Oct 23, 2020

Posted by in BUDDHISM IN OTHER LANGUAGES | 40 Comments

TURNING THE MIND ( Hưng vận tâm thức)

Whether being poor or rich, everyone has their own worries. Human beings have a natural tendency to search for happiness and get rid of sufferings. “How to stop worrying and start living” has become well-known worldwide for giving solutions, however, each person has their own way to stop worrying.

The Buddha pointed out there are eight types of sufferings which are reasons of worries and afflictions. They include suffering of birth, suffering of old age, suffering of sickness, suffering of death, suffering of being apart from the loved ones, suffering being together with the despised one, suffering of not getting what one desires or wishes, suffering of the flourishing of the Five Skandhas (five aggregates, or “heaps”). These eight sufferings continuously create 84.000 types of distresses and afflictions. Everyone wants to be free from worries. In the Sutra of the Wheel of Dharma, the Buddha gave instruction on how to stop worrying. After contemplating on the Four Noble Truths, the Buddhist practitioners accordingly deviate their lives towards the Eight noble paths, eventually they will achieve fruitful outcomes depending on their levels of cultivation. In Vajrayana Buddhism, the practice is simply done by activating external sources of energy through reciting mantras. What is a mantra? Mantra is the pure hidden language, the nature and essence of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and was composed from the state of Samadhi; it is the quintessence of the universe.

Mani mantra, Six-syllable Mantra

“Mantra” is interpreted in Sanskrit as “the mind guardian” that helps to clean all afflictions and distresses. Therefore, it can be understood as a means to grant happiness and eliminate sufferings. The functions of mantra have been mentioned in many Vajrayana Buddhist scriptures. In brief, there are five sublime functions including (1) reducing afflictions (the afflictions will be decreased, in which heavy karmas will be reduced to light ones, and light karma will be cleaned completely) (2) increasing life longevity, health and material achievement (3) getting respects from others (whoever recite mantras will be respected by human beings, heavenly beings, demi-gods) (4) exorcizing and overcoming the forces of other realms (not being harmed by invisible beings who are meant to harm human beings) (5) convening the pure power (gathering quintessence of the universe). In the Lanka meeting, the Buddha taught that even the Great Bodhisattvas keep reciting mantras, so that we acknowledged that the mantras bring tremendous benefits to all sentient beings, including human beings. Here is a relevant excerpt from the Sutra of Heroic One that said “Supposing that there are sentient beings whose minds are disbanded but they still keep reciting this mantra, they are still protected by 84.000 Vajrayana guardians all days and nights long.. Small ghosts have to stay away at least 10 yojana from these good human beings, it is impossible for those evil invisible beings to stalk and harm these human beings..”.

From the above references, we understand that being able to eliminate worldly afflictions by the mantra “weapon” is definitely simple. The main point is whether the Buddhist practitioners are disciplined enough to practice regularly? The practice is normally called reciting mantras, which is different from chanting mantras. Chanting mantras is often practiced in Vietnamese pagodas in which the Buddhist practitioners read the mantras out loud in the rhythm of striking the wooden bell. Reciting mantras mean reading the mantra silently in one’s mind, or reading it softly so that the sound can only be heard by the collar. If one practices reciting mantras, that means he practices regularly in accordance with the official ritual (the word “recite” in this context means hold tight, which means one holds the mantra tightly as a means to transform the mind). There are six methods of reciting mantras which were taught by Guru Rinpoche Padmasambhava as follows:

Guru Rinpoche Padmasambhava

–       The first method is Vajra (means diamond) recitation in which the reciting sound will only be heard by the bead necklace.

–   The second method is reciting with Vajra melody which is practiced in later stages of achievement (the fourth stage of Tantric Buddhism).

–       The third method is secret Vajra recitation in which the practitioners recite silently.

–       The fourth method is the like-Chakra recitation in which the practitioners let the sound rollout from their mouth to their abdomen, then dissolve gradually into the heart center.

–     The fifth method is the like-garland recitation in which the garland of mantra moves around the syllable in the heart center, then the practitioners focus with the whole mind in the syllables while reciting.

–       The sixth method is sound-focus recitation in which the practitioners pay absolute attention to the sound of the mantra while reciting.

