Many people have approached me for the concise Vajrasattva Terma sadhana by HH Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche through this blog over the years. Although not everyone gives me feedback, but from the feedback that I have received so far, there has only been good signs from practicing this sadhana, in most cases, without even any oral transmission. The permission to do this practice without any empowerment or oral transmission was given by HH Jigme Phuntsok, the treasure-discoverer himself.
Below, I share many real-life past cases of Chinese practitioners who have had good results with this practice through simple sincerity, faith and diligence. Many of them simply received the text through the mail and did the practice accordingly without even any oral transmission. (Note: Just FYI, I am not the editor/compiler/interviewer of these stories. )
Actually, in my own opinion and experience, it is the people who practice simply with sincerity, faith and diligence who produce really amazing results and realizations. It really almost doesn’t matter how much you know. It is your good heart and faith that really matters. I may be simplifying things here, and of course, I still encourage everyone to do more listening and contemplating – but in a way that increases your faith and pure view, not in a way that increases your fault-finding criticisms, doubts, pride and ego.
This is my previous post on Vajrasattva many years back:
I received a phone-call from Zhang in Jiangsu, a lady. She said that she had received this Vajrasattva practice and started reading about how the practice came to be discovered and the various explanations about it.
“Before receiving this, I had heard about the recitation of this mantra from others and completed 400,000 recitations. Now that I think back to that time, before reciting the Vajrasattva mantras, each time I chanted Amitabha or meditated, there will always be some kind of interruption, whether it was the phone ringing or neighbours coming to visit. After completing the recitation, these things ceased to happen.
“Another example to prove my point is: I lived near the sea and when my wooden furniture got moist, termites infested and since they were multiplying very quickly and caused alot of damage, eating furnitures and books in a short time, I thought that to throw them outside would cause further harm to other vegetation etc. and when they had matured to adulthood, they would grow wings and go to other peoples’ homes to harm them. So I decided to exterminate them myself and bear the negative karma.
“Whether this is a right or wrong choice, let’s put that aside, but the point is that after spraying the poison to kill them, for the next few days, whenever I did prostrations or chanted mantras, just as I placed the lighted incense into the holder to begin the session, the phone would start to ring. In the early morning, after lighting the incense, just as I was about to offer prostrations, the nanny who was returning home would knock the door loudly and shout, “Open the door!” I thought to myself that I would just finish this one prostration before opening the door, but the nanny was afraid that I couldn’t hear and shouted even louder at the top of her voice.
“These are just examples, but in the past, such things never happened. So the karmic consequences of bad karma are quite obvious to me.”
I am a Buddhist who took refuge about 10 years ago. There have been countless obstacles. All kinds of negative karma and sufferings caused by negative spirits. The kind of torment my body and mind has been through is hard to express with words. My Dharma practice could barely take off. In the early half of this year, just as I was in complete despair about the sicknesses plaguing my whole family, I met someone who gave me some advice about the heavy negative karma that is causing all these.
I was guided to open my heart and give more thought to helping other people and contributing to the Buddhadharma. I was also told not to be too obstinate about sticking only to chanting Amitabha, and was introduced to the Vajrayana, in particular the confession practice to purify my negative karma. But for about a month, I did not meet any suitable purification practice, until my fervent prayers were answered and I received this Vajrasattva practice. Truly thanks be given to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and all the great masters for their beneficence. As it is said, “A thousand prayers are met with a thousand responses, the boat of liberation sails across the sea of suffering.” (This is a common Chinese proverb about Avalokiteshvara or Great Compassion.)
Ever since I met a teacher and encountered the Vajrayana, I have been reciting the Mani mantra. I had no opportunity to receive empowerment and there was not much result from the recitation. In my region, all we had were the Mahayana Sutric teachings, mainly consisting of pureland teachings in which we were told to eschew other practices in favor of concentrating on Amitabha — which was a wrong concept.
After I started practicing the Vajrasattva practice, the strong blessing was evident from the first few days. My entire body felt purified and clean, I felt very relaxed and there was a feeling of being washed and cleansed. I had a deep feeling of unspeakable joy. Even in my free time the mantra would resound in my mind. If I collected my concentration and recite the mantra even ten times, I had a feeling of going into samadhi. It was as if Vajrasattva did not leave the top of my head for even an instant. My resolve to persevere in this practice is definite, and I will spread this practice to others if the conditions are right, to let more people purify their karma and gain wisdom, going to the pureland at ease.
