Teachings From the Vajrasattva Retreat

By Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Soquel, CA USA 1999 (Archive #1055)

This book is an edited transcript of Lama Zopa Rinpoche's teachings at a three-month Vajrasattva retreat held at Land of Medicine Buddha, from February 1 to April 30, 1999. The teachings cover many lam-rim topics, purification practices, mantras, pujas and more.

Chapter 29: February 25

Evening: Final Vajrasattva Session

Extensive Dedication

“Due to all the past, present and future merits collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may bodhicitta—the source of all happiness and success for myself and all sentient beings—be actualized within my mind and within the minds of all sentient beings without even a second’s delay. And may the bodhicitta that has been generated be increased.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may all the father and mother sentient beings have happiness; may the three lower realms be empty forever; and may all the bodhisattvas’ prayers be accomplished immediately.

May I be able to cause all this by myself alone.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, from now on in all my future lifetimes may I be able to offer benefit as extensive as the sky to all sentient beings as Lama Tsongkhapa did, by having within me the same qualities as Lama Tsongkhapa had.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, in whichever universe, world, country, area or place I am, just by my being there, may all the sentient beings who are in that universe, world, country, area or place never ever be reborn in the lower realms. May they immediately be liberated from all disease, spirit harm, negative karma and defilements and immediately achieve enlightenment by actualizing the whole path, especially bodhicitta.”

Dedicate specifically that the people whose names were mentioned before immediately recover from their heavy sicknesses and have the most meaningful life through meeting the Dharma, the lam-rim, and especially through actualizing bodhicitta in this very lifetime.

“May those who have cancer and AIDS immediately be healed. May those who are in a coma immediately come out of their coma. May all those who have heavy diseases that are difficult to cure or have no cure, such as arthritis, leprosy and so forth, immediately be cured. May those who suffer a lot of pain because of bone disease immediately be healed.

May those who are blind be able to see, those who are deaf be able to hear and those who are lame be able to walk. May those who have obstacles to their Dharma practice immediately be free of those obstacles. May those who are unable to correctly devote themselves to the virtuous friend because they have much anger, heresy and negative thoughts arising be able to change their minds immediately. Instead of creating the heaviest obstacles to their happiness and to their achieving realizations and enlightenment and thus being able to benefit all sentient beings, may they have the stable devotion that sees the guru as buddha. May they immediately be able to purify all their heavy negative karma and do only actions that please the holy mind of the virtuous friend.

“May those who are unable to find a guru be able to find a perfectly qualified Mahayana guru. May those who need teachings be able to meet unmistaken Mahayana teachings, which reveal the complete path.

“May all those who have difficulties in their lives, who are constantly tortured by problems because of their uncontrolled delusions of anger or attachment, be able to have the realization of renunciation of this life and of samsara. May they realize that samsara is suffering in nature. In this way, may they be able to find peace and happiness in their heart and be free from all delusions, especially strong attachment, to which they have become addicted during beginningless past lives. May all those with problems, whether with their relationship or with drugs or alcohol, immediately be able to change their attitude and develop renunciation of samsara by realizing that samsara is suffering in nature. May they immediately be able to realize that samsaric pleasures are only suffering in nature. May they also immediately be able to realize the nature of pervasive compounding suffering. In that way may they be able to find peace and happiness. May that also lead them to see the suffering of others and to generate compassion for all living beings and then bodhicitta.

“May everyone receive perfect happiness. May I become wishing-fulfilling for all sentient beings, not only in this life but from life to life in all my future lifetimes. Like a wish-fulfilling gem, may I bring all sentient beings all happiness, up to enlightenment, from life to life in all my lifetimes.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, which appear to your mind to be real but are false, may the I, which appears real but is false, achieve Vajrasattva’s enlightenment, which appears real but is false, and lead all sentient beings, who appear to your mind to be real but are false, to that enlightenment, which appears to your mind to be real but is false, by myself alone, who appears real but is false.”

When I say that phenomena are “false,” I mean that they are deceptive.

