A lot of people ask us why malas have 108 beads and why we are the 108 mala project. Since Adam and I learned about malas in Shangrila on the boarder of Tibet, we take the modern Tibetan approach to malas and meditation.
And here is the short story, Mantras should be said in sets of 100 during your meditation. There are 108 beads on your mala, so the extra 8 beads are just in case and to sure you got your 100 mantras counted!
108 is the most holy number in Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Jainism.
If you are interested in a little more history and information about the mala counting here are some facts for you.
Buddhist malas have 108 beads, but counting the 3 spacers beads, a total of 111 beads. Many ideas in Buddhism come from Hinduism, so 108 is an important number in both Buddhism and Hinduism.
9 x 12= 108. Both 9 and 12 are significant numbers in Buddhism.
There are 108 earthly desires.
Powers of 1, 2, and 3 in math: 1 to 1st power=1; 2 to 2nd power=4 (2x2); 3 to 3rd power=27 (3x3x3). 1x4x27=108.
There are 108 energy lines leading to the heart chakra.
There are 54 letters in the Sanskrit Alphabet, and 54 x 2=108
There are 108 evils one must overcome in order to find enlightenment.
Some say that there are 108 beads to allow for the mantra to be repeated 100 times, with room for error.
There are 108 Upanishads
There are 12 constellations, and 9 arc segments.
There are 12 houses and 9 planets.
There are 108 names of Indian goddesses.
Lord Krishna had 108 gopis.
The diameter of the sun is 108 times the diameter of the earth.
108- 1 plus 8 equals 9
It is said that there are 108 paths to God.
Some Buddhists ring a bell 108 times to ring in the New Year.
Many Buddhist temples have 108 steps.
Sandalwood, obsidian and 24k gold 108 knotted mala necklace.