For the past few years, I am a believer in Buddhism and recited the Amitabha sutra and Great White Robe Mantra daily. From the day I received this Vajrasattva practice, I started to recite the Vajrasattva mantra instead for a while. I had been suffering from tracheitis (inflammation of the windpipe), sometimes it was good, sometimes bad. Recently, it had been worsening, and all the medicine had not much effect. When I finished reciting the mantra several hundred times on the second night, I felt discomfort and retired. At night, I had a dream, both my colleague and I were planting trees. We were exhausted but several trees had not been watered. Then someone told me, if you spat on the tree, it would live. In the end, I spat thrice at the roots of the tree, and they were black in color. I do not know whether it was phlegm or blood. Later I woke up. The next morning, my body felt very comfortable, and my mind was bright, there was no more cough or panting. Till now, my condition has been fantastic. I think the mantra is quite efficacious. I am determined to complete 400,000 to purify my karma.
(some parts of his letter have not been translated as it was irrelevant)
I contacted the Dharma 15 years ago. I was delighted to discover it and went to Shanghai to receive refuge and the Mani mantra practice. When I returned, I practiced it diligently. Before long, I met obstacles. When I sat down, my body started to move uncontrollably. My head would swing non-stop. Every morning I would sit from 430am – 530am. This phenomenon continued at night, the shaking was very strong. I couldn’t sit on the bed, even moving to the floor didn’t help. Because practice couldn’t go on, my faith also deteriorated. I switched to chanting Amitabha. But the same problem arose. I could not get into a state of concentration. I thought now I was really finished, who knows when I will be able to truly get realizations. So I stopped practicing Dharma three years ago. My faith had all but vanished.
Shame on me! Repent! Before long, I broke all my five precepts. And the temptation to break them was so strong. After negative karma ripened twice, it became clear to me that if I continued this zombie-like state of living in a dream, the only future will be the three lower realms. I would shoot straight into the lower realms as quickly as an arrow leaving the bow. So I was very frustrated and wished for some way to attain liberation. But I could not enter the door of Dharma.
Then someone sent me a Vajrasattva practice. After seeing it, I was filled with doubts, but decided to give it a try. In my first session, my body shook for half-an-hour. I was wracked with suffering. Tears rolled down as my mind was filled with anguish. I prayed to Vajrasattva to bless me and aspired to cross this obstacle and generate Bodhichitta. Half an hour later, calm really came. At that time, my mind was filled with joy. So I make a wish to benefit others too… after reading the teachings of Huang Nian Zu (a master who combined practice of Vajrayana and Pureland), my faith increased greatly and I recited the mantra daily in two to three sessions, sometimes even four sessions. Two days later, I started to have diarrhea, passing out black substances. (Vajrasattva purifies on different levels, depending on one’s karma, for some people, it purifies the body, ridding it of particular karmic sicknesses. As can be seen in later sharings.)
Later I wrote to a friend at Serthar Monastery expressing my wish to recite 2 million Vajrasattva mantras. My mind became purer and when I heard loud sounds during practice, I did not get angry but instead made dedications to all beings. The sounds would then stop.
These few days, while accompanying my clients, I drank seven cans of beer and ate meat. When I returned home to practice, my body started shaking again, I quickly did prostrations and the sweat that poured out from me smelled terrible. I was quite frightened and thought that the protectors may have been displeased with me. After my prostrations, I had a bout of diarrhea and the smell was unbearable. Two days later, I had to take some alcohol and meat again while socialising with my colleagues and I had abdominal pain and diarrhea again. From then on, I vowed that even at the cost of my life, I would not break the precepts again or may the protectors crush my skull… recently my faith, aspirations and conduct have become firm and pure. This is something real…
Since I am still young, my energies are strong and although I am determined to practice, strong sexual desires do arise, I would contemplate on the unclean nature of human bodies to overcome it, but it was still difficult and what I could suppress in the day-time still arose at night in dreams. It is so true that because desires are strong, we are trapped in the endless cycle of samsara. Since practicing Vajrasattva, these desires have ceased without me even trying to. It was completely natural. Such a difficult dilemma resolved by the power of the Dharma in short time. It was inconceivable!…
Normally, when I am sitting in meditation, it was difficult to bear with the mosquito bites, I would think that the nature of the body is emptiness and that it was good to perform charity with my blood, and pray that the mosquitoes would gain a human life and attain Buddhahood in future. When I see many people chasing after fame, wealth and benefits, I felt a deep sense of compassion for their lack of wisdom. My resolve to practice would strengthen
Also, my desire for food has reduced. I do not wish to eat after lunch quite naturally… Vajrayana is quite amazing… I am determined to finish reciting Vajrasattva for a thousand days, after that I would focus on Pureland practice.
