The Royal Song Of Saraha

Jul 14, 2013 | Views: 775
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The Royal Song Of Saraha

I bow down to noble Manjushri
I bow down to Him who has conquered the finite.

… 1
As calm water lashed by wind
Turns into waves and rollers,
So the king thinks of Saraha
In many ways, although one man.

2
To a fool who squints
One lamp is as two;
Where seen and seer are not two, ah! the mind
Works on the thingness of them both.

3
Though the house-lamps have been lit,
The blind live on in the dark.
Though spontaneity is all-encompassing and close,
To the deluded it remains always far away.

4
Though there may be many rivers, they are one in the sea,
Though there may be many lies, one truth will conquer all.
When one sun appears, the dark
However deep will vanish.

5
As a cloud that rises from the sea
Absorbing rain the earth embraces,
So, like the sky, the sea remains
Without increasing or decreasing.

6
So from spontaneity that’s unique,
Replete with the Buddha’s perfections,
Are all sentient beings born and in it come
To rest. But it is neither concrete nor abstract.

7
They walk other paths and so forsake true bliss,
Seeking the delights that stimulants produce.
The honey in their mouths and to them so near
Will vanish if at once they do not drink it.

8
Beasts do not understand the world
To be a sorry place. Not so the wise
Who the heavenly nectar drink
While beasts hunger for the sensual.

9
To a fly that likes the smell of putrid
Meat the fragrance of sandalwood is foul.
Beings who discard Nirvana
Covet coarse Samsara’s realm.

10
An ox’s footprints filled with water
Will soon dry up; so with a mind that’s firm
But full of qualities that are not perfect;
These imperfections will in time dry up.

11
Like salt sea water that turns
Sweet when drunk up by the clouds,
So a firm mind that works for others turns
The poison of sense-objects into nectar.

12
If ineffable, never is one unsatisfied,
If unimaginable, it must be bliss itself.
Though from a cloud one fears the thunderclap,
The crops ripen when from it pours the rain.

13
It is in the beginning, in the middle, and
The end; yet end and beginning are nowhere else.
All those with minds deluded by interpretative thoughts are in
Two minds and so discuss nothingness and compassion as two things.

14
Bees know that in flowers
Honey can be found.
That Samsara and Nirvana are not two
How will the deluded ever understand?

15
When the deluded in a mirror look
They see a face, not a reflection.
So the mind that has truth denied
Relies on that which is not true.

16
Though the fragrance of a flower cannot be touched,
‘Tis all pervasive and at once perceptible.
So by unpatterned being-in-itself
Recognize the round of mystic circles.

17
When in winter still water by the wind is stirred,
It takes as ice the shape and texture of a rock.
When the deluded are disturbed by interpretative thoughts,
That which is as yet unpatterned turns very hard and solid.

18
Mind immaculate in its very being can never be
Polluted by Samsara’s or Nirvana’s impurities.
A precious jewel deep in mud
Will not shine, though it has luster.

19
Knowledge shines not in the dark, but when the darkness
Is illumined, suffering disappears at once.
Shoots grow from the seed
And leaves from the shoots.

20
He who thinks of the mind in terms of one
Or many casts away the light and enters the world.
Into a raging fire he walks with open eyes–
Who could be more deserving of compassion?

21
For the delights of kissing the deluded crave
Declaring it to be the ultimately real–
Like a man who leaves his house and standing at the door
Asks a woman for reports of sensual delights.

22
The stirring of biotic forces in the house of nothingness
Has given artificial rise to pleasures in so many ways.
Such yogis from affliction faint for they have fallen
From celestial space, inveigled into vice.

23
As a Brahman, who with rice and butter
Makes a burnt offering in blazing fire
Creating a vessel for nectar from celestial space,
Takes this through wishful thinking as the ultimate.

24
Some people who have kindled the inner heat and raised it to the fontanelle
Stroke the uvula with the tongue in a sort of coition and confuse
That which fetters with what gives release,
In pride will call themselves yogis.

25
As higher awareness they teach what they experience
Within. What fetters them they will call liberation.
A glass trinket colored green to them is a priceless emerald;
Deluded, they know not a gem from what they think it should be.

26
They take copper to be gold. Bound by discursive thought
They think these thoughts to be ultimate reality.
They long for the pleasures experienced in dreams. They call
The perishable body-mind eternal bliss supreme.

