Heroic Red Tara (Suryagupta Lineage)

Jan 3, 2016 | Views: 1,300
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In the language of ancient India (Sanskrit), Tara literally means ‘Savioress’. She is a female Buddha with a particularly long history of being worshipped by many great Indian and Tibetan masters.

The practice of Tara originally descended from ancient India during the time of the great Indian Buddhist institutions. In the monasteries and temples of Bodhgaya, Nalanda, Varanasi (Sarnath Park) and numerous other sites of Northern India, one can find numerous images of Tara still surviving. Within Tibet itself, Tara in all her manifestations is found virtually in every major shrine and monastery. Many of these ancient images have shown many miraculous signs in the past to many great masters. These bear testament to the popularity of the worship of Tara.

Within Hinduism, Tara is also worshipped in her wrathful form as one of the ten Mahavidyas of the goddess Durga. It is likely that the Hindu Mahavidya Tara was historically derived from the Buddhist Tara but Hindus incorporated her wrathful manifestation into the Hindu pantheon.

The earliest known image of Tara can be found today on the walls of Cave 6 within the rock-cut Buddhist monastic complex of the Ellora Caves in Maharashtra (7th century CE). According to archaeology, the worship of Tara was established during the early period of the Pala Empire in Northeastern India (8th century CE).

The wall relief carving of Tara in the Ellora Caves dates to the 7th Century. This is the earliest known image of Tara.

 

Praise to the Twenty-One Taras

The twenty-one Taras according to Lama Atisha's tradition where all 21 Taras are visualized as the same Tara but in different colors and with slight variations of facial expressions, gestures, attributes and specialities. Click on the image to enlarge.

Scripturally, the earliest text on Tara is the ancient Praise to the Twenty-One Taras which is included within the Kangyur (the collection of the spoken words of the Buddha). Therefore, it is evident that this praise was originally spoken by Buddha Shakyamuni himself and was later recorded down by one of his disciples from memory. Each of the twenty-one Taras that the Buddha specifically named within the praise actually corresponds to a particular emanation of Tara. Each of these emanations possesses a different aspect of the same female Buddha Tara.

Even the color of each Tara represents the type of activity that the particular Tara embodies. Green Tara represents swift activity and the embodiment of all the other activities, White Tara represents pacification of diseases and longevity, Yellow Tara represents increase and abundance in inner and outer wealth, Red Tara represents the activity of control and power while Blue or Black Tara represents wrathful activity.

Within Tibet, two Indian traditions of the Twenty-One Taras have been disseminated. One tradition stems from the great master Dipamkara Srijnana Atisha who travelled to Tibet to teach. Another was from an older lineage stemming from the Mahasiddha Suryagupta.

The twenty-one Taras according to the Suryagupta lineage. In this lineage, each of the twenty-one Taras manifests in different forms with different numbers of faces, arms, and widely differing gestures and attributes. Click the image to enlarge.

Both traditions are valid and have their own authentic lineage lamas, sadhanas, corresponding mantras and also completely different iconography for each of the twenty-one Taras. The Suryagupta lineage of twenty-one Taras is older and, generally, has more complicated iconography based on the visions of the Mahasiddha Suryagupta.

The entire practice of Atisha’s twenty-one Taras is traditionally bestowed in a single initiation.  On the other hand, Suryagupta’s twenty-one Taras are bestowed an initiation for each of the deities not including the main form of Green Tara. Hence, there are twenty-two initiations included in the Suryagupta lineage of the twenty-one Taras.

 

The Tara-siddha Suryagupta

Very little is known of the Tara-siddha Suryagupta who is also known by the name of Ravigupta. This siddha received the practice of the twenty-one Taras directly from Tara herself. He is called the Tara-siddha because his main practice was Tara and he gained his attainments through Tara.

Suryagupta was born in Kashmir and was reputed to have built up to twelve Dharma centers between Kashmir and Magadha (India). His first guru was the famous master Nagamitra. He was said to have practiced Tara for the last seven lifetimes prior to that lifetime.

According to the Tibetan scholar-translator Taranatha, Suryagupta lived during the time of Chandrakirti, Chandragomin, Shantideva, Acharya Dharmapala (better known as the Mahasiddha Virupa) and so forth.  According to one source, Suryagupta’s connection with Tara began at a famous temple in Kashmir. The image of Tara at this temple was famous during that time for being endowed with miraculous powers. Lepers who came from all over to worship at this shrine were said to have been cured of their ailments. At that time, the Acharya Suryagupta was a great scholar steeped in the knowledge of the five sciences. He was particularly noted to be an adept in Tantra as well. He caught leprosy and so, he traveled to the temple and built a meditational hut to the West of that shrine propitiating Tara.

After three months of intense practice, Tara appeared to him and asked, “What is your wish?” And the Acharya requested to be healed of leprosy. Tara granted his request but left him with a small sore on his forehead.  The Acharya realized this and asked, “What was the reason for not curing the sore on my forehead?”

Tara replied, “You were once a hunter in a previous life, you killed many animals and you even set fire to a forest as well. Consequently, you had to take rebirth in hell for 500 rebirths and this is your last rebirth. That sore is the last vestige of the karma of killing.” After that Tara bestowed an initiation on the Acharya and gave him a sadhana, which was accompanied by some verses of praise. Tara proclaimed, “Whomever practices this sadhana, I shall grant siddhis (spiritual attainments).”   

 

The Heroic Red Tara

Pravira Tara (Tibetan: Rab tu dpa’ ba’i Sgrol ma) or the Heroic Tara is the first of the twenty-one Taras featured in the Suryagupta lineage. Therefore, this Tara corresponds to the first verse of the Praise to the Twenty-One Taras, which is called ‘Praising Tara according to Her History’.

Homage to Tara, The Swift One, The Heroine,
Whose eyes are like a flash of lightning,
Who arose from the opening of a lotus,
Born from the tears of the Protector of the Three Worlds.

The first verse pays homage to Tara for her qualities of swiftness as she is sometimes called the activities of all the Buddhas. It is said that if one takes heartfelt refuge in Tara, one does not need a Dharma Protector as Tara’s blessings and protection are swift enough to eliminate outer and inner obstacles.

She is praised as a heroine, which means that she has ‘conquered’ herself, which is an epithet for a fully awakened Buddha.

She has the sight of a Buddha, which means that she is able to see into the past, present and future simultaneously.  In seeing, she comes swiftly to one’s aid ‘like a flash of lightning’. The later part of the verse refers to a legend that Tara was born from a lotus that grew from the tears of the Bodhisattva of Compassion, Avalokiteshvara, who is also known as the Protector of the Three Worlds – form, formless and desire. The tri-cosmic realms here refer to different plains of existence that the Buddha had described in his teachings.

According to legend, the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara once contemplated the sufferings of beings in the lower realms and attempted to use his powers to remove them from suffering. However, he soon realized that as soon as suffering beings were removed, more beings took rebirth to replace those that were removed. It was apparent that there were no fewer suffering beings than when he first started.

The great Bodhisattva soon realized the futility of rescuing beings in this manner and wept great tears of sorrow. A beautiful lotus bloomed from the tears of the Bodhisattva and within the lotus stood Tara. She comforted the Bodhisattva and vowed to assist Avalokiteshvara in benefitting sentient beings. Thus, the first verse calls to mind this creation story of Tara and this verse also corresponds to the Heroic Tara.

Those who are engaging in the sadhana or practice of the 8-armed Red Tara will be able to turn back the power of others. This Tara is red in color which corresponds with the activity of control. In the case of this specific red Tara, one gains the ability to deflect the negative influence of harmful individuals with authority or influence. This practice can generate the merits to successfully negotiate worldly dealings in the legal and business fields, or in the administration of a secular organization. This Tara can also be propitiated to help one subjugate difficult individuals who pose obstacles to our practice or our work to spread the Dharma.

 

Iconography of the Heroic Tara

We visualize Heroic Red Tara and the details of her iconography during our practice to plant powerful blessings of Tara in our mind stream. Her iconography can be slightly complicated for some people and therefore, having a statue, a thangka or a drawing would be helpful to aid in one’s visualization. Below are general explanations of the meaning of her gestures (mudras) and the implements that she carries. Her eight arms carry the following implements:

Vajra and Bell in the Mudra of Joy – The vajra represents method or compassion and the bell represents the realization of Emptiness. It is explained that one would not be able to identify where the sound of the bell comes from and where it goes. This is often used as an analogy for the Emptiness of inherent existence. Tara carries both implements crossed above her head in what is known as the joy of Dharma. Joy is described in the text as a quality of a Bodhisattva’s perseverance in benefiting sentient beings.

Bow and Arrow – The bow held in the left wisdom hand and the arrow held with the right hand of method or compassion combines to ‘project’ skillful means. Thus, they collectively represent Tara’s skillful means or her ability to use our situation to liberate us and bring swift attainments.

Dharma Wheel – The Dharma wheel represents the Buddha’s teachings and also the spiritual authority of a chakravartin or a universal monarch. Thus, Tara wielding the Dharma wheel signifies her dominion over all beings.

Conch Shell – The conch shell was used as a horn trumpet in ancient times to proclaim the Dharma throughout the land where the conch shell is blown. This signifies the spread of the Dharma, the subjugation of ignorance and the victory of Buddha’s teachings.

