a reason why Mahi is at home in Bali and we will share with you why. As we were drawn to the idea of creating malas and providing an accessible entry to meditation, we decided to create Mahi malas in a traditionally aligned way. For this reason, our malas are hand made and strung by a traditional balinese family. According to Balinese tradition, these malas can only be made when the creator is in a good mindset. He does not create these malas when he is too agitated, too sleepy, or when full of anger or worry, as it is believed that the energy will be transferred into the mala.
Watch how the Malas are being blessed:
After the mala is created, Ida Resi Alit, the youngest High Priestess of Bali, conducts a blessing ceremony that is both deep and very beautiful. This ceremony is closely linked to ancient teachings, and includes activating the malas by blessing them with mantras, a sequence of symbolic movements, Balinese offerings, and holy water.
And who exactly is Ida?
Ida Resi Alit is a highly respected Balinese High Priestess with a beautiful story of inspiration and healing. She was born within the central highlands of Bali in a small village in Bangli. In her late teens, Ida was riddled with depression and struggled in life and spirit. Soon, she was taught meditation from a dear relative and began to pick up the practice in order to soothe her worries. The first time she tried meditation she “just felt bored” (You are not alone in this!) but then something happened:
“Then one time I was meditating and my body started to feel very strange. I felt sick to my stomach and started chanting in a language I didn’t know. Afterwards, I tried to repeat the chants but I could not remember what I’d said. But for the first time in my adult life, I felt really calm. I felt good. Before my mind was always so busy and crazy, but suddenly I was at peace. From that point on I started meditating every day, and at every meditation I started chanting these strange words. Then one day I was meditating and I entered a trance. My family started worrying. ‘Why is she in meditating so long?’ they asked. When they checked my body, they saw I was cold. My skin was white. I had no pulse. I had stopped breathing and they thought I was dead. So my uncle said if I live, he will make me a priestess.”
Along with her awakening from this experience, she brought wonder and worry, but soon it was seen that Ida’s experience was a beautiful one, one of spiritual awakening. The chants she received in the meditations were later identified by the balinese high priests as ancient scriptures that usually get passed along the generations of priests. In 2007, she became the youngest woman ever to have the title of High Priestess bestowed upon them. Ida is unlike most with this honor in regards to her age, caste and gender, yet here she is, a highly respected Water Priestess. We are honored to have Ida on board with our mission of bringing meditation to a larger community and love that she performs beautiful traditional blessings upon each of our malas before they are sent out all over the world.