27
By the symbol EVAM they think self-clearness is achieved,
By the different situations that demand four seals
They call what they have fancied spontaneity,
But this is looking at reflections in a mirror.

28
As under delusion’s power a herd of deer will rush
For the water in a mirage which is not recognized,
So also the deluded quench not their thirst, are bound by chains
And find pleasure in them, saying that all is ultimately real.

29
Nonmemory is convention’s truth
And mind which has become no-mind is ultimate truth.
This is fulfillment, this the highest good.
Friends, of this highest good become aware.

30
In nonmemory is mind absorbed; just this
Is emotionality perfect and pure.
It is unpolluted by the good or bad of worldliness
Like a lotus unaffected by the mud from which it grows.

31
Yet with certainty must all things be viewed as if they were a magic spell.
If without distinction you can accept or reject Samsara
Or Nirvana, steadfast is your mind, free from the shroud of darkness.
In you will be self-being, beyond thought and self-originated.

32
This world of appearance has from its radiant beginning
Never come to be; unpatterned it has discarded patterning.
As such it is continuous and unique meditation;
It is nonmentation, stainless contemplation, and nonmind.

33
Mind, intellect, and the formed contents of that mind are It,
So too are the world and all that seems from It to differ,
All things that can be sensed and the perceiver,
Also dullness, aversion, desire, and enlightenment.

34
Like a lamp that shines in the darkness of spiritual
Unknowing, It removes obscurations of a mind
As far as the fragmentations of intellect obtain.
Who can imagine the self-being of desirelessness?

35
There’s nothing to be negated, nothing to be
Affirmed or grasped; for It can never be conceived.
By the fragmentations of the intellect are the deluded
Fettered; undivided and pure remains spontaneity.

36
If you question ultimacy with the postulates of the many and the one,
Oneness is not given, for by transcending knowledge are sentient beings freed.
The radiant is potency latent in the intellect, and this
Is shown to be meditation; unswerving mind is our true essence.

38
The buds of joy and pleasure
And the leaves of glory grow.
If nothing flows out anywhere
The bliss unspeakable will fruit.

39

What has been done and where and what in itself it will become
Is nothing; yet thereby it has been useful for this and that.
Whether passionate or not
The pattern is nothingness.

40

If I am like a pig that covets worldly mire
You must tell me what fault lies in a stainless mind.
By what does not affect one
How can one now be fettered?

English translation by Herbert V. Guenther.

 

 

 

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10 Responses to The Royal Song Of Saraha

  1. Choongs on Jul 15, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Verse 5 – not true anymore as pole ice is melting.
    I love, love, Verse 11 – transformation. Take the salt out of your water! Older people always say I have eaten more salt than you, now you can reply: but I have learnt to take the salt out of the water. He he he.
    Verse 12 – sublime, sublime… :)
    Verse 14 – so samsara and nirvana and not two, they are one but in our mind?
    Verse 18 – we must realise that we all have the potential to shine.
    Verse 21 – A moment on the lips, a lifetime of illusion. For sweet desserts, a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips!
    Verse 28 – Another actor star bit the dust, this time from the cast of “Glee”. They live a life full of unreality and this often takes over their mind.
    Verse 30 – too much adolation is given to the lotus flower. Without mud the lotus will not live, without the right building blocks, perfect understanding will not be achieved. Hey it rhymes!
    Verse 31 – You will need bridges to get to pure land but burn them if you want to get there. Bye-bye gurus :) bye! :) … bye :)
    Verse 32 – If the big bang theory is correct, all matter is past tense, only our mind is present tense and therefore relevant.
    Verse 33 – shaky ground or maybe I don’t understand.
    Verse 36 – I think I’m ready for meditation. Need to move beyond all this intellectual stuff. Got insight already I think, so can meditate without non-mentation.
    Verse 37 – missing.
    Verse 38 – When the universe is in your mind, nothing will flow out.
    Your own pure land ya.
    Verse 39 – similar to Verse 31, bye, bye gurus :)
    Verse 40 – Ooooh, ends with a question mark! Drama. Who done it? I read it to ask this question – is ignorance bliss? My attempt at an answer: ignorance is briefly bliss but if you don’t plan for the future you will end up like the pig or earthworm.

