Who is 
Arya Tara?
 
INTRODUCTION - DEVOTION - IMAGES - HEALER - LINKS - PRINT - COMMENTS 
ARYA TARA

   "A net of lights shone forth from her two eyes and scanned the three realms of the world to alleviate the suffering of sentient beings."
                   -- Selected Works of the Dalai Lama: I
                            Snow Lion Publications
Feminine aspect of the bodisattva of compassion, "Mother of All the Buddhas," Tara protects the welfare of all beings; those who are devoted to her are especially fortunate.

"In myth she is born from Avalokitesvara's tears of compassion or from her own vow to be enlightened and stay a woman.... There are innumerable manifestations of Tara, as many as beings require, but her most famous are the peaceful White Tara, who brings protection, long life and peace; and the dynamic Green Tara, who overcomes obstacles and saves beings in dangerous situations."  -- Mandala: The Architecture of Enlightenment; Denise Patry Leidy and Robert A. F. Thurman. 


IMAGES OF TARA
Green Tara -- from the Virtual Thangka Gallery at Osel Shen Phen Ling.
White Tara -- 2 images -- Galery of Realmistic Images in Finland.
White Tara -- 4 images -- Padmasambhava Buddhist Center, Gallery 1.
White Tara -- 3 images -- Padmasambhava Buddhist Center, Gallery 2.
Red Tara -- Kurukulla - from JBL Statues

While any of these images is displayed in your browser,  it can be saved on your hard drive. 



Poster-sized and Card sized reproductions of many of these images are for sale through the Web sites where they are displayed.  Wisdom Books also has a poster of Green Tara and several Card-sized images of Green and White Tara for sale in their online Artwork Catalog

The image above, of White Tara's eyes, is available on cards and on magnets from The Empty Mirror

Illustration at the top of the page is Green Tara (mural detail) from the 800-year-old "Three Tiered Temple" in the Alachi monastic complex, in Ladakh; from Early Portrait Painting in Tibet, by Jane Casey Singer, in ASIAN ARTS.


DEVOTION

PRAISES AND REQUESTS TO THE TWENTY-ONE TARAS

"Whatever your body, O Mother of Conquerors,
Whatever your retinue, life span and pure land,
May I and all others attain only these.
By the force of these praises and requests made to you,
May all disease, poverty, fighting and quarrels be calmed,
May the precious Dharma and everything auspicious increase
Throughout the world and directions where I and all others dwell."

BENEFITS OF RECITING THE HOMAGE 

Those endowed with perfect and pure respect for these goddesses--
The intelligent who recite these praises with most supreme faith 
Both in the evening and upon waking at dawn--
Will have fearlessness bestowed on them by this remembrance.
After being purified of all evils completely,
They will attain destruction of all lower realms
And the seven million conquering Buddhas
Will quickly grant them every empowerment.
Thus they will attain greatness and so forth
To the ultimate state of supreme Buddhahood.
As a result all violent poisons--
Whether abiding within or spreading to others--
That they have eaten or drunk
By this remembrance will be completely removed
And they will eliminate quickly all afflictions by spirits, epidemics,
Poisons and all various sufferings.
*   *   *
Without obstruction, all their wishes will be granted
And every single hinderance will be destroyed as it arises.

Full text of the "Praises and Requests"
The text is reprinted Osel Shen Phen Ling Web site 
from Ven. Thubten Chodron's Pearl of Wisdom, Book II

RED TARA PRACTICE TEXTS
Red Tara: An Open Door to Bliss and Ultimate Awareness
and
Red Tara Commentary
"The interdependence of our faith and the blessings of the wisdom
beings creates a sense of refuge much greater than our commitment
alone. It is like stepping through an open door and finding oneself in a
world of transformation where every phenomenon has a spiritual
meaning and can be used to attain ultimate freedom and happiness."

Even hearing the name of Tara, or seeing her image, is said to bring inconcievable blessings. These practices are more effective when performed under the guidance of a qualified teacher. 
Traditional Tibetan Meditation Centers

TARA THE HEALER
Arya Tara, along with the Medicine Buddha, is the major focus in healing meditation for many Tibetans and for many Western practitioners of Tibetan Buddhism.

A major part of the Dharma Haven Web Site is devoted to Tibetan Buddhist tools for Healing, Relaxing and Awakening, which are integral aspects of traditional Tibetan culture. Practicing meditation and working (or playing) with prayer wheels, incense, chants, and prayer flags all are used together with Tibetan medicine.

Healing, Relaxing and Awakening

TARA HEALING INCENSE

Tara healing incense has been used for centuries. It is prepared by Tibetan refugees in India according to the Tibetan medical formulary with 33 different herbs. Effective for symptomatic relief from stress, depression and tension, headache, and asthma, it is non-toxic and not habit forming, and is used by many people who have allergic reactions to ordinary incense.


Tara incense Incense can be ordered on line from The Feng Shui Emporium or Snow Lion.


TARA ON THE WEB

The Blessed Arya Tara -- information for western students interested in the Tibetan Goddess Arya Tara or in meditative practice.
Tripple E Goddes Guide: "An Encyclopedia of Women Devine."

TARA IN PRINT
Most of the following books and tapes are available through Arya Tara's Webstore. Clicking on the Title link will take you to the page for purchasing that book the vendor's page for purchasing that book online. Prices given here are list prices  -- on most titles the actual price will be considerably lower.


Tara's Coloring Book; Andy Weber; Wisdom, 1979; Paperback, $9.95.
Black-and-white outline drawings of Tibetan Buddhist deities, including Tara, intended for coloring. 

Pearl of Wisdom Buddhist Prayers and Practices -- Books I and II; Compiled and translated by Ven. Thubten Chodron. Available from Dharma Friendship Foundation, P.O. Box 30011, Seattle, WA, 98103 USA, 73 pages each.  US$5.00 each ISBN #981-00-0558-X and #981-00-0559-8.
"Book I is a compilation of prayers and practices that are commonly taught to people beginning to study and practise Buddhism of the Tibetan tradition. Book II is for people who have already begun the practice of Tibetan Buddhism. In it are contained prayers and practices commonly taught and practiced in centers of the FPMT. By repeatedly training in the practices included in these books under the guidance of a qualified teacher, we gradually learn to do the practices well, thereby transforming our mind and improving the quality of our daily life." The practitioners at Osel Shen Phen Ling call these "Indispensible!"

Longing for Darkness : Tara and the Black Madonna : A Ten Year Journey; China Galland; Viking, 1990; Hardcover / Paperback (1990) ( Both Hard to Find). 
The author's search for a concept of divinity which embraces femininity leads her to the Tibetan goddess Tara, and the cult of the Black Madonna.

Cult of Tara: Magic and Ritual in Tibet; Stephan Beyer, Thomas R. Beyer; Univ. California Press, 1978; Paperback, $19.95. 

In Praise of Tara: Songs to the Saviouress: Source Texts from India and Tibet on Buddhism's Great Goddess; Martin Willson (Editor); Paperback; $22.46.

Mandala : The Architecture of Enlightenment; Denise Patry Leidy, Robert A. F. Thurman; Shambhala, 1997; Paperback, $25.00.

Tara: The Supreme Goddess; Prof. Kumar Pushpendra, Dr. R.K. Sharma; South Asia Books, 1992; Hardcover, $72.50 (Special Order). 
An academic study of the origin and development of the Tara cult, its rituals, forms, and iconography as found in Hindu Tantras.

Om Tara Tuttare: Buddhist Mantra for Meditation; Swami Sivananda Radha; Timeless Books, 1995; Audio Cassette, $9.95. 



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Revised on June 28, 1999

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