Lama Tsongkhapa’s A Prayer for Birth in Sukhavati is one of the great devotional verses in Mahayana Buddhism. Alongside The King of Prayers and Maitreya’s Prayer of Love, this prayer is one of the nine great prayers in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. It is also an important practice text composed to help us cultivate the aspiration and enthusiasm we need to practice the entire path to enlightenment. As always, Geshe Tashi’s emphasis in these teachings will be on how we can best experience the material for ourselves.
What is our back up plan, should we not manage to be reborn in Sukhavati? Lama Tsongkhapa’s advice is to make prayers to have all the excellent qualities we need. We have reached the Great Scope teachings and the types of wisdom and compassion we need to cultivate. Of the Four Wisdoms, here Geshe la takes us through Swift Wisdom – the wisdom that realises our mistakes as soon as we make them – and Deep Wisdom. This section of the prayer now urges us to practice the bodhisattva deeds so we can overcome laziness, dispel obstacles, and gain the mental strength and capacity we need to continue our spiritual path at this level.
Geshe Tashi introduces us to the deities that represent these enlightening qualities: Manjushri, Avalokitashvara, Vajrapani and now Buddha Shakyamuni.
Next Sunday will be the conclusion to this wonderful series, but Geshe la has announced the topic for the next series, starting the 14th July. He will lead us through Lama Tsongkhapa’s “Hundred Deities of The Joyful Land” Guru Puja. This is one of the earliest texts dedicated to Lama Tsongkhapa, and includes key practices to bring us closer to him and his teachings. Geshe la points out that this topic is “important for us to learn.” Save the date!
With best wishes,
The Admin Team