    Thank you dear Riponche.
    This song is another excellent/entertaining way of imparting wisdom and I have thoroughly enjoyed the learning process.
    “I don’t know how I do it, I just do it!”, John Leguizamo on Saturday Night Live.

    • Choongs on Aug 1, 2013 at 10:23 am

      Let’s Dance!

  2. Joy on Jul 15, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    I enjoyed reading every bit of this song. Very profound and deep in wisdom. Would be excellent if Rinpoche could give us a further commentary on each verse so we do not misinterpret it to suit our egos.

    The below are my favourite verses which I think talks about samsara’s delusions, tantra, our ignorant mind seeing duality when in fact when we practice correctly the tantras with correct view and motivation, everything we do, our body speech and mind becomes a method to bring Dharma to others or others in to Dharma… “Samsara and Nirvana are not two”! So a firm mind, a stable mind, will always think of others, selflessly put others before their own needs and so they use many creative methods to help others, changing sense-objects into nectar… reminds me of how Rinpoche uses non-conventional ways to teach us all the time!

    But if we notice… how even from the very beginning of this song… homage is paid to the Guru… for without the Guru… the knowledge and realisation will be quite slow, limited or none at all!
    “I bow down to noble Manjushri
    I bow down to Him who has conquered the finite.”

    11
    Like salt sea water that turns
    Sweet when drunk up by the clouds,
    So a firm mind that works for others turns
    The poison of sense-objects into nectar.

    13
    It is in the beginning, in the middle, and
    The end; yet end and beginning are nowhere else.
    All those with minds deluded by interpretative thoughts are in
    Two minds and so discuss nothingness and compassion as two things.

    14
    Bees know that in flowers
    Honey can be found.
    That Samsara and Nirvana are not two
    How will the deluded ever understand?

    15
    When the deluded in a mirror look
    They see a face, not a reflection.
    So the mind that has truth denied
    Relies on that which is not true.

    Thank you Rinpoche for this profound sharing!

  3. Sofi on Jul 19, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Wow, a really deep and profound poem/song that needs careful reading and deep thoughts. Beautiful though as it reveals the essence of our mind/being from the beginningless time. Samsara and nirvana, just a thing line apart, depending on our mindlessness or mindfulness. Will definitely need repeated readings. Hope Rinpoche will give a commentary on this poem to help us with the real meaning meant. As Choongs mentioned, Verse 37 is missing. Thank you and with folded hands Rinpoche, may you continue turning the wheel of dharma for deluded beings as us.

    • Sofi on Jul 25, 2013 at 6:14 pm

      Though spontaneity is all-encompassing and close,
      To the deluded it remains always far away.

      I have been thinking how spontaneity relates to this poem and this is what I think. When upon “full realizing” (as in really believing and living it) of impermanence, we will then be able to let go of our attachments, ie. ego, fear, comfort zone, etc. In doing so, we can then be spontaneous as we will not be held back by our attachments. Also in compassion for others, we too will act spontaneously to help others, ie. a mother’s love for her young will make help her young in trouble by spontaneous instincts or even a stranger who may jump to save a child from being hit by a car, etc. Spontaneity is within us but blocked by our delusions which forms our attachments, egos, etc. Nowadays, due to so many samsaric attachments, we are only able to habituate spontaneity thru daily practise/mindfulness.

      Back to more pondering.

  4. Julien Roth on Jul 25, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Such a nice and deep song. It brings out a strong message. Which many people could learn from. I wouldn’t know anything else to say about this song, but that it needs to be thought of very deeply for one to understand fully.

  5. Cliff on Jul 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    This song is wonderful in teaching the dharma and although I don’t really understand what this song is mostly conveying but singing it felt good haha.

  6. Wan Wai Meng on Aug 21, 2013 at 2:35 am

    Songs of realisations always point to the truth and the dharma. It is inspiring to read this.

  7. beatrix ooi on Aug 27, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    The song has been very thoughtfully and beautifully written, it shows that how much love and passion the original author has towards Saraha. It’s really nice, Mr Herbert must have had a tough time translating it, but every single word he uses in the song does gel with each other.
    Thank You for sharing Rinpoche.

  8. albert ventura on Jul 29, 2014 at 8:58 pm

    Hi Tsemtulku, can you give me a short explanation about the stanza :
    Though there may be many rivers, they are one in the sea,
    Though there may be many lies, one truth will conquer all.
    When one sun appears, the dark
    However deep will vanish.

    your reply is much appreciated.

