Sharing the Buddhist View

Lam Rim Prayer
Commentary by Anila Ann

I would like to read the prayer for the Glance Meditation and the Graduated Path, which is the Lam Rim. This was the first prayer I ever got. His Holiness, Ling Rinpoche, who was the Senior Tutor to the Dalai Lama at that time, was going to give an initiation in Yamantaka and then he was going to teach the Lam Rim. I thought -- "Initiation" -- I didn't have any initiations. So I was walking along with Lama Zopa and I said, "Do you think I should take that?" Now you know from me that if you're in the area, you take it, because it's so rare. And he said, "Hmmm." And we climbed way up this mountain "Raj Gere" -- not that big, about half-way up Grouse -- and we get up to the top and then he turns to me and says, "Well this Buddha, Shakyamuni Buddha, is the only Buddha of the thousand who are coming to this planet who is going to teach Tantra." Well you take it. And if you can't figure it out, you still take it.

So I go to another teacher and I say I'm going to take the initiation. He says, "Oh, that's good. You'll need a prayer." I'll need a prayer? He says, "Write this down." They were translating it for the first time, I think, into English. So mine is all upside down and backward and got edited and edited and edited so I can hardly see it anymore. Just relax and listen. This is as old as when I got this, which is twenty-some years ago.

There are a lot of things in there that need explanation but the fact is that if it's recited enough times, your own wisdom will cognise what it means. So just reciting this prayer is called direct meditation. You're scanning, you just keep scanning and scanning and scanning, and as you read and study, parts of this will make sense.


I take refuge in the Holy Guru, the essence of all Buddhas, the original granter of all holy teachings and the Lord of all Supreme Beings.

Please, O Guru Buddhas, enable me to unify my mind with the Dharma and to succeed in practising Dharma for receiving the Graduated Path.

May nothing prevent my receiving this path.

Please bless me to take refuge in Buddha, Dharma and Sangha with all my heart, and to practise virtue and abandon non-virtue.

Through realising that I have received a perfect human rebirth which is highly meaningful, for many reasons, difficult to obtain, but perishable, transient and fragile, decaying in the shortest second because of its changeable nature.

Thus, my death is definite but its actual time is most indefinite.

Karma is most profound.

Even in one hour I create more negative karma bringing rebirth in the suffering lower realms, than positive.

Even a small negative karma has so many suffering results and the ability of karma, created to bring its result, is never lost, even after more aeons than the ordinary mind can imagine.

And the sufferings of the three lower realms are very unimaginably unbearable.

Through practicing in this way I might be reborn in the upper realms, but would still have to experience unlimited samsaric suffering because of uncontrolled delusion and karma.

Please bestow upon me the ability to realise fully the evolution of samsara from uncontrolled rebirth to death and rebirth so that I shall follow day and night the threefold training of the path which is supreme conduct, supreme concentration, and supreme wisdom, the main method to release me from samsara.

But as each sentient being has been my mother and as most are in extreme suffering, please grant me blessings to bring success to all.

To renouncing the perfect self-happiness (nirvana) and practising the Bodhisattva's deeds with Bodhicitta on the basis of the equilibrium meditation.

Thus shall I have no sorrow in experiencing the samsaric sufferings of all other sentient beings for no matter how long, having trained my mind in the general path.

Please grant me blessings to be able to follow the quick Vajrayana teachings by feeling sentient beings' suffering, very unimaginable, unbearable, for even the shortest second, as my own.

And to attain the enlightenment of Arya Tara* immediately, at this very moment, by keeping my ordinations and the orders of the Guru with greater and better care than anything else in my life for the sole purpose of enlightening all sentient beings.

*It could be any deity; Chenrezig or Buddha. 


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