What is a Red String Bracelet?
Throughout history and across philosophies, the red string has been worn for protection, faith, good luck, strength, and connection. While there are different views about the properties of red thread, it's viewed as a powerful tool across cultures.
Today many people use it as a reminder that they're not alone. It's also a symbol of being loved, supported and, feeling safe and secure. For others, it's a prompt to stay positive while facing any adversity.
There's no denying this powerful tool aids in living mindfully and assists the wearer in utilizing the power of thought.
Before we dive into the different ways you can wear and use your red string bracelet, let's start by learning a bit more about its history. So often, ancient cultures and traditions are watered down and recycled merely for commercial purposes.
At Karma and Luck, we care about your experience and maintaining the authenticity of our products. We believe it's essential to respect and honor the cultures these traditions come from. Part of this is learning more about the origins and the unique ways to use our products on your personal - journey toward growth.
WHERE DOES THE RED STRING ORIGINATE?
The origins of the red string can be found in multiple cultures, namely, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Kabbalah, and Ancient Chinese lore.
In Hinduism, a red (also sometimes yellow or white) thread is worn by married women on the left wrist and by men and unmarried women on the right. The red string is viewed as sacred and gets used in many religious celebrations and traditions.. As a way for people to feel connected, the red string was worn as a symbol of good luck and protection.
Kabbalah is the mystical form of Judaism. In ancient Hebrew texts, Rachel, the Joseph’s mother,, tried to conceive for years without success. She's believed to have been infertile until, finally, she gave birth to Joseph. She died during the birth of her second son, Benjamin. At her death, her only priority was to keep children safe and protected from evil. That's why Rachel is still revered as a holy mother figure.
A ritual in her honor is tying a red string around her tomb seven times to infuse it with the energy of protection and luck. After removing the string from Rachel's tomb, it gets cut into bracelet-sized lengths. It's tied to the left wrist while reciting a prayer for protection. The belief is that the bracelet wards off evil.
Not everyone has access to Rachel's tomb,- so today , the red string can be knotted seven times while repeating a Kabbalah bracelet prayer.
In lineages of Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism, tying a cord or string around the wrist is common during ceremonies. The thread gets blessed by a Lama (Buddhist leader) and given to students and practitioners to represent lessons learned or mark the occasion of taking Buddhist vows.
Traditionally, the Lama blesses the string and then ties a knot and imbues it with a mantra. Similar to other traditions, it's said that these red cords bring luck and offer protection. They also serve as a constant reminder of vows if received during a vow ceremony or lessons if received during a retreat.
A scarlet thread wrapped around the hand of two biblical figures, Pharez and Zarah, appears in Genesis 38 in the Bible. In the passage, the thread symbolizes redemption.
Ancient Chinese Legend
In ancient Chinese legend, the Red Thread of Fate is - invisible and ties all those whose lives will intertwine together. It is governed by the Chinese God of marriage, Yue Lao, as it's primarily associated with the link between two people destined to be married.
A MODERN SPIN ON THIS CLASSIC TRADITION
Because this tradition stems from many cultures, it's been changed and altered over time into a modern practice that blends all traditions. Do a bit of research, and you'll find people using it in various ways, which can sometimes be contradictory.
You may be thinking, "what should I do, and how should I wear my red string bracelet?"
If you're feeling that way, don't worry, you're not alone.
And we've got your back!
First, let's look at some popular ways to wear the red string -
Some wear it on the left wrist only, as that's known in Kabbalah as the "receiving" side of the body, and it's the side closest to the heart. Many other cultures believe the same.
Many also believe that cutting the red string off the wrist is bad luck. They think you wear the red thread until it falls off on its own. Furthermore, once it falls off, the wish or intention you set when tying it has come to fruition or is about to shortly.
CREATE YOUR OWN RED STRING RITUAL
At Karma and Luck, we believe you make your own luck. If you want to believe that cutting off or removing your bracelet is bad luck, you certainly can - but it's essential to know that you have options.
Here's why we wanted you to know about the history and the current traditions: we want you to utilize that knowledge to work with the red string in a way that best suits you. You are unique, and how you use it can be as individual as you.
The red string can serve as an opportunity to redirect and realign your core beliefs. It can serve as a reminder of your goals, of who you are, and who you most desire to be. It can serve as a reminder of a connection between you and a loved one. It can make you feel like you're safe and protected. It can aid in helping you feel prosperous and lucky.