To the beginners who have just started in Vajrayana Buddhism, the third and sixth methods are mostly used because they can be used in almost all activities including walking, standing, lying, or sitting. Just like using medicine, the more precious the medicine is, the more restricted rules it has. While reciting any mantra, it is important to follow these rules: Do not stop reciting mantra in the middle to have conversations with others; Do not recite mantras with a loud voice, their powers will diminish and nonhumans and spirits will panic and faint; Do not spit or throw mucus in places frequented by people since that will impede the power of mantra. Among four kinds of demeanors, the best posture while reciting mantra is lotus pose (cross-legged position, with the spine straight, the shoulders extended, the neck slightly bent, the hands in the gesture of equanimity, the tip of tongue touching the palate, and the gaze placed in the direction of the nose). Those were taught in “Dakini’s teachings” by Guru Rinpoche Padmasambhava, the chapter of “The crystal garland of faultless practice”.

I have explained the practice perspective. The explanation in regard to theory as follows will help those who are under sufferings and worries to be released: While the Buddhist practitioners are reciting mantras, they stop talking over worldly affairs; which helps to purify the speech. While the Buddhist practitioners are sitting in the seven points of meditation posture, they keep an imposing posture; which helps to purify their body. The main point is that in any position, whether walking, standing, lying or sitting, when the Buddhist practitioners recite mantras, they maintain their body pure. When the Buddhist practitioners focus on listening to mantras, of course at that time they don’t think about worldly affairs. Simultaneously they maintain their mind pure. Whenever the Buddhist practitioners keep their mind, body, speech pure, at that moment they attain Buddhahood in the flesh. In that case, as a Buddha, how come one suffers from worries and afflictions!

These above mentioned are about the independent personal power of the Buddhist practitioners, which means it depends on the practitioners’ individual effort. In regard to the power derived from external forces, the Buddhist practitioners depend on the external support from the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, for example, Avalokiteshvara, to stop worrying and start living. This is unthinkable, beyond ordinary thought and words. Avalokiteshvara asserted in the “Great Compassion Dharani, Maha Karuna Dharani Sutra” that once sentient beings recite His mantra, all their legitimate wishes will be fulfilled. Otherwise, He swears not to attain supreme enlightenment. This means mantras are bridges that connect the Buddhist practitioners to Avalokiteshvara, or the antenna to pick up the signal from Avalokiteshvara’s sublime realm. For that reason, all the legitimate wishes will be fulfilled because they are blessed by the Avalokiteshvara.

Bổn tôn Quán Âm Tứ Thủ

Avalokiteshvara

Once the Buddhist practitioners nurture their faith that way, they will no longer be bothered by ordinary affliction and worries because those matters are all taken care of by the Avalokiteshvara. The only thing that they need to do is focusing on reciting the mantra. At that time, the independent personal power will be supported by the power derived from external blessings. In reverse, the outcomes from being blessed by external forces (the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas) will motivate the practitioners to practice more diligently. Accordingly, the practitioners will “break through their afflictions and baseness. They vanquish and defeat four kinds of demons, and escape from the prison of the five skandhas” (the fourth awakening in The Eight Great Awakening sutra). After understanding and growing the faith, it all depends on you to decide your action. May all sentient beings who have potentiality and favorable conditions achieve their legitimate wishes!

Thinley – Nguyen Thanh.

Translated by Cao Dieu Mat Tu


Vietnamese version: HƯNG VẬN TÂM THỨC 

 

  1. paul yawney says:

    Dear Holy Guru, I bow head to Lotus Feet. Thank you for another great article. you have again made things more clear for me. Following this path with your Guidance has helped me to become more deeply in tune with my Buddhism. Saying Mantras and feeling them has a calming affect. I stay in the moment and the moment is good. May Holy Guru and Consort live a long and Happy Life. May covid soon end. OM MANI PADME HUM. Tantra Himataru

  2. Dr C H Lakshmi narayan says:

    I bow my head at the lotus feet of Guru.
    Buddham sharanam gachchami
    Dhammam sharanam gachchami
    Sangham sharanam gachchami
    Dear holy Guru,
    I am of the opinion the best way to forget our worries and be happy is to turn (train) our mind to accept come what may cool and calmly without an atom of desire for any thing forgetting all the past let go all the feelings that arise by way of dependent Origen by way of meditation or chanting mantra which help to wash away all the feelings and try to be happy this day, this hour and this moment. So turning the mind towards this way helps us to be free from all worries and be happy. In other words keeps us in a state of Nirvana !
    Om Mani Padme Hum.
    Tantra Nirvadeva

  3. Daniel says:

    This was very interesting article. Thank you Guru. Mantras can be very helpful. With matras we talk to the cosmos/universe. Good spirits will guide us.

