Mantras – Holy Words of Power
These mystic formulas carry a tremendous blessing power and exist in all religions. Anyone who recites these holy words can tap into their source and connect with sacred energy that helps to transform our minds.
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Mantras – holy words of power
There was a book called Words of Power: Mantras by John Blofeld when I read when I was like, 9 or 10 and boy, I memorized every mantra in there. Oh yes. Very famous Sinologist, he was a very great scholar in China and China arts, and a very great devotee of Guan Yin and Tara. And then when he got into Tibetan Buddhism, that was it. He went crazy with Tara. Crazy. He just like, Tara, Tara, Tara, that’s all he talked about. Everybody’s crazy about Tara. In any case, that is why in the future we have to have a Tara Mystical Treasures. Isn’t that fabulous? Can you imagine a Tara Mystical Treasures? Yes I just can’t wait, I just can’t wait, I just can’t wait…
Okay never mind. Now, I’m going to hit on two main reasons, on a profound level, that we do mantras and I’m going to hit on a few general meanings that we do mantras. General meanings…no, general purposes that we do mantras that will help us so you can condense this writing into a short one, you can also make it a long one because it will be information for you. Mantras are very, very holy because…think. One day, if someone tells us, “No meat, you’re gonna be vegetarian for one day”, you’re like, “Ughhh”. Every time you walk by KFC, every time you walk by McDonald’s, you walk by one of the hawker stands, satay stands…(sniffs loudly) “I’m vegetarian.” Just think of Kandarohi with no beef for one day. Oh my god! You know what she’ll do? She’ll go to the Yoshinoya beef stands and moon them. Can you imagine her pulling down her pants that don’t fit, with her blue underwear on, and mooning them? Because she is vegetarian. Yes.
In any case, just imagine one day, no lying. Not even a teeny little lie. You know one of your ugly friends that you don’t like, call you up and they want to go eat eat and din din, and you say, “Noooo because my great grandmother’s sister’s dog died. I can’t.” No, no lies. Imagine one day of no sexual misconduct or contact at all. None. No thoughts of it. Not even contact. You think, “One day, what’s the big deal?” For some of us, it’s like, “I’m already a nun!” But not even the thought of it. Not even an attraction to it. Nothing. Nothing. You’re just a fruit. Not le fruit, but a fruit. Okay, Mademoiselle Le Fruit, that’s different. That was your previous reincarnation. He’s like Madonna, he keeps changing his reincarnations.
Any case, imagine one day of not having any negative motivations. Me, me, me – one whole day, none of self-cherishing mind, of putting yourself a priority. One day that from morning to night, you are Mother Teresa, all day, non-stop. All you think is others, you don’t think about yourself. And one day of no attachment – no makeup, no hair, no clothes, no, no…nothing, just one whole day. And that whole day is filled with light and love, compassion, clairvoyance, skills, great planning for others, skillful speech, skillful action and not self-cherishing mind. But other cherishing mind, altruistic mind, imagine one day of that. And imagine, the altruistic side forget it, just one day of discipline, of cutting out our delusions and illusions, one day of that. And then imagine two days of that. Imagine three days of that, imagine four days, one week, one year, one month. Imagine a whole lifetime of ethics, morality, compassion. Imagine one lifetime of not lying, of not working for the benefit of oneself. Of not thinking about earning, earning earning, getting, getting, getting, me, me, me, me. Just one whole lifetime. Think about that.
And then, imagine the energy that creates. Not lying for one whole lifetime. Not lying will, in short, will create a type of speech that when you talk, people will listen. When you talk, it has substance. When you talk, it will be properly enunciated. When you talk, people understand. When you talk, it moves people’s hearts. When you talk, it changes people’s lives. When you talk, it changes the brutal mind of a person from that of like an animal, into that of a higher being. Animals think for themselves, me, me, me, me, me, me. It may be cute for a puppy to fight for his food and fight for a bone, but it is not cute for a person to fight other people for their money.
So imagine that if you don’t lie, if you don’t lie, you will be born with a speech that is melodious, pleasant, good words, captivating, very clear, the point is brought across. Not only a good speaker – a good speaker is not enough – but a type of speech that transforms people’s minds, transforms people’s lives, transforms people’s inertia, people’s delusions and illusions, and the type of speech that motivates them from doing self-cherishing acts that bring them to more sufferings, to acts that bring them to happiness.
So being a good speaker is not enough. It is a type of speech that has the power of truth and altruism from lifetimes, or a life of practices, and a lifetime after lifetime, that when this person speaks, it profoundly moves another person. Sometimes to tears. Why? To make them realize what is going on in them and what is really the purpose of life. That type of speech doesn’t come from practice. That type of speech doesn’t come from a book. Doesn’t come from learning. That type of speech comes from lifetime and lifetime and lifetime of telling the truth, and using the speech to benefit others, and using the speech for positive reasons. And using the speech not to get money, sex, rock ‘n roll, drugs, fun and increase attachments, but using the speech to increase people’s happiness, increase people’s mind, increase peace, increase love, increase altruism. And using the speech to destroy delusion, using the speech to destroy the very causes that make people – themselves and other people – unhappy.
So that type of speech becomes very very very powerful. Why? It is through speech that we can create wars. It is through speech we can create peace. Even people who have excellent motivation, but they do not speak well or correctly, they can create wars. Even people who have nasty motivation, but if they are very good in their speech, they can make things move. Imagine a person with good motivation, good intention, and they speak to benefit others, and they use their speech, their tongue, their teeth, their mouth, their vocal cords, they use their speech in what? In changing people’s lives, from self-ingratiating activities that bring harm and unhappiness to themselves and the ones they love, to benefit for themselves, and others and everyone. Imagine a person who uses their speech like that, lifetime, after lifetime, after lifetime, after lifetime, after lifetime.
So this type of person will eventually have Buddha speech. What is Buddha speech? They have 60 melodious qualities of Brahma, it is said. 60 melodious qualities. Out of the worldly gods, Brahma is said to have the most beautiful and melodious voice. So they have 60 qualities of their voice. 60 qualities. They have the power of speech of a Buddha. Some examples of the power of speech of a Buddha, which you can get into more detail in the Lamrim, is when they speak, although they speak one subject, one word, whatever your level of intelligence, it will penetrate your mind and it will hit you. So if you are there in your intelligence, if you’re there in this intelligence, you’re there in this intelligence – when they speak, it will hit you at your level and you will understand it at your level. And even when people get together later, they understand it differently and it affects them deeply and it changes their lives. That is the power of speech of an enlightened being or an advanced being, or a Buddha.
So when they speak, it isn’t just nice words to pick up a pretty girl. It isn’t sweet words to just get a good deal on a house or a product for bargaining at pasar malam. It is the type speech that…because some people, you see, they are very good at talking but when it comes to changing people’s lives, when they talk, they can’t do anything. So good speech is not that it sounds nice and you can get things done. Good speech is that it benefits, it changes people’s lives because it arises from altruism. So therefore, a Buddha’s speech is that when they speak, it hits everybody at their level. One.
Two, whether you are very far away or you’re nearby, the level it hits your ear will be exactly the same. That a Buddha’s speech. Just think, during Buddha’s time, there were no microphones, speakers, sound systems. Thousands of people gathered to listen to Buddha. Thousands. Thousands of people gathered to listen to Lord Jesus. How? These are enlightened activities. They can hear. And when they speak, it’s heard in many languages simultaneously, on many levels. So for beings who don’t need speech to hear, by clairvoyance they will hear it clairvoyantly, immediately. And whatever they speak, soothes the mind, calms the mind, like water on a fire.
There are many, many qualities of speech, and everything that they speak becomes – this is very important – everything they speak becomes a method, a path, a cause for enlightenment. That is a Buddha speech. That’s in short.
Now a Buddha mind dwells, minute after minute, hour after hour, day after day, in skillful means on benefitting others, how to benefit others, direct methods, indirect methods. And when they look at you, when they understand you, they perceive your previous lives down to a pore of your hair, down to your eyebrows, the shape of your eyes, the color of your skin, everything… and the causes for you to have that result, they look at you, they see directly, your previous lives, unlimited. Your future lives, unlimited. What you are now. Even the cause of a single pore on your skin, they know the cause. And not only do they see you in the present, they see the past, the present and the future simultaneously, all in one shot. And that’s just you. And every single sentient being on this planet, in the universe, in samsara, they perceive directly. Exactly what they perceive you, and everything that’s going on, everything that’s moving, everything that is perceivable, tokpa, perceivable, they perceive simultaneously. And yet they can talk to you, yet they’re aware and they’re alert. This is the Buddha mind.