    Thank you,

    Albert

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The Known and unknown are both feared,
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    This is a very inspiring video by Jim Carrey you must see
    1 week ago
  • Dalai Lama watching TV
    Dalai Lama watching TV
    2 weeks ago
  • Dog with a heart of Gold
    Dog with a heart of Gold
    Description
    2 weeks ago
  • 14th Dalai Lama with Mrs.Indira Gandhi , Delhi INDIA 1966
    14th Dalai Lama with Mrs.Indira Gandhi , Delhi INDIA 1966
    3 months ago
  • The Girl Who Couldn't Cry - Water is Life
    The Girl Who Couldn't Cry - Water is Life
    It's really hard to educate a generation of people born in conditions where they take things for granted. A simple slogan campaign that says, "Save water, It's precious" isn't sticky enough to make inroads. That's exactly where this video steps in: to make people realize how precious water actually is. A brilliant video that follows the heartbreaking story of a young girl that cannot cry. Sounds like fiction? Sadly, it is not.
    3 months ago
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    Dear everyone, All sentient beings deserve to live, be happy and not hurt, including animals. We should never hurt them or eat them. Look how much this chicken welcomes a hug and love. Observe carefully. Don't eat beings who can feel pain because the karma comes back. Tsem Rinpoche
    4 months ago
  • The appreciation shown here is so deep and touching.
    The appreciation shown here is so deep and touching.
    Dear friends, See this incredible video. This chimp was found in captivity for many years. Dr Jane Goodall released him into the wild. Look how he comes back to thank her with deep apprecition. It's amazing. Animals have such strong feelings of pain and happiness just like us. We should never hurt them and share with others to not hurt them. Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com
    4 months ago
  • Aki drinking some water in the aviary
    Aki drinking some water in the aviary
    Aki is a rescued bird, he now lives in Kechara Forest Retreat Aviary
    6 months ago
  • Jamyang enjoying some fresh corn
    Jamyang enjoying some fresh corn
    Jamyang is one of our rescue birds that live in Kechara Forest Retreat Aviary
    6 months ago
  • The Cute Mumus Practising Dog Orchestra at Kechara Forest Retreat
    The Cute Mumus Practising Dog Orchestra at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Today the Mumus (dogs) decided to do a dog orchestra rehearsal together with the Kechara Forest Retreat (KFR) dogs.
    6 months ago
  • Incredible footage you must see!
    Incredible footage you must see!
    Description
    7 months ago
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    Gongkar is our new bird for Kechara Forest Retreat's aviary. Gongkar never had friends and the original owner could not bring him to his destination. Now he is with us and assimilating in his cage within the aviary for a few weeks then released into aviary. Look at how much he wants attention from the other birds. Cute. Tsem Rinpoche
    10 months ago
  • Mumu, Oser and Dharma running and having a good time. I love seeing them playing. Tsem Rinpoche
    Mumu, Oser and Dharma running and having a good time. I love seeing them playing. Tsem Rinpoche
    10 months ago
  • Mumus running at Kechara Forest Retreat
    Mumus running at Kechara Forest Retreat
    11 months ago
  • Kechara Forest Retreat panorama, September 2013
    Kechara Forest Retreat panorama, September 2013
    12 months ago
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    Dechog our cockatoo at Kechara Forest Retreat grabbing long beans which he loves. Nice bird. We love him. Tsem Rinpoche
    1 years ago
  • The mumus having outdoor evening stroll!!!
    The mumus having outdoor evening stroll!!!
    1 years ago
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    17 May 2013, heavy rain at Kechara Forest Retreat from 7am-8am (1 hour). Water overflowed the existing drain and also opened up a much wider new "route" for itself.
    1 years ago
  • Must see video from Rajendra on our disciplined dogs
    Must see video from Rajendra on our disciplined dogs
    1 years ago
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    Dato' Ruby won the Bella Awards!
    1 years ago
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    This is a wonderful video for Moh Mei because she is sleeping in the KECHARA FOREST RETREAT CONTAINERS all alone...ehehehhehe...this is a new friend to keep her company....tsem rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
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    Answer to Jo
    2 yearss ago
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    The 2 tortoises in Tsem Ladrang, Kadro and Menlha are enjoying their fresh veggie meal.
    2 yearss ago
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    Organic vegetables at Kechara Forest Retreat
    2 yearss ago
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    This is Dorje our friendly fish that lives with us. He captured my attention the first time because he was exceptionally friendly. TR
    2 yearss ago
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    Mumus go bye bye!!!
    2 yearss ago
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    SP's mom said that she is from Penang. This is her first trip to bodhgaya, and she truly finds bodhgaya is very holy and spiritual.
    2 yearss ago
  • -
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    Very touching video...Buddha said it was very important to visit the four holy places associated with Him before our deaths. Remembering this, I had instructed Paul to take this senior group to Bodhgaya and make sure they are able to plant imprints. When this life of 'fun', money, parties and socials are over, we cannot leave empty handed. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago
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    Our two rescued tortoises who live at Tsem Ladrang happily and will be transferred to Kechara Forest Retreat where they will have much more space to roam and run. Tsem Rinpoche
    2 yearss ago