Here “false” relates to their appearance. In our view phenomena appear to be real, in the sense of existing from their own side, or independently.

Phenomena appear to be real, but this is a false appearance.

This term “false” is similar to the term “no” in the Heart Sutra, where it says that there is no eye, no nose, no tongue, no sleep, no food, no bathroom, no toilet.... I simply applied the word “false” instead of “no” to the real phenomena that appear to us. We can use the word “false” as a weapon against the real phenomena that appear to us.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may any members of my family who have passed away, those who rely upon me, all those—both living and dead—whose names have been given to me and for whom I have promised to pray, and the numberless sentient beings who are now suffering unimaginably in the lower realms immediately be liberated from all those sufferings and reincarnate in a pure land where they can become enlightened, or achieve perfect human rebirths in their future lifetimes.

May they achieve enlightenment as quickly as possible by meeting a perfectly qualified Mahayana guru and the Mahayana teachings.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me and by others, may just my hearing that somebody is sick cause that sentient being to immediately recover from that sickness. And may just my hearing that somebody has died cause that sentient being to never ever be born in the lower realms, or if already born there, immediately be liberated from the lower realms and be born in a pure land where they can become enlightened.

Or if that sentient being has been reborn as a human but with no opportunity to practice Dharma, may they be able to receive a perfect human body and achieve enlightenment quickly.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may I, the members of my family, all students and benefactors of this organization—especially the directors and others who sacrifice their lives by bearing many hardships in offering service to others and the teaching of the Buddha through this organization—and those whose names were given to me, who rely upon me and for whom I promised to pray all have long lives. May all our wishes be accomplished immediately according to the holy Dharma.

Most importantly, may we be able to actualize the steps of the path to enlightenment, especially bodhicitta and clear light, in this very lifetime, without even a second’s delay.

“Due to all the merits of the three times collected by me, buddhas, bodhisattvas and all other sentient beings, may all the meditation centers be able to spread the teaching of Lama Tsongkhapa in the minds of all sentient beings by receiving everything they need. May the hospices, leprosy project, schools and all our other social service projects become wish-fulfilling for all sentient beings, causing them every happiness, including enlightenment, and pacifying immediately their sufferings of body and mind. May all the projects of this organization, including those here at Land of Medicine Buddha and the 500-foot Maitreya Buddha statue, be completed immediately by receiving everything they need. May all these statues and projects cause the generation of loving kindness, compassion and bodhicitta in the minds of all sentient beings.

Due to that, may all sentient beings never experience anything undesirable, such as war, famine, disease, earthquake or danger from fire, water, wind and so forth. In short, may all the centers, statues and projects cause all sentient beings to achieve enlightenment as quickly as possible.

“May all the virtuous friends—including Lama Yeshe’s incarnation, Lama Ösel Rinpoche—have stable lives, and may all their holy wishes be accomplished immediately. May everything Lama in his past life intended for the benefit of others be actualized in this life without any obstacles.”

Even though the sangha are already included in the dedication for the FPMT students, dedicate again specifically for all the FPMT sangha.

“May all the sangha be able to complete their lives in pure vows and in this way be able to benefit the whole world. In this life may they be able to complete all the scriptural understanding and realizations and receive all the necessary conditions for that to happen. May nothing become an obstacle and everything become a support for them to live a pure life in their vows and to have realizations of the path to enlightenment.

“May all the countries in the whole world be guided by Dharma leaders.

May everyone have perfect happiness through having loving kindness, compassion and bodhicitta. May everyone live their life without harming but only benefiting each other. May the teachings of the Buddha, especially those of Lama Tsongkhapa, spread in all directions and flourish.”

[After recitation of the multiplying mantras:] “Due to the blessings of the eminent buddhas and bodhisattvas, due to unbetraying dependent arising, and due to my special attitude, may all my pure prayers be accomplished immediately.”

Thank you very much. Good night. I thought I might have missed the chocolates—I just came to get the chocolates [tsog was offered].