niedziela, 8 grudnia 2013

Commentary to the Dewachen Prayer

Document on Scribd:
THE LOTUS GARLAND Commentary to the Dewachen wishing prayer by Karma Chagme Rinpoche

Boosting of Confidence about Amitabha Pureland

Bodhisattvas who voluntarily serve the needs of sentient beings do not cringe at  the miseries of thecycle of existence. We, on the other hand, fear the suffering of samsara, so if we wish to attain spiritual awakening in a state of joy and happiness, without experiencing suffering, we should pray to be born in the realm of Sukhavati. If we pray to be born there (except in cases of sins of immediate retribution and the abandonment of Dharma) our birth there will be due to the power of Amitabha's prayers. If we are reborn there, we will not have even the slightest suffering, and our joy and happiness will be abundant. We will be able to go miraculously to Abhirati, the Glorous Copper Mountain, and Tusita, meet the buddhas there and receive the Dharma. With unimpeded extrasensory perception and paranormal abilities, we will be able to lead those with whom we have a connection out of the intermediate state. For countless hundreds of millions of eons, there will be no illness, no aging, and no death. We will behold the face of Buddha Amitabha and listen to Dharma. Incalculable clouds of offerings will be emanated from the palms of our handsand be offered to the buddhas. Thus, the qualities of the grounds and paths will be perfected, and we will become enlightened.

How easy is it to be born there? It is said that if one earnestly prays ten times, one will take birth there. There is no point is doubting whether or not you will be born there. If you nurture doubts, you will be born in that pure realm, but the lotus flower in which you are born will not open for five hundred years. It is said that during that time, you will experience joy and happines, and you will hear the voice of the Buddha; but unfortunately there will be a delay in seeing his face. Therefore, without harboring doubts, tonight when you are about to sleep, you should dedicate whatever spiritual practice you havedone today to be reborn there. If you know them, recite The Prayer of Fine Conduct and The Sukhavati Prayer, but if you do not know them, it is enough to say, "May I be born in Sukhavati!" By so doing, when you die (whether or not you are able to sustain your spiritual practice, or succeed in the practice of transference, or recognize the assemblies of peaceful and wrathful deities in the transitional process of reality-itself) two weeks after your death, you will determine that you have died; and before the messengers of Yama arrive, and before the verdict is made concerning your actions and their karmic consequences, with defiled extrasensory perception you will be aware of your past and future lives and the intermediate states. You will be able to demonstrate various paranormal abilities, and you will have great freedom to go where you will. At that time, hold Buddha Amitabha in mind, and go to Sukhavati. There is no doubt that you will go there simply by thinking of it.

The author of this text, Karma Chagme Rinpoche, was born in 1613. He took refuge, novice ordination, and eventually full ordination from the Karmapa at Tsurphu Monastery. He then entered Thupten Nyingling Monastery of the Zurmang tradition. In his 21st year he was given a public examination during the Monlam of the Karma Kagyu order before a gathering of 12,000 monks, which increased his already considerable renown as an outstanding scholar. Karma Chagme spent 13 years in retreat during which he meditated on the form of Avalokitesvara known as Jinasagara (Tib. Gyalwa Gyatso) as his chosen deity. Karma Chagme passed away in the year 1678 after announcing to thousands of his disciples that the time had come for him to depart to another realm. He revealed amazing signs at his death. It is said that he dissolved his mind into the heart of Buddha Amitabha, and after the cremation of his body many images of Avalokitesvara Jinasagara were found to be embossed on his bones.

piątek, 6 grudnia 2013

Origin of mantra Karmapa Chenno

The most important practice in Tibetan Buddhism is Guru Yoga, meditation and mantra on the spiritual head and teacher of the tradition, which is seen as living Buddha, embodiment of three kayas and 10 bhumi (extraordinary powers). In Kagyu tradition the head Lama is Gyalwa Karmapa and his mantra is Karmapa Chenno. It is believed sounds of this mantra are directly connected with the enlightened mind of HH Karmapa and carry its enlightened qualities and brings help when it is most necessary for the benefit of student.

Here I would like to share with you a story about the origins of Karmapa Chenno mantra. The Karmapa mantra has originated at the times of 8thKarmapa Mikyo Dorje (1507-1554) in context of teaching about "Calling the Lama from afar."

“Karmapa Chenno” can be roughly translated as "Embodiment of the compassion of all Buddhas, turn attention to me." In Central Tibet, Sikkim and Bhutan, it is pronounced Karmapa Kyen-no or Karmapa khen-no. In East Tibet, it is pronounced "Karmapa chenno."In western countries the most widespread pronunciation is Karmapa Chenno and it is considered correct.

One day, in 16th century, the head of a nomadic household in desolate, windswept northern Tibet passed away. In such a sparsely inhabited region it was rare to find monasteries and lamas to perform Buddhist funeral rites, so the family wondered what to do. Then they noticed a ragged individual travelling on foot who appeared as if he could be either an itinerant yogi or a beggar, so they went to inquire. The mendicant turned out to be, in fact, a lama. The grieving family requested his ministrations for the deceased, and he complied.

When he reached the man's deathbed and began his incantations, the family respectfully requested the lama to perform phowa (consciousness transference to higher realms). The lama, however, said: "I am just a poor, uneducated practitioner of the Buddha's teachings; I have not mastered that esoteric practice. But I do have one positive quality, infinite faith in the living Buddha, named Lama Karmapa; he is like the great gate to Dewachen (a transcendent Pure Land from which evolution on the path of enlightenment is said to be more easily assured). His name is the magic password to that fabulous spiritual domain."

Then he began reciting again and again the powerful name-mantra, "Karmapa Khyenno!" "Karmapa Khyenno, Karmapa Khyenno," he intoned loudly, again and again. After each and every rosary of one hundred and eight fervent recitations, he would then hit the corpse with his mala, or prayer beads, commanding that, in the name of the Buddha Karmapa, the spirit of the deceased be reborn in Dewachen.

After some time, everyone noticed that the signs of successful consciousness transference began to appear. Hair fell from the top of the corpse's head; there was a pleasant fragrance in the air, and a large bump appeared at the crown aperture where the subtle consciousness of the deceased departed for the other world.

Everyone present rejoiced, and gratefully thanked the mendicant lama. All began to faithfully practice the mantra of the Karmapa, praying to realize the great freedom and bliss of Dewachen in this very lifetime.

The travelling lama soon continued on his journey. One day he heard that the omniscient Karmapa was visiting south Tibet, so he determined to go and meet him and pay his respects. Upon finally reaching his destination, the first thing the clairvoyant Karmapa said to him was: "That was a difficult phowa we performed up there in the north, wasn't it?" The Karmapa laughed, hitting the other lama with his mala. Then the mendicant knew with unshakable certainty that the Karmapa is an omniscient living Buddha, who always keeps his disciples, wherever they are, in his heart and mind.

Since those days Karmapa Chenno is the most important mantra to invoke the enlightened qualities and powers of Karmapa in Kagyu tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. With the name of Karmapa is understood not just some particular individual, but the enlightened qualities of all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Karmapa is the one who embodies all three jewels of refuge, Buddha, Dharma and Sangha for his students.