I have received three volumes of the Vajrasattva practice. My wife Xu Shu Guo has finished 400,000 mantras in the past but as she did not really focus and visualize, she made the wish to complete a few more cycles of 400,000 mantras. My wife’s friend Wang Mei Lan finished a million in the past, but made the wish to complete another few more cycles of 400,000 with better focus. I also gave my friend Sun Chang Shun one volume, and he expressed that this was a great practice and that he will do it too.
I myself have also recited 400,000 before. I have finished 1 million Amitabha’s name and 2 million Namo Amitabha, just as HH Jigme Phuntsok had advised. From 2000 onwards, I have combined the practice of Vajrasattva, Liberation by Listening and many mantras and Buddha names. I am quite a stupid person, I can’t really visualize, so I mainly focus on recitation. From 1999, after I returned from Serthar Monastery, I started to recite Vajrasattva mantra and completed 400,000 in 12 days. Then I completed 1 million Amitabha in 15 days. I need to work in the day and so I used the night-time to recite. After I had completed these recitations, I had a very clear dream. I dreamt of my paternal grandfather, father’s sister and another auntie who managed the household, they took the mala (rosary) I used to count my mantras with and divided it among themselves, each person taking several beads. They said that they had bought their own malas and wanted to add my beads to their malas and would to start doing a diligent recitation practice from then on. (Editorial comments: It is a common practice in Tibet to add the beads from the malas of good practitioners or masters to one’s own beads as a blessing to augment one’s own practice, although this man did not know it.)
After chanting Vajrasattva mantra, my body underwent a huge transformation. I remember that upon reaching 300,000 mantras, my excrement contained many patches of thick black-colored blood, the anus was unbearably painful for more than ten days, I keep expelling pus like substances, at that time, I did not know what this was and ignored it as I thought that it was due to heat rising in the body from the effort of reciting many mantras diligently. I also had several dreams of expelling dirty substances from my throat and eyes. And it was strange that after several of such signs, the gastric ailment that had troubled me for many years also disappeared. After I read the book you sent me on Vajrasattva practice, I realized that this could be a positive sign of purification. Thank you very much!
This year, in the early morning of 21 August, I dreamt of myself in full lotus posture (in reality, I am unable to cross my legs in full lotus, I cannot even sit in half-lotus for a long time) flying quickly through space across mountain ranges, rivers, railways, roads, farmlands, villages, passing over them like a flash of lightning until I reached Serthar Monastery. The monastery was teeming with people, there was a grand puja going on and there were too many people on the hillsides that I could not remain there. Suddenly, there appeared in the sky brilliant light and it transformed into the body of Amitabha Buddha, filling the whole sky. It was a magnificent sight and his appearance was resplendent. I quickly chanted Amitabha and everyone were also chanting in unison. I also saw Chenrezig and Vajrapani and the assembly of sangha from the pureland surrounding them. In a short time, the whole space was filled with infinite Buddhas, awe-inspiring in their beauty, and radiating bright lights, I quickly recited the mantra of the hundred deities until I woke up from the dream. So it was only a dream!
My wife Xu Shu Guo has a deep affinity to Chenrezig, and because of her recitation of the Dharani of Great Compassion to successfully cure an illness, she took refuge in Buddhism. In the 90s, after she had attended the first Chenrezig Puja, both of us were reciting the name of Guan Yin (a form of Chenrezig in Chinese), we had been reciting until about just after midnight when we both decided to retire for the night as we had to work the next day. She later said that during her sleep the recitation continued mentally throughout the night and she dreamt of Chenrezig. In the South-eastern direction, there was a white-silverish arch bridge, under which a stream flowed, Chenrezig appeared (in the female form Guan Yin, common in the Chinese tradition) on the bridge with her robes swaying gently in the wind. Chenrezig sprinkled water on her head with the willow branch and my wife was touched to tears and recited the name of Guan Yin non-stop. For many years, this kind of auspicious dream has never reoccurred. But this time, when you sent us the Vajrasattva practice, after reciting for the first day, Chenrezig again appeared in my wife’s dream that very night.