And this is based on altruism, compassion that derives from many lifetimes of ethical, moral practices. Dharmakaya form is the Buddha’s mind. Non-tangible, unperceivable, and anyone below that level cannot perceive. It does not need a body to be perceived. It can only be perceived by another Buddha. The end. Sambhogakaya form is a Buddha’s body in enjoyment form. Enjoyment means – not that he runs around enjoying himself – it means a form where it looks like as if he is enjoying himself. For example, when the Buddha manifest as Avalokiteshvara, oh god, it’s fabulous! Avalokiteshvara is white, wearing beautiful raiments, beautiful jewels, fabulous hair, you know, clothes that fit. Jewelry, ornaments, on a fabulous lotus, amidst an aural of light, he doesn’t smell, his body is perfectly V-shaped, it’s soft, it’s strong, yet it’s just emitting light…wouldn’t you enjoy yourself if you have that body? Couldn’t you see Jamie with a Tara body on Saturday night? That’s it! See you later! Forget about your marathon! She’ll be on the podium jumping up and down!
So imagine if you have such a body like Tara or Avalokiteshvara, you’d be enjoying yourself! Why is it enjoyment body? It is a body that shows you the results of their practice. So that is perceivable by Buddhas, and Bodhisattvas and high level practitioners who have visions of these beings. For ordinary schmucks like me, cannot see. So for ordinary schmucks like me, who can’t see the enjoyment body, Sambhogakaya, or perceive the truth body, Dharmakaya which is without form, we have to stick with the Nirmanakaya. Nirmanakaya, in Tibetan we call Tulku. Tul means to emanate, ku means body. Emanated body. So a Tulku, a real Tulku is a high level being, that is emanated from either the Dharmakaya or the Sambhogakaya form of the Buddhas. And they emanate into bodies that are coarse and rough, and that needs the four elements, the five aggregates to function to benefit others.
So the mind that this being is in is of course Dharmakaya, but the body that they have is Nirmanakaya. And that body, because it is borrowed of this earth, borrowed of this planet, borrowed of the mineral and resources here… why is it borrowed here? Because these beings are on this planet and they need to relate to these beings on this planet. Maybe on another planet, mercury is the predominant material, maybe they take a body in mercury, it doesn’t really matter. But on this planet, it’s the five aggregates, and the four elements. Therefore, they take on this body like a hotel room to use. It is subject to decay, it is subject to sickness, it is subject to imbalance, it is subject to heat, it is subject to deterioration, because it is a body that’s borrowed. It doesn’t reflect the enlightened being – example, His Holiness the Panchen Lama who is Amitabha himself, gets old, can be poisoned, will die but it doesn’t affect his mind. His incarnation came back again but his body does get old. Why? The body doesn’t belong to the enlightened mind, it is used to borrow to spread enlightenment.
So like that, these three bodies arise from the mind of a holy Buddha. Then the actual body, is we don’t kill, we don’t steal, we don’t commit sexual misconduct, we don’t beat, no vulgarity of the body. And we use our bodies not for making money, not for making fun, not for adorning to increase our delusions and illusions, but we actually use our body in the service of others, and to benefit others. Whether it’s to teach Dharma, whether it’s to discipline our body for others, whether it’s to discipline ourselves or to sacrifice our self-comfort for others, example, Mother Teresa, who uses her body just for others. Just like Mahatma Gandhi, who used his body for others non-stop by his fasts that freed so many people, and inspired millions around the world. That’s a bodhisattva. Like Nelson Mandela, like the great ex-Prime Minister Mahathir, who had to maintain his body, who had to wear suits, who had to look good, who had to be healthy, to run the country and make the country so great. That’s using his body. I mean he could have used his body playing golf all day long, non-stop but using your body to benefit others…sitting in an office wearing nice clothes, that’s using our body for others. Sitting here when we could be somewhere else is using our body for others. Why? We are getting knowledge to benefit others.
So how happy we are to do that and enthusiastically shows the level of our mind and how altruistic we really are. Why? The more we want to get methods to help others, the more altruistic we are. That’s a measuring stick. So making our bodies easily available for others, and very happy to do so shows a level of altruism. Why? Everything else you can share, your body you can’t, you only have one body. You have to be there. And then, suffering disease for others. When you are sick and not well, and you can still push yourself for others, that’s a measuring stick of using your body for others. Why? You don’t think the body as yours, you think its something you borrowed, you use for a while and afterwards, you dump. I mean who will be ridiculous enough to paint up, and redecorate and refurbish the hotel room that you rent for overnight? You know, you go in there redecorate, furnish and paint it up, and “see you later tomorrow”…who’s ridiculous! Like that, when you think of your body as something you borrow and use, you’re not going to be too worried about it and playing with it and doing things with it as an end in itself, but you would use it as a vehicle to reach an end. There is a big difference in how people operate.
If you use your body and everything else as an end in itself, you will end up in depression, unhappiness. Why? Because it tricks you. How ever you feed it and take care of it, it still gets fat, it still gets sick. How ever creams you put on it, whatever operations you go through, whatever slimming or whatever you do, it still gets fat and it still gets old. And no matter what you tell it to do, it does the opposite. And no matter how wonderful oils and whatever you put on your hair, you still lose hair. And I don’t care, you can drink moisturizer, and your skin will still get wrinkled. It deceives you and makes you use up everything. And then on top of that, it makes you create pleasure for it. It makes you run around for sexual contact, and then all the crap that comes after that, the relationship, the people, the lies and all that stuff, is just to please the body.
So when we use the body in such a way where we try to find pleasure for itself alone, we end up in depression, unhappiness. I’ll tell you why. Because it is deceptive. You never achieve it. So when you use your body to benefit others, you hold ethics, and morals and you use your body for others, in the highest form teaching the Dharma, and using your body as an example of the Dharma, you inspire others to come out of delusions and unhappiness. To medium use of your body in social works, to physically do work, or to use your body to practice such as prostrations, or to use your body simply to be still and not create more negative actions…imagine life after life after life of using your body like that. It will result in the Buddha body with the 112 marks.
What is that? 80 minor, and 32 major. Some of the marks of a superhuman, of a super Buddha is that it is very tall. The limbs are very long. The fingers are very long. The limbs are very soft and very gentle, neither masculine nor feminine. The limbs and the body is very pleasant to the appearance. And it has a golden luster. And the hair turns counter-clockwise in curls. It has an ushnisha, meaning a crown protrusion here. It’s not that someone bumped you there and you got a bump, no. And some people draw the Buddha statues wrong. You need to know this. They actually draw the Buddha with hair and wrap it up in a bun. You know, what is he? Auntie Edna? Wrong! He is bald, he is a monk! And the little bit of hair he has is just a little bit of growth, because monks cannot have more than two finger spans of hair. So he has a little bit of hair which grows in a tuft, which looks like little curls. Like African people, they have this beautiful curly hair. When you cut it short, it’s like round tufts. Buddha’s hair is like that except when he grows out he doesn’t have an afro, so he doesn’t look like Lenny Kravitz. Lenny Kravitz hair is fabulous but the Buddha doesn’t have that. Buddha has curly, beautiful locks of Indian blue, black hair. Yes, and not chicken hair like Paris Buddha. No, beautiful.
And then he has an urn…and this is a protrusion, representing another state. To you he may look like a UFO but to another Buddha it’s a sign of beauty. Okay? It’s not like he has a cerebral problem, you know, the Elephant Man, his brain grew that way, no, no, no. It’s very beautiful. So it is not a bunch of hair tied up. So when you see a Buddha statue with the hair tied up, no, no, no. Thangka, no. It is a protrusion of his head. And he has long, beautiful earlobes. Long and beautiful, not because he is from Myanmar and he wears those earrings that pull his ear down, you know, like those Burmese women, that’s beautiful too but that’s not the point. And some Buddha statues they even put earrings on him. No. He doesn’t wear any earrings, he’s not a drag queen and he is not a layperson. Monks don’t wear earrings. Okay? Buddha is not a drag queen or a layperson, so he doesn’t wear earrings. So when you see Buddha Shakyamuni with earrings, no, no. You ask them to leave the jewelry home then I put you on the altar. He has a long beautiful swan-like neck, golden, strong, broad shoulders like a lion, thick chest, very thick chest. Alright? Thick body but not like Mr Universe, not bulging with veins because bulging with veins is considered not nice. Then he has a beautiful V-shaped body, but it is not V-shaped like that, it’s like a Versace cut. It goes down and then the hips…oh yeah, it’s exactly like a Versace cut, it goes down like that, when it gets to the hips it’s rounded and then comes out, almost feminine and it’s soft and it’s very very beautiful.