  4. Tantra Amashuta says:

    Dear holy guru,
    Thank you for an amazing article. Your words are wise in a simple form so all can understand AMD your English had come a long way. I still struggle with remaining focused during meditation but am doing better. Mantra successfully brought me through my survey, unafraid and still breathing. I wad not fearful of dying even though these doctors said I likely would. Your lessons taught me that being in the moment and believing I’m protected and having faith in your lessons and buddha. The mantra was with me even add they woke me during surgery. There nurse who was zoo kind AMD confusing heard me whispering the mantra, she asked what I said but when I didn’t respond but kept reciting she listened holding my hand. Thank you guru.
    Om mani Padme hum. May all sentient beings come to know buddha, a guru add yourself, faith, and true desire to learn of buddhism.

  5. Lynwood Furhthington says:

    Dear Holy Guru, Thank you so Much for sharing this with all of us, it is exactly what i needed to read!!!it is wonderful information!! Thank you!!

  6. Tantra Aradhana says:

    Thank you so much Guru
    For another wonderful article and great teachings this one really made me think about a few things as well alot of things have been hard here in the USA cause its election time for us and it has not been that easy but so this article has been helpful for sure

    Thank you again

  7. Tantra Aceptina says:

    Dear guru
    It is a great article. I enjoy it a lot.
    Thank you very much.

  8. Tantra Tanshami says:

    Amazingly helpful. Namo Guru!

  9. Muralikrishna says:

    Buddham sharanam gachami
    Dhamam sharanam gachami
    Sangam sharanam gachami

  10. Moises says:

    Dear Guru, I am not worthy to speak to you. I humbly want to ask, If I have bad thoughts, I have a lot of hatred, I think very bad things, how can my mind heal? how can a mantra remove this hatred?

    Thank you for your time, your time is very appreciated by me, your time is jewels in my hands.

    I humbly ask for your blessing.

    Namo Buddha 🙏🧘🏻‍♂️🕉️

    • Nguyên Thành
      Nguyên Thành says:

      Om mani padme hum!

      • Felicia says:

        Dear Guru,

        Thank you for explaining it so clearly. Practicing daily mantras is a great help to me. Before I came into the learning of Buddhism I practiced it and called it a mantra as well. It does the magic of attracting the well being one seeks. Sometimes it’s difficult to set aside my wants and needs that seen they are interchangeable. The mantras help you sort those things out and categorize them precisely where they need to be.

        Best of health and happiness to you and all others,
        Felicia

        • Boying Bagz Baguio says:

          Om Mani Padme Hum

          My greetings to all chantuduy brothers and sisters specially to holy guru

          Thank you for sharing a wonderful learnings about the importance of mantra. I personally experienced and experiencing the powerful phenomenon of mantra. Though,I am not sure of what and how it could properly done, but I can say it gives a big effect to me in communicating my inner self. In tines when I feel confused, agitated, I feel hatred within me, sitting for half an hour with a mantra I learned from reading and listening Dharma made me calm. The benefits of meditation and mantra has indeed a magical results in helping me to get indulge to the world where sometimes gives me a lot of questions. I believed it is such an effective matter to build someone’s good personality and turning one’s character into something admirable and pleasant.

          May all sentient beings be away from sufferings and always be safe.

          Tantra Maruta, from the Philippines

    • Admin
      Nguyên Thành says:

      I am ready!

  11. Liam says:

    I loved reading this article! I learned a lot about mantra recitation and answered a lot of my questions on mantras. I do however want to ask what a “yojana” is?

