Initially, the rosary was a religious attribute inherent in both Islam and Christianity and Buddhism. They were used to count prayers, bows, and other religious rituals. Now, rosary beads are often used not only for their intended purpose, but also as a fashion accessory or even a remedy.
A rosary is a cord or ribbon on which wooden, glass or amber beads or plates of approximately the same size are strung. Often this cord is connected in a ring, but this is not necessary. Sometimes, instead of beads, large knots are tied on the ribbon.
The first rosary appeared in the II millennium BC in India. Then they had only practical value - they used the rosary so as not to think about counting when it was necessary to read a certain number of prayers. Later, this attribute appeared in other religions, receiving a symbolic meaning. Until now, rosary beads are widely used among Muslims and Buddhists.
The rosary also found its application in the Christian church. There is an opinion that in Russia the rosary was introduced into everyday life by Saint Basil the Great, intended for illiterate monks who prayed not from church books, but simply by reading a certain number of prayers. At present, only monks and higher clergy use rosary beads in the Orthodox Church.
As already noted, the main purpose of the rosary is to count prayers, bows and other ritual actions. However, their functions are not limited to this. An equally important task of the rosary is to constantly remind the followers of a particular religion of the need to pray. A rosary in the form of a ring serves as a symbol of continuous prayer.
In addition, they help the person praying to maintain attention and a certain rhythm in the recitation of prayers. Fingering the rosary, a person does not lose concentration, concentrates on prayer. Often they are used in meditative practices to combat sleep.
The rosary is also a kind of distinctive sign. Made in different techniques and from different materials, they can testify to a person's belonging to a particular branch of teaching, as well as the degree of preparation of the student.
In the early centuries in the East, rosary beads were used as flexible edged weapons. Their grains were made of metal and often had sharp, raw edges.
In our time, rosary can be seen even in a non-religious person. Having spread throughout the world, they acquired other functions. So, now the rosary is used both as an ordinary decoration, and as an object symbolizing the special status of its owner (for example, prison rosary-chattering beads). They are widely used for medicinal purposes. Fingering the rosary helps to improve fine motor skills, has a beneficial effect on the rhythm of cardiac activity, and soothes a person in stressful situations.