Wisdom Sword – The wisdom sword is a blade of wisdom that signifies the ability of Tara to cut through our negative karma, obstacles and ignorance.

Vajra Noose – The vajra noose represents the binding of all harmful beings and obstacles that harm our spiritual practice. On an inner level, the noose represents the ensnaring of the ego and the binding of Tara’s higher wisdom.

 

The Sadhana of the Heroic Red Tara  

The following is the sadhana of Heroic Red Tara according to the lineage of Suryagupta. At the beginning of each section is a commentary, which is not to be recited but to be read prior to engaging in the practice. The commentary includes explanations of the section as well as a guide to any visualizations that need to be done. 

 

REFUGE

[Buddhist refuge is the spiritual reliance upon the Three Jewels as a foundation for higher teachings and practices. The Three Jewels consist of the Buddha, Dharma (the teachings) and Sangha (the spiritual assembly). The Guru is included because the Guru is the inspiration for our faith in the Buddha, the channel through which we receive instructions and teachings in the Dharma that transforms our lives, and the gateway to an entire spiritual community of monastics and lay practitioners who continue to bless us with inspiration. So, when we recite the refuge formula, we invoke the blessings of the Three Jewels to empower our practice.]

 

Taking Refuge

NAMO GURU BEH 
NAMO BUDDHA YA 
NAMO DHARMA YA 
NAMO SANGHA YA 
(Repeat 3x)

I take refuge in the Guru 
I take refuge in the Buddha 
I take refuge in the Dharma 
I take refuge in the Sangha 
(Repeat 3x)

 

Generating Bodhicitta

SANG GYE CHO DANG TSOG KYI CHOG NAM LA 
JANG CHUB BAR DU DAG NI KYAB SU CHI 
DAG GI JIN SOK GYI PAY SO NAM KYI 
DRO LA PAN CHIR SANG GYE DRUB PAR SHOG 
(Repeat 3x)

I take refuge until I am enlightened in the Buddhas, the Dharma and the Sangha. 
By the positive potential I create by practising generosity 
And the other far-reaching attitudes, 
May I attain Buddhahood in order to benefit all sentient beings. 
(Repeat 3x)

 

JE TSONGKHAPA’S GURU YOGA (GADEN LHAGYAMA)

[We visualize Lama Tsongkhapa and our Guru as one while reciting the Guru Yoga and Migtsema. This taps into the merits and blessings of the lineage so that our practice of Red Tara becomes successful.]

 

Invocation

GA-DEN HLA-JI NGON-JYI THUG-KA NEY 
RAP-KAR SHO-SAR PUNG-DEE CHU-DZIN TSER 
CHO-KYI GYEL-PO KUN-CHEN LOZANG DRAG 
SEY-DANG CHE-PA NE-DIR SHEG-SU SOL

From the heart of the Lord of the Gaden devas (Maitreya Buddha) emerges a brilliant white cloud, 
Like a great mass of fresh yoghurt. 
Atop sits Tsongkhapa all knowing, King of Dharma; 
We request your coming to this place along with your great disciples.

 

Requesting to Stay

DUN-JYI NAM-KHAR SING-TI PEE-DEE TENG 
JE-TSUN LA-MA JYEH-PI DZUM-KAR CHYEN 
DAG-LO DE-PE SO-NAM SHING-CHOG TU 
TAN-PA JYEH-SHIR KAL-DJAR JUG-SU SOL

My Lord Guru is seated before me upon a lion-throne, lotus and moon cushion. 
His body is white and he smiles blissfully. 
Please remain many eons and serve as the great merit field for the growth of my mind’s faith, 
And for the increase of Lord Buddha’s teachings.

 

Prostration and Praise

SHE-JYEH CHON-KUN JAL-WEY LO-DO THUG 
KAL-ZANG NA-WEY JYIN-JUR LIK-SHEY SUNG 
DRAG-PI PEL-JYI HLAM-MER DZEY-PI KU 
THONG-THO DRAN-PI DON-DHAN LA-CHAG TSAL

His omniscient wisdom-mind encompasses all that is existent. 
His voice is a profound teaching, which ornaments the ear of the fortunate pupil. 
His body’s beautiful radiance evokes wondrous admiration. 
To Lama Tsongkhapa whom merely viewing, hearing or contemplating earns one great merit, I make prostration.

 

Offering

YIH-WONG TCHO-YON NA-TSOG ME-TOG DANG 
DRI-JEM DUG-PO NANG-SAL DRID-CHAB SOG 
NGO-SHAM YIH TUL TCHO-TIN GYA-TSO DI 
SO-NAM SHING-CHOG CHE-LA CHO-PA BUL

I present to you, great field of merit, Tsongkhapa, 
Beautiful offerings, water, a display of flowers, fragrant incense, butter-lamps, 
Perfumes and more both physical and mental offerings, 
Vast as the clouds and wide as the ocean.

 

Confession

DAG-GI TO-MEY DU-NEH SAG-PA YI 
LU-NGAG YIH-KYI DIG-PA CHI-JYI DANG 
CHEY-PA DOM-PA SUM-JI MI-TUN SHO 
NYING-NEH JO-PA TRAH-PO SO-SOR SHAG

The unwholesome actions of body, speech and mind, 
which I have accumulated over a measureless period, 
especially actions contrary to the three vows (Vinaya, Bodhisattva, Vajrayana), I regret extremely 
From the depths of my heart, and I reveal each and every such action.

 

Rejoice

NIK-MI DU-DIR MANG-THO DRUP-LA TSON 
CHO-JYED PANG-PI DAL-JOR DON-YO SHYE 
NGON-PO CHEY-KYI LAP-CHEN DZE-PA LA 
DAG-CHAG SAM-PA TAG-PEH YI RANG NGO

We totally rejoice in your magnificent achievements, my Lord, 
Who received numerous teachings and performed the practices with utmost diligence, 
Who abandoned the eight worldly objectives and made the most meaningful use
Of the eighteen opportune conditions during these degenerate times.

 

Request to Turn the Wheel of Dharma

JE-TSUN LA-MA DAM-PA CHEY-NAM KYI 
CHO-KU KA-LA CHEN-TI TIN-TIK NEY 
JI-TAR TSAM-PI DUL-SHIH DZIN-MA LA 
ZAB-JI CHO-KYI CHAR-PA WHAP-TU SOL

All you holy Gurus, unerring in conduct, 
May you precipitate a rain of realisation of Bodhicitta and 
Shunyata from the clouds of all-knowing compassion which fills the Dharmakaya sky, 
Providing for the field of disciples precisely what is needed.

 

Requesting to Remain

NAM-DAG WO-SAL YING-LEY JING-PA YI 
ZUNG-JUG KU-LA CHAR-NUB MI-NGA YANG 
THA-MAL HNANG-NGOR ZUG-KU RAG-PA NYI 
SEE-THEE BAR-DU MI-NUB TAN-PA SHUG

May the Vajra body of Tsongkhapa created from the purity of clear light, 
Free of the rising and setting of cyclic existence but 
Visible to the ordinary viewer only in its unsubtle, physical form
Stay on unchanging, without waning, until Samsara ends.

 

Dedication

DAG-SOG JIN-NYEH SAG-PA GE-WA DEE 
TAN-DANG DRO-WA KUN-LA GANG-PHAN DANG 
CHE-PA JE-TSUN LO-ZANG DRAG-PA YI 
TAN-PI NYING-PO RING-DU SAL-SHEH SHOG

May this merit accumulated by myself and others, 
Beneficially serve all sentient beings and the Buddhadharma 
And especially may the essential teachings of 
The unerring master Tsongkhapa, become clear and enduring.

 

Mantra of Je Tsongkhapa (Migtsema)

MIG-MEY TZE-WEY TER-CHEN CHENREZIG 
DRI-MEY KHYEN-PI WANG-PO JAMPAL YANG 
DU-PUNG MA-LU JOM-DZEY SANG-WEY DAG 
GANG-CHEN KE-PEY TSUG-GYEN TSONGKAPA 
LO-SANG TRAG-PEY SHAB-LA SOL-WA DEB 
(Recite 21x or more, depending on time)

Je Tsongkhapa, crown jewel of the holy Masters of the Land of Snows, 
You are Avalokiteshvara, great goldmine of Compassion untainted by ego’s delusion. 
You are Manjushri, great Master of stainless wisdom. 
You are Vajrapani, great subduer of all the gatherings of demons.
At your feet, famed Lobsang Drakpa, I humbly bow
And earnestly request that all sentient beings achieve Enlightenment. 
(Recite 21x or more, depending on time)

 

Dissolving Je Rinpoche into Ourselves

PAL-DAN TSA-WEY LA-MA RINPOCHE 
DAG-SOG CHI-WOR PE-ME DAN-JUG LA 
KA-DRIN CHEN-PO GO-NEY JE-ZUNG TE 
KU-SUNG THUG-KYI NGO-DRUP TSAL-DU SOL

Dear worthy root Guru, please ascend the lotus seat 
Atop the head of myself and the other beings, 
And in your great kindness please remain with us. 
Bestow upon us the blessings of your body, speech and mind.

