The Four Vajrayana Empowerments

images (10)“Empowerment” (Tib. wang) is an inaccurate and misleading translation of the Sanskrit term abhisheka, which literally means “sprinkling, bathing, purifying”. 

The Four Empowerments are first conferred by the Lama, and then renewed and cultivated as often as possible by the practitioner, preferably on a daily basis.

There are Outer, Inner, and Other empowerments:

  • The Outer purify the imaginary nature (appearances)
  • The Inner purify the dependent nature (causes and conditions)
  • The Other purify the truly established nature (Buddha Forms, Qualities, and Activities)

The basis of purification is Buddha Nature, and the affective and cognitive obscurations are what is to be purified.

Vase Empowerment

  • Purifies the body
  • Eliminates or reduces the habitual tendency toward depriving sentient beings of life, taking what is not freely given, and sexual misconduct

Secret Empowerment

  • Purifies speech
  • Eliminates or reduces the habitual tendency toward deceit, sowing discord, harsh speech, and idle chatter

Wisdom Empowerment

  • Purifies the mind
  • Eliminates or reduces the habitual tendency toward covetousness, malice, and holding acquired wrong views

Sublime Empowerment

  • Purifies the subtle obscurations
  • Eliminates or reduces the habitual tendency to sustain the innate wrong views of separation and supremacy

 

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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