Calling the Guru from Afar

By Pabongka Rinpoche

Calling the Guru from Afar is a heartfelt request to the guru for blessings to realize all the stages of the path to enlightenment, as well as a meditation on the nature of the guru. There is both a long version and an abbreviated version of this prayer.

A practice booklet containing the long and short versions of Calling the Guru from Afar and Practicing Guru Devotion with the Nine Attitudes, is available from FPMT as a free download. FPMT Education Services also offers an audio version of Lama Zopa Rinpoche chanting the long version of this profound and moving prayer.

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama with Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
Calling the Guru from Afar (Long Version)
A Tormented Wail, Quickly Drawing Forth the Blessing of the Guru, the Inseparable Three Kayas

LA MA KHYEN

Guru, think of me.

LA MA KHYEN

Guru, think of me.

LA MA KHYEN

Guru, think of me.

 

SANG GYÄ KÜN GYI YE SHE DE CHHEN CHHÖ KUR RO CHIG

The wisdom of all buddhas, one taste with the great bliss dharmakaya,

DE NYI DRIN CHÄN LA MA KÜN GYI RANG ZHIN THAR THUG

Is itself the ultimate nature of all kind gurus.

LA MA CHHÖ KYI KU LA NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, dharmakaya,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

YE SHE GYU MÄI RANG NANG GYÄL WA YÄN LAG DÜN DÄN

Wisdom’s own illusory appearance, the conqueror with seven branches,

DE NYI DRIN CHÄN LA MA KÜN GYI TRÜL ZHI THAR THUG

Is itself the ultimate basis of emanation of all kind gurus.

LA MA LONG CHÖ DZOG KUR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, sambhogakaya,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

JI NYE DÜL JÄI KHAM ZHIN NA TSHOG TRÜL PÄI RÖL GAR

The play of various emanations, suiting the dispositions of the many to be subdued,

DE NYI DRIN CHÄN LA MA LONG CHÖ DZOG KÜI NAM GYUR

Is itself the behavior of the sambhogakaya of the kind gurus.

LA MA TRÜL PÄI KU LA NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, nirmanakaya,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

KU SUM YER ME RÖL PA LA MÄI ZUG SU SHAR WA

The play of the inseparable three kayas, appearing in the form of the guru,

DE NYI DRIN CHÄN LA MA KÜN GYI NGO WO CHIG NYI

Is itself one with the very essence of all kind gurus.

KU SUM YER ME LA MAR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, the inseparable three kayas,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

YI DAM ZHI THRO RAB JAM KÜN KYANG LA MÄI RANG ZHIN

All the infinite peaceful and wrathful yidams are also the guru’s nature,

DRIN CHÄN LA MA NYI LÄ YI DAM LOG SU ME PÄ

And since no yidam exists apart from the kind guru,

YI DAM KÜN DÜ LA MAR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, who comprises all yidams,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

SANG GYÄ KÜN GYI CHI ZUG LA MÄI NAM PAR SHAR WÄ

The ordinary form of all buddhas arises in the aspect of the guru,

DRIN CHÄN LA MA NYI LÄ SANG GYÄ LOG SU MI MIG

Therefore no buddhas are observed apart from the kind guru.

SANG GYÄ KÜN DÜ LA MAR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, who comprises all buddhas,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

GYÄL KÜN KHYEN TSE NÜ PÄI RANG ZUG LA MAR SHAR WÄ

The very form of all conquerors’ wisdom, compassion, and power arises as the guru;

PHAG CHHOG RIG SUM GÖN KYANG DRIN CHÄN LA MA NYI YIN

Therefore, the supreme arya saviors of the three types are also the kind guru.

RIG SUM CHIG DÜ LA MAR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, who combines the three types in one,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

RIG GYA RIG NGA RIG SUM JI NYE TRO YANG LA MA

The hundred, five, and three types, however many elaborated, are the guru.

DE KÜN GANG DU DU WÄI KHYAB DAG NYI KYANG LA MA

The pervasive master in whom they are all included is also the guru.

LA MA RIG KÜN DAG POR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, as master of all the types of buddhas,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

SANG GYÄ CHHÖ DANG GE DÜN KÜN GYI JE PO LA MA

The creator of all buddhas, Dharma, and Sangha is the guru.

CHIG CHHOG KYAB SUM KÜN DÜ DRIN CHÄN LA MA NYI YIN

The one who combines all three refuges is the kind guru.