There is no shortage of ways you can work with your red string bracelet. By honoring traditions and cultures and staying connected with your core values and desires, you can create your ritual that best serves you in utilizing your red string bracelet.
How beautiful is that!?
So you get to decide. What does this red string represent to you? Is it the red string of fate from Ancient Chinese tradition that binds you to those you're destined to meet? Or is it more of the Kabbalah or Hindu view, serving as protection and good luck?
Or is it something else to you entirely?
When I was a Soul Camp counselor, there was a beautiful tradition at the end of each camp where we were each given a red string of fate. We were asked to envision something for this string to represent.
I remember one of my strings represented how I desired to show up in the world. Another expressed a big, scary life goal that I have. Whatever it was, we shared that vision with a friend who would tie the string on our wrist, and we would do the same for them, binding ourselves to this vision.
It felt sacred! I would look at that red string on my wrist multiple times daily and be reminded of all of the incredible people I am connected to worldwide. It would simultaneously remind me of my soul family, in addition to the goals and visions I set for myself with the knotting of the string.
The red string connects us to what we desire and want to keep in our minds daily.
5 STEPS TO USING YOUR RED STRING BRACELET
You're about to create your ritual for working with your red string bracelet. Do it for your own highest, most loving good, based on your knowledge of the ancient traditions and cultures, along with your desires.
STEP 1: IDENTIFY YOUR WHY
Take a moment and think about what you want this red string to do for you. Why do you want this string? Is it for protection? Love? Good luck? As a reminder of something?
What's your why for having a red string?
In a notebook, write down the question: "Why do I want a red string bracelet?"
Allow whatever comes to mind to flow through you. Do not edit your words; write what comes. There's no right or wrong
Step 2: Create Your Ritual
Many of the traditions have rules and special techniques utilized with the red string bracelet. You get to decide which of these work for you.
To help you out, keep your journal out as you answer these questions:
- Of the cultures and traditions you read about, which resonated with you most and why? You may find that it's a mix of cultures and traditions that you resonate with. It doesn't have to be just one.
- Is it important to you that the bracelet be worn on a specific wrist? If so, which one and why?
- Think about your “why” from the previous step. Using your why, what is your intention for this bracelet? Example: “My intention is that this bracelet helps me remember to believe in positive solutions to all circumstances” or “This bracelet helps me remember my connection to my loved ones,” or, simply “This bracelet brings me good luck, love, and fortune.”
- How do you wish to create your intention? As you’ve noticed in many cultures, it involves giving it a blessing or tying a knot. This answer can be as simple as holding the bracelet close to your heart while thinking of your intention. You could also come up with something more elaborate and create a ceremony where you light a candle, sit in meditation, and envision the intention permeating throughout the bracelet before wearing it. As part of this, decide if there’s any special way you plan to put it on. For example, you may get a bracelet for you and a friend and have each other put it on for one another as a symbol of connection. You can hold space for each other's intentions.
- After it’s on, how does it serve you? Let yourself journal about how you desire to work with this bracelet. Do you wish to use it to help you stay more mindful - more connected to your intentions? What happens if it falls off? Is that good luck or bad luck? What do you do to take care of it?
After you’ve jotted all of that down, you can move on to the next step.
STEP 3: CHOOSE YOUR RED STRING BRACELETWe offer a wide variety of beautiful options at Karma and Luck. The choice is yours. Whatever you go with will serve you. Consider how you feel when you look at it when making your decision because this is how you'll feel every time you look at it while wearing it. If it makes you feel good when you look at it's a sign of good choice.
STEP 4: PRACTICE THE RITUAL YOU CREATED
Once you have your red string bracelet, go back to your notes and look over the ritual you created. If you've come up with any other ideas, go ahead and add them. As soon as you have everything you need, you're ready to begin. You absolutely cannot get it wrong.
Even if you don't have your own personal Lama, guru, or spiritual teacher to walk you through it, it doesn't matter. You have everything you need within you to practice this ritual that you created. It is unique and sacred just because you make it so. Enjoy this step!
STEP 5: WEAR YOUR BRACELET!
Now you get to reap the benefits of your red string bracelet! You set your intention for it, chose the perfect bracelet, create your ritual, and now you get to use this bracelet and enjoy all of its benefits.
We hope this article served you! If you did your ritual, let us know in the comments below.
Much love from your Karma and Luck family.