King of Aspiration Prayers

Samantabhadra’s “Aspiration To Good Actions”

In the language of India: Arya Bhadracarya Pranidhana Raja
In the language of Tibet: Pakpa Zangpo Chöpé Mönlam gyi Gyalpo
In the English language:  The King of Aspiration Prayers: Samantabhadra’s ‘Aspiration To Good Actions’

Homage to Manjushri, the youthful!

To all the Buddhas, the lions of the human race,

In all directions of the universe, through past and present and future:

To every single one of you, I bow in homage;

Devotion fills my body, speech and mind.

 

Through the power of this prayer, aspiring to Good Action,

All the victorious ones appear, vivid here before my mind

And I multiply my body as many times as atoms in the universe,

Each one bowing in prostration to all the Buddhas.

 

In every atom preside as many Buddhas as there are atoms,

And around them, all their bodhisattva heirs:

And so I imagine them filling

Completely the entire space of reality.

 

Saluting them with an endless ocean of praise,

With the sounds of an ocean of different melodies

I sing of the Buddhas’ noble qualities,

And praise all those who have gone to perfect bliss.

 

To every Buddha, I make offerings:

Of the loveliest flowers, of beautiful garlands,

Of music and perfumed ointments, the best of parasols,

The brightest lamps and finest incense.

 

To every Buddha, I make offerings:

Exquisite garments and the most fragrant scents,

Powdered incense, heaped as high as Mount Meru,

Arranged in perfect symmetry.

 

Then the vast and unsurpassable offerings—

Inspired by my devotion to all the Buddhas, and

Moved by the power of my faith in Good Actions—

I prostrate and offer to all you victorious ones.

 

Whatever negative acts I have committed,

While driven by desire, hatred and ignorance,

With my body, my speech and also with my mind,

Before you, I confess and purify each and every one.

 

With a heart full of delight, I rejoice at all the merits

Of Buddhas and bodhisattvas,

Pratyekabuddhas, those in training and the Arhats beyond training,

And every living being, throughout the entire universe.

 

You who are like beacons of light shining through the worlds,

Who passed through the stages of enlightenment,

To attain Buddhahood, freedom from all attachment,

I exhort you: all of you protectors,

Turn the unsurpassable wheel of Dharma.

 

Joining my palms together, I pray

To you who intend to pass into nirvana,

Remain, for eons as many as the atoms in this world,

And bring well-being and happiness to all living beings.

 

What little virtue I have gathered through my homage,

Through offering, confession, and rejoicing,

Through exhortation and prayer—all of it

I dedicate to the enlightenment of beings!

 

1. Aspiration for Purity of Attitude

 

Let offerings be made to Buddhas of the past,

And all who now dwell throughout the ten directions of this universe!

Let all who are yet to come swiftly fulfill their wishes

And attain the stages of enlightenment and Buddhahood!

 

Let as many worlds as there are in all the ten directions

Transform into realms that are vast and utterly pure,

Filled with Buddhas who have sat before the mighty bodhi tree,

Around them all their bodhisattva sons and daughters!

 

Let as many sentient beings as there are in all the ten directions

Live always and forever in happiness and health!

Let all beings meet the Dharma

That befits them best! And so may all they hope for be fulfilled!

 

2. Aspiration Never to Forget the Bodhicitta

 

As I practice the training for enlightenment,

May I recall all my previous births,

And in my successive lives, through death and through rebirth,

May I always renounce the worldly life!

 

Training in the footsteps of all the victorious Buddhas,

May I bring Good Actions to perfection,

And my moral conduct be taintless and pure,

Never lapsing, and always free from fault!

 

In the language of the gods, nagas, and yakshas,

In the language of demons and of humans too,

In however many kinds of speech there may be—

I shall proclaim the Dharma in the language of all!

 

Taming my mind, and striving in the paramitas,

I will never forget the bodhicitta;

May all my harmful actions and the obscurations they cause

Be completely purified, every single one!

 

3. Aspiration to be Free from Defilements

 

May I be freed from karma, harmful emotions, and the work of negativity,

And act for all beings in the world,

Just like the lotus flower to which mud and water cannot cling,

Or sun and moon that course unhindered through the sky.

 

4. Aspiration to Lead Beings to Happiness

 

Throughout the reach and range of the entire universe

I shall pacify completely the suffering of all the lower realms,

I shall lead all beings to happiness,

And work for the ultimate benefit of each and every one!

 

5. Aspiration to Wear the Armor of Dedication

 

I shall bring enlightened action to perfection,

Serve beings so as to suit their needs,

Teach them to accomplish Good Actions,

And continue this, throughout all the eons to come!

 

6. Aspiration to Accompany other Bodhisattvas

 

May I always meet and be accompanied by

Those whose actions accord with mine;

And in body, speech and mind as well,

May our actions and aspirations always be one!

 

7.  Aspiration to Have Virtuous Teachers and to Please Them

 

May I always meet spiritual friends

Who long to be of true help to me,

And who teach me the Good Actions.

Never will I disappoint them!

 

8. Aspiration to See the Buddhas and Serve them in Person

 

May I always behold the Buddhas, here before my eyes,

And around them all their bodhisattva sons and daughters.

Without ever tiring, throughout all the eons to come,

May the offerings I make them be endless and vast!

 

9. Aspiration to Keep the Dharma Thriving

 

May I maintain the sacred teachings of the Buddhas,

And cause enlightened action to appear;

May I train to perfection in Good Actions,

And practice these in every age to come!

