By: Mahanidhi Swami
In Hari Bhakti Vilasa, Srila Sanatana Goswamipada presents this prayer to speak while offering your new tulasi neckbeads to Thakuraji before wearing them:
“O Tulasi kanthi! You are made of tulasi wood and you are very dear to the Vaisnavas. Now I will wear you around my neck, so please make me dear to Bhagavan Sri Krishna.”
Srila Sanatana Goswamipada gives a wonderful explanation of the word mala, which means necklace as in tulasi kanthi mala. He says the word “MA” means “to me,” and the word “LA” means “to give”. Thus the word mala means, “O tulasi kanthi, the beloved of Hari! Please offer me to Krishna’s devotees!
Our Gaudiya padakarta mahajana, Sri Lochana Dasa Thakura, says, “Condemned and abominable persons who never wear tulasi neckbeads will reside in hell. (tulasira hara, na pare je chara, jamalaye basa tara [“Nitai Gaura Nama” bhajan]
Tulasi Kanthi ki jai! Tulasi Maharani ki jai!
Jai Jai Sri Radhe!