A Song of Longing for Tara

green-tara-063015

Tara is a favorite Buddha in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, with a long history of devotees. One such devotee was Lama Lobsang Tenpey Gyaltsen, who was recognized as a reincarnation of Tara. Already at the age of 18 or 19, he wrote this song of devotion to Tara. Here is the translation done by Lama Thubten Yeshe, taken from here.

A Song of Longing for Tara, the Infallible

From my heart I bow to Divine Mother Tara, essence of love and compassion, the most precious objects of refuge gathered into one. From now until I reach enlightenment, hook me with your great love and kindness to liberate me.

By the witness of the Three Jewels, not just from my mouth but from the depths of my innermost heart and bones, I pray to you morning and evening. Show your blissful face to me, Loving One. Grant me the nectar of your speech.

Great gurus and small gurus cheat us with their made-up teachings, selling Dharma, teaching without comprehension, not observing who is qualified and who is not, being concerned about their own happiness and the eight worldly concerns. Since I can no longer trust friends of this degenerate age, you are my principal guru. Inspire me, Divine Mother, essence of love. Arouse the great power of your compassion and think of me.

I take refuge in you, Tara; like you, no Buddha could ever deceive me. But understanding the odd character of these times, most Buddhas have gone into the bliss of nirvana. Even though they have great compassion, we have no connection. Since for me there are no other deities, you are my principal deity. Bestow realizations upon me, Divine Mother, essence of love. Arouse the great power of your compassion and think of me.

Most Dharma protectors do not show their powers. Tired of those who invoke them, they do not act. Other protectors, lacking insight but proud of their power, may be friendly for a while but will later do me harm. Since I cannot rely on other protectors, you are my principal protector. With divine action, Wisdom Mother, essence of love, arouse the great power of your compassion and think of me.

To ordinary view the names of objects are the same as their meaning. Like this, they produce afflictions and bind us to samsara. When it is time to die, unless I understand the true nature, could a wish-fulfilling gem enable me to carry even a sesame seed with me? Since I do not trust in illusions, you are my real richness. Please grant my desires, Divine Mother, essence of love. Arouse the great power of your compassion and think of me.

I cannot rely on non-virtuous friends for even a day. They pretend to be close to me and all the while have in mind the opposite. They are friends when they wish it and enemies when they don’t. Since I cannot trust in this kind of friend, you are my best friend. Be close to me, Divine Mother, essence of love. Arouse the great power of your compassion and think of me.

You are my guru, my yidam, my protector, my refuge, my food, my clothes, my possessions and my friend. Since your divine quality is everything to me, let me spontaneously achieve all that I wish.

Although I am overwhelmed by my habitual, uncontrolled mind, please cut these self-centered thoughts so I will be able to give my body and my life millions of times without difficulty to each sentient being. Inspire me to be able to develop this kind of compassion to benefit all.

Empower me to cut the root of samsara, self-grasping, and to understand the pure doctrine, the most difficult middle way free from the errors of extremes.

Inspire me to practice as a bodhisattva, turning away from what is worldly, dedicating all my virtues to teaching living beings, never for even one instant thinking of just my own happiness. Let me wish to attain Buddhahood for the benefit of all.

Empower me to actualize as much as possible the most subtle vows and to keep them without a careless mind, thus becoming the most perfect bodhisattva.

Outwardly, let me be simple in my practice, while inwardly, actualize the depth of the diamond vehicle with the strong wish to practice the two stages. Inspire me to attain enlightenment quickly for the benefit of all.

Divine Wisdom Mother Tara, you know everything about my life—my ups and downs, my good and bad. Think lovingly of me, my only mother.

I give myself and all who trust in me to you, Divine Wisdom Mother Tara. Being completely open to you, let us be born in the highest pure land. Set me there quickly with no births in between.

May the hook of your compassion and your skillful means transform my mind into Dharma and transform the minds of all beings, whoever they are. They have all been my mother, the mother of one unable to follow the Conqueror’s teachings.

By reciting this prayer three times a day and by remembering Divine Wisdom Mother Tara, may I and all beings who are connected to me reach whatever pure land we wish.

May the Three Jewels and especially the Divine Wisdom Mother, whose essence is compassion, hold me dear until I reach enlightenment. May I quickly conquer the four negative forces.

If, as long as you live, you recite this prayer three times every day, not just from the mouth (in words only) but strongly linked with your mind, you will have close connection and will see Tara’s face. No hindrances will be experienced and all wishes will be fulfilled. You will have a close relationship with all Buddhas and bodhisattvas, and they will hold you dear. If you recite the Homage to the Twenty-one Taras and this prayer, you will attain the Divine Liberating Mother.

Colophon: This prayer to Venerable Tara, in heart words making his own requests and also non-deceptive to others, was composed by the Buddhist monk, Lobsang Tenpey Gyaltsen, in his nineteenth year, the Water Mouse year (1852), on the third day of the miracle month (second month of the lunar calendar) at Bengar Namgyal Ling. It is sure to have great benefit.