My wife and I live harmoniously and practice together. Although we have no great ability, ever since we took refuge, we mainly relied a heart of deep sincerity and devotion, using our strength and diligence, ploughing on stupidly. We feel deep gratitude for the kindness of Buddhas. It is a kindness that is difficult to repay. If we had not met the Buddhadharma, it would be endless cycling in samsara for us without any escape. For more than ten years, we have dedicated ourselves to the pureland practice, often chanting with tears in our eyes as devotion arises, praying to the Buddha to bless us and to quickly bring us to the pureland. There have been many many miraculous incidents of the blessings and protection of Buddhas, in fact it is so numerous that I can almost compile it in a book. After 1997, I met the Vajrayana teachings and gained faith in HH Jigme Phuntsok. In 1999, I went to Serthar monastery and received many teachings and pith instructions etc, and received the kind guidance and care of Khenpo Sodargye.
From Upasaka Ba in Guangzhou
I have received the Vajrasattva practice from you a long time back, the 400,000 mantras I committed to recite were completed on 5 Feb 2002. Later on 22 Feb, I made a vow to recite another 1 million mantras, the reason is like this: When I received the practice from you in late August of 2001, I discussed with my daughter whether I should recite this mantra. My daughter opined that I should settle my mind on pureland practice only and not divert myself. I myself was in agreement with her view. Since it was not easy for me to have met with the Dharma and pureland practice in my late years, so I did not take up the Vajrasattva practice immediately.
However, no matter who sent me a Dharma book, it is my habit to read through it once. This book was no exception. The strange thing was that whenever I saw the image of Vajrasattva, my whole body itched, and upon scratching a piece of dried skin would come off. This continued for several days. So it woke me up, I took this as a sign that I should do this practice. From 10 Sep 2001, I started to recite this mantra 3000 times daily. I did not stop chanting Amitabha but completed my daily morning and night sessions pureland practices before continuing with 3000 Vajrasattva mantras.
On the third night of having recited Vajrasattva mantra, while I was watching the evening news, I felt a pressure on the crown of my head, it seemed to envelope me. The pressure was unmistakable. When I sat down to meditate that night, it occurred again twice. There was a slight feeling, not a very strong pressure. After I have completed about 200,000 mantras, the greatest response was that the migraine that had bothered me since infancy was gone. I felt my head lightened. I was delighted. The Vajrasattva mantra truly purifies negative karma! A migraine that had bothered me for more than several decades had disappeared. I am grateful to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and grateful for their blessings. I thank all these Dharma friends and benefactors whom I do not know in person. May your progress to enlightenment be enhanced and may you make more contributions to Buddhadharma!
Sharing 7 :
Upasaka Dong from Gansu
Reading the sharings from many fellow-practitioners has helped my practice to improve alot. Thank you. From 9 July since receiving the Vajrasattva practice from you, I have started reciting in fits and starts until I made a firm vow to complete 800,000 mantras by the end of the year on 15 July.
So I stopped my pureland practice and concentrated fully on the Vajrasattva mantra. As for its power and responses, even before the first 10 days ended, the effects were incredible.
1. My whole body suffered from some kind of skin ailment that caused itchiness. For many years, despite taking medications and injections, there was no cure and it grew worse instead.
2. For 10 years, I suffered from a kind of sickness, in the summer, I had to wear a woolen vest, the hearth had to be burning hot, every night from 10pm to 12pm my body was unbearably itchy, at 1am, I would fall asleep, at 3am, I would wake up
From 15 July till 29 July, all these sicknesses disappeared, I could sleep very well at night.
3. I had chronic constipation for more than 40 years and this was also cured.
Now my wish to continue reciting Vajrasattva mantra till I die.
Sharing 8 :
Two elderly practitioners from Yunnan
Both of them were usual pureland practitioners, but due to many illnesses, they were unable to continue with their practice, after reciting Vajrasattva mantra, their health recovered and they were able to continue with their usual practices.
1. Wu Lan Ying is 79 years old and has been practicing for more than 20 years. In recent years, she had high blood pressure, coronary disease, rheumatism and other sicknesses, which obstructed her practice.