    • Nguyên Thành
      Nguyên Thành says:

      It is a measurement unit that is used in Buddhist scriptures. One yojana is equivalent to 14.6 kilometer.

  12. Ahmed Sameh says:

    Thank you, I learned a lot

    • Tantra Mahajan says:

      Dear Holy GURU
      THANKS FOR Sharing this article
      I learned a lot about mantras and knowledge
      Thank you very much

      Om Mani Padme Hum

  13. Tantra Mitsharuma (Petra) says:

    Dear Holy Guru
    Thank you for this article
    To be able to let go of troubles and to train your mind, is something I would like to learn more about doing.
    May Guru be in good health
    May all sentient beings feel peace and harmony

    Om Mani Padme Hum

    • Nguyên Thành
      Nguyên Thành says:

      The more you read and comment (contemplate) the articles on chanhtuduy.com, the better your mind will become as the mind trash is removed and my teachings are with you in your daily life simultaneously.

  14. Mật Thúy says:

    Kính Bạch Thầy .
    Con đã đọc xong bài này rồi ạ.
    Con rất hoan hỉ với công hạnh luận giải của vị Thầy , con cảm tạ ơn Thầy đã từ bi phân tích cho con hiểu được sự lợi lạc khi chúng con thực hành đọc niệm thần chú Mani
    . Con cầu nguyện sức khỏe và sự trường thọ của vị Thầy vì lợi lạc của chúng sanh con cầu nguyện cho vi khuẩn corona xóm ngày được tiêu trừ Om Ah Hùm.

  15. Tantra Mahajan says:

    Dear Holy GURU
    THANKS FOR Sharing this article
    I learned a lot about mantras and knowledge
    Thank you very much

    Om Mani Padme Hum

  16. Debkalpa chakraborty says:

    Dear respected guru,
    Your article was really helpfull.learned a few new things as am new to buddhism..plese write more and guide us alk but in easy and understanding way..om mani padme hum..thank you..

  17. Raymondbeugels says:

    Om Mani Padme Hum🙏🙏🙏
    Great sharing!!!
    Thank you Sir.

  18. Tantra Shadhita says:

    Dear Guru, THIS article was an excellent one for me to read. Thank you and your translator Cao Dieu Mat Tu.
    Om Mani Padme Hum

  19. Dr aditya says:

    Amazing…thanks for shearing article with me..its really helpful….thank you again.

  20. Nguyễn Thùy Linh ( Đại Yên - Hạ Long - Quảng Ninh ) says:

    Kính bạch Thầy .
    Con đã đọc xong bài này rồi ạ .
    Con cảm ơn Thầy ạ .
    Con cầu nguyện Thầy , Cô sức khỏe và sự trường thọ vì lợi lạc của chúng sanh .
    Cầu nguyện cho đại dịch Covid-19 sớm được tiêu trừ .
    Om Mani Padme Hum!

  21. Tantra Mashinaga says:

    Dear Holy Guru,

    Thank you for this article. In this article you explain that we should use mantras to ease our mind, body, and spirit.
    We should also follow the four noble truths and the eight fold path.

    May Guru live a long and happy life

    May all sentient beings be free from suffering and attain happiness

    Om Mani Padme Hum
    Tantra Mashinaga (Mark Hamilton)