ASK ME A QUESTION

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Related Links To Myself

My Blog in Chinese:
zhandugu.blog.163.com
My website:
www.tsemtulku.com
My organisation's website:
www.kechara.com





CHAT PICTURES

Lovely flower arrangement and deco by Kechara Blooms for a wedding at Tropicana Golf Resort. Lucy Yap
57 minutes ago
Do not waste your whole life on just making money and pretending you’ll be secure. IT NEVER HAPPENS. STOP BELIEVING IN ILLUSIONS Sourced from 108 ways to grab my APPLES from Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, conceptualised by Sharon Saw)_PB
3 hours ago
Always speak for the benefit of the listener and not your ego. (Sourced from 108 ways to grab my APPLES from Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, conceptualised by Sharon Saw)_PB
3 hours ago
Next week will be on His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche bio and you can all study up here: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=4340 and also his teaching on: Various Aspects of Tantra- http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/?p=4621 So next week Blog Sharing will be on Trijang Rinpoche's life and his teachings on tantra. This will everyone to learn and understand dharma more. Study up! - PJJ
4 hours ago
New program is going on in KFR. Guess what is Pastor Chia doing? Hehe.. Julia@KFR
15 hours ago
在生命中毫无成就的孩子,也就是那群不会事奉他们父母亲的孩子。他们的表现反映了本性和自私的程度有多深。 ~詹杜固仁波切 http://weibo.cn/comment/kvugIU?uid=1837031263&rl=0#cmtfrm From: June Tang (Khjb)
18 hours ago
残酷的行为让你被唾弃、讨厌及回避。你不该承受这样的对待,也勿制造这样的因。治愈他人的同时治愈自己。 ~詹杜固仁波切 http://weibo.cn/comment/kvumoS?uid=1837031263&rl=0#cmtfrm From: June Tang (Khjb)
18 hours ago
Win a Manjushri? Dear friends, I came across this article and video and it really broke my heart. I wish so much to share this with you. Please don’t say you find it hard to watch if you are taking meat or such. I am not criticizing you, just trying to create awareness. What happens to animals really touches my heart and affects me very much. Please read through the article and watch the video a few times. I am holding a contest to create awareness of this situation. ~Tsem Rinpoche http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/animals-vegetarianism/win-a-manjushri-statue.html Or view the video on the server at: http://video.tsemtulku.com/videos/battery_hens.flv From: June Tang (Khjb)
18 hours ago
Some children are wiser than adults. ~ Lama Yeshe _Hee TS
18 hours ago
Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them. ~ Albert Einstein _Hee TS
18 hours ago
True compassion is possible if we put an effort into developing it.~H.E.Tsem Rinpoche_Hee TS
18 hours ago
CHALLENGE YOURSELF to go beyond your comfort zone. When you do that, it is actually an attainments. (Sourced from 108 ways to grab my APPLES from Tsem Tulku Rinpoche, conceptualised by Sharon Saw)_PB
21 hours ago
Tsongkhapa Retreat participants were circumambulating Widsom Hall and Vajrayogini Stupa at KFR_PB
22 hours ago
24 persons entering Tsongkapa retreat as a group in Kechara_PB
22 hours ago
By circumambulate The Vajra Yogini Stupa & around Wisdom Hall. Mark the begin of Lama Tsongkhapa Retreat for 24 retreatants at Kechara Forest Retreat.
yesterday

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