He has very beautiful legs, you know. Some people, some of our friends, you know, they complain they have short stocky legs and a big top. Whatever lah. Buddha has long elegant, beautiful legs and he walks with a gait. You know a gait, not a sashay! A gait, not a sashay! You get the picture, Birdcage? Alright, and he has beautiful long feet that are straight and symmetrical, similar to his fingers, with rays of light in between his fingers, that actually look like webs but they’re not webs because he’s not, you know, a toad man. So actually you can go like that but it’s webs of light from not telling a lie. And he has gold, copper colored nails – no, not L’Oreal, they are natural – they’re copper colored nails, webbed with light. And on the palms of his hand and his feet, have Dharmachakra wheels, imprinted, not a tattoo from One Utama, alright, not Paris’s, “OM TARE TUTTARE, I got a Buddha mark here”, no. They’re real Dharmachakra wheels, they’re beautiful, on his feet. And when he walks, his feet never ever touches the ground. Never. But wherever he walks, it leaves a footprint. And lustrous golden lights emanate. And when we see his body, although it is so beautiful and fabulous, for some perverts they will look at it and say, “Oooh yum yum”, but for most people they will look at a Buddha’s body, fold their hands and it will calm their delusions down. It will calm their delusions down.
And he has this magnificent charisma, magnificent energy that when he shows up at the party, he is the life of the party, literally. What does that mean? He has a natural body aura that draws people to him, that pulls people to him, that makes people look at him. Why? Transform them into the Dharma. You see, being beautiful and sexy is not enough. Being beautiful and sexy with charisma and a look that brings people’s passions down, eventually, and brings them to enlightenment is the key to beauty. See, some people’s beauty bring more delusion and unhappiness to other people. They can’t have it, they commit suicide. You know, “I can’t sleep with her, I want suicide.” So it’s not the type of beauty that creates more delusion because Buddha’s beauty, male or female, does not arise from delusion, it arises from great holding of ethics for many lifetimes.
So Buddha holds ethics and morality with his body for many lifetimes, controls his speech where it becomes natural, where it is used to benefit others, and his mind dwells in omniscience, thamche khenpa means all-knowing omniscience. Completely. So his body, speech and mind is in the state of omniscience, compassion, and the full result of elimination of karma, result of altruism. Just every act he does, even if he picks his nose, it benefits some sentient beings. Literally like that. Literally. Alright? And so this type of body, when he practice the practice, he practices for three great aeons. One great aeon consists of 60 minor aeons. One minor aeon, let me just give you a very simple whatever, because they talk in cubits and stuff in the texts and I don’t understand what cubits is so I made up my own little example which is vast enough. Think of a hole in the ground, dug one mile long, one mile wide, one mile in breadth. Fill that up with 1-inch human hairs, alright, no meters and centimeters and stuff. You don’t like inch? You transfer, whatever. 1-inch human hair fills up that hole. Every hundred years, you open it up, take one hair out. So the time it takes to completely empty out that hole is one small aeon. 60 of those is one great aeon, and it took three of those great aeons for Buddha to practice what I just spoke about to become a Buddha.
So when you look at a Buddha, as Lama Tsongkhapa praised, your body is a result of the accumulation of three aeons of countless merits, “to this great wonder I praise.” And therefore when you look at a Buddha statue, it benefits you because it represents three aeons of body, speech and mind practice. So if it’s a Tara statue, if it’s a Vajrayogini statue, if it’s a Shakyamuni statue, a Tsongkhapa statue, a Mahakala statue, a Setrap statue…if it’s an Amithaba statue, if it’s an Avalokiteshvara statue, whatever it is, it is three countless aeons of practice. And therefore whatever you do to that statue, if you put it in a beautiful shrine, if you put gold on it, you put jewels on it, you clean it, you make offerings to it, you prostrate to it, you do prayers, you meditate in front of it, you are tapping into three great aeons of ethical virtue and merit of body, speech and mind. Therefore, when you have that Buddha statue in a room, trust me, your little wrong door, wrong window, wrong color, wrong direction feng shui, cleared. Because you’re talking about…you want to wash a little cup, they give you an ocean worth of water to wash it out. You think your cup will be clean? Trust me, it will be swept away, you’ll never see it again, on the other side of the universe. Can you imagine using a whole ocean worth of water to wash one little cup? That’s what you are doing when you put a Buddha statue in your room to clear out feng shui.
So you know what? You don’t need to change no windows, you don’t need to change no colors, you don’t need to change your furniture. Just put a Buddha statue there and say, “Do your job!” And then if your place has something spiritually off, you know, things that go bump in the night, things that are attracted to frangipani flowers, and they are there, things that fly with heads and just intestines hanging, you know. Things, when you walk down the stairs, you feel someone went…”huhhhh!”, or when you’re asleep you feel someone going (imitates spirit touching someone). In Kandarohi’s case, he’ll be like, “More” but for most of us it’ll be like, “No thanks.”
So we put a protective Buddha who manifested out of compassion in a fierce form…those spiritual beings become spiritual and leave you alone. Alright? So when we offer gold on the Buddha, we are offering gold to three aeons of merit, and you know what happens? You collect the virtues and the imprints to achieve the same thing, and hence we put ornaments on Buddhas. Hence Buddha statues are incredible blessings, and therefore the bigger the statue, the better. The bigger, the better. The more mantras inside, the better. The more jewels, the better. Why? If we adorn ourselves with jewels, it’s like putting jewels on a corpse. Just put it underground, what’s the difference? If we put it on a Buddha, we are putting it on what it represents. So raising funds for Buddha statues or paying for Buddha statues or buying or having them is tremendous benefit. Tremendous. And that’s visual, visual, alright, that’s visual. And then when we prostrate to a Buddha statue or we make offerings, what are we making offerings to? Some stone or some clay or some copper, gold-plated image? No! To a Buddha and hence in Buddhist practice we make Buddha images all over the world, huge and big ones because of what they represent and the benefit it brings.
So every time each one of us clowns sees that, whether we recognize that or not, it plants the seeds of enlightenment in our mind. Because his whole body is the result of virtuous practice of three aeons. You guys understand that? Just think about the impact of that. And each Buddha is very compassionate because for each of our illusions and delusions and problems and difficulties, he manifests and shows himself in different forms, in different colors, in different mudras, in different stances, in different hand implements to counter a specific problem that we have. Specific. So that’s why if our particular Yidam is someone like Lama Tsongkhapa, the impact is great. To have a big image of him, to have him there, to bless and clear the environment, to make offerings, to even earn our salary to put towards something holy like that, what are you developing? You are creating the causes for you to become that Buddha image, to be that Buddha body. Incredible. Incredible. And then, that is in physical form. That is in physical form.
Now Buddhas are not stuck or blocked in on just a physical emanation or just one way of emanating to benefit beings. Because they have an enlightened mind based on altruism, and they have skillful means, that skillful means can manifest based in body, sound, sight. So therefore when the three countless aeons of virtue of a Buddha manifest in sound, it is called mantras. Mantras are the sound emanation of a Buddha’s three aeons of ethical conduct, virtue, practices, asceticism. Can you imagine that? So every time you chant OM MANI PADME HUM, OM AH RA PATSA NA DHI, OM BENZAPANI HUM, OM TARE TUTTARE TURE SOHA, MIG MEY TZE WEY TER CHEN CHENREZIG, DRIMEY KHYEN PEY WANG PO JAMPALYANG, DU PUNG MA LU JOM ZEY SANG WEY DAG, GANGCHEN KHEY PEY TSUG CHEN TSONGKHAPA, LOBSANG DRAG PEY SHAB LA SOL WA DEB, TAYATHA OM BEKANZE BEKANZE MAHA BEKANZE BEKANZE RADZA SAMUDGATE SOHA, TAYATHA OM GATE GATE PARAGATE PARASAMGATE BODHI YE SVAHA…when you OM MAHA YAKCHA TSA SOHA, when you recite that mantra, you are using the power of your speech and, through that gateway, you invoke upon the Buddha’s three aeons of countless merits, virtues and practice to go into you.
