In today’s episode of Practicing Buddhism, Geshe Tashi begins his commentary on A Harvest of Powerful Attainment by Lama Tsongkhapa.
In the first verse, Lama Tsongkhapa pays homage to Vajradhara (Sangye Dorje Chang), translated here as the Vajra-holder. In the same way he did when commenting on Lama Tsonkhapa’s evocation of Tara at the beginning of his Words of Advice for the Lay Practitioner, Geshe Tashi asks “Who or what is Vajradhara?”
Geshe la helps us approach this question by, once again, giving us as broad a context as possible within the Buddha’s teachings, touching on Buddha Nature in sutrayana and vajrayana; working at base, path and result; the extremes of cessation and samsara; and the spiritual mechanics of having a positive relationship with a teacher. Here is the source of Lama Tsongkhapa’s inspiration, freshly presented by Geshe la, to serve as our inspiration today.
A Harvest of Powerful Attainment (verses 1 to 3)
Prayer for Blessings of the Close Lineage
Homage to my guru, the youthful Manjushri!
I pray to the mighty Vajra-holder,
wisdom breaking samsara’s chains,
compassion discarding nirvana’s joys.
Dwelling in neither, you are protector of both.
I pray to protector Manjushri,
single manifested form of wisdom
of the treasure of knowledge of innumerable buddhas
in number more than the atoms of countless realms.
I pray at the feet of Pawo Dorje,
whose tangled webs of doubt were blown away
by noble Manjushri in actual presence,
made manifest by the force of sustained and powerful prayer.
p.109 The Splendour of an Autumn Moon, Lama Tsongkhapa, trans. Gavin Kilty.
Khen Rinpoche Geshe Tashi Tsering taught in London for over 25 years and is currently Abbot of Sera Mey Monastery in Karnataka State, India.