Make Strong Prayers to Medicine Buddha

Make Strong Prayers to Medicine Buddha

Date of Advice:
August 2017
Date Posted:
May 2019

This advice was given to a student whose brother was in intensive care and close to dying. The student asked what could be done for his brother to avoid rebirth in the lower realms.

Holy objects at Lama Zopa Rinpoche's house in Aptos, California.

My most dear, most kind, most precious, wish-fulfilling one,
Thank you for your kind letter and thank you for coming to the Light of the Path retreat, that was so good.

Regarding your brother, I checked and if possible, if you can manage, do the extensive Medicine Buddha puja five times, with the dedication for him to not be reborn in the lower realms, in the hell realms. Otherwise, as it is now, according to my observation, and I can’t say what other lamas would say, but according to my observation it seems maybe the hell realm. So, you need to make very strong prayers to Medicine Buddha, with the extensive Medicine Buddha puja, the one that was written by the Fifth Dalai Lama. You need to do that five times for him.

Of course, it is not only for your brother, but for every sentient being—those who are your brother, sister, father and mother. You have to know that, you must have heard this numberless times from the gurus. It’s so good to pray for all sentient beings, to do the Medicine Buddha puja for all the sentient beings, for example, the animals, there are thousands of different types of fish, sharks, small fish and others that are big like mountains, so for all of them, as well as for all the ants in this universe and in other universes, for every single ant, for banana slugs and so forth.

Kopan Nunnery comes out best to do three extensive Medicine Buddha pujas—not the short one, it has to be the extensive one. So you can sponsor the Kopan nuns, if you can. If it can be done at Kopan, the puja only needs to be done three times not five times.

Then for yourself, when you do the short Medicine Buddha practice, even just the mantra every day, you must pray every day to Medicine Buddha. Pray strongly that when he dies it is with a virtuous thought, in order to not be reborn in the hell realms. Make this dedication:

May he be reborn in a pure realm where he can become enlightened; may he receive a perfect human body and receive Mahayana teachings, and meet a perfectly qualified Mahayana guru who reveals the unmistaken path and by pleasing most the holy mind of the virtuous friend may he achieve enlightenment as quickly as possible.

Do that dedication every day when you do the Medicine Buddha practice.

[Dedicate] not only for your brother, but also for His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s wishes to succeed immediately, and for all the holy beings in the world who benefit others, for all the Sangha who preserve and spread the Dharma, for their success, then for those who offer service and materials to benefit them, for all sentient beings who do good things for others, for their success, and for all the evil beings to meet Dharma and to abandon the cause of suffering and practice the cause of happiness. You can do these dedications for yourself but if you can, dedicate more for other sentient beings.

When you sponsor the pujas, when you spend that money, it’s so incredible what you collect with every dollar spent. You collect unbelievable, unbelievable, unbelievable merit and with bodhicitta motivation you collect more than skies of merit with each dollar spent.

You must do these things, and if you know how to practice Dharma in a skillful way then you will always collect unbelievable merit. Most of the Kopan nuns have already received teachings from His Holiness, therefore His Holiness is their guru and they look at His Holiness as their guru. That means every nun is a pore of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, therefore if you also offer and generate the motivation of bodhicitta when you ask for the puja, and think “I am making offering to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s pores,” in this way you collect so much more merit than having made skies of offerings to numberless buddhas, Dharma, Sangha and numberless statues, stupas and scriptures.

Even by offering one rupee or one mug of tea or one piece of bread to one nun or monk or lay person who is His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s disciple, you collect so much merit. Now there are so many nuns in Kopan Nunnery, so can you imagine, you collect so much merit. If you offer with bodhicitta, then you collect more than skies of merit—more than having just offered to numberless buddhas, Dharma, Sangha and numberless statues, stupas and scriptures—by making an offering to one nun of just one mug of tea or one piece of bread or one rupee, offering whatever. Anyway, you can discuss with them what to offer for the pujas and request, if possible, if they can do the puja completely three times.

Please continue to live your life with bodhicitta, as you are.

My most dear one, billions, zillions and trillions of thanks for your retreat. I am thanking you on behalf of the numberless buddhas and bodhisattvas, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Lama Yeshe and numberless sentient beings. I speak on their behalf.

With much love and prayers ...