Now mantras are words of power. Why are they power? Power for what? Power to transform our delusions. Power to transform our unhappiness. Power to transform our hatred, our impatience. Power to transform everything in our mind that makes us unhappy and negative and evil and rotten people. And to find the real us, kind, compassionate, altruistic people. So when we recite mantras, it is to counter delusions based on the sound coming from the power of three aeons of practice of the Buddha. Does everybody understand that? That is one way that it helps us.
Second way is, mantras can be used for developing very powerful concentration and awareness meditation. Everything in life, how much suffering we create for others, and ourselves is dependent on awareness. Even in the animal kingdom – now listen up – even in the animal kingdom, how alert an animal is means his survival. So an animal that is “duhhh” gets eaten up, no and’s, if’s and but’s. No second chance. They get eaten up. Some birds sitting in a tree, “duhhh”, they get caught by a bigger bird, eaten. You know, very simple. A stupid snake hanging out, bathes in the sun because he feels a little cold, gets eaten up by a big bird. You know? Stupid animals get eaten. Stupid people don’t make it. Stupid ghosts don’t get any offerings. And stupidity means what? Stupidity is just an evil word that we use coz it’s fun, but it actually means lack of awareness. Not being aware. Not being aware of what’s going on, what’s happening around you, in front, nothing. You’re always like in your own little planet, and your own little planet is very small. So lack of awareness.
So awareness is the key to survival. Awareness is the key to good survival. Awareness is the key to success. Awareness is the key to knowledge. Awareness is the key to happiness. Awareness is the key of Buddhism. Why? When we are aware of things that happen and our level of awareness grows, we are extremely sensitive people. We’re extremely alert people, and we are people that can use this alertness and awareness in normal life to succeed in life, and in spiritual life to advance in practice. When we are not alert and we’re not aware, in ordinary life we lose. In spiritual life, we can’t gain any further. Why? It all develops from the mind. Awareness and alertness. So therefore mantras, in the southern tradition of Buddhism…in the southern tradition of Buddhism, they use the breath. They use breath meditation where they sit with the seven-point Vairochana posture, right and left with their thumbs holding, resting at our lap. The feet, the legs are either in full lotus or half lotus. The back is straight, uplifted, our spine is straight, our eyes look forward, not up, not down. Straightforward if possible, in Zahir’s case, on the nose tip. In Jamie’s case, in the floor in the front or she’ll go buzz eyed. But in Zahir’s case he doesn’t concentrate on the tip, just the center. Because the tip is a little too far. And then the tongue up on the roof of the mouth. And we meditate on the breath, we block out everything. And trust me, it is very not easy to meditate on the breath, in and out, in and out. How long you can meditate and hold the breath, how long is how your awareness will grow, because at a certain point in your meditation, you will hear sounds you didn’t hear before. You will smell things you didn’t smell before, and without your eyes you can feel the presence of people around you, you can hear the presence around you. And as your meditation advances, your mind calms, your awareness grows, you’re able to see ethereal beings, you’re able to see higher level beings, you can see spiritual beings, you can even have visions. And then when you go deeper and deeper and deeper what happens is this. You’re able to gain very good memory into things such as very far back into your childhood. You can have perfect memory into things such as when you were even born and what you were thinking inside your mother’s stomach. And then when you go back in your memory you can even remember your previous lives, your previous lives, your previous lives. That type of awareness will grow. Oh definitely.
And then higher forms of awareness meditation will create clairvoyance. You have clear audio, vision, you can see things that people cannot see, hear things that people cannot here, and you’ll know people’s thoughts. You have clairvoyance, it all arises from awareness. So, if we do the southern tradition, it’s a little slower because it’s upon the breath. If we do the northern tradition, which the aim is the same, awareness, it’s very much faster so we use mantras. Now, when we use mantras we are doing a double-fold benefit onto ourselves. We are invoking the three aeons of a Buddha into us, the blessings, one. Two, we instead of focusing on the breath, we focus on the mantra. For example, during meditation, we focus on Avalokiteshvara’s mantra, OM MANI PADME HUNG, OM MANI PADME HUNG, OM MANI PADME HUNG, OM MANI PADME HUNG, you keep the sound at a still where you can hear it but people outside cannot. You keep it regular, you keep it well, and in your heart you visualize a HUM on a moon disc. Around that is OM MANI PADME HUNG circling, going around, with six different colors, representing the six different realms of samsara, which you wish to conquer and empty out. And brilliant lights going out into the six realms, eliminating the sufferings of others, while you recite that mantra very methodically, OM MANI PADME HUNG, and you focus your mind on not what you gonna eat, you’re hungry, you’re tired, your legs hurt, you don’t focus on the weather, you don’t focus on the mosquitoes, you don’t focus on anything…you focus on the mantra, and how long you can focus on the mantra is how strong your meditation of awareness is.
And when you keep that meditation strong and aware, not only that you are able to remember previous lives, your memory becomes excellent, your mind becomes firm and strong, and you are able to endure hardship…also simultaneously, because it’s invoking on blessings of the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, your meditation will be doubled. Faster and quicker. Why? Simultaneously, through the breath, you are not meditating on the empty breath that has no substance, you are meditating on Avalokiteshvara who is an enlightened being. Therefore meditation on that creates merit which propels your meditation into higher levels. Propels. Why? It is on the basis of merit one gains enlightenment and the purification of negative karma and higher thoughts, higher realizations. So when you do the mantras, it propels your mind into a higher state of awareness and it creates a great amount of merit. And a third benefit is if it’s the mantra of for example, Tara, of Setrap, of Dzambala, whatever the deities represent, whatever the deities represent, you are invoking on that particular aspects of enlightenment. So if you are invoking on White Tara, healing comes. Strong body, strong mind, strong nervous system, strong bones, strong circulatory, strong internal organ, strong muscles, everything strong because White Tara’s energy is to heal your body, free it from the causes for it to become sick and unhappy so that you can use your body to benefit others. So therefore the result of this mantra on the side is your body will become lustrous, clean, bright, energetic and extremely attractive to others to bring them to the Dharma.
So if you do Dzambala’s meditation, Dzambala’s mantra, OM DZAMBALA DZALEN DRAYE SOHA, you do it in front of Dzambala’s image, with offerings prepared, and you have done the jorchoe, the six preparatory practices of meditation, jorchoe, six meditations, six preparatory practices, you sit in front of Lama Dzambala and you do your meditation, OM DZAMBALA DZALEN DRAYE SOHA, on awareness and invoking his energy, you will destroy the causes for you to have poverty. You will destroy the causes for you not to be successful in business and earning money, or whatever you like. You will be very successful in earning wealth, you will be very successful in gaining wealth to benefit others and you will also destroy the causes for you to be born in places where it’s very poor or no opportunities, in future lives, from Lama Dzambala’s practice.
So whatever mantra you do, A) you tap into three aeons of Buddha’s energy, of Buddha’s merits and ethics, so you gain the imprints to also achieve that. B) you create awareness. You use that as a meditation to create awareness to gain higher insights within your own mind. C) the mantras also will help you to invoke the particular energy of that particular deity, that particular representation of enlightenment, to gain the particular power or benefit you need from that particular deity. And one more benefit is that because the mantras invoke upon Buddhas, they can be used for healing, they can be used for blessing animals, they can be used for blessing the sick, and blessing the dead, and helping people to clear the environment. Example, if you do Setrap’s mantra well and you achieve Setrap, achieve means become very close by altruism. Achieve Setrap means what? That your mind is very altruistic in propitiating Setrap, that your mind is not about me, me, me, it is about benefitting others. So when you think about benefiting others and you do Setrap’s mantra, you have achieved Setrap. So when you have achieved Setrap and you go to a room that is defiled, that is unclean, that is dirty, that’s filled with disasters or many people has been killed, or you go near a person that needs to be exorcised or taken trance of something evil, or the body has been hexed, OM MAHA YAKCHA TSA SOHA, OM MAHA YAKCHA TSA SOHA, and you think about altruistic and about benefitting people from that suffering so that they don’t do more negative things to create more negative sufferings. And you recite, you invoke upon Setrap’s energy (blows breath out)…you clear the room. Why? When you blow the mantra, it’s as if you are blowing millions and millions of Setraps into that environment. Why? By the power of your meditation, conjoined with Setrap’s energy, combined with your altruistic mind.