Dangers of Sectarianism in Buddhism

When His Holiness the 17th Gyalwai Karmapa met with the Tibetan community in Wisconsin, he warned about the dangers of sectarianism to Buddhism. From the notes from this gathering, it notes:

Sounding a serious note of warning against the effects of jealousy and sectarianism, His Holiness the Karmapa cited scriptural sources that indicate that the teachings of a previous dispensation, that of Buddha Kashyapa, degenerated and were finally lost due to the laziness of his followers. By contrast, the Karmapa said, Buddha Shakyamuni foretold that his teachings would be brought to ruin by disputes among the holders of his teachings.

“Strife between religious lineages is the worst, the most serious form of strife,” he said.

“The lineages of Tibetan Buddhism carry different names based on the lama or monastery transmitting them,” the Karmapa said, “but the actual content that is being transmitted is essentially the same: the realization of emptiness, the cultivation of bodhichitta and the unification of sutra and tantra. When we speak of it, we often make it sound as if there were huge differences, but  at heart we are basically all the same.”

Rebuilding Lawudo Retreat Center in Nepal

lawudo_gompa

The Lawudo Retreat Center was started by Lama Zopa Rinpoche, and was the retreat area of his former reincarnation, the Lawudo Lama. During the 7.9 magnitude earthquake in nepal, the propery sustained extensive damage.

To date, $50,000 has been donated by the Nepal Earthquake Fund to help in the rebuildling effort. To help contribute to the rebuilding of the Lawudo Retreat Center, read more here.

Trulshik Rinpoches reincarnation found

Trulshik Rinpoche was one of the senior most teachers of Tibetan Buddhism, being a disciple of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and Dudjom Rinpoche. He was also a teacher to many influential teachers, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

The reincarnation was recognized by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and the he was born in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Read more about the recognition here.

Benefits of the Guru Rinpoche Mantra

"Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche) is perhaps the most universally cherished realized being in all of Tibetan Buddhism. Padmasambhava came to Tibet from India in the 8th century and helped establish a pure lineage which is still practiced today by all four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism around the world." - FPMT Padmasambhava Project for Peace

“Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche) is perhaps the most universally cherished realized being in all of Tibetan Buddhism. Padmasambhava came to Tibet from India in the 8th century and helped establish a pure lineage which is still practiced today by all four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism around the world.” – FPMT Padmasambhava Project for Peace

A fairly simple mantra to memorize and recite, but has powerful benefits is the Guru Rinpoche mantra, which is:

OM AH HUNG VAJRA GURU PADMA SIDDHI HUNG

Benefits of reciting the mantra

Such an easy to recite mantra has various benefits, and an excerpt of its benefits is found here:

Even one hundred recitations per day without interruption will make you attractive to others, and food, wealth and enjoyments will appear effortlessly. If you recite the mantra one thousand, ten thousand, or more times per day, you will bring others under your influence with your brilliance, and blessings and powers will be continuously and unobstructedly obtained. If you perform one hundred thousand, ten million or more recitations, the three worlds will come under your power, the three levels of existence will fall under your glorious sway, gods and spirits will be at your bidding, the four modes of enlightened activity will be accomplished without hindrance, and you will be able to bring immeasurable benefit to all sentient beings in whatever ways are needed. If you can do thirty million, seventy million or more recitations, you will never be separate from the Buddhas of the three times nor ever apart from me; thus, the eight classes of gods and spirits will obey your orders, praise your words, and accomplish whatever tasks you entrust to them.

“At best, practitioners will attain the rainbow body; failing that, at the time of death, mother and child luminosities will meet; and at the very least, they will see me in the bardo and all their perceptions having been liberated into their essential nature, they will be reborn in Ngayab Ling and accomplish immeasurable benefit for sentient beings.

Supporting the Padmasambhava Project for Peace

Guru_Rinpoche

6.5 ft statue of Guru Rinpoche in Osel Ling, Spain

 

The FPMT is undertaking a project of building several large Padmasambahava (also known as Guru Rinpoche) statues all over the world. The benefits of building such large statues is that it creates peace in the surrounding areas and helps the spread of the Buddha’s teachings. To date, 19 large statues have been created. To learn more about this interesting project, click here.

Rebuilding Benchen Phuntsok Dargyeling Monastery in Nepal

Benchen

As many people know, many of the monasteries in Nepal were severly damaged or destroyed during this years earthquakes. One such monastery that was on the brink of being demolished is Benchen Phuntsok Dargyeling Monastery, situated near the Swayambhu Stupa, and which takes care of 300 monks.

A recent campaign has been started to raise funds for helping in restoring this monastery. To learn more about this campaign and how to donate, click here.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,918 other followers