 

PAL-DAN TSA-WEY LA-MA RINPOCHE 
DAG-SOG NYING-KHAR PE-ME DAN-JUG LA 
KA-DRIN CHEN-PO GO-NEY JE-ZUNG TE 
CHO-DANG THUN-MONG NGO-DRUP TSAL-DU SOL

Precious, noble, root Guru, please occupy the lotus seat 
Within our hearts and in your great kindness remain with us. 
Please grant us your blessings 
For our temporal success and for the supreme attainment.

 

PAL-DAN TSA-WEY LA-MA RINPOCHE 
DAG-SOG NYING-KHAR PE-ME DAN-JUG LA 
KA-DRIN CHEN-PO GO-NEY JE-ZUNG TE 
JANG-CHUB NYING-PO BAR-DU TAN-PAR SHUG

Beloved, noble, root Guru, please occupy the lotus seat 
Within our hearts and in your great kindness remain with us. 
Please stay on until we achieve 
The great goal of Enlightenment.

 

SELF-GENERATION AS HEROIC RED TARA

[If one has received the initiation of Red Tara, the description below is the visualization of ourselves as the deity Red Tara. How this is done is that we visualize that our perspective has altered to that of the seed syllable OM in the heart of Red Tara, looking out. In other words, we have become one with the seed syllable OM and we imagine looking out from the syllable.

If one does not have the initiation, we visualize Red Tara as an external deity. We can read the description to engage in the visualization and extend the visualization during the mantra recitation. The reason for the generation as Red Tara is to get closer to Tara and gain her attainments and eventually become one with her.]

 

From the sphere of Emptiness on a yellow lotus and moon seat appears a red OM syllable. OM completely transforms into me as Venerable Heroic Red Tara. My body is red in color with one face and four pairs of arms. My first two hands hold a vajra and a bell and are joined at my crown to proclaim the Dharma in the mudra of great joy.  The second pair holds an arrow and a bow.  The third pair holds a wheel and a conch. The fourth pair holds a wisdom sword and a noose. I have a peaceful expression and sit in the vajra posture. I am clothed in silken garments and adorned by precious ornaments, with a halo of moonlight behind my body. A white OM marks my crown, a red AH my throat and a blue HUM my heart.

 

Praise

Homage to you, the Swift One, the Heroine,
Whose eyes are like an instant flash of lightning,
Who arose from the open corolla
Of the lotus face of the Lord of the Three Worlds.

 

Reciting the Mantra

At my heart is a moon disc marked by the syllable OM, with the mantra circling clockwise around the circumference of the disc.

OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SARVA TRE DATU VASHAM KURU SOHA
(Recite 21x, 108x or as much as possible)

 

DEDICATION

[The recitation of the dedication verses is to seal the merits accrued while engaging in Red Tara’s practice so that the results of virtuous deeds do not get destroyed by a moment of anger. The merits accumulated are necessary for understanding the Dharma, transforming the mind and gaining spiritual attainments.]

Completion Dedication

JANG-JUB SEM-CHOK RINPOCHE
MA-KYE PA-NAM KYE-GYUR CHIK
KYE-PA NYAM-PA ME-PA YANG
GONG-NA GONG-DU PEL-WAR SHUG

May the precious Bodhi-mind,
Where it is not born arise and grow
May that born have no decline
But increase forever more.

 

TONG-NI TONG-WA RINPOCHE
MA-KYE PA-NAM KYE-GYUR CHIK
KYE-PA NYAM-PA ME-PA YANG
GONG-NA GONG-DU PEL-WAR SHUG

May the precious Emptiness
Where it is not born arise and grow
May that born have no decline
But increase forever more.

 

DAG-SOG JIN-NYEH SAG-PA GE-WA DEE
TAN-DANG DRO-WA KUN-LA GANG-PHAN DANG
CHE-PAR JE-TSUN LO-ZANG DRAG-PA YI
TAN-PI NYING-PO RING-DU SAL-SHEH SHUG

May this merit accumulated by myself and others
Beneficially serve all sentient beings and the Buddhadharma
And especially may the essential teachings of the unerring Master Tsongkhapa,
Become clear and enduring.

 

Prayer by Je Tsongkhapa

KYE-WA KUN-TU YANG-DAK LA-MA DANG
DRAL-ME CHO-KYI PAL-LA LONG-CHO CHING
SA-DANG LAM-GYI YON-TEN RAP-DZOK NA
DORJE CHANG-GI GO-PANG NYUR-TO SHUG

In all my rebirths may I not be parted from perfect Gurus,
Let me enjoy the abundance of the Dharma!
Perfecting the quality stages and paths
May I quickly attain the rank of Vajradhara Buddha.

 

Dedication of Virtue

GE-WA DI-YI NYUR-DU DAK
LA-MA SANG-GYE DRUP-GYUR NA
DRO-WA CHIK-KYANG MA-LU PA
DE-YI SA-LA GO-PAR SHUG

By this virtue, may I quickly
Realize Guru-Buddhahood,
And transfer each sentient being
Into that Enlightened state.

 

CHO KHI GYAL PO TSONG KHA PA
CHO TSUL NAM PAR PHEL WA LA
GEK KI TSHAN MA ZHI WA DANG
THUN KYIN MA LU TSHANG WAR SHOK

May all conducive conditions arise
And all obstacles be pacified,
In order to increase infinitely,
The doctrine of the spiritual king, Tsongkhapa.

 

DA DANG SHEN GI DU SUM DANG
DRIL WA TSOK NYI LA TEN NAY
GYA WA LO ZANG DRAG PA YI
TAN PAR YUN RING VAR GYUR CHIG

By the merits of the
Three times of myself and others,
May the doctrine of Lama Tsongkhapa
Blaze forever.

 

Auspicious Dedication

NYIMO DELEK TSEN TELEK
NYIME GUNG YANG DELEK SHIN
NYITSEN TAKTU DELEK PEL
KON CHOK SUM GYI JIN GYI LOB
KON CHOK SUM GYI NGOR DRUL TSOL
KON CHOK SUM GYI TRA SHI SHOK

At dawn or dusk, at night or midday,
May the Three Jewels grant us their blessing,
May they help us to achieve all realisations and
Sprinkle the paths of our lives with various signs of auspiciousness.

 

Dedication for the Guru’s Long Life

JETSUN LAMA KU TSE RABTEN CHING
NAMKAR TRINLEY CHOG CHUR GYE PA DANG
LOBSANG TENPE DRON ME SA SUM GYI
DRO WE MUNSEL TAKTUR NE GYUR CHIG

May the holy teachers have long lives.
May the enlightened activities be fully displayed in the ten directions, and
May the brightness of the teachings of Lama Tsongkhapa
Continuously dissipate the veil of darkness covering the beings of the three realms.

 

Dedication for the Long Life of H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

GANG RI RAWE KORWAI SHING KHAM DIR
PEN DANG DEWA MALU GYUNG WAI NE
CHENREZIG WANG TENZIN GYATSO YI
SHA PEI SITHAI BARDU DEN GYUR CHIG

In this holy Land surrounded by snow mountains,
You are the source of all benefit and happiness
May your lotus feet, O powerful Chenrezig, Tenzin Gyatso
Remain in this world until the end of existence.

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13 Responses to Heroic Red Tara (Suryagupta Lineage)

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  1. Fong on Jun 25, 2016 at 4:42 pm

    Thank you, Rinpoche for this posting. I always find the 21 forms of Tara a bit confusing. Sometimes, I see Taras with 2 arms and sometimes more. Guess, that means that I have to read and learn up more about Tara.

    But, I like Tara because I feel that I need not wish to be male or be like a male to practice and achieve something. She is a Buddha, an enlightened female Buddha.

    This article definitely has helped in my knowledge of Red Tara. But, I guess I have yet to find out more about the other forms of Tara as there is not very much out there in the internet about the other forms. The more common forms of White Tara and Green Tara are more accessible in the internet. as suggested in the article, there are more than 1 Red Tara.

    But, thank you for the information that this is a practice that can be done without initiation though the visualisation for those with initiation is generate the deity, Heroic Red Tara as a Yidam.

    Thank you again for the beautiful images of the Heroic Red Tara.

  2. gary foo on Jun 16, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    There’s something about this Tara thats made me very atracted tothis form and to start reciting her mantras and create thatnrelationship with her in addition to the daily sadhana 🙂 thank you Rinpoche for introducing this form to us and allowing us to tap into Taras blessings.

  3. heng meng kiat on Feb 13, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Tara manifest in many form ( 21 forms) to serve 1 purpose which is to liberate us from samsara
    Heroic Red Tara is one kind of Tara , if we do her practice we can gains the ability to deflect the negative influence of harmful individuals with authority or influence.
    for those dealing with difficult person during Dharma activity or in Business negotiating is very powerful if we propitiate Red Tara practice
    thanks Rinpoche and team kindness for sharing this informative resource on Red Tara

  4. Alice Tay on Jan 14, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    感谢仁波切在此分享有关二十一度母之一,红度母。

    每位度母不同的颜色都是她们特定的象征与化身来救度众生。例如绿度母可以迅速帮助我们消除烦恼痛苦,达成心愿。持修白度母可以帮助我们健康长寿。而这位红度母象征着权威与力量。

    根据Suryagupta的传承有记载有关红度母的持修法。而当时这位高成就者,Suryagupta,就是持修度母的法门,而达到至高的成就。

    在Suryagupta努力与积极的持修度母法门,他如愿的可以看见度母和他的麻风病也因此被度母医治好。但度母告诉Suryagupta,他的额头上的疮不能被消除。因为此疮是来自于Suryagupta前几世所造下的杀业所致的。

    因此,我们可以理解到不管我们持修任何法门,要达到一定的成就并不是不可能。而这只在乎于我们的坚信、坚持、耐力,还有必须要相信与了解因果。

  5. Paul Yap on Jan 7, 2016 at 10:40 pm

    Tara is widely practiced among the Buddhist and Hindus. This shows her popularity among the devotees, perhaps she has answered the prayers and has grant swift assistance whenever needed.

