In Praise Of The Incomparable Tsongkhapa

24 October 2009 - 1:44pm Comments Off

By Gyalwa Mikyo Dorje, the Eighth Karmapa (1507 – 1554)

Once when Gyalwa Mikyo Dorje was travelling through the Charida Pass, thoughts of the incomparable Tsongkhapa welled up within him. Overcome by profound faith, he was moved to compose this poem.

At a time when nearly all in this Northern Land
Were living in utter contradiction to Dharma,
Without illusion, O Tsongkhapa, you polished the teachings.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

When the teachings of the Sakya, Kargu, Kadam
And Nyingma sects in Tibet were declining,
You, O Tsongkhapa, revived Buddha’s Doctrine,
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Manjushri, the Bodhisattva of Wisdom, gave to you
Special instructions on the thought of Nagarjuna.
O Tsongkhapa, upholder of the Middle Way,
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

“Mind and form are not empty of their own natures
But are empty of truly existent mind and form”,
You, O Tsongkhapa, are Tibet’s chief exponent of voidness,
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

In merely a few years you filled
The land from China to India
With peerless holders of the saffron robes.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Those who become your followers
And look to you and your teachings
Are never again disappointed or forsaken.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

The trainees who walk in your footsteps
Breath the fresh air of the Great Way.
They would die for the good of the world.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Anyone who disparages your doctrine must face
The terrible wrath of the Dharma protectors.
O Tsongkhapa, who abides in truth’s power,
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

In person and in dreams you come to those
Who but once recollect your image.
O Tsongkhapa, who watches with compassionate eyes.
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

In order to civilize men and spirits you spread
Your teachings through Kham, Mongolia and Turkestan:
O Tsongkhapa, subduer of savages,
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

For men coarse and far from the Way, you dispel
Mental clouds, evils and bad karma.
O Tsongkhapa, who bestows quick progress,
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Those who take heartfelt Refuge in you,
Even those with no hope for now or hereafter,
O Tsongkhapa, have their every wish fulfilled.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Having exposed false teachings transgressing
The excellent ways well shown by Buddha,
You firmly established your Bold Doctrine.
Hence I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

Manifesting sublime austerity and discipline,
The form and fragrance of your life was incomparable.
O Tsongkhapa, controlled one pleasing to the Buddhas,
I sing this praise to you of Ganden Mountain.

By the strength of the sons of your lineage
And by my having faithfully offered this praise,
May the enlightened activity of Buddha Shakyamuni
Pervade the earth for ages to come.

Footnote: Extracted from the Life and Teachings of Tsong Khapa (Edited by Prof. R. Thurman)

Comments are closed.