Practices for Drug Problems

Practices for Drug Problems

Date Posted:
November 2009

A student wrote to Rinpoche, worried about her son, who was having problems with drugs. Here are her letter and Rinpoche’s response.

Student: My son is in a very dark and dangerous place in his life. He is in a rehabilitation center for drugs and alcohol, and he is very confused, from what I gather. He has a wife and two beautiful little boys that he may lose. I am concerned that if he does not get proper help, he will lose his life. Would you mind recommending practices for me that I can do on his behalf? Thank you so much.

Rinpoche's Response

My dear one,
Regarding your son, there is a prayer called Auspicious Prayer for Healing Sickness. This needs to be translated, it is only in Tibetan at present. It comes out very good if you recite this prayer three times every day, with strong prayers for your son. Then, also, you can think of all sentient beings who need prayers.

As this has not been translated yet—this is hard to do—maybe you can discuss this with someone who could translate it.

There is a mantra to recite. While reciting the mantra, visualize Buddha and strongly rely on and take refuge in Buddha. Beams emit from Buddha to your son. Think he is completely under the protection of the Buddha, then also think of all sentient beings. Next, think your son and all sentient beings are totally purified of the four things (disease, spirit harm, negative karma, and defilements). Mainly focus on your son, then all sentient beings and yourself as well. This is a very powerful healing method.

The mantra is:


This mantra is extremely powerful for purification of all negative karma, particularly obstacles. Everything becomes auspicious for success. If you can, recite one mala a day. At the beginning, take refuge and generate bodhicitta.

Start with Praise to Shakyamuni Buddha (this is usually the prayer you recite at the beginning of teachings starting with “Tonpa chom den de…).

Then, recite the mantra above. Visualize Buddha above your son’s head, and make strong prayers for your son to generate the whole path to enlightenment.

So, for two to three malas, think your son is being purified of the four things, then for the rest of the mala think he is receiving all the qualities of Buddha, especially renunciation of samara, renouncing samsara’s pleasures, such as drugs, etc, which are in the nature of suffering and cause so much suffering.

These are other prayers that that you could do, when they have been translated, that will benefit your son:

1) Piles of Auspiciousness
Again, this has not yet been translated. It would be so good if it were translated. This prayer makes inauspicious things end. This prayer is often recited at the beginning of big projects, to bring success. Then there is another prayer:

2) Verses of Auspicious Prayers to Buddha
This expresses auspiciousness in verses. This is to the trader KunKon, from the chapter Sangpo, from the sutra called Manifested in Exalted Extensiveness. If this one is translated, it comes out very good for you to recite this every day.

It also comes out very good for you to make strong prayers to Padmasambhava. You can do the same meditation as I described above with Buddha. Make strong prayers and requests to Padmasambhava. Think that nectar emits from Padmasambhava and enters your son’s body and mind. Think also of all young people who are in the same situation, as well as all sentient beings who are suffering. Recite three malas of Padmasambhava mantra:


With strong faith, nectar flows down and purifies your son. At the end, think your son and all sentient beings receive all the qualities of Padmasambhava: perfect understanding, perfect wisdom, omniscience, perfect compassion, perfect renunciation, particularly renunciation.

Also, you can recite the prayer Sampa Lhundrupma. Recite the short version two to three times a day.

This comes out very good for your son. This advice can be used for other people who have similar problems, especially young people, who have problems and difficulties in their lives. This is something that one can try. In general, this will help. Of course, there is karma, and people have different karma, but it good to use some methods rather than nothing.


1 From the instructions of Lama Zopa Rinpoche, “It is important to stop between YO and NI or the mantra has a different meaning.  [Return to text]