    I found this 8 arm Heroic Red Tara very fascinating and attractive. The implements hold in her hands shows that she has various methods to bring people to dharma and give assistance, perhaps this is one of the reasons she can act like a protector as well. She also promised whoever practice her sadhana, she will grant them siddhis.

  6. Pastor Shin on Jan 7, 2016 at 8:32 pm

    Tara is one of the most popular deities in the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon. Tara was often associated with the two historical wives of the first Buddhist king of Tibet, Songtsen Gampo. His wife from imperial China, Princess Wencheng was said to be an incarnation of White Tara, while the king’s Nepalese wife, Princess Bhrikuti was an incarnation of Green Tara.

    What was posted in this article regarding Suryagupta’s meeting with Tara reminded me of the two mentions in “The All-Pervading Melodious Drumbeat: The Life of Ra Lotsawa”. First was the same story of Suryagupta mentioned in this text (Suryagupta is also known as Ravigupta) and the other one of Chandragomin.

    When Ra Lotsawa was visiting Vajrasana (the seat of Buddha @ Bodhgaya), northeast of the sacred site was a deity shrine of the goddess Tara in five forms, the first of which faces east. Behind the shrine to the west was the thatched hut built by Ravigupta (Suryagupta). When Ravigupta was practising there, something marvelous happened: the face of Tara and the shrine face turned west and spoke to him.

    In the southwest was the so-called Shrine of Lokesvara, and inside was an image of Avalokiteshvara at the centre of the nine-deity retinue. This was the image that had actually spoken to Chandragomin and taught him the Dharma. There was also the blessed image renowned as Tara the Unadorned. The story goes that there was an old woman who had a beautiful daughter. She had no money for her daughter’s wedding, so she went to beg around until eventually she reached Nalanda. When she heard about the famous scholar Chandrakirti, she went to beg from him. Chandrakirti told her he was a simple monk and did not have much, he suggested that she try Chadragomin, who lived nearby. As Chandragomin only had the clothes he was wearing, Chandragomin prayed to the painting of Tara on the wall. Tara came to life and took off her own adornments and jewels, gave to Chandragomin, who then joyfully handed them to the old woman.

    Ra Lotsawa himself also have experience of Tara appearing to him. One day when Ra lotsawa was travelling to Kyosang, Langlap Jangchup Dorje who was a Vajrakilaya master caused a lighting shower of nailing daggers to strike the very spot where he was walking, killing many of his attendants. Ra Lotsawa performed the defensive rite of expulsion but he failed to suppress the attacks. As he thought about hwhat to do next, Tara appeared in emerald-coloured brilliance and adored with precious ornaments, she told Ra Lotsawa that extremely fierce paranormal attacks cannot be suppressed by expulsion rites alone, but to use meditative absorption that is devoid of inherent existence, combined with the secret expulsion. She also spoke about 8 additional oral instructions/teachings that are required that have not been translated in Tibet, and for Ra Lotsawa to go to Nepal and translate them into Tibetan.

    Thank you for sharing the practice of Heroic Red Tara with the world. May many come under Mother Tara’s protection and blessing.

  7. Sharon Ong on Jan 6, 2016 at 10:29 pm

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for this interesting read about Red Tara who I see as a divine superheroine and I love her ability to help subjugate difficult individuals who pose obstacles to our practice or our work to spread the Dharma. I particularly like her iconography where her womanly form carries implements that represent her ability to powerfully bind and subjugate our negatives.

  8. Uncle Eddie on Jan 6, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    Our Heroic Red Tara, which literary means “savioress” in ancient India, has a long story of being worshipped by many great Indian and Tibetan Masters. According to Archaeology, worshipping of Tara was established in the early period of the Pala empire in northern India in the 8th century. As shown in this article, the earliest known image of Tara was found on the walls of “rock-cut” Buddhist Monastic complex of the Ellora caves in Maharashtra in the 7th century. Red Tara has received verses of praises for her good qualities and swiftness in her work well done. She is also been praised as a Herione, meaning she has “conquered” herself, and posseses the sight of a Buddha, where she is able to see into the past, present and future simultaneously. Last but not least, the later part of the verse refers to that, Tara was born from a Lotus that grew from the tears of the bodhisattva of compassion, Avalokiteshvara, who is also known as the protector of the three worlds – form,formless and desire. Our Heroine Red Tara, being red in colour, corresponds with the activity of control, gains ability to deflect the negative influence of harmful individuals, with authority or control! Our Heroic Red Tara can also be propitiated to help one to subjugate difficult individuals who post obstacles to our practices or our work to spread the Dharma. She has her own perfect qualities to use to draw us into Dharma for the benefit of furthering Dharma in serving others. How intersting, informative and inspiring! Thank you Rinpoche for the sharing. Om Tare Tuttare Ture Soha.

  9. Pastor Henry Ooi on Jan 6, 2016 at 12:07 am

    This article is provides very good information on Red Tara including nice images. The more popular are Green Tara and White Tara, and now this article enhances the popularity of Red Tara. Thank you, Rinpoche.

  10. Sarah Yap on Jan 4, 2016 at 10:11 pm

    An incredibly interesting article.

    I must say, I’m not particularly attracted to the Buddha Tara, though I know she is magnificent, but the Tara from Suryagupta’s lineage is fascinating and I find her particularly beautiful.

    I do wonder however why the change in the iconography. Perhaps it is difficult for practitioners to visualize 21 Tara in 21 entirely different forms which has led Lama Atisha to compassionately renew the 21 Tara practice we have commonly today? Not sure if this is the real reason but it sure is interesting.

    Also, I wonder if there are any difference when it comes to practicing Red Tara from Lama Atisha’s lineage, and practicing Red Tara from Mahasiddha Suryagupta’s lineage? I know all Buddhas are one, but the formation of these 2 different lineages must be born from a slightly different purposes which leads to some differences. Of course ultimately both practices can lead us to Enlightenment.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this article.

    • Pastor David Lai on Jan 5, 2016 at 4:50 pm

      Dear Sarah,
      You have very interesting questions. The difference in iconography is probably reflected in the practitioners of that lineage. Perhaps, the more complicated iconography of the older Suryagupta lineage reflected the affinity, karma, merits and abilities of the older practitioners of that time. The simpler iconography once again reflects those of the new generation of practitioners.

      Red Tara is a very generic term and could mean any of the few Red Taras in the 21 Taras of the Suryagupta lineage and also a few in the Atisha’s lineage. This particular Red Tara has a name and she is the Heroic Red Tara and has a particular purpose. Not all Red Taras have the same function as her and I am sure there is a Red Tara in the Atisha’s lineage with the same function but even if they do not have the same purpose, they should still come under the activity of magnetizing or control.

  11. Joy on Jan 3, 2016 at 11:49 pm

    Ok ok Rinpoche knows I am pretty biased when it comes to Tara… anything associated with her, I love it! hehe. So thank you Rinpoche and wonderful blog team/writers/researchers for putting up this write up on Tara in general, her story and adding the Heroic Red Tara teachings and practice for all. Now whenever we need to teach or explain something about Tara, we can come here. This blog is truly like a Dharma resource centre. I did not know adding her sadhana/praise and mantra was that amazingly simple!

    I guess the reason why I love Tara is because of Rinpoche who introduced me to her and how Rinpoche explained to me she was just exactly like “Mother Mary” and yes up till today I do believe that she probably is, manifesting in different forms in different time for different minds. Why not?

    Besides that I love Tara because she gives women hope and strength because in many society women are often looked upon as the lesser, weaker and inferior gender even up till today, women are still trying to stand up be heard and have equal standing in social and economic grounds. So a Buddha in female form is definitely uplifting and sort of got me liking Vajrayana Buddhism. It sounded (in my small silly mind) to me like the “FAIREST” religion where there is “equality” 🙂

    It is amazing how the Buddhas are so compassionate to manifest in so many different forms, focusing on different issues and aspect of our problems to help us out of samsara. For instance this amazing 8-arm Red Tara has the ability to deflect the negative influence of harmful individuals with authority or influence. Wow! Many people with such problems will be able to do her simple practice, rely on her with faith and not only solve their problems but be connected to the Dharma eventually. How skillful the Buddhas are.

    I saw/read something really beautiful on FB which I thought explains about Tara, or any Buddhas actually, very appropriately well by Tenzin Palmo:

    “Sacred art, an image of Tara, for example, is not just something that we admire on a wall, or even something we think of outside of ourselves. All these manifestations are really just the reflection of our ultimate nature.”