Then when you do White Tara’s mantra very well, and invoke upon White Tara, if you work in a hospital, in healing places, as a doctor, as a nurse, oh it’s beautiful! Why? People are very sick on their medicines, for your parents, for your animals (blows breath out)…it really expedites their healing very, very, very, much. Very, very, very much. And then if you have achieved Dzambala, if you give people Dzambala images, and they worship and they practice and do it correctly, their wealth will grow. If you have achieved Manjushri, you do Manjushri practices and you do it well, Lama Tsongkhapa, Manjushri, you know what happens? When you speak about Dharma, when you speak about the truth, when you speak about things that benefit people, when you speak about change, their minds will turn. Why? You have achieved Manjushri, so you have skillful means in order to bring them to the Dharma.
So like that, mantras are words of power, on a very basic level, to heal and take care of immediate problems, spirits, demons, sickness, unhappiness. And on a next level, on the next level, it creates awareness. It makes your mind focus. Why? You’re using the breath and mantra. And, mantras can be used to control natural calamities. Mantra can be used to control the weather. Oh there are many holy lamas, I’ve seen with my own eyes! Who would blow the Yamantaka mantra into the air, within a few minutes you will see the rain disperse. In places where there are no rain and they need it really badly, they will blow Yamantaka mantras in the air. Within half hour you will see a downpour like it hasn’t downpoured in weeks. I have seen it with my own eyes. Not once or not twice. It can’t be coincidence. I’ve seen it. I’m not telling you something I read from 1500 years ago, I’ve seen it in my own backyard with high lamas. Trust me, I’ve been out there blowing until I was blue and nothing happens. But these high lamas, oh they can control the weather. I’ve seen it. No rituals, nothing. Definitely. You can heal people’s lesions and problems and sickness by mantra. You can clear and exorcise them by mantras, but you have to achieve it. Achieve means what? Altruistic thought, concentration on the particular Yidam and devotion to the Yidam, and the wish to benefit others. That is most important for mantra practice.
And then you have the secret level mantras that without initiation you cannot do. Why? Because those mantras move the inside. So those mantras are secret, let me explain why. One of the reasons is because with those mantras, it isn’t simply to recite. Those mantras are conjoined with the movement of the winds inside of your body. And joining the winds into the central channels of your body where, from the 72000 physic channels in your body, it combines into the three main channels. That combines into the central channel where your mind resides, and with those mantras and meditation you can control your rebirth. You can control when you die, when you go, how long you will stay, and you can control where you go. One of those mantras is Vajrayogini’s mantra. So they are not to be recited by the uninitiated. Why? Because they are combined with the meditation, and that meditation must be given to qualified people, who have already finished their preliminary retreats and preliminary practice.
And certain mantras that are general, they have meditations but they are not ‘dangerous’. Meaning wind meditations. Because you know, Chinese have this word, tau fung, wind off, Tibetans also have that. Means the wind literally goes off. We’re not talking about women, we’re talking about anybody. Because we had a case of a monk – well, that’s what he manifested, I can’t guarantee – where he went to the mountains, he meditated wrong, came back, he was obnoxiously crazy. Nice guy but crazy. If there is women running up and down the monastery, he’d chased after them. Once he caught them, he just wants to hold them and then he lets them go. He doesn’t do anything more. When you see him you’re like, “ohhhh”. And he would run around barefoot all over the monastery…I mean a monk chasing women in the monastery, you know, when women went through to make offerings and stuff, he’d chased them. I mean it is a little not too good. But everybody left him alone because they knew that he was not well, and the story went that he went into the hills for years to meditate and it went wrong.
It could have been that or he’s manifesting as mahasiddha. I don’t know. But he used to come to my window and scare the crap out of me. My window was facing the road behind me and then I’d be sitting there doing, I don’t know, picking my nose, listening to Madonna – yes, in the monastery, I was caught many times – hanging out, reading some serial killer book, whatever. Everything but Dharma practice, I’d be doing and he’d be on the window and he’d be like, “What are you doing?” I’d be like, “OHHHHHH, oh god you scared the crap out of me!” He did this almost daily so I had this phobia. You think, “Well, why don’t you keep the window closed?” Because it was so hot, there was no aircon. I mean south India, I was burning up. I’d have phobia thinking, “Where’s Gen Tenzin?” Gen means teacher, Tenzin is his name. Because he was older, I just couldn’t call him Tenzin, it’s not respectful. I’d be like (looks over shoulder). And sometimes he’d be sitting there and staring at me for minutes, and I’d turn around and I’d be like, “OHHHH” and I’d just see these two eyes like (imitates someone blinking closely), and I’d be like, “Oh my god!” And then sometimes he’d just split…he’d split and then a few seconds later I’d hear some women down the street, screaming, “Ahhhhhhhh! It’s Gen Tenzin! Let’s get out of here! Ahhhhhhhh!” And you’d hear his footsteps chasing them, and sometimes he’d catch them, he’d just hold their hands for a few minutes, let them go. Oh god that went on for years and years and years. I said, “Why do you chase women?” and he says, “Because they are beautiful!” And I’m like, “What do you do with them?” “Well, I like to touch them!” I’m like, “Oh.” Like, why I didn’t think of that! And he was so funny…all the time. He was very dark, very skinny, and he had eyes that flickered.
So after a while, I thought, “No, he is a mahasiddha. He is something weird.” I’d respect him very much. He’d come to my window and he’d go like that to me (imitates prostration). But if there is women, of course he’d split. And then he would always ask me for money or tea or something so whenever I had money – I didn’t have much – I’d take money out and I’d offer to him with two hands, thinking, “If you’re a mahasiddha, may I gain your attainments”, offer to him all the time. I didn’t disrespect him or anything. The police, the Indian people, even the Indian women, no one reported him, no one harassed him because he was harmless. But his brother, who I think his wind is off too but nevermind, his brother his name is Gen blublublublu I can’t say it, it’s not respectful, used to tell me that he went to the mountains to meditate and went off.
The higher forms of meditation, you need a Guru, you need a guide. So if you have not developed a relationship with your Guru from beginning to end, it’s very hard just to show up. For example, hundreds of people show up for initiation and then they are gone. They develop don’t a relationship with their Guru beforehand, they don’t develop a relationship with their Guru afterhand. They just show up during initiation and disappear. So when they do practices nothing happen. No one can guide them, no one can teach them, no one can do anything. We need to develop a relationship with our Guru from beginning to end. And if we have a Guru that is skillful, that has love and that has ways to purify our karma, we follow the Guru without complaining, we listen to the Guru without complaining and whatever exercises he gives us to transform our mind, we take it happily without complaining.
The minute we are rude, we shout, we say vulgar things, we show bad actions toward our Guru, it reflects us. Why? A Guru in our mind should be a reflection of the highest point of enlightenment, of what we want to achieve. If we are disrespectful to our Guru, that’s the whole basis, we’re disrespectful to ourselves and what we can achieve. So people who are very rude to their Guru, are very vulgar, and very impatient, and demand and complain and bitch about their Guru, you look at the state of their life. You look at where they are in their life, you look at their body, you look at their speech, you look at their mind. You look at what they do with themselves. Why? If they respect their Guru, in this case because there are many ways to test the person out, isn’t just by Buddhism, in some cases it’s how they respect their parents. In some cases, it’s how they respect their husbands and wives, or their lovers or their friends. They are different meter sticks. But in our case, for people who claim they have Gurus and stuff, how they respect their Gurus is how they respect their state of enlightenment and what they want to achieve. If they are flippant about it, they’re flippant about what they want to achieve. If they are rude about it, they’re not sincere. How they act reflects their state of mind. it’s very clear. You have to think about that.
So, Gurus are very compassionate. If they are real Gurus, they are very kind to people who are mean, they are very kind to people who are rude, they are very kind to people who scream vulgar things and say negative things about them. Why? For them it doesn’t disturb them. They look at them with compassion and think, “I need to help this person more”. So Gurus will always keep weird, strange, flippant, rude and nasty people around them. Why? Nobody else will keep them. Nobody else would have them. Nobody else will listen to them. Nobody else will ever help them. So a practice of compassion is not having nice people around you. A practice of compassion is having nasty people around you and to show love, and show response to them, no matter what they say and how they complain. Mantras can help us on that. The practice of OM MANI PADME HUNG, and the meditation of Avalokiteshvara and the Eight Verses of Transforming Our Mind can be very great in taking care of other people who need help.
