FOUNDATION OF ALL GOOD
by Je Tsongkhapa
(This prayer by
Lama Tsongkhapa outlines the basic Lam Rim teachings, the
graduated path to enlightenment.)
The kind and venerable spiritual master is the foundation of
all good qualities. Seeing that dependence on him or her is
the root of the path, may I rely on him or her with great respect
and continuous effort -- inspire me thus!
A human life with leisure is obtained this
once. Understanding that it has great value and is hard to
find, may I produce unceasingly the mind that takes hold of its
essence day and night -- inspire me thus!
The fluctuation of our body and life is like a
bubble of water; remember death, for we perish so quickly.
After death, the effects of black and white karma pursue us as a
shadow follows a body. Finding certainty in this, may I always
be careful to abandon even the slightest negative action and to
complete the accumulation of virtue -- inspire me thus!
There is no satisfaction in
enjoying worldly pleasures. They are the door to all
misery. Having realized that the fault of samsaric perfections
is that they cannot be trusted, may I be strongly intent on the
bliss of liberation -- inspire me thus!
That pure thought to attain liberation produces
great conscientiousness, mindfulness and awareness, may I make the
essential practice, keeping the vows of individual liberation, the
root of the doctrine -- inspire me thus!
Having seen that all beings, my kind mothers,
have fallen like myself into the ocean of cyclic existence, may I
train in the supreme heart dedicated to enlightenment, assuming the
obligation to free all migrating beings -- inspire me
altruistic intention alone, without cultivation of the three moral
practices, does not lead to enlightenment. Having realized
this, may I practice with intense effort the vows of the conquerors
and their spiritual children -- inspire me thus!
By quieting distraction to false
objects, and analyzing the meaning of reality, may I quickly
generate within my mindstream the path uniting calm abiding and
special insight -- inspire me thus!
When, trained in the common path, I am a
suitable vessel, let me enter with ease the great gateway of the
fortunate ones, the Vajrayana, the highest of all vehicles --
inspire me thus!
basis of achieving the two powerful attainments is the pure vows and
commitments that I have pledged. Having found true
understanding of this, may I keep them even at the cost of my life
-- inspire me thus!
Having realized the significance of the two stages, which
are the essence of the tantric path, may I steadfastly practice
without laziness the four sessions of yoga, and realize what the
holy beings have taught -- inspire me thus!
May the spiritual teachers who lead me on the
sacred path and all spiritual friends who practice it have long
life. May I quickly and completely pacify all outer and inner
hindrances -- grant such inspiration, I pray!
In all my rebirths may I never be
separated from perfect spiritual masters, and enjoy the magnificent
Dharma. Completing all qualities of the stages and paths, may
I quickly achieve the stage of Vajradhara.