    And there she sits with a painting of Mother Mary what a coincidence?

    I suppose all pure enlightened divine energy are from the same source. Their outer appearance shows us what we can achieve if we practice well, and what we need to do and work on harder in order to be one with our yidam.

    12469502_423186174472643_7389668500337365727_o

  12. Chris Chong on Jan 3, 2016 at 2:00 am

    Dear Rinpoche,

    Thank you for sharing this amazing post on the history and practice of the rare Heroic Red Tara.

    From this post I have learnt

    1. The practice of worshipping Buddha Tara had existed even in the ancient indian buddhist institute time. She was so popular back then where many major monasteries and shrines have her image and she was even worshipped in Hinduism.

    2. There are 2 lineage of Tara practices, Suryagupta lineage and Atisha’s lineage. Both of them are valid and Suryagupta’s lineage is actually older and more complicated in iconography.

    3. Heroic Red Tara practice mainly is to gains the ability to deflect the negative influence of harmful individuals with authority or influence.

    Chris

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  • Lin Mun
    Friday, Apr 28. 2017 04:00 PM
    Everything we offer to Buddha is a form of mind transformation and practise our mind to be focus even when doing water offering. When pouring the water into the bowl we have to recite Om Ah Hum (3 times), think positively and pouring it slowly so it does not spill and leaving the space of a grain of rice before reaching the top. After offering we also have to clean the bowls properly without leaving stain. All this is to train our mind.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing the many benefits and water offering in a simple to understand article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/making-water-offerings-to-the-buddhas.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Friday, Apr 28. 2017 03:38 PM
    Trolls are assiociates as beings of Scandinavian folklore.A large number of different mythological creatures continue to live on in Scandinavian folklore.They have different shapes,habitat and filthy features . There are also numerous tales of trolls told and retold.Trolls are also believed to have the magigal powers, which were folktales ,posses capabilities that are beyond human .What ever it was a remnant of a long-lost reality for sure. I do believe that there’s a very high chance trolls had existed in the past.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing ,i do enjoyed all the stories in these article even though it just folk tales.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/science-mysteries/the-hidden-nature-of-trolls.html
  • Jason
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 11:54 PM
    People always expect return on some contribution being done especially in charity events. When the return was under their expectations then they will feel sad or unhappy.
    As Rinpoche said, Dharma is a teachings to transform our mind to become bodicitta or selfless to benefit others without condition. Once we practiced selfless mind, our mind will not be affected by others people reaction.
    What will be my legacy? I think this is not really important to me anymore once I know Dharma teachings from Rinpoche.
    Thanks Datuk May for sharing to benefit more people.

    Jason

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/guest-contributors/what-will-be-your-legacy.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 08:56 PM
    Amazing miracles true story …of how Rinpoche helped. With Rinpoche blessing during the children baptismal ceremony,this little boy who had not spoken since 9 years old was able to speake again.Incredible….
    Chef Au truly believes been a vegetarian has help him to collects merits for his son.Rinpoche’s care and compassion has benefited many more people.Through these stories hope more people will be inspired to achieve the state of compassion and attainments.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Loh Seng Piow for this sharing.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-4.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 07:51 PM
    Having fully trust and faith in Rinpoche ,Fat monk’s mother was well again, after been diagnosed with cancerious tumour at the liver.
    Following instructions given by Rinpoche, his mother recited mantras and Fat monk did a series of pujas as told,his mother recovered then.
    Amazing……Miracles do happen.
    Thank you Rinpoche and Pastor Loh Seng Piow for sharing.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-3.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 05:27 PM
    We are no strangers to the creatures called Werewolves. They are often depicted as the Jekyll-and-Hyde-like monsters in movies who are unable to control their animal instincts when they shift from human form to a wolf-like creature, usually during the full moon. Together with the Vampires who can transform into bats, are my childhood imagery villains, who triggered my curiosity on mythical creatures during younger days. They still do, lol.

    It is gruesome to learn that real life werewolves are actually brutal even when they are in human forms. It is a far depict from the movies and fictions, where they are civil and level headed when in human form. I hope one day science or technology can provide more proves the existence of werewolves, and debunk the reason of this mystical shapeshifter.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/paranormal/werewolves-the-shapeshifters.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 05:07 PM
    The miraculous power of Protectors’ practice can heal and shield us from negative karma from ripening. Through the blessings of our Guru, coupled with strong faith and trust, the practices will take effect swiftly and effectively. Rejoice to Steven Lee. May he be guided by the Three Jewels always. Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow for sharing the true story with us.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-10.html
  • Lin Mun
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 03:57 PM
    This is a very touching article. I totally agree that dog is a man’s best friend. They are always so loyal to the owner. However it is sad that not all pet owners are such. Some will only treat them literally as an animal and therefore do not take good care of them. Dogs or any other animals are beings that have feeling. There should not be neglected and be abused by us. This article reminds us to always care for all beings and respect them.

    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing this heartwarming article.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 02:21 PM
    Its a heartfelt touching article of this faithful dog.Cannot imagine this ,such a wonderful relationship between that dog and the deceased owner.The greatest fear dogs know is the fear that we will not come back for them That i noticed from observing from my pet poodle.In this case this faithful dog knew his owner won’t be back.
    Dogs are loyal, patient, fearless, forgiving, capable of pure love and have feelings too.He must have missed the owner badly that he wanted to accompany the owner all the way to the resting place.
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing. May that faithful dog ,continue to serve and well taken, love by the other family members.
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Samfoonheei
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 01:46 PM
    Werewolves are known to be mythical creatures found in fiction instead of lurking in the dark woods,In various parts of the world there were few cases who have gone down in history as real life werewolves Interesting to read it from these post..How far it was true or just legends.,no one really know . Many myths and legends surrounding werewolves .To become a werewolf, it is necessary to be bitten by a werewolf in their form at the time of the full moon. Thats what all of us knew from the movies and from fiction told. Reports of werewolf sightings continued even till this century but mostly in between 1428 and 1447 .The most recent sighting of werewolf sightings in 1972. was in Ohio .but eventually subsided .
    Thank you Rinpoche for sharing these interesting article which i do enjoyed reading it,
    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/paranormal/werewolves-the-shapeshifters.html
  • Valentina
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 01:11 PM
    Join our blog chat session this Saturday 11AM – 12PM (GMT +8) on the topic of:

    Twenty-Four Holy Places & Eight Great Charnel Grounds part 2 – (focus topic: Eight Great Charnel Grounds)

    At one time there was a god by the name of Rudra who was originally part of Mahadeva’s retinue. He was a very fierce being who also had many of his own consorts. Together with his consorts he began to oppress sentient beings, and promoted violence and unethical behaviour. At that time, Heruka once again arose, and in a dance of great compassionate wrath, liberated Rudra and his consorts from their physical bodies, sending their minds to pure lands. The places where Rudra’s body parts fell became charnel grounds. …read more by clicking the following link:

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/twenty-four-holy-places-eight-great-charnel-grounds.html
  • Jason
    Thursday, Apr 27. 2017 03:07 AM
    This year Wesak Day fall on 10 of May. This day is very special and meaningful to me because I will visit Kechara Forest Retreat(KFR) to join some meritorious event there.
    For me, Wesak is a day to commemorate Buddha Sakyamuni in three aspect( Birth , Enlightened, Nirwana).
    While we celebrate Wesak, we must remind ourselves to learn from Buddha teachings and practice it in order to gain attainment.
    Thanks Rinpoche and Pastor Seng Piow for sharing in order to create more understanding on Wesak Day.

    Jason

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/buddhas-dharma/wesak-day-special-on-rtm-2.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 06:10 PM
    OMG! This is very touching. To see a doggie who never left go of his owner in spite of death. Way more powerful than many who proclaimed “till death do us part.” Just like the human, not all doggies are as loyal as this tear-jerking pet, but I truly believe almost all doggies offer unconditional love to the person who feeds and cares for them. Even when they are stray animals. There was a stray dog who will run two streets from the entrance of the “Taman” until the car stops in front of the house, just to greet me. You can imagine the warm and conviction in my heart that these beings are more than capable of loving than many of us, human! Thank you for this lovely sharing. I miss my doggie, Sherab.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/faithful-dog-chases-deceased-owner.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 06:00 PM
    Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow, for this amazing sharing. There is no doubt about the ability of our Guru, His Eminence the 25th Tsem Tulku Rinpoche. His incarnations have been compassionate and taken rebirth to return and spread the dharma so that sentient beings can benefit and learn some dharma in our short life.

    We shall never doubt our Guru; but must see that He is one with our Yidam and Protector, an attained being. Even if our Guru does not demonstrate clairvoyance abilities, we must never contest our Guru, for he holds the key (dharma) that can liberate us from eternal suffering in samsara.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-1-2.html
  • Stella Cheang
    Wednesday, Apr 26. 2017 05:50 PM
    Thank you, Pastor Seng Piow, for the illustrated miracle story on how Rinpoche guided Cynthia and Marici away from danger through protector’s practice. The unseen exist, whether we like it or not. Some of them are malicious and have the affinity or karma with some of us. Hence they can cause harm and disturbance. By engaging in Protectors’ practice like Dorje Shugden and Setrap that have been practiced by the high lamas of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism, we are protected and guarded against harm.