So mantras work on very different levels. Secret mantras such as Heruka, Yamantaka, Guhyasamaja, Kalachakra, those are very sacred, and they can’t be just spoken out. Why? Because they are combined with meditation. And then the meditation, development of that and the recitation of that, and the result of that is dependent on holding the vows, the bodhisattva and the tantric vows. So when we hold our bodhisattva vows and tantric vows well, conjoined with meditation, combined with mantra, things move. Things move. So a teacher who is skillful will not put his students in meditation, will not put his student in tantra or initiation and he will treat them, he will step them up in the preliminary practices. You know they scold the student. Scold and scold and scold until the scolding doesn’t disturb the student anymore. Why? If he or she cannot take scolding from the Guru, he cannot take scolding from the whole planet, so this person will always be fighting and violent. So the Guru is very kind because he puts himself on the firing line of people who have a lot of negative emotions. Lots of negative emotions. That’s the purpose of a Guru. The guru puts himself in your firing line. So what happens is this, is that when we do mantras correctly conjoined with meditation, combined with vows, the result is great. Until that point the Guru will skillfully lead you by practice, by meditation, by reading, by study, by training.
And if you are lucky to be near Guru for a few years, to be personally trained by Guru you are very very fortunate. Why? It takes many lifetimes and many prayers to even see a Buddha image, to have reverence for, to know its significance and to hear about it. Imagine how much more merit you need to be near a Buddha? A living Buddha or a being that teaches Buddhism, for you that is a living Buddha. So to be near a statue needs so much merit, but the statue cannot speak to you. To be near a Guru that can speak the Dharma to you, that is even better than a statue. So to disrespect this person or to talk negatively about this person, to act in an ungracious way towards this person, no matter what training you have gotten, reflects your state of mind and your ulterior motive and then good results cannot come. So lower states, the Guru will guide you until the point of initiation. And when you receive initiation and you practice intensely, the results will be there. Why? Holding the vows combined with meditation and mantra will make your attainments grow and your delusions, purified. The mantras are very, very powerful. Very, very powerful. That is why we devote ourselves to a Guru, that is why we have respect for our Guru, that is why we support a Guru’s work, that is why we help a Guru. Why? So that he may do this for many others. What other reason would we do that, what other reason? So the Guru is very skillful in guiding us to higher meditation practices.
So if we stick by, if we’re compliant, if we’re pliant, if we’re agreeable, and we let him help us instead of making terms and conditions and times and this way and that way, then you limit his ability to help you, then you cut it. It’s like if we find a new girlfriend, we’ll make our time available 24/7, whenever she wants. But if it’s somebody we don’t like, “Oh I’m busy on this day, I’m busy on that day, I can’t do this, I can’t do that” – we have a lot of rules. Similarly, if we treat our Guru like a new lover, we’re very compliant, therefore our attainments will grow and our knowledge will grow. If we’re incompliant towards our Guru, we make a lot of conditions, then our attainments don’t grow. Why? Then you limit the possibility of getting that knowledge. So if you like Buddha statues, better is to have a Guru.
So the power of mantra is very very powerful. The power of mantra, the power of mantra is based on the meditation that you do. This set of meditations that you do from beginning to end, helps you from taking refuge, developing the altruistic mind, the Four Immeasurables, the altruistic mind and the four immeasurable types of thought, combined with dissolution of the world as you know it and its projections, and the reappearance of that world into a Buddha field surrounded by mandalas and all beings surrounding it to be dakas and dakinis, and embodiments of enlightenment. And the meditation stages of dissolving the universe, dissolving samsara into emptiness, and arising from emptiness, and then combining that with dissolving the winds, the channels and drops of your body, to purify your delusions and illusions, and then transform your body like that of your meditational deity, into that of a vehicle to benefit others, up to the point of reciting mantras of felicitation, reciting prayers of benediction and felicitation, and reciting aspirational prayers to benefit others, up to dedication, that refuge to that dedication is what we call a sadhana.
So a sadhana is literally translated as this: self-growth. Why? Sadhana is Sanskrit, in Tibetan it’s called da-key. Da means self. Key means to grow, or to develop or to transform. So the word can be grow, develop, transform, transmute. Transform, transmute, grow from what? From a delusional state of self-centered mind to an altruistic mind that thinks of others. So the purpose of doing a sadhana is to transmute or transform, like elixir, from mercury to gold, from that of a delusional mind, to that of a wisdom mind. That’s the purpose of a sadhana. Each deity has a sadhana. Each deity has a mantra. Each deity has a special meditation and each deity has a special path. Each deity and each mantra and each path is perfect for becoming enlightened, but their approach is different. Each deity sadhana is appropriate for enlightenment and will bring you to enlightenment, but the difference is that the approach is different and that approach depends on one’s individualistic inclinations. Meaning if one is more lust-based, desire-based, hatred-based, ignorant-based, anger-based, then according to one’s basis, and one’s immediate, heaviest delusion, then one’s Yidam will be the one that counters the heaviest delusion, simultaneously purifying the other delusions in one go.
Example, Lord Yamantaka would be anger and deep ignorance and use that method. Lord Heruka will be lust and attachment. Guhyasamaja will be a combination of all three. So Vajrayogini being the synthesis of Heruka’s practice, a shorter version, will be a counter to desire, lust, attachment and using that method to become enlightened. Hence her body red, her visage fierce, trampling on demons of selfishness and ignorance and hatred. The black figure under Vajrayogini represents hatred and ignorance. The red figure under her represents desire. So when she tramples on those three, she tramples on the very causes of samsara, which are the three animals in the center of samsara’s wheel – the pig, the rooster and the snake. SO Vajrayogini stepping on those three, which is the center of samsara, representing that’s the cause of samsara – ignorance, hatred and desire. So she tramples on those three. When you practice Vajrayogini together with mantra, with meditation and holding your vows, it propels you to her state. What is that state? The state free of those three delusions.
So a sadhana is something we do every single day, it’s a practice manual. From A-Z to becoming enlightened. It is a set form of prayers which starts with refuge, next is aspirational prayers, the Four Immeasurables, thoughts and then dissolution of the environment as we know, and development or the projection of the environment as it should be. Dissolution of the environment as it is, projection or creation of a Buddha environment, of a Buddha being, and Buddha sound, everything Buddha. And then using that combined with making offerings, supreme and mundane to the deity, such as offerings that we place in front of the Yidam, as a method to collect merit, conjoined with meditation in our mind to control the winds, channels and drops. The winds is the wind that passes through, it’s chi. The drops, the bindhu, is the fundamental drop that started us, the single drop from our mother red, the single drop from our father, to control that which remains in our body. And the channels, one, two (recites a prayer), five chakras which are joined energy points for our winds to travel.
So during this sadhana, you are holding your vows that you get during initiation to stop doing further negative things. It’s like someone who smokes, no more ciggie butts, you cut it off, that is what the vows do, cold turkey. So a lot of people can’t do cold turkey, so before you take tantric vows, that’s why your Guru doesn’t let you go do it, he trains you up. So people who are fierce, the Guru is fierce; people who are gentle, gentle; whatever the Guru needs to train you up, this way or this way, the Guru will train you, because you can’t give the vows cold turkey to people, they will break it. Defeats the purpose. It’s like giving a little baby crystal glass. When the baby grows up, give it, can no problem. When the baby small, you give it a crystal glass, break what, drop. So similarly the Guru trains you up. If you submit yourself to the training, you will come out excellent. If you fight it, then maybe you have a better method. If you fight it, you don’t have a better method you look at yourself, are you happy? Are you depressed? How is your body, how is your friends, your attitude, your mind, how are you? You have to look at yourself. Okay? Then, by this meditation combined with making offerings, holding your vows and the secret power of mantra, when you combine it such as in Vajrayogini’s case, your attainments will be very fast. Very efficacious.