 

10. Aspiration to Acquire Inexhaustible Treasure

 

As I wander through all states of samsaric existence,

May I gather inexhaustible merit and wisdom,

And so become an inexhaustible treasury of noble qualities—

Of skill and discernment, samadhi and liberation!

 

11. Aspiration to the Different Methods for Entering Into the ‘Good Actions’

a).  Seeing the Buddhas and their Pure Realms

 

In a single atom may I see as many pure realms as atoms in the universe:

And in each realm, Buddhas beyond all imagining,

Encircled by all their Bodhisattva heirs.

Along with them, may I perform the actions of enlightenment!

 

And so, in each direction, everywhere,

Even on the tip of a hair, may I see an ocean of Buddhas—

All to come in past, present and future—in an ocean of pure realms,

And throughout an ocean of eons,

May I enter into enlightened action in each and every one!

 

b). Listening to the Speech of the Buddhas

 

Each single word of a Buddha’s speech,

That voice with its ocean of qualities,

Bears all the purity of the speech of all the Buddhas,

Sounds that harmonize with the minds of all living beings:

May I always be engaged with the speech of the Buddhas!

 

c). Hearing the Turning of the Wheels of Dharma

 

With all the power of my mind, may I hear and realize

The inexhaustible melody of the teachings spoken by

All the Buddhas of past, present and future,

As they turn the wheels of Dharma!

 

d). Entering into All the Eons

 

Just as the wisdom of the Buddhas penetrates all future eons,

So may I too know them, instantly,

And in each fraction of an instant may I know

All that will ever be, in past, present and future!

 

e). Seeing all the Buddhas in One Instant

 

In an instant, may I behold all those who are the lions of the human race—

The Buddhas of past, present and future!

 

f). Entering the Sphere of Activity of the Buddhas

 

May I always be engaged in the Buddhas’ way of life and action,

Through the power of liberation, where all is realized as like an illusion!

 

g). Accomplishing and Entering the Pure Lands

 

On a single atom, may I actually bring about

The entire array of pure realms of past, of present and future;

And then enter into those pure Buddha realms

In each atom, and in each and every direction.

 

h). Entering into the Presence of the Buddhas

 

When those who illuminate the world, still to come,

Gradually attain Buddhahood, turn the Wheel of Dharma,

And demonstrate the final, profound peace of nirvana:

May I be always in their presence!

 

12. Aspiration to the Power of Enlightenment through Nine Powers

 

Through the power of swift miracles,

The power of the vehicle, like a doorway,

The power of conduct that possesses all virtuous qualities,

The power of loving kindness, all-pervasive,

 

The power of merit that is totally virtuous,

The power of wisdom free from attachment, and

The powers of knowledge, skilful means, and samadhi,

May I perfectly accomplish the power of enlightenment!

 

13. Aspiration to the Antidotes that Pacify the Obscurations

 

May I purify the power of karma;

Destroy the power of harmful emotions;

Render negativity utterly powerless;

And perfect the power of Good Actions!

 

14. Aspiration to Enlightened Activities

 

I shall purify oceans of realms;

Liberate oceans of sentient beings;

Understand oceans of Dharma;

Realize oceans of wisdom;

 

Perfect oceans of actions;

Fulfill oceans of aspirations;

Serve oceans of Buddhas!

And perform these, without ever growing weary, through oceans of eons!

 

15. Aspiration for Training

a) To Emulate the Buddhas

 

All the Buddhas throughout the whole of time,

Attained enlightenment through Good Actions, and

Their prayers and aspirations for enlightened action:

May I fulfill them all completely!

 

b) To emulate the Bodhisattvas: Samantabhadra

 

The eldest of the sons of all the Buddhas

Is called Samantabhadra: ‘All-good’:

So that I may act with a skill like his,

I dedicate fully all these merits!

 

To purify my body, my speech and my mind as well,

To purify my actions, and all realms,

May I be the equal of Samantabhadra

In his skill in good dedication!

 

c) Manjushri

 

In order to perform the full virtue of Good Actions,

I shall act according to Manjushri’s prayers of aspiration,

And without ever growing weary, in all the eons to come,

I shall perfectly fulfill every one of his aims!

 

16. Concluding Aspiration

 

Let my Bodhisattva acts be beyond measure!

Let my enlightened qualities be measureless too!

Keeping to this immeasurable activity,

May I accomplish all the miraculous powers of enlightenment!

 

Extent of the Aspiration

 

Sentient beings are as limitless

As the boundless expanse of space;

So shall my prayers of aspiration for them

Be as limitless as their karma and harmful emotions!

About Tashi Nyima

I am a Dharma student, and aspire to be a companion on the path. I trust that these texts can offer a general approach and basic tools for practicing the Buddha's way to enlightenment. ||| Soy un estudiante del Dharma, y aspiro a ser un compañero en el sendero. Espero que estos textos ofrezcan a algunos un mapa general y herramientas básicas para la práctica del sendero a la iluminación que nos ofrece el Buda.
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2 Responses to King of Aspiration Prayers

  1. James Low says:

    Dear TashiLa
    it is very lovely that you make the prayer available but the image is of Adibuddha Samantabhadra and the prayer you have placed below the image is to Bodhisattva Samantabhadra, who looks quite different.
    best wishes
    James Low

  2. Timothy Kasten says:

    Enjoy this translation very much. Simple and sincere.

Leave a Reply to James Low Cancel reply

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