    Rinpoche is compassionate and only want the best for us. His teachings are not meant to show off the power of the divines but offer us a way out from our desperate samsara conundrum that binds us from engaging in deeper spiritual practice. Rinpoche always teaches us to focus on mind transformation and Tsongkhapa practice. How fortunate we are to have met Rinpoche in this lifetime. We must not let this rare and precious opportunity go to waste.

    http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/personal-attendant/the-miracles-of-tsem-rinpoche-true-story-12.html

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The Unknown

The Known and unknown are both feared,
Known is being comfortable and stagnant,
The unknown may be growth and opportunities,
One shall never know if one fears the unknown more than the known.
Who says the unknown would be worse than the known?
But then again, the unknown is sometimes worse than the known. In the end nothing is known unless we endeavour,
So go pursue all the way with the unknown,
because all unknown with familiarity becomes the known.
~Tsem Rinpoche

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Holy Lady Buddha Vajra Yogini\'s blessing can be found when we decide to focus out to others instead of in to only ourselves.
~ Tsem Tulku Rinpoche
2 weeks ago
Holy Lady Buddha Vajra Yogini's blessing can be found when we decide to focus out to others instead of in to only ourselves. ~ Tsem Tulku Rinpoche
His Holiness Vajradhara Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Monastery who is the refuge of countless, gives a clear explanation of Dorje Shugden. One is able to hear his holy voice and translation by Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen! Please see here and share: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=122352
2 weeks ago
His Holiness Vajradhara Kyabje Zong Rinpoche of Gaden Monastery who is the refuge of countless, gives a clear explanation of Dorje Shugden. One is able to hear his holy voice and translation by Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen! Please see here and share: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=122352
: This picture says it all. Click on it to enlarge and read and please share.
3 weeks ago
: This picture says it all. Click on it to enlarge and read and please share.
This is a simple chart showing the three main psychic channels used in tantric meditations to control the winds, raise tummo (fire energy), gain higher consciousness and insight and also for gaining siddhis. These channels are used in meditations for controlling the mind, when the mind ejects from the body (phowa) and one\'s death. These three channels are very important. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
This is a simple chart showing the three main psychic channels used in tantric meditations to control the winds, raise tummo (fire energy), gain higher consciousness and insight and also for gaining siddhis. These channels are used in meditations for controlling the mind, when the mind ejects from the body (phowa) and one's death. These three channels are very important. Tsem Rinpoche
I think my cute doggie Oser is actually Tintin\'s dog Snowy!
3 weeks ago
I think my cute doggie Oser is actually Tintin's dog Snowy!
Great Masters of Gaden Shartse Monastery. From left to right: His Eminence Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, His Holiness Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, H.E. Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, His Holiness 101st Gaden Tripa throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal.
3 weeks ago
Great Masters of Gaden Shartse Monastery. From left to right: His Eminence Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, His Holiness Sharpa Choeje Jetsun Lobsang Nyima, H.E. Kyabje Zemey Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche, His Holiness 101st Gaden Tripa throne holder Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal.
 Left to right: Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl. The three of them are my beautiful and loved Schnauzer dogs. They loved looking through the window to see traffic, people and movement. They loved the smells that drifted through their little noses. I love seeing the three of them together like this. I love them. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Left to right: Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl. The three of them are my beautiful and loved Schnauzer dogs. They loved looking through the window to see traffic, people and movement. They loved the smells that drifted through their little noses. I love seeing the three of them together like this. I love them. Tsem Rinpoche
Little Mumu boy...he loved balloons. When he saw them, he wanted to get close and perhaps bite them. Cute. I love this picture of Mumu reaching for the balloons. He was young and healthy! This picture captures his energy, enthusiasm, curiosity and high energy. I love this picture of him chasing the balloons. His pictures are always so nice....He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Little Mumu boy...he loved balloons. When he saw them, he wanted to get close and perhaps bite them. Cute. I love this picture of Mumu reaching for the balloons. He was young and healthy! This picture captures his energy, enthusiasm, curiosity and high energy. I love this picture of him chasing the balloons. His pictures are always so nice....He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
Little Mumu boy and myself.. He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Little Mumu boy and myself.. He was not a pet but family to me. I love him tremendously and always will. Tsem Rinpoche
2017-His Holiness the 101st Gaden Tripa, Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal is doing well and 90 years old. His Holiness Lungrik Namgyal is a powerful master of sutra and tantra and practitioner of Dorje Shugden. Currently residing in France.
3 weeks ago
2017-His Holiness the 101st Gaden Tripa, Jetsun Lungrik Namgyal is doing well and 90 years old. His Holiness Lungrik Namgyal is a powerful master of sutra and tantra and practitioner of Dorje Shugden. Currently residing in France.
One of the most sacred statues of Avalokitesvara made of sandalwood housed in Lhasa, Tibet. He has shown miracles also. Every pilgrim wishes to make offerings to this Lord of Compassion.
3 weeks ago
One of the most sacred statues of Avalokitesvara made of sandalwood housed in Lhasa, Tibet. He has shown miracles also. Every pilgrim wishes to make offerings to this Lord of Compassion.
 Sacred Avalokitesvara statue in Nepal. Thousands come to worship this special Buddha as it has conferred wishes in the past.
3 weeks ago
Sacred Avalokitesvara statue in Nepal. Thousands come to worship this special Buddha as it has conferred wishes in the past.
Tsem Rinpoche\'s Vajra Yogini statue and offerings
3 weeks ago
Tsem Rinpoche's Vajra Yogini statue and offerings
Two of my teachers from Gaden Shartse Monastery in South India. Left side is Most Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen whom I lived with for 8 years in Los Angeles where his centre Thubten Dhargye Ling is located. On the right is the abbot emeritus H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche the scholar and yogi. I was very fortunate to have them in my life and learn so much dharma from them. Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
Two of my teachers from Gaden Shartse Monastery in South India. Left side is Most Venerable Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen whom I lived with for 8 years in Los Angeles where his centre Thubten Dhargye Ling is located. On the right is the abbot emeritus H.E. Kyabje Lati Rinpoche the scholar and yogi. I was very fortunate to have them in my life and learn so much dharma from them. Tsem Rinpoche
 It is so wonderful to be kind to people, be caring, feed them, make sure they are healthy and share dharma if they are interested with them for their future. But simply to be nice to others is worth getting up and being alive...otherwise why be alive to hurt/use/distrust and hate others? No point living that way..must change that..... It is nice to live our lives to benefit others and be patient even if we have been hurt before because by caring we can heal the hurt and \'defeat\' the ones that hurt us because we don\'t become bitter..... Tsem Rinpoche
3 weeks ago
It is so wonderful to be kind to people, be caring, feed them, make sure they are healthy and share dharma if they are interested with them for their future. But simply to be nice to others is worth getting up and being alive...otherwise why be alive to hurt/use/distrust and hate others? No point living that way..must change that..... It is nice to live our lives to benefit others and be patient even if we have been hurt before because by caring we can heal the hurt and 'defeat' the ones that hurt us because we don't become bitter..... Tsem Rinpoche
Tsem Rinpoche\'s heritage in China. Must read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=120499
4 weeks ago