KYAB KÜN DÜ ZHÄL LA MAR NYING NÄ SÖL WA DEB SO

I beseech you, Guru, whose presence combines all refuges,

DI CHHI BAR DO KÜN TU DRÄL ME JE SU ZUNG SHIG

Please guide me always without separation, in this life, future lives, and the bardo.

 

SANG GYÄ KÜN GYI RANG ZUG LA MÄI NAM PAR SHAR NÄ

Thinking of how the actual form of all buddhas arises in the aspect of the guru

TSE WÄ JE SU DZIN TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And mercifully guides me – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

SANG GYÄ KÜN GYI PANG PÄI KÄL CHHÄ NYAM THAG DAG LA

Thinking of how you show the excellent unmistaken path to me,

MA NOR LAM ZANG TÄN TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

An unfortunate wretched being, abandoned by all the buddhas – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

NYE KA DÖN CHHEI TEN ZANG KHE NYEN KYI DUG DAM GA

Thinking of this excellent body, highly meaningful and difficult to obtain,

MA NOR NYING PO LEN DÖ SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And wishing to take its essence with unerring choice between gain and loss, happiness and suffering – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

LO BUR CHHI WÄI JIG CHHEN RANG GI THOG TU BAB NÄ

Thinking of the experience of not knowing what to do when the great fear of death

CHI JA TÖL ME NGANG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

Suddenly descends upon me – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

TSHE DII PHÜN TSHOG KÜN DANG DA TA LO BUR DRÄL NÄ

Thinking of the experience of just now suddenly separating from all the perfections of this life,

CHIG PUR DRO WÄI NGANG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And going on alone – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

JIG RUNG NYÄL WÄI ME NANG RANG LÜ JEN PAR LHUNG NÄ

Thinking of the experience of my naked body falling into the terrifying fires of hell

ZÖ LAG ME PÄI NGANG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And being unable to bear it – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

KÄL CHHÄ YI DAG NÄ SU ZÄ KOM CHHU THIG ME PÄI

Thinking of how the suffering of hunger and thirst, without a drop of water,

DUG NGÄL NGÖN SUM NYONG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

Is directly experienced in the unfortunate preta realm – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

LÜN MONG DÜ DROR GYUR NÄ SHIN TU MI DUG KÄL NGÄN

Thinking of how very repulsive and wretched it is to become a foolish stupid animal

DE DRA RANG THOG NYONG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And what it would be like to experience it myself – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

NYAM THAG NGÄN SONG NÄ DER DA TA LHUNG LA NYE WÄ

Thinking of a refuge to protect me from this,

DI LÄ KYOB PÄI KYAB SHIG SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

Since I am now about to fall into the wretched states of bad migration – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

KAR NAG LÄ KYI NYONG WA ZHIB CHING THRA WÄI JUG DOG

Thinking of how white and black actions are experienced

JI ZHIN LAG LEN DEB TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

And of how to practice thorough and precise engagement and restraint – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

THA ME SI PÄI TSÖN KHANG DUG NGÄL KÜN GYI JUNG KHUNG

Thinking of a method to escape this prison of endless existences,

DI LÄ THAR PÄI THAB SHIG SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

The source of all suffering – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

JIG RUNG SI TSHÖI LONG DU KHA KHYAB NYAM THAG MA GÄN

Thinking of the plight of my pitiful old mothers, pervasive as space,

LHUNG ZHING NAR WÄI NGANG TSHÜL SAM KYIN LA MA DRÄN NO

Fallen amidst the fearful ocean of samsara and tormented there – reminds me of you, Guru.

 

DE CHHIR LAM TSO SUM DANG RIM NYI ZAB MÖI NYAM NYONG

Therefore, Guru, please bless me to generate in my mental continuum

TSÖL ME GYÜ LA KYE WAR LA MÄ JIN GYI LOB SHIG

Effortless experience of the profound three principles of the path and the two stages.

 

SHUG DRAG NGE JUNG SAM PÄ THAR PÄI TSÄN SA ZIN CHHIR

Please bless me to strive in one-pointed practice of the three trainings with the intense thought of renunciation,

LAB SUM TSE CHIG DRUB LA TSÖN PAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

In order to reach the secure state of liberation.

 

DRO KÜN RANG NYI CHIG PÜ DRÖL WÄI LHAG SAM KHUR GYI

Please bless me to train in the precious supreme bodhichitta with the special attitude

RIN CHHEN JANG CHHUB SEM CHHOG JONG PAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

Taking responsibility to liberate all migrators by myself alone.

