Removal of Karmic Hindrances and the Four Preliminaries

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Posted by Master ( on November 02, 2000 at 02:31:33:

The four preparatory practices will be discussed one by one:

I. The Fourfold Refuge

In your practice every day, first of all, visualize the look of your
guru; also visualize the character "Om"appearing on your head
and emitting white light shining upon it, the character
"Ah"appearing at the throat and emitting red light shining upon the
throat area, and the character "Hum" appearing at the heart region
and emitting blue light upon it.

Then recite : "Namo the Holy Red Crown Vajra Guru Lian
Sheng" three times, with palms held together.
Recite the Fourfold Refuge mantra: "Namo Guru bei, Namo
Buddha ye, Namo Dharma ye, Namo Sangha ye." You can recite
this as many times as you like.

At the same time, visualize your guru or the Triple Jewels
transmitting five-colored light shining upon your body, your own
negative karma being expelled from your body as black smoke.

Recite the Bodhicitta mantra three times:
"From this point on, your student takes refuge in the Guru and the
Three Jewels, right up unto Enlightenment, never to return. All
good deeds, large or small, shall be retributed to all sentient
beings, so that we attain Buddhahood quickly."
For reinforcement, recite Master Padmasambhava's mantra:
"Om-ah-hum, be-dza gu-ru, peh-ma, sih-dee, hum seh." (a
thousand times)

For reinforcement, recite Bodhisattva Kuan Yin's Heart mantra:
"Om, ma-nee pad-mee hum." (a thousand times)

For reinforcement, also recite the Green Tara mantra:

"Om da-le, du-da-le du-le, so ha "(a thousand times)

Verse of Transference of Merit:

"Reinforced by Master Lien-Shen, with the Triple Jewels'
illuminosity to expel my karmic hindrance, all sentient beings
and I attain Buddhahood together and go to the Western Land of
Great Bliss."

Then prostrate and retire.

II. The Great Mandala Offering

To remove your karmic hindrances, you need to make offerings
to your Root Guru, to the Triple Jewels, and to the vajra
protectors. This must be done because making offerings has the
effect of reinforcing your achievement. The Great Mandala
Offering, in particular, will please the Heaven above, the Earth
below, the Four Continents of Sumeru, the Sun and the Moon. It
is extremely effective.

What you offer are some grains of rice. Use five grains of rice to
represent the Eastern, the Southern, the Western, the Northern
and the Central Mount Sumeru. First, put the five grains in the
center of your palm, and form the Offering Mudra. Interlace your
fingers (with hands back to back) so that the palms face upwards.
Hook the index finger of the left hand over the middle finger of
the right. Hook the index finger of the right hand over the middle
finger of the left. Hook the thumb of the right hand over the little
finger of the left. Hook the thumb of the left hand over the little
finger of the right. Place your ring fingers vertically, back to back


Chant the Offering Mantra:

"Om, sa-er-wa. da-ta-ga-da. ee-da-mook, gu-ru la-na,
man-cha-la, kan,nee-lee-ye,da-ye-mee.

Raise the Mudra up to touch your forehead, and release the
mudra. Put the rice grains in the right hand, and form the mudra
again to touch your forehead. Toss the rice grains to complete the

III. The Great Homage

The Great Homage is the prostration ceremony to worship the
Buddha. We should know that a pious prostration before the
Buddha is enough to expel karmic hindrances; one thought of
respect and reverence to the Buddha is a good act. When all this is
done with solemn rites, it is the Great Homage all cultivators must

Pay attention to how to hold your palms together. Use the Buddha
Mudra for worshipping the Buddha. Join your palms together,
fingers pointing up and brought together, but leaving a slight
empty space between the palms.

In worshipping Bodhisattvas, use the Lotus Mudra---join your
palms together with the fingers pointing up; then open the palms
so that only the bases of the palms meet; the other fingers are
spread out like an opened lotus.

In paying homage to the Vajra Protectors, use the Vajra Handclasp
Mudra--Join your palms together, fingers pointing up. Spread out the fingers of
each hand just enough to interlace the fingers, like a Vajra scepter.