Before, she had been able to go to the various monasteries to attend pujas and do prostrations etc. She also recited the Sutra of Infinite Life many times daily. Since last year, she has been unable to leave her house or finish her daily practices. Whenever she chanted Amitabha, she experienced breathlessness or coughed alot, she could only do her morning and evening homework in the afternoons when she had more energy — reciting the sutra once before lying down to sleep, often not being able to wake up for a long time. Her body felt lethargic and listless.
After she started reciting Vajrasattva, she managed to complete 200,000 in half a month. In her dream, she saw Chenrezig in blazing golden light. This strengthened her faith and she persevered in reciting the mantra. Now, after more than one month, she has completed 500,000 mantras, her negative karma has been purified and her sickly body has recovered to a large degree so that she is able to resume her usual morning and evening practices.
2. Yang Gui Zhi has been practicing pureland for five years. Her daily practices includes recitation of Amitabha and the Sutra of Infinite Life. But due to chemotherapy for cancer of the bladder since the beginning of the year, her energy has ebbed greatly, and with the bony vestige of her worn-out body, she is barely able to continue her practices. Due to this, she was greatly discouraged and her mind was filled with frustration and despair.
Since early October this year, after hearing of the Vajrasattva practice, she enthusiastically took it up and after completing 400,000, she felt that her whole body was more deeply relaxed. Her appetite became very good with better spirits and she put on weight. Now, she has resumed her daily pureland morning and evening practices.
On 21 December, after a checkup, the bladder cancer has disappeared. She feels that this is the blessings of the Vajrasattva practice.
I have taken refuge for many years. I am 65 this year, a pureland practitioner. These 3 years, besides doing my daily pureland morning and night practices, I have increased my practice to include reciting the Sutra of Infinite Life once daily and taken a vow to complete 800,000 Vajrasattva mantra by the end of the year. After receiving the Vajrasattva practice, knowing that it purifies negative karma swiftly, I was delighted. But since time is short, I stopped reciting the Sutra of Infinite Life and increased my daily recitation of Vajrasattva mantra to about 3000-5000 daily. From 19 Oct 2001, I started to recite the mantra, till now, within these 2 months (excluding a holiday overseas for about 15 days when I stopped reciting the mantra for 10 days), I have only completed 280,000, but there have been very apparent signs of purification.
The first time was 3 Nov, having recited 5,700 mantras, on the second day, at around 2pm, my left upper tooth suddenly gave great pain, I touched it with my finger and a fake tooth as well as a real tooth with roots fell out simultaneously, there was no blood at all. Because my left kidney was weak, the upper and lower left gum often swelled and was painful, a sign of weak fire rising (TCM term).
The second time was 9 Nov, after having reached 75,000 mantras. At night, after having taken several mouthfuls of dinner, I felt discomfort and nausea, there was some taste of gastric juice and after I went to throw up my food, there was a bean shaped shell in my vomit. It was purplish-red and ellipsoid in shape, I used a stick to touch it and it broke, it was hollow with some yellow fluid. This came from my stomach and was fleshy. Because I had chronic gastritis and colitis, to throw up this thing, is to my thinking, a good thing. If I did not recite Vajrasattva, what this would have grown into, I really don’t know.
The third time was 28 Nov, I had completed about 150,000 mantras and recited 10,000 on that day. At night, I had severe abdominal pains. The next day, I recited another 5000 mantras and when I passed motion that morning, I saw the sections of two white and flat-shapped parasitic worms in the feces. My husband also saw it and he helped me to empty the waste-pot. He commented that the worms were masculine and would not bear eggs. I do not know when I ingested the eggs that grew into worms.
The power of the mantras were very great to be able to expel the worms. Since my karma is really heavy, I will recite the mantra a million times.
The fourth time was on 2 December. After having recited 220,000 times, while reciting, I kept burping. Now that I have recited about 280,000, whenever I chant Amitabha, I find that I have much less thoughts. I also have much less attachment to worldly pursuits and only wish to channel all my efforts into practice, going to the pureland at the end of this life.
Sharing 10 :
(Parts of letter not translated as it is irrelevant)
Thank you for sending me this practice to liberate me. I am a junior practitioner who would not disappoint you. I will practice without flagging with a pure mind. Due to having recited Amitabha for the past 10 years with a concentrated mind, I have built a good foundation. To complete 1 million Vajrasattva mantras within a month was not difficult. At the same time, I had been studying the three teachings of Maitreya (Cittamatra studies) and practicing its system of teachings.
