A String & A Prayer


As children, many of us may remember sitting
crossed legged on the floor, stringing wooden beads on thin twine at some point
during our first years of grade school. Still later, we may have tried our
hands a beading on a small bead loom usually found at a local crafts store. A
String & A Prayer
shows us through the origins, meditative and
spiritual aspects of bead work that creating, stringing and using our own
prayer beads need not be a tedious, frustrating time consuming exercise in

Authors Eleanor Wiley & Maggie Oman Shannon
give us a brief but informative history rich in the origins and religious uses
of beads and their cultural importance. They offer references and suggestions
about the symbolism of prayer beads through clear, concise correspondences that
cover topics from color, number and shape meanings, to stone and animal totems,
to charms, amulets, fetishes and talismans.

Included in this useful and personable
"how-to" book are 5 types of prayer bead projects from which to
choose. From the simple "Circle of Prayer" to Eleanor's "Prayer
Bead Shawl" all examples include line drawings or photographs to help
guide you visually as you make your prayer beads and compliment their clear
step-by-step instructions beautifully. If you choose not create a set of prayer
beads exactly as shown, that's okay. The authors encourage beaders to use their
own style and intuition when making a set of prayer beads.

Regardless of whether you want to create and
string a modest prayer bead bracelet or a prayer bead shawl, there's creative
inspiration and wisdom to be found for beaders of all skill levels in A
String & A Prayer

(Originally printed in The Beltane Papers)