I have pretty much abandoned the thought of ever joining another organized religion again after my separation from the Lutherans. Now, I’ve found many things within the variety of faiths that can help us cultivate our spirits on our journeys. I’ve tried psychological practices, and religious rituals among others, and one seems to have stuck with me – the Rosary.
What made me want to try it?
One day, I listened to a podcast from Tammy Peterson, and something about her gentle, down-to-earth voice resonated with me. She talked about her struggles with sickness and more and about meditation and prayer as a helper in those times. Somewhere in the podcast, she suggested that we should try it, as we would not lose anything by doing so.
I did exactly that, and let me tell you, the power of rituals is nothing to scoff at. Having this daily practice has allowed for so much more mental peace and clarity. Though, I sneered at first at the notion of doing anything remotely religious. I didn’t want to do anything that could be traced back to certain traditions. As I grow on my journey, I find myself getting closer to the way I was before, in my childhood. I’m getting closer to God, whatever that entity might be for me. Sometimes this realization still sends cringy shivers through my spine. But the journey of my fall from grace and regaining it is its own long topic for another time.
Fulfilling a need
I’ve found that as human beings, we tend to crave the ritual, for some notion of order within the Chaos. Anyone who claims they relish the dreadful maw of the beast in the depths is out of their mind. I enjoy the time I have alone, exploring my innermost thoughts, my true self that nobody else will ever know. We are all a universe in our own right, that’s something to think about in the dark hours.
As it pertains to the Rosary, it is typically portrayed to be a thing of the Catholics. It’s traditionally a way of meditating on the life of Christ. For me, this is obviously not the way since I’m a blasphemous heretic, not subscribing to the Christian gospels. The Rosary had to be modified to fit the views and beliefs I hold dear. I researched the structure of the Catholic Rosary and followed its themes of it in my own particular way.
I think the Rosary is an amazing tool. It’s well structured with decades, mysteries, and prayers in between. The repetitive mantras help get me into a trance-like state. Oftentimes I find myself having ideas and solutions pop up as I go through the more than 20-minute meditation. And the most surprising thing about this practice is that previously I struggled to meditate for 5 minutes straight! The linear Rosary with all its checkpoints and the end goal helps keep me focused until the end.
The purpose of the Rosaries
The Rosary is traditionally meant for pondering and reflecting on the life of Christ. In my case, however, it’s for the deep dive into everything that is human and life. I take on topics like death, life, God, the divinity within us all, and my purpose and meaning. Modern society doesn’t really seem to think about these, at least I haven’t seen it anywhere outside the traditional circles.
It seems to me like everyone is too busy trying to be progressive. The world rushes to abolish these helpful traditional tools, and that alone makes me look at the world in sorrow. We need to keep thinking and talking about the enormous concepts of the reality we live in. We shouldn’t fall into the trap of thinking that we are the epitome of evolution, the gods on earth.
I usually go through my Rosary in the mornings, or at least before I start preparing food for the day. It sets me into a composed mindset for the rest of the day, helping me cope with the emotional fluctuations. Through the Rosary, I repeat my mantras and instill them into my mind. The harmony I gain from meditation is hard to explain, and I suggest that you try it for yourself. There is indeed nothing to lose and everything to gain, should it be your cup of decaf tea.
I carry the Rosary around my neck for support if my Borderline is gaining too much foothold in my day. In those moments I fiddle with the pendant-like ‘ornament’ dangling on the self-made chain, and go through the mantras. When the brain goes haywire, there’s nothing quite like a crutch of yarn to re-center yourself again!
Removing the Crucifix, the making of the Maverick’s Rosary
As I mentioned, I’m not much of a fan of Christianity, though there are some lessons to be learned. While I utilize the Rosary for my own spiritual growth I also need to wonder how to practically do it. After all, the crucifix is sort of an important element of the whole thing. In the end, I came to the conclusion that I ought to use my craftmanship and make my own. So, I raised my crochet hook once more and got to work.
Thankfully, the interweb holds a host of videos and directions in its magical folds. I soon found a design that was simple and effective enough for my purposes. One clip even had a star to make as the pendant part of it. Albeit, later on, I changed it to the plain ring I have around my neck as I write this article. The ring symbolizes all of the cosmos in its infinite potential, and at one of its many centers is my being.
And then there were the mental effects of committing to the Rosary as I was making it. The process of arranging the ‘beads’, both the smaller decades and the bigger mystery ones, was extremely serene and meditative. Then again, that might just be my inclination to enjoy crochet and other repetitive, creative, and simple things. Either way, it felt like preparation for the practice that would from then on mark my days in deep thought.
Does it work?
I struggled for the first month of my meditative Rosary practice. Eventually, as I kept at it, it became easier and easier. The benefits of spending that time on the Mysteries shaped my mind into being more flexible, accepting, and patient.
Keep repeating things to yourself long enough and it’ll change your brain, that is not exactly new knowledge, is it? And the thing is, the change is, in its special way, addictive. I’ve started to notice that my essence compels me to pray the Rosary if I’ve failed to do so. I have started to crave that brief moment alone with my thoughts.
The benefit of cultivating the self
Practicing the meditative way of the Rosary has helped me cultivate many things. This includes insight into the greater universe around me as much as the realms inside myself. I’ve managed to gain back parts of my childhood free-flow thinking and creativity and can observe the worlds in my mind with ease. And that, my dear reader, is an incredible thing for someone who is taking a gander at this writing thing! The daily meditations also help me keep my Borderline emotions in line, making them more harmonious and noticeably less volatile.
All of the mantras and mysteries on my Maverick’s Rosary are inspired by the original Catholic ones. This tool allows me to grow in a more realistic, accepting, tolerant, and at the same time more insightful manner. I appreciate life itself more, which is a huge step up from the constant idolizing of death in my past.
Last Updated: 07/06/2023