I have now finished 1.25 million mantras. I would soon reach 2 million. I will practice this mantra for the rest of my life until I meet Amitabha. Since my youth until I entered University and until post-graduate, due to my daily posture of sitting for long hours at the table, I had serious spinal problems, and this pressed on my vetebral artery so that the blood supply to my brains was insufficient, this caused me to have fainting spells. It was quite dangerous and caused me much suffering (Editor : it is assumed that this was later cured through the practice)…
The mantra was amazing, after I started reciting it, on the day onwards, my usual constipation problem resolved itself. First, I had two days of diarrhea, kept passing gas and burping loudly, but I did not feel hungry and felt energetic. Later there was refreshing current of energy flowing on my chest and back, sometimes it felt cooling, sometimes it felt like a warm current. My brains felt very clear and when studying the scriptures or practicing, the effect was very good, with high efficiency. This is the blessings of the deity and mantra.
Also, due to my over-exertion at work and often soaking in cold water, the fingers of my right hand started to be inflamed and it was difficult to write and very painful. I had actually promised someone to go to Mt Wutai to copy the scriptures, and everyone had spent money to buy the gold dust for it, but due to this illness, I could not keep my promise. After reciting the mantra, my fingers gradually recovered and it was less painful to write a letter or record. The script was no longer so shaky or tilted, and the characters showed more strength in them. This is the blessings of Vajrasattva and his mantra.
Sharing 11 :
Since reciting the Vajrasattva mantra, I could feel the purification effects, and it also heightened my ability to receive blessings from the Buddhas. After reciting the mantra, these are the kind of effects it had on my body and mind: In terms of the body, I felt that my body generated more sweat each day, it seemed as if the toxins in my body were expelled through the body through the pores. The body’s arteries, veins, nerves and tendons felt relaxed and unblocked. The changes in the body were very evident.
The changes in the mind were that my concentration when reciting Amitabha became much deeper. In the past, when reciting Amitabha, I was disturbed by many other thoughts and had difficulties going into a deep concentration. Since reciting Vajrasattva, my concentration has become stronger and there are not much thoughts when I chant Amitabha. My faith in Amitabha has strengthened alot. There are many benefits of reciting the Vajrasattva mantra.
Sharing 12 :
After reciting the Vajrasattva mantras, I definitely felt a great reduction in the mental afflictions and negative emotions. As for sicknesses, I had gastric problems, there were many kinds of food I had to avoid. Even for rice, I had to choose particular types of grains. Now I am able to eat basically anything. I have not started to recite the mantra in a focussed way. I only recite it whenever I think of it. I even gave my Vajrasattva practice text to someone else, not leaving any copies for myself. My greed and desire has gradually flattened out. If it were in the past, I would not give all my texts away but would leave at least one copy for myself. The Vajrasattva mantra has changed my life. But I would like to request you to compassionately send me more copies of the Vajrasattva text. I would like to give it to more people so that we can all cross the ocean of samsara!
Sharing 13 :
I am now 40 years old, a teacher by profession. From 1997 I had been reciting the Sutra of Infinite Life daily for several years. I feel that the Buddhadharma is incredible, and the benefits I have received is truly not small. After receiving the Vajrasattva practice from Mr Ma, after reading it once, I gained great faith and felt that it was difficult to meet the Dharma. Feeling that I had heavy karma from past lives, I immediately made the vow to finish 400,000 mantras. I did not neglect my usual daily practice to focus on Vajrasattva, so I think that caused the purification effect to be slightly lacking. Nonetheless, upon completing 400,000 mantras, there were still some responses.
Firstly, my body felt lighter, I felt more energy and better chi. I practiced every night in a concentrated manner with visualization. One night, I had a dream that when I took off my shirt, my body was crawling with many lice.
The atmosphere in my family was harmonious, my job also became very smooth. I felt very energetic in my daily job and even if I woke up every morning at around 2am or 3am, I did not feel tired. My heart was constantly bubbling with a kind of inner joy. Later on, I stopped my usual practices and decided to focus on Vajrasattva. I vowed to complete 1 million mantras. From then on, I was more diligent.