  22. Tantra Mahajan says:

    Dear Holy Guru

    Thanks for sharing this article

    I leaned about lot of mantras and knowledge
    Thanks very much

    Om Mani Padme Hum

  23. Tantra Sutradaka says:

    Reverend Gurujee
    I bow before your lotus feet
    I am really surprised that being sited in Vietnam you are taking much of my care through the power of your pure mind Buddhism. Whenever I am in distress your letters shared in Vimalkirti’s house suggest me what to do, what not to do and how to react or remain silent in the critical situation of the life. I also get from you the suggestions regarding the modus oprendie of tackling the problems, and succeeded. Your ambrosia of benediction kept me ward off from the internal and external situational or circumstantial attacks. When I transgressed the limits of life’s liberty you punished me to bring me on the right track. I am grateful to you for your love and affection that you regularly shower forth on me even if I am physically far away in spatial distance and nationality. The prime reason of surprise is that how these come to me in a written document at the time of crisis owing to my need.
    For last about 20 days I am travelling far and wide in and around India for my domestic works and to fulfill the needs of my children and wife. In between some official works, I continued to perform my house hold works, along with reading and commenting on Guru’s sharing. This gives me a sense of pleasure to remember our holy Guru’s idea that the duties of the world and to pursue for enlightenment and Liberation from the earthly bondage (Nibban) can go hand in hand in this busy schedules of life too. With this end and view whenever I get tormented I took asylum in Chanthudui. com and try to dive deeper into the depth the ocean of your Buddhist wisdom. The present comment is the outcome of my eagerness of surmounting my existential suffering which has been dealt with the Buddha 500 B. C. E ago and explained our holy Guru in the modern context of human suffering. In 2565 the existential situation was different with that of today. To follow the eightfold path very strictly is not possible for the modern man who is running from pillar to post to meet his and his family member’s need. Hence there was a need to make the entire spiritual and meditative process easy to suit the busy man of the day, and help him curtail the sufferings through the Buddhist way of life and the Mantras of Vajrayana Buddhism came to our rescue. These are designed in such a way that it fulfills our need without impairing the basic tenets of Buddhism propounded by the Buddha. But before going into the details into the merits of the mantras as depicted it the Guru’s article it seems proper to spot light in brief the nature of the suffering that has started here as a problem of the first Noble Truth and ends with the benefits of the Mantra, as the forth Noble Truth.
    The Guru’s sharing starts with the nature of suffering its type and its various kinds as is depicted in the Tripitaka. Broadly it can be said that the pleasant sensation is pleasure and unpleasant sensation is suffering. Again it can be summarized as the things that happen in consonance with our wishes or desire are pleasure and opposite to it are suffering. In other words suffering may be defined as the impediments to the volition is suffering. It seems important to mention that volition is a mental thing. In the same way pleasure and pain are basically mental. Hence suffering or happiness is also the fragments of the mind. Hence in order to get rid of sufferings of life the turning of mind is needed. Mantras are helpful in this holy pursuit. The reason is simple. The chanting of the Mantras on the one hand energies the disciple’s internal psyche-physical power on the other its positive effects neutralizes the evil effects of the past Karmas, even of the previous lives, if not it makes it milder and milder and finally it is extinguished. And all these happen because of the positive effects of the mantras as per the law of dependent origination of the Buddha. The regular practice of the Mantras makes one healthy wealthy and wise as well as he commands respect in the society as well as by the heavenly beings. Now the disciple becomes so powerful and exorcizing that he becomes capable to overcome the evil forces of other realms willing to harm the humans. In brief the mantras extend tremendous benefit to all the sentient beings including the humans by generating in them the pure, pious and positive powers and protect them from the invisible evil beings including the ghosts.
    In the sacred texts of Mahayana Buddhism, particularly the Tantrayana or Bajrayana there is a mention of six ways reciting the mantras. Though it seems not proper to repeat the same here but the results are enormous. These can be practiced in an easy way in any form while sitting, walking, lying and so on, but one thing has to be remembered that it purity has to be maintained at any cost. Hence one should not mingle the worldly things and thought while reciting the mantras and secondly, the disciple must have fill faith in the mantras and its effect. And when the disciple performs it with unwavering faith and in a proper way one has not to worry about his worldly or spiritual problems of the life as these are being taken care by the Avalokiteshwar himself. And thus withe effects of the mantras he attains mundane success and enlightenment as well.
    Om Mani Padme Hum
    Long live our Guru
    may all sentient beings attain the Buddha Nature
    Tantrasutradaka
    Avinash Kumar Srivastava

    • Nguyên Thành
      Nguyên Thành says:

      Dear Tantra Sutradaka,
      I am glad to read your comment after a while and see your usual enthusiasm when it comes to reading and leaving your insights after every article that you read. Thank you for adding more insights which showed that you have deep understandings of sufferings, how to eliminate sufferings by turning the mind. It’s right as you emphasized that it can be done not only by reciting mantra but also reading on chanhtuduy.com, which you have applied in your life even in hectic times and found peace in mind. Therefore, your comparison between this era and the Buddha time with appropriate methods to practice becomes more persuasive!

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