 

LAB CHHEN GYÄL SÄ CHÖ PÄI PHA THAR DRÖ PÄI NYING TOB

Please bless me to follow after the ocean of conquerors with the will to cross

GYÄL WA GYA TSHÖI JE SU JUG PAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

To the very end of the great waves of deeds of the conquerors’ sons.

 

TONG DANG TEN JUNG NANG TONG CHIG DROG CHIG TU CHHAR WÄI

Please bless me to realize the supreme view, free of extremes,

THA DRÄL TA WÄI YANG TSE TOG PAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

In which emptiness and dependent arising, appearance and emptiness, complement each other.

 

ZHI YI KYE CHHI BAR DO KU SUM LAM DU KHYER WÄI

Please bless me quickly to generate the experience of taking the three kayas into the path,

MIN JE NYAM NYONG NYUR DU KYE WAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

Ripening the bases of birth, death, and bardo.

 

LUNG SEM U MAR THIM PÄI GA ZHI TONG ZHII RÖL WA

Please bless me to arise as the illusory divine body itself, the play of the four joys and four emptinesses

GYU MÄI LHA KU NYI DU CHHAR WAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

Of the wind and mind absorbed in the central channel.

 

ZUNG DZIN SHÜN PA BÜ PÄI NYUG MÄI RANG ZHÄL JEN PA

Please bless me to meet the ultimate guru – the bare face of my innate mind

NÄ LUG DÖN GYI LA MA JÄL WAR JIN GYI LOB SHIG

With the covering of perception of true existence and perceiving it as true removed.

 

DRIB NYI TRÖ PA ZÄ PÄI DE CHHEN CHHÖ KÜI LONG DU

Please bless me to be one with your three secrets, Guru, in the vast dharmakaya of great bliss,

RANG DANG LA MÄI SANG SUM CHIG TU JIN GYI LOB SHIG

Which has exhausted the elaborations of the two obscurations.

 

DOR NA JANG CHHEN BAR DU NYING Ü DRÄL ME ZHUG NÄ

In short, please abide inseparably in the center of my heart until the great enlightenment,

PHA JE BU YI ZIN PAR TSE WÄ JIN GYI LOB SHIG

And mercifully bless me, the child, to follow after you, the father.

 

LA MA KHYEN

Lama, think of me.

LA MA KHYEN

Lama, think of me.

LA MA KHYEN

Lama, think of me.

 

After reciting either the long or abbreviated version of Calling the Guru from Afar, recite any requesting prayers to your Guru that you wish, such as the following.

 

PÄL DÄN LA MÄI NAM PAR THAR PA LA

May I not give rise to heresy for even a second

KÄ CHIG TSAM YANG LOG TA MI KYE SHING

In regard to the actions of the glorious Guru.

CHI DZÄ LEG PAR THONG WÄI MÖ GÜ KYI 

May I see whatever actions are done as pure.

LA MÄI JIN LAB SEM LA JUG PAR SHOG

With this devotion, may I receive the Guru’s blessings in my heart.

 

Then recite the following verse and meditate on the Guru entering your heart.

 

PÄL DÄN TSA WÄI LA MA RIN PO CHHE 

Magnificent and precious root Guru,

DAG GI NYING KHAR PÄ MÖI TENG ZHUG LA

Please abide on the lotus seat at my heart,

KA DRIN CHHEN PÖI GO NÄ JE ZUNG TE

Guide me with your great kindness,

KU SUNG THUG KYI NGÖ DRUB TSÄL DU SÖL 

And grant me the realizations of your holy body, speech, and mind.

 

Colophon:

Calling the Guru from Afar: A Tormented Wail, Quickly Drawing Forth the Blessings of the Guru, the Inseparable Three Kayas(Bla ma rgyang ‘bod sku gsum dbyer med bla ma’i byin rlabs byung ‘dren gdung dbyangs):

Original Colophon: 

Composed by Pabongka Tulku at the great insistent request, and with the offering of three hundred silver coins, of Gelong Losang Rabye of Bompa in the faraway area of Tsawa. The scribing was done by the monk Losang Dorje from the area of Den.

Publisher’s Colophon:

Translated by Ven. George Churinoff in Nyung Nä: The Means of Achievement of the Eleven-Faced Great Compassionate One, Avalokiteshvara (Wisdom Publications, Boston, 1995). Permission kindly granted by the translator to replace “lama” with “guru,” which is more commonly used in FPMT prayers, and to replace “families” with “types,” as Lama Zopa Rinpoche considers this to be a better translation of the Tibetan word “rigs,” June 2016.