To my most precious Guru Lama Zopa Rinpoche, How are you and how is your health? We pray for your good health and that we have the karma to continue being close to you. I am writing to share some really great news. John and I are pregnant again, with our second child. We just found out about two days ago, and are rejoicing with the news. I wanted to write to you early to ask for advice, to please see if there are obstacles, and what practice I should do. I remember from my previous pregnancy that your advice was that when the child is still in the womb, the karma can still be altered. My sister in law recently had a miscarriage at 12 weeks, it was a boy. The baby died in his mother's womb. This made me realize even more how truly precious it is to be born a human, and how blessed we are with news of a new baby. I want to do all I can to make sure the baby is safe and will have a good rebirth into the human realm.
Previously, when I was pregnant with my son, you checked and observed that he could die in the womb. You advised me to do Chenrezig Dharani (very long one) and I did practice it a few times and dedicated it to the birth of my son. I read the Chenrezig Dharani and read 10 pages of the Sanghata Sutra every night before sleeping (for the last 4 months of the pregnancy) loudly (so he could hear) and when he was born he was very healthy and beautiful. He's growing up to be a really nice boy, easy to look after, and loves animals. His astrologer says he will grow up to be a scientist, and will invent something very beneficial for the world. I pray that he grows up to be a compassionate person, to benefit all sentient beings.
Thank you for taking the time to read my letter. I look forward to hearing from you. On behalf of all sentient beings, I make prostrations and offer beautiful oceans of offerings to you, my precious guru. May you have a long long life. May all the merits collected be dedicated to your long and healthy life, and to the enlightenment of all suffering sentient beings.
Lots of love, Gina
My very dear Gina,
I checked regarding your baby and the situation looks quite good.
It would be good if you are able to go to a Chinese temple and offer a bath to the baby Buddha. You can also do this by using a very nice Buddha statue (that is waterproof and would not be damaged in any way if you pour water over it). You put the statue in a beautiful container, then you offer the water very carefully and nicely to the Buddha statue. While you offer the water, you recite a verse of offering the bath to the Buddha (if you look in the Jorcho practice there is more description about the practice of the bath offering). Then, you drink the water that you have offered over the Buddha, a few times each day.
First, you recite this mantra over the water seven times:
NAMO RATNATAYA OM YE DHARMA HETU-PRABHAVA HETUN TESHAN TATHAGATO HYAVADAT TESHAN CHA YO NIRODHA EVAM-VADI MAHA-SHRAMANAH YE SVAHA
After this, blow over the water, offer the water over the Buddha, then drink the water (after it has washed over the Buddha). This practice is to help the baby come out easily and for there to be no obstacles.
While you are offering the water to the Buddha, recite this prayer:
“I offer this water to the Holy Body of the Victorious One, who does not possess any stains, but in order to purify sentient beings’ defilements of body, speech, and mind. I offer this bath to the Buddha’s holy body, speech, and mind. May the obscurations of body, speech, and mind of sentient beings be purified.”
Think the Buddha is all the gurus that one has a Dharma connection with.
Then, also, it is very good if you do Chenrezig practice, reciting the long mantra. Think that beams of nectar emit from Chenrezig, enter your body and mind, as well as the baby’s body and mind. Also, think that all sentient beings are in your heart, on a moon disc. As the beams of nectar are emitted, think that all the baby’s negative karma collected since beginningless rebirths is purified, as well as any sickness, spirit harm, and obscurations. Think that the same thing happens to all sentient beings in your heart. Recite one mala or maybe 21 mantras, just focusing on purifying the four things (sickness, spirit harm, negative karma, and obscurations), purifying you, your baby, and all sentient beings in your heart. Then, recite one mala or maybe 21 mantras just focusing on receiving all the qualities of Chenrezig: perfect power, perfect wisdom, perfect compassion, omniscience, and especially great compassion. Think that you receive all the qualities, as well as all sentient beings in your heart receiving them, and especially your baby. Think especially that your baby receives all the blessings of Chenrezig, as well as all the qualities. This is very important.
With much love and prayers...