So a sadhana is a self-transformation text, self-transformation manual and guide to enlightenment. And each deity has their specific sadhana to do. It can be short or it can be long. The prayers that I have composed that are in DMT, those are not sadhanas, those are prayers. Prayers are aspirations in words that we offer to the deities, hoping that what we prayed for will manifest. So aspirational prayers are something we aspire to. So for new people who go into DMT, KMT, they just buy a Dzambala and they don’t know what to do, I give them aspirational prayers with the mantra so that they can make prayers to Dzambala, to have that actualize and by reciting the mantra, purify their negative karma, so that they can achieve something small from it. Questions? Sadhanas and mantras.
(someone asks a question)
(answer) You can do mantras on their own. Of course.
(someone asks a question)
(answer) Depending on the environment and situation. I mean, if you’re with your parents and they think that you’re a religious fanatic and you have joined a cult, you don’t see them and go, “OM MANI PADME HUNG, OM MANI PADME HUNG, OM MANI PADME HUNG.” You don’t do that. If you’re driving, you don’t go into shamata meditation (snores). You don’t do that.
So it depends on the situation but generally mantras should be recited at the tone where just yourself can hear it but the neighbor cannot. At that tone. And if it is not convenient, silently. But by hook or crook, your mouth must move. You can’t sit there and go (imitates mouth closed) “Mmmhmmmhmmm”, then you might as well not do anything. “I’m doing mantras what.” You know, you can’t you…you have to at least move your mouth, very important. Because if you move your mouth the sound of the mantra, the mantra is the energy, the essence, the attainments, is the power of that deity in sound form. So you are enunciating all the qualities of the deity. And there is a type of mantra…there are levels that you can do the mantra silently, which means yi-dey. Yi-dey is mind mantra, meaning you have reached a stage where you don’t have to move your mouth, you can actually recite the mantra in your mind. That’s quite a high stage. People in Vajrayogini’s mantra it’s possible. You have the yi-dey here and you can move it to your belly, you can move it to your secret organ, you can move it to back up, you can move the mantra up and down, recite it without moving your mouth. Oh yes. Those type of people, they can control their orgasms. And when they have orgasms, it’s very strong, it’s very powerful and they can see their subtle mind with their orgasms. Or in their deep sleep. It’s very, very powerful. So with Vajrayogini you can move your mantras up and down without using your mouth, you can use yi-dey, mind mantra. Isn’t that fabulous?
So just now when you make offerings there, what you are praying for is to get all of those in the future. So I advise you guys to stick around. Because when I get that retreat center open and you guys are my friends, I’m going to be passing you a fabulous, delicious, wonderful, Miss World pageant winner. Vajrayogini. Her name is Miss Vajrayogini, come on out. She won in talent and beauty and smart and everything. You know when they interviewed you, “What is your fondest wish?”, she didn’t say, “World peace.” Oh yes, that is what you guys are going to get later. Why Vajrayogini? Look at us. We need her badly. Look at us. Look at Kandarohi. Kandarohi is screaming for Vajrayogini, screaming. Why is he screaming for Vajrayogini? Because he screamed at me the other day when I asked him, “Why don’t you get laid?” and he said, “Don’t you think I’ve been trying?”, screaming. He screamed back, “Don’t you think I’ve been trying?” It’s the first time someone shut me up in a long, long time. He’s screaming. When he said that, he was screaming, he was screaming Vajrayogini. Look at all of you sexual deviants, why Because sexual energy is the most powerful and pervasive in the world. From salmons that swim upstream to mate and then spawn and die, to human beings that live their whole life spending money for sex, getting it, the pleasure of it, wanting it. That’s why Vajrayogini is the most appropriate for all of us, because she is the one that absorbs that, allows it and transforms it. Isn’t that wonderful? Absorbs it, allows it and transforms it. I didn’t say restrict so you guys don’t have to look for the door, and transforms it…because the minute you say restrict, they say, “Where’s the door? Where’s the door? I’m not doing any cult practices that means no boobli!” Yes. If you say ‘restrict’, Paris and a few of her other friends like Kandarohi will be like, “Where’s the door?” Get it? That is why Vajrayogini is very appropriate.
Tonight’s talk became a little profound and deep. And I don’t know if you can come out with questions immediately, but Saturday…I’m sure from now to there, Paris will go home and type out 5000 questions and harass me with. And what we do is we will have 10 people screen her questions and it comes out to me to be one, thank you. Any questions about sadhanas and mantras?
(someone asks a question)
(answer) Remind me to give you a little short version on mantras and sadhanas on Saturday. That you can write up on one little pager on. Because now, what I gave, you’re like, “Ohhhh”. Henry doesn’t even write notes anymore. After I tell him, he’s like, “Oh forget it lah.” Henry is just…the only wind he likes is some tobacco wind. So think about that. I’ll give you a little, simpler form of sadhana and mantra which should take you about 10 minutes. I want to go a little in-depth, I’ll tell you why: you guys are capable about it. And you guys made offerings just now. I wanted it to result in something. Any questions?
(someone asks a question)
(answer) Yes it depends. In the case of Tara, her mantra was spoken by Lord Vajrapani when he was requested to talk about Tara. In the case of certain other Taras, she herself appeared to people like Nagajurna, to people like Atisha…example, there was one student of Atisha’s that was very, very ill. Very, very sick, and he had to do 100,000 Praises to Tara, 21 Praises to Tara in order to become healed. He was so sick that he couldn’t even recite one. So Atisha felt compassionate for him and didn’t know what to do, so he prayed to Tara. Tara appeared to him in the simplified form, and taught him the 21 verses condensed into one paragraph. And then Atisha passed it to this man to recite it, and he became well. So sometimes the deities themselves appear.
In the case of Vajrayogini, Heruka spoke it. In the case of Heruka, Shakyamuni spoke it. Very good question. All mantras have a source. They cannot be made up. Example, His Eminence Tsem Rinpoche’s mantra – apostrophe ‘s’, okay keep the tomatoes and fruits to yourself, don’t throw it to me alright – was made up by my holy Guru Gangchen Rinpoche who says that when people recite it, it will benefit them. It’ll transform their minds. It will help them to realize things better and prolong my life. So in the case of (says his name silently) mantra was by His Eminence Gangchen Rinpoche, requested by my students in Westin Hotel when he arrived here.
(audio cut)…what they want, sweeping, and doing the laundry, the king; the courtesan, recited Vajrayogini’s initiation and he became enlightened. So this mahasiddha has been reincarnating over and over again in Nepal and India and in Tibet. And this mahasiddha’s name is His Eminence Gangchen Tulku Rinpoche. He’s one of my Gurus. He resides in Italy. Yes. Fabulous. Lemons here had the great merit to meet His Eminence Gangchen Rinpoche in Italy. Great merit. Okay, any questions? Susan? Sharon? Wasn’t it fabulous? Yes. Any questions? Kandarohi? What about Sleepyrohi Joe? Joe is always in deep shamata towards the end, he’s like (imitates someone nodding off). What about JJ-rohi? Again, a reminder, no more tight shirts for you. Alright. Go ahead.
(JJ asks a question)
(answer) Oh yes. Now, that’s a very good question. There are four classes of tantra: charya, kriya, yoga and maha-anuttara yoga. The three lower classes of tantra specifically deals with transformation of immediate obstacles. This is what Kensur Rinpoche says: in chaju or kriya tantra, in the lower tantras, what Kensur Rinpoche mentioned is, it will take care of immediate problems and difficulties. And when immediate problems and difficulties are taken care of, then we are able to practice the higher tantras that will actually bring us to enlightenment. So example, if we have monetary problems, we will receive Dzambala retreat, initiation, practice, profound mantra, oral transmission and we do his sadhana. And the Dzambala sadhanas do not really go in-depth into mind transformation, it doesn’t really go into in-depth into the meditation of winds, drops and channels. What Dzambala’s meditation does is actually, immediately purifies the causes for us to be in a poverty situation, clears immediate obstacles, opens up our heart a little bit more to generosity, and therefore with that practice, when we get some money, we’re alright, we can go into retreats. We can do higher practices such as Vajrayogini. Higher and lower is not the deity’s power, higher and lower is the method that is presented. Example, the lower tantra such as Manjushri…let’s say we have bad memory so we go for teachings and we can’t stay awake, we’re not aware, we’re always asleep, we always forget, we’re not alert, so we do a Manjushri retreat, the Manjushri retreat gives us the alertness of the mind. Then we can engage in Yamantaka. Yamantaka and Manjushri is exactly the same deity. One is not lower or higher. So that when we engage in Yamantaka’s retreat, we can gain enlightenment.