Tsem Rinpoche's heritage in China. Must read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=120499
Thank you Buddhist Pastor Chia for sharing your story on how you met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche over 20 years ago. We can learn much from your story.~Admin  Please read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116928
4 weeks ago
Thank you Buddhist Pastor Chia for sharing your story on how you met His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche over 20 years ago. We can learn much from your story.~Admin Please read: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=116928
Mumu boy is incredibly photogenic. He is beyond cute. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
Mumu boy is incredibly photogenic. He is beyond cute. Tsem Rinpoche
 (left to right) Rabten Tulku, Gonsar Rinpoche, Gyume Kensur Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, H.H. Gaden Trisur Rinpoche (France)
4 weeks ago
(left to right) Rabten Tulku, Gonsar Rinpoche, Gyume Kensur Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, H.H. Gaden Trisur Rinpoche (France)
Beautiful 200 roses arrived today for me as a gift from Su Ming. Very kind and thoughtful of her as usual. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
Beautiful 200 roses arrived today for me as a gift from Su Ming. Very kind and thoughtful of her as usual. Tsem Rinpoche
It\'s good to be with kind and sincere people.
4 weeks ago
It's good to be with kind and sincere people.
If we are kind, we lose less of ourselves-Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
If we are kind, we lose less of ourselves-Tsem Rinpoche
My Mumu boy didn\'t want to eat. Eating is not one of his favorite activities throughout his life. So I talked to him to let him know why he needs to eat and keep his strength up when this photo was taken. He was listening intently and after my talk with him, he ate. Tsem Rinpoche
4 weeks ago
My Mumu boy didn't want to eat. Eating is not one of his favorite activities throughout his life. So I talked to him to let him know why he needs to eat and keep his strength up when this photo was taken. He was listening intently and after my talk with him, he ate. Tsem Rinpoche
This is so true. Click to enlarge and understand more about unpleasant people.
4 weeks ago
This is so true. Click to enlarge and understand more about unpleasant people.
This mahasiddha Kukkuripa is easy to identify as he is accompanied by a small dog whom he loved very much.
1 month ago
This mahasiddha Kukkuripa is easy to identify as he is accompanied by a small dog whom he loved very much.
Mumu taking a rest in the turquoise room. Over the years, I always feel very satisfied when I see him covered with a blanket, safe and sleeping. I always wanted to make sure he was safe from harm, illness and distress. I wanted him to have a happy and loved life. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Mumu taking a rest in the turquoise room. Over the years, I always feel very satisfied when I see him covered with a blanket, safe and sleeping. I always wanted to make sure he was safe from harm, illness and distress. I wanted him to have a happy and loved life. Tsem Rinpoche
I wrapped my little Mumu boy up in my blanket and propped him up on my bed. He didn\'t move or wiggle and just looked at me. He is one funny entertaining little guy. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
I wrapped my little Mumu boy up in my blanket and propped him up on my bed. He didn't move or wiggle and just looked at me. He is one funny entertaining little guy. Tsem Rinpoche
March 2017-Coaxing my little Mumu boy to eat his meal. He was not well and therefore not hungry. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
March 2017-Coaxing my little Mumu boy to eat his meal. He was not well and therefore not hungry. Tsem Rinpoche
Click on picture to enlarge and see what Milarepa says. Profound.
1 month ago
Click on picture to enlarge and see what Milarepa says. Profound.
We are always trying to get somewhere, try something new, find some friends, get some entertainment and in the end we end up in the same place. Time to really practice Dharma seriously and stop wasting time we don\'t have. ~Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
We are always trying to get somewhere, try something new, find some friends, get some entertainment and in the end we end up in the same place. Time to really practice Dharma seriously and stop wasting time we don't have. ~Tsem Rinpoche
March 20, 2017-Mumu is just so adorable with his bright eyes.
1 month ago
March 20, 2017-Mumu is just so adorable with his bright eyes.
More and more people inviting Lord Dorje Shugden home to connect with on their shrines. I am so happy to see this as it will benefit them and their families so much. That is the purpose to be alive which is to benefit others as much as possible. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
More and more people inviting Lord Dorje Shugden home to connect with on their shrines. I am so happy to see this as it will benefit them and their families so much. That is the purpose to be alive which is to benefit others as much as possible. Tsem Rinpoche
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
1 month ago
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
1 month ago
His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche is a good sport watching his students do Halloween drag costumes for a charity show. Funny!
The Japanese are very innovative. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
The Japanese are very innovative. Tsem Rinpoche
Read this as it will be interesting
1 month ago
Read this as it will be interesting
Recite this before any meal or drinks for blessings of abundance. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Recite this before any meal or drinks for blessings of abundance. Tsem Rinpoche
This sacred statue of Buddha is in Nepal brought originally from Tibet and has spoken on many occasions. Very blessed to see this holy image and keep a picture...bless you always. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
This sacred statue of Buddha is in Nepal brought originally from Tibet and has spoken on many occasions. Very blessed to see this holy image and keep a picture...bless you always. Tsem Rinpoche
I love Mumu boy tremendously. We went through so much together for so many years. You are a great being to be with. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
I love Mumu boy tremendously. We went through so much together for so many years. You are a great being to be with. Tsem Rinpoche
Dear everyone, I am sharing this beautiful and modern altar to Dorje Shugden in Malaysia. I am glad to see more and more people creating sacred spaces. Tsem Rinpoche
1 month ago
Dear everyone, I am sharing this beautiful and modern altar to Dorje Shugden in Malaysia. I am glad to see more and more people creating sacred spaces. Tsem Rinpoche
Lhamo Karmo, a female buddha form visualized above the crown of one\'s head at the time of death, to encourage consciousness to leave the body via the crown aperture. From my book \"The Female Buddhas.\"- Glenn Mullin
2 months ago
Lhamo Karmo, a female buddha form visualized above the crown of one's head at the time of death, to encourage consciousness to leave the body via the crown aperture. From my book "The Female Buddhas."- Glenn Mullin
The Tibetan female tulku Dorje Pakmo, from a fresco on the wall of the Dorje Pakmo monastery (Samding) in Tibet, near the Turquoise Lake. In Tibet the Dorje Pakmo was ranked with the Dalai Lama, Panchen Lama and Sakya Trizin as the four highest lamas in the country.-from Glenn Mullin
2 months ago
The Tibetan female tulku Dorje Pakmo, from a fresco on the wall of the Dorje Pakmo monastery (Samding) in Tibet, near the Turquoise Lake. In Tibet the Dorje Pakmo was ranked with the Dalai Lama, Panchen Lama and Sakya Trizin as the four highest lamas in the country.-from Glenn Mullin
Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl checking out the scene..cute
2 months ago
Dharma boy, Mumu boy and Oser girl checking out the scene..cute
My Dharma boy has such a cute expression here. He is a good boy!
2 months ago
My Dharma boy has such a cute expression here. He is a good boy!
February 9,2017-My Mumu boy and Oser girl are just relaxing together..super cute
3 months ago
February 9,2017-My Mumu boy and Oser girl are just relaxing together..super cute
Click on the picture to enlarge and see what Suzy from Hawaii commented on the Dorje Shugden issue after much research. She is very candid and honest. Refreshing. Original is posted here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vl-4lIwxph4
3 months ago
Click on the picture to enlarge and see what Suzy from Hawaii commented on the Dorje Shugden issue after much research. She is very candid and honest. Refreshing. Original is posted here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vl-4lIwxph4
This is a good one to read
3 months ago
This is a good one to read
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ASK A PASTOR