So the palms are held in different ways in paying homage to
different deities.
Visualization in paying homage to the Buddhas is also important.
First, bring your palms to the crown of your head, visualizing
white light entering your forehead. Then touch your throat chakra
and visualize red light entering your throat. Touch your hear
chakra, and visualize blue light entering your heart. Then, with
some force, push your arms forward horizontally, and prostrate,
touch the ground with your head and stand up. Form the mudras
again and visualize as above, and then prostrate again. (editor's
note: one prostation for each-Buddha, Bodhisattva, Vajra
Protectors, using the respective mudras. End with Equanimity
Mudra and a half bow) So much for the Great Homage.

IV. The Vajra-hearted Bodhisattva Method

This method has the most inconceivable power, which can expel
the gravest negative karma since time immemorial and make your
resolution to cultivate as strong as diamond. Success in following
this method is tantamount to empowerment. Some masters
specialized in the Vajra-hearted Bodhisattva Method, and attained
fruition of Bodhisattva in a lifetime. This is the most important of
the Four Preliminaries.

Join your palms together and recite:

"Namo Holy Red Crown Vajra Master Lian-shen." (three times)

Recite the Four-fold Refuge Mantra:

"Namo Guru bei, Namo Buddha ye, Namo Dharma ye, Namo
Sangha ye."
Recite the verse for the Four Divine States of Mind (The Four
Immeasurable Vows):

"May all sentient beings have full happiness and causes for
happiness. My loving kindness for them is boundless.
May all sentient beings leave their sufferings and causes of
sufferings. My compassion for them is boundless.
May all sentient beings enjoy eternal happiness without
suffering. My sympathetic joy for them is boundless.
May all sentient beings abandon love and hatred, and cherish
equality. My equanimity for that is boundless.

Recite the mantra to develop the Bodhicitta:
"Om, Bodhicitta, bie-dza, sa-ma-ya-, ah-hum."
Recite the Repentence Verse:
"All the bad karma I have committed in the past are due to my
greed, anger and ignorance. All that have been committed by my
body, speech and mind, I now fully repent. Om, bie-dza,
sa-ma-ya, su-dee-ya."
Use the Great Compassion Mantra Water or the Vajra Nectar
(Kundalini Mantra Water) to sprinkle all over the practice site.

Visualize the Dharma body of the Vajra-hearted Bodhisattva,
dressed in white, with a five-Buddha crown, in layers of skirts,
precious ornaments from head to toe, seated in a moon shaped
eight-petal lotus blossom. The right hand, in the Fiery Mudra,
holds a Vajra sceptre to the heart chakra, while the left, also in the
Fiery Mudra, holds a vajra bell to the left leg. At the heart chakra,
around the eight-petal lotus, the wheel of the hundred-syllable
revolves. The mantra wheel radiates white light, entering the
practitioner's whole body. His heart will then radiate strong white
light, which disperses all negative karma and unwholesome

Recite the Hundred-syllable Mantra:
"Om, be-dza sah-do sa-ma-ya, ma-nu bah-la-ya, be-dza sah-do
deh-lu-pah-deh-cha, zhe-jo mi bah-wa, soo-do ka-yu mi bah-wa,
soo-poo-ka-yu mi bah-wa, an-nu-la-do mi bah-wa, sa-er-wa
sid-di mi bu-la-ya-cha, sa-er-wa ka-er-ma soo-cha mi, ji-da-moo
see-li-ren, gu-ru hum, ha ha ha ha hoh, bah-ga-wan, sa-er-wa
da- ta-ga-ta, be-dze ma-mee mun-cha, be-ji ba-wa,ma-ha
sa-ma-ya sah-do ah, hum, pei."

If you persist in practicing this method, the Vajra-hearted
Bodhisattva will come and visit you, protect you and empower
you to cleanse all your karmic hindrances, devils' hindrances and
illnesses. Once free from negative karma, you feel fresh and
relieved. The Bodhisattva enters you from your crown and
merges with you. This is a sure path, leading to Buddhahood in
this lifetime.

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