So the lower tantric methods are specifically to take care of a problem such as poverty, sickness, mind illness, disorder, obstacles…Example, if we always see spirits, we might need to go into the practice of Black Manjushri in the lower tantras, or Vajrapani. If we always have horrible skin diseases or horrible sickness, we might have to go into the practice of Vajrapani. Maybe we need compose and write and do Dharma texts, we need to practice Saraswati, Manjushri, or the great Lama Tsongkhapa. And then when we’re able to do that, along with that we can do practices of Yamantaka or Vajrayogini or Heruka. Why? The higher tantras deal with, specifically, enlightenment. The lower tantras deal with immediate taking care of problems. Very good. So not everybody is able to go into the higher tantras, but people who can do the higher tantras, they don’t need to do the lower tantras because the higher tantras embody everything. If you are doing Yamantaka, you don’t need to do Manjushri. If you’re doing Manjushri, you need to do Yamantaka. Why? Because Yamantaka is the full-fledged form of this practice. This is just a condensed form. Does everybody understand that? Oh yes, it’s very very powerful.
(someone asks a question)
(answer) Same effect as in purifying other obstacles, yes. And preparing you for Yamantaka’s practice, yes. But not for full enlightenment in one lifetime. So when you do Lama Tsongkhapa’s practice what happens is you create the causes that in case you don’t become enlightened, you take rebirth in Ganden Heaven. Tushita. One.
Two. When you do the practice of Lama Tsongkhapa, you purify the three…hatred, ignorance, and outer obstacles. When you do Lama Tsongkhapa’s practice, it is the same as doing Yamantaka meaning, Yamantaka’s mantra, when you recite, spirits cannot come near. So when you do Migtsema, if you don’t have Yamantaka, it has the same effect. Therefore if someone who does Migtsemas, and their mala is given to you and that mala is put on the door, then very fierce spirits will run. Why? From that mala emits Yamantaka deities. Why? Because they are one in being.
So the meaning of that is not a substitute, it means the immediate benefit. If we have cancer and therefore we have fever…alright? Or someone else has a flu or a fever, if we can take Panadol it helps, but it doesn’t remove the cause. Like that, either way, Panadol helps. Like that, Migtsema helps either way, but Migtsema is a short form and the immediate form of higher tantric practice preparation. So if we do Guru Yoga according to Lama Tsongkhapa, if we do water offerings according to Lama Tsongkhapa, if we do recitations of Vajrasattva according to Lama Tsongkhapa…if we do prostrations, if we do mandalas according to Lama Tsongkhapa, focusing on Lama Tsongkhapa, when we do Vajrayogini, it’s as if we’re not at the front of the door, we already in the middle of the house. We’re ready to go upstairs. It’s much quicker. Why? Lama Tsongkhapa is an easier to digest deity for people, as opposed to Vajrayogini which is quite wild and too obnoxious and scary, but has many functions. So it is equivalent to Yamantaka’s mantra in the sense of protection from outer interferences, yes; in controlling weather and spirits and black magic, yes, but not equivalent in meditation for transforming the mind. Does everybody understand that? Yes. Good. Questions? Otherwise we are finished.
“I don’t have any questions and don’t ask me any questions.” She has this kind of look. Don’t you like? Wan doesn’t go, “Thank you very much!” She goes, “Please don’t ask me anything! Please!” Any questions? Susan? Beneficial? Yes. Good. You come back for a little while, you pop in. I saw your hand. Keep it down I can see your armpit hair sticking out too. Like Richard Nixon. Hello. Isn’t that rude? You see when you come back to the peninsula it is better than that little island over there, wherever you are living at. And remember what the Buddha’s telling you. Yes JT and let’s make it an intelligent one this time.
(JT asks a question)
(answer) That’s why you doing now. That’s what you’re doing right now. Everyday. You got that right! That’s what I said! An intelligent question this time. Edit that one out. I don’t want anybody to see how evil and negative and how uncultured and how unpracticed and how uncouth this Guru is. And I don’t want this to be like, “snip” and sent to the Dalai Lama. Uh oh. Called back, excommunicated, kicked out and then you know what? Next time when you go to India, I’ll be like running around with a buffalo. And you’ll be like, “What happened to you?” “I’m a farmer now.” Which is what where I was. Isn’t that horrible? You guys on the way to Bodhgaya, it’s like, “Isn’t that Rinpoche?!” God! And then couldn’t you see Kandarohi? She’ll be like, “Here Rinpoche, here’s some cough drops for you! Mwah! Mwah! Mwah!” and I’ll be like, “You little…” And then suddenly you see me getting on a lorry, rushing there with my buffalo and Kandarohi is running around, getting on the luxury deluxe bus, thank you very much, with the Hindi music blaring, going to the stupa…I send my buffalo. Sic ’em, sic ’em, get em! Moooo! Oh god! And it’ll be a water buffalo, so it’s gonna be a big one! Hmmm, you might enjoy it though. So snip this out so I don’t end up a buffalo or a rice planter farmer in India. Questions?
Well no questions? It has been a wonderful, fabulous, beautiful, delicious experience and I just can’t want for Saturday because you guys are very sincere, you guys are going to do wonderful Dharma work. And you guys are gonna write in such a way that with the skill of composition, it will benefit so many people. So if I can benefit you all with this and the outlet people are here, then it’s very pleasurable because when we get this out, more and more people will be benefited. They will have some knowledge. And this is what Dame Khang is all about. This is what Kechara House is all about. This is what our outlets are all about. And we’re normal people, I make mistakes, I have my diva fits, I have problems and difficulties, but deep down inside I am a good person, and I really do want to help. So sometimes things go up, things go down, that’s normal. I never said that I was a Buddha, I just said I’m trying to be. So that’s my catchline, “I ain’t a Buddha, I’m trying to be.””
The next time I make a mistake, they’ll go, “See! You’re not a Buddha!” “I already told you I’m not a Buddha so kiss my grits!” Alright? You know what? You’ll Vajrayogini everybody again with your backside. My, my, my. You and JJ and JT should not be allowed to wear tight things. You should wear things that are not tight and that fit. I like that! Things that are not tight and that fit. Oh that is so evil! And the original lineage of that came from Guru Paris. Well we have to have a lineage and tell them where it came from, that powerful mantra, “Om wear things that fit hung phet”, that came from Guru Paris when we had a vision of her in a green dress. So you can see Paris…Tara appears like that, Vajrayogini appears like that, Buddha appears like that, Paris appears like this. “Wear things that fit hung phet.” And then of course, the mahasiddha Tsem here had a vision of the goddess Paris and said, “Oh my god it’s a fabulous mantra! Om wear things that fit hung phet! Om wear things that fit hung phet!” And I pass it to you, and then you’re like, “I’m going to kill that mahasiddha and I’m gonna slap that Buddha! Oh god!” And then you find out, it’s not a mahasiddha or Buddha but two charlatans. Don’t you love it? Yes. So Paris, you’ve been dethroned before you were canonized by the Bahrainian inquisition. It’s been wonderful, thank you for the preparations, we will start on Saturday 3 o’clock, and then we will finish it off at 7 what is…no 6, and then we start at 7:30pm and finish at midnight. It’s going to be…sleep well Friday night, take the Xanax, take whatever pills you need to sleep well because its going to be a long, tough, fabulous whatever.
Where there is no Dharma, let there be the Dharma; where there is Dharma, let it become stronger; where there is a misunderstanding of Dharma, may we clear it. May we use our body, our speech and mind to be of tremendous benefit of others, to relieve people of their immediate unhappiness and sufferings, and their ultimate unhappiness, suffering and delusion. May we spread the word of the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation. May this country and this land be peaceful, be bountiful and be happy, may the leaders all of this country have long life, health and happiness and may the holy wishes and their virtuous wishes all come to fruition. May this place be free of natural disasters and calamities. May it be free from riots and wars and poverty. By our presence and the generation of the Bodhi mind, may this place and this country and this area be filled with bounteous thoughts and harvests.
(This was transcribed from a talk I gave a few years ago as there were many questions on mantras and I thought I’d answer the questions with this talk. And Ms Jean Ai has re-edited it again weeding out the mistakes.
I thank Ms Jean Ai for such a good job. Now I can share with more people. Tsem Rinpoche)
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