Ask the Pastors

A section for you to clarify your Dharma questions with Kechara’s esteemed pastors.

Just post your name and your question below and one of our pastors will provide you with an answer.

Scroll down and click on "View All Questions" to view archived questions.

  • April 20, 2017 10:45
    Ronnie asked: Dear Rinpoche and Pastors, I'm studying abroad and very far away from home, seeking guidance and advice as I have no one else I can talk to about this. Please read with an open mind, I don't know where else to go for help. I'm pregnant and it's an unplanned pregnancy. I'm stuck between keeping it or letting it go. I'm young and having a child at my age in the society we live in now would be considered taboo. The father of the child thinks I should let it go because it may cause a setback to both our careers and cause major family issues. He thinks we aren't ready to raise a child especially since we're both still in university and his parents think badly of me even though they've never met me or tried to get to know me. I'm sure no one would ever have the heart to take away a heartbeat but it seems like it isn't the right time to have a child now and if we did go through with it, the child probably won't be able to have the best things life can offer looking at where we are now in terms of finance and maturity. I'm lost, confused and unsure what the right thing to do is now. Any advice at all would be helpful right now. Thank you so very much for taking time to read my story.
    pastor answered: Dear Ronnie, I’m sorry to read that you are going through this situation. I can understand that this situation is tough to go through. You are always more than welcome to come here to ask questions. May I suggest that you talk to either someone in your family or your friends to help you come to an appropriate solution? This is because, what you feel, what you are going through, will change from time to time and you would need someone to talk to, someone that you can lean on through this situation you are facing. Depending on where you are in the world, professional help can also be sought to help you make a decision, which will be the best option for you seeking help. From a Buddhist perspective, the taking of a life is not considered a positive act, therefore those on the Buddhist path, would normally abstain taking a life if possible. However, that being said, one must always weigh the decision oneself. Everything we do in life, necessarily involves karma both positive and negative. That is why Buddhists try to overcome samsara in general. Your situation is complicated because you are abroad, but if possible you should really open up to someone you are close to in order to help you through making this decision on a personal basis. When you talk to someone, whom you are able to express yourself more, you may able to come to better decision that is right for you. There may be other options open to you if you seek help. I personally know women who have been in similar situations. One of these women, let the child go and the other went through the pregnancy and then gave the child up for adoption. You may or may not have thought of this option, but it is one that could be open to you, depending on where in the world you are. Any decision we make in life, however big or small it may seem, has far reaching consequences whether in this life, or in future lives. This is just a part and parcel of life within samsara. However, we should weigh the decisions we make clearly given the situation we are in. We cannot always do this weighing ourselves, but need to talk about our options with others we can rely on such a friends, family or professionals. You should consider doing this, which will help you greatly emotionally, and may give you the grounding you need to make the correct decision for you. I hope this helps.
  • April 19, 2017 04:57
    Dongho asked: What is a nyung ne practice? According to Lama Zopa Rinpoche, it's a purification sadhana. However, what are the instructions for this? I'm guessing it's to Chenrezig, but how does it work? Also, from what I have read, Vajrasattva practice is only for broken vows while Akshobhya is for regular misdeeds. Does that mean one has to take the Akshobhya practice to purify bad karma from this life and previous instead of Vajrasattva? As for the purification practices, are some like Vajrasattva and Chenrezig only to purify the bad karma and let it come quickly or is it to prevent it from coming? I am confused in it. As for signs, I recited a mantra of White Yangchenma that a Sakya lama, Lama Kunga Thartse Rinpoche, gave me with the Sakya visualizations I read on, and after one mala, I heard some lady call my Korean name even though no one in my neighborhood knows of my name and my family members weren't in the area. What does this mean?
    pastor answered: Dear Dongho, Thank you for your questions, it’s nice to see you back here again. Nyung Ne practice is a purification practice that centres around Chenrezig. It is a very beneficial practice that stems from a holy nun named Gelong-ma Palmo. It is a two and a half day practice that can be repeated many times over and over again to intensify the purification and build a closer relationship with Chenrezig. As well as its purification aspect, the practice is known to generate vast amount of merit, and also compassion, as the practice centres around Chenrezig, the Buddha of compassion. The practice involves taking the eight Mahayana precepts for the duration, fasting, meditating, prostrating and praying. The practice usually entails empowerment into the practice of Chenrezig, therefore the exact meditations, prayers can only be explained to those who have the empowerment. Vajrasattva practice is not necessarily only for repairing broken vows, etc. That’s why it is advised that you engage in the practice at the end of the day, to repair any vows that you may have broken during that day, as well as stopping any negative karma you created that day from multiplying. This would entail reciting the mantra 21 times, together with the four opponent powers. However, if you engage in this practice more intensely, it definitely has the capability to purify all sorts of karma. That is the reason why in Ngondro, or preliminary practices one engages in before tantra, the practice of 100,000 Vajrasattva mantra recitation is an integral part. You can read more about Vajrasattva and his practice here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/prayers-and-sadhanas/an-important-purification-practice.html. Within purification practices, some of the karma will be purified completely, so you do not feel its effects at all, but when purifying other karma you will need to feel its effects somehow. For example if you have the karma to be in a car accident and get seriously injured, and you are engaging in any practice, but especially the purification practice, since you have purified most of the karma, you will only experience being in a very minor car accident, with only very superficial injuries. Therefore, in this case, the karma has been purified to the extent that it does not affect you as much, but you still need to feel part of its effect. In regards to any signs that you receive which engaging in the practices given to you by one of your specific gurus, you should report the happenings to that particular guru. He will be able to give you more of an accurate answer, as it may be related to the particular practice that he gave to you. I hope this helps. Thank you.
  • April 17, 2017 07:06
    Thomas asked: Dear Pastors, When a serkyem set has been used so much and one is ready to get rid of it and replace it with a new one. What is a respecful mode of disposal?
    pastor answered: Dear Thomas, Thank you for your question. Your question shows that you have a lot of respect for offering items, which is very good. If possible, you should try to repair the item if within your means, and doing so make embellishments to make it a better offering item, which can still be used. If this is not possible, then you should dispose of the item with a good motivation. You should think that this item has been used to make offerings to the enlightened beings, but now that it is broken or unusable, you are going to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. Since it itself is not a receptacle of energies of the enlightened beings, such as a statue, tsa tsa or thangka, it does not require a special dissolution before being disposed of. However since it was used to make offerings, it still requires some form of respect when disposing, and this comes from one’s motivation and the way in which you dispose of it. Usually, when disposing of items in this way, make the motivation that you have used it and that it is now time to dispose of it, and replace it with a new one. When you do this you can dispose of it in a respectful manner. For example, if you are going to throw it away, you do not simply open the trash can and throw it in. You wrap it up in something, like a bag or newspaper and dispose of it respectfully. Another method you can dispose of it is to recycle the object, if the material it is made from can be recycled. That way you are more conscious of the environment as well. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • April 16, 2017 22:38
    Curious asked: Dear pastors In a recent youtube video something like paying respect to deceased ones, pastor Nirel Patel explained that merits are like the interest and good karma is like the principal sum. So merits always regenerate themselves and hence do not get used up but good karma is like the principal sum so it gets used up. So my question is what are practices that generate merit? And can we turn a mundane daily activity into a meritorious one? Maybe can you provide an example?
    pastor answered: Dear Curious, Thank you for your question. First, to clarify a point, in regards to good karma, you are right, it is like a principal sum in a bank account, but you take away from it when you experience something good in your life, and you add to it when you do good deeds. Merit on the other hand, once accrued never diminishes, therefore when something is based on merit, it is based on the energies of this never diminishing sum, which you could say is like interest. In short, the principal sum when talking about karma is always added to and subtracted from. However, when talking about merit, once you have it, there is no way to destroy it, you will always benefit from it. There are various ways to explain how to generate merit. I will explain a way that I find easiest to understand. In normal life, when we go about performing any sort of activity, be it ‘good’ or ‘bad’ we do so out of ignorance of the true nature of existence, and it is usually self-motivated. For example, we work our entire lives to generate monetary income, so that we have enough money, resources, and materials goods to be comfortable. This is self-motivated, but it is the accepted way the world works these days, and is part and parcel of being bound to samsaric life. On the other hand, the act of merit making can be categorised into three parts: i) motivation, ii) the act itself, and iii) dedication. Let’s start with motivation, when engaging in various virtuous acts, we should have the motivation that by engaging in the act, we have the motivation to alleviate the suffering of someone else, and that may we gain enlightenment so that we can benefit them in the future. The second is the act itself. The third is to dedicate the energy of the virtuous act to gaining enlightenment. These three are what make merit. This may be a little confusing, so let me give an example: giving help to a homeless person. Whereas in ordinary life, this is something praised as a very good deed, it does not create merit without motivation and dedication. In order for this to become merit, one must set the motivation that one is giving help to the homeless free of the eight worldly concerns, to alleviate their suffering and also making the motivation that you will achieve enlightenment for the sake of the person or people you are helping. Then after you have helped them, you dedicate the energy created to the spiritual journey towards full enlightenment to help all sentient beings, while at the same time benefiting as many sentient beings as possible on the way there. This transforms the act into not only a virtuous action but also one that generates merit. On the other hand, if you were to help the homeless without these, you are creating good karma, which although beneficial, keeps you bound to existence within samsara. As it is the goal of Buddhist practice to overcome the cycle of samsara, a Buddhist would want to generate merit instead of good karma. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
  • April 13, 2017 11:38
    D.A. asked: If Begtse Chan is not from Mongolia, what are his real origins or story exactly? And which lamas offer his empowerment? As for Manjushri Nagarakshasa, which lamas specifically offer his empowerment and practice?
    pastor answered: Dear D.A. Thank you for your question. Begtse, is also known as Chamsing, or Jamsaran in Mongolian. As mentioned in an earlier sharing with someone who also asked a question about Begtse, the practiced was introduced to Tibet from India by the translator Nyen Lotsawa, and is considered one of the main protectors of the Hayagriva cycle of tantras. According to the scriptures that derive from the Sakya tradition, who incorporated the practice from the translators, and in which tradition Begtse became a very important protector, Begtse in a previous life was born many eons ago. In that particular life, he was born as the younger prince in a royal family. His name was Drag Gye, and his older brother’s name was Drag Den. Over time both princes developed differing religious beliefs, to the point where they could not get along with each as they both held their own religious views strongly. As was the custom during that time, they decided to settle their differences through logical debate, with the loser having to convert to the winner’s religion. This custom was also prevalent in ancient India, and there are many stories of such debates occurring between the great masters of the past and those of other faiths. Drag Gye lost the various debates, but ran away instead of converting to his older brother’s religion. Drag Den caught him, and tried to punish him for breaking the rules of debate and going back on his promise. Drag Gye told his brother that even if he was killed he would not give up his religion, however if Drag Den let him go, that in the future when Drag Den became enlightened, he would protect his teachings. With that Drag Den let him go, and gave him a set of copper armour, a stick, and a bow and arrow. Drag Den also gave Drag Gye a new name: Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po. After this incident the two brothers never saw each other again in that lifetime. Many lives after that Drag Den was reborn as Prince Siddharta, who eventually became enlightened and is now known as Buddha Shakyamuni. Drag Gye, or Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po, was reborn in a cemetery in the North West direction. His parents gave birth to two eggs, one was a coral-like colour and the other was an agate-like colour. These two eggs flew high into the sky and reached the heavenly realms, there they subdued the gods. Then flying back down to earth, they subdued many nagas. Eventually they even came to threaten their own parents. The parents petitioned the Dharma protector Ekajati for her help, who threw her own staff (khatvanga) at the eggs, and broke them apart. From the coral-like coloured egg came a ferocious man with yellow hair, he proclaimed that his name was ‘Sog Dag Yam Shi Mar Po’. When he emerged he was wearing a set of copper armour, wielding a stick, copper sword, and a bow and arrow. From the agate-like coloured egg came a female who was blue in colour, her teeth were like shells, she had turquoise eyebrows, and her hair was made of fire. She emerged wielding a copper knife, ritual dagger (phurba), rode a terrifying bear and wore an intricate necklace made of agate and lapis lazuli. It was then that Ekajati once again took action, and subdued them, after which they became Dharma protectors. The male figure became known as Begtse, and the female as his sister. When you propitiate Begtse, his sister is automatically included and aids practitioners as well. As for which lama offer his practice and empowerment, most lamas do not advertise which teachings or practice they hold. Therefore you should respectfully approach lamas and ask them if they have the practice and can bestow it, or if they know of any lamas that have the practice, depending on how much you want to practice Begtse. Similarly, this applies to those lamas who have the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. However, this practice is included in the Rinjung Gyatsa series of empowerments. This unique cycle of teachings, includes all 4 classes of tantric practices, and includes the practice of Manjushri Nagarakshasa. Therefore those lamas who have received the complete transmission, and have kept their commitments for this practice, are qualified to pass this on to others. I hope this explanation helps. Thank you.
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Pastor Gim Lee assisted by Kechara Puja Team, conducted a Dorje Shugden puja and blessings at a premise. Lucy Yap
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