At this time, my wife was also reciting this mantra. One day, I had a dream seeing clearly that there were 2 holes punctured in my right hand and black blood was oozing out of them. Later on, alot of blood poured out. When I woke up, I felt very refreshed. My fingers which always felt cold to the touch started gaining warmth. My wife dreamt of many snakes coming out from her body. She was so frightened that she woke up. After waking up, she realized it was a dream. It was quite incredible. Undeniably, Vajrasattva’s mantra has immense power. After doing this practice, I feel as though I have something that I can depend on. After completing 1 million mantras, I resumed my usual daily practice and added on several thousand Vajrasattva mantras daily.
(After reading this letter, I requested this teacher to give more details about his wife’s practice and how she benefitted from Vajrasattva’s practice. His reply is seen in Sharing 14.)
In my previous letter, I mentioned my wife dreaming of the snakes. After that dream, I felt that she went through some subtle but positive changes. Firstly, she often liked to lose her temper. But these occurrences lessened. In the past, any small matter could provoke her, and once she got angry, it could last from several days to weeks. If anyone at home angered her, there would be no peace for a while. Because of this, both I and my children saw her as a “tigress”, we did not dare to approach her easily. After her dream of snakes, she was more peaceful in her manner of speaking and the language she used was much more gentle and soothing. Even our eldest son said that his mother was much better in her treatment of him — more gentle and loving. In the past, when she saw me chanting Amitabha, she would fly into a rage.
Secondly, she was much more relaxed about fame, reputation and benefits, she was more easy-going in her relationships with fellow-teachers and students. In the past, if students did not listen or if something disturbed her about the exam rankings or colleagues, it would make her very emotional. Now, she is more even-minded about all these, getting along with her students. After her dream about the snakes, it was time for the end-of-semester exams, if it were the past, she would be tensed up or irritable, even to the extent of falling sick, but this time, she was very relaxed, happy and even caring towards me, worried that the house was too cold, she even borrowed a electric heater etc. When I said something that was offensive, she did not get rankled up like in the past.
Thirdly, she has a deeper calm now. Even when she heard some unpleasant news, she would not be fired up but instead handle it calmly. There were several incidents that would have thrown her into a rage in the past, but she sailed through them peacefully this time. This really demonstrates the power of the mantra.
Fourthly, due to the change in her mind, her external appearance also changed. This is most apparent on her face. In the past, my wife’s face had many freckles and discolored patches. To cover them up, she spent much time and went through many methods but it did not reduce the spots. After reciting the mantra and dreaming of snakes, the originally darker spots gradually lightened and now if you do not examine her face closely, you could not make them out at all. Her complexion also changed from greenish-black to rosy pink. Her back pains have also improved alot. Her mental afflictions of greed, anger, ignorance, pride, jealousy and doubt have decreased to a large extent.
Because of not being too attached to benefits and fame, she was able to learn to give generously. She also started persuading her mother to be generous. The amount of sleep she needed also reduced alot. She believed in cause-and-effect and started to be quite averse towards alcohol and meat. Anyway, these are the main changes I observe in her.
Thank you for asking after me. After reciting the Vajrasattva mantra, I had two kinds of experiences. The elimination of sicknesses is not that obvious for my case but I felt that the blessing was very strong. I am 52 this year and my health is pretty good. But it was quite strange that ever since I received the Vajrasattva practice from you 3 months ago, even before I started reciting, I felt the blessings coming. I began to pass alot of gas, this continues to be so even now, but the purification in terms of one’s self-nature (mind) is quite evident. In the past, when I chanted Amitabha, my wild thoughts intruded so much that I had to stop my chanting. The five mental poisons and five kinds of desires were very heavy. My relations with other people were quite poor and I could not calm my mind. I lost my temper easily and was impatient. After reciting the mantra, such occurrences were very much reduced.
I developed more faith in the Buddhadharma, now my faith has become extremely strong. The Bodhichitta in my mind has increased greatly. I stopped all my usual practice and focussed on Vajrasattva mantra, completing 800,000 in 2 months. I think I will finish 1 million before resuming my usual practices.
(Second letter) I had finished 1 million mantras on top of the 400,000 stipulated in the text. I finished it on the 17th of the 11th lunar month (a special day of Amitabha）, I have now resumed my pureland practices. My daily recitation of Amitabha is slightly less than 10,000, following that I would recite the Vajrasattva mantra for 30 minutes. The rest of the time would be used to study some scriptures. Later, I discovered that whether it came to reciting the sutras or chanting Amitabha, the effect was vastly different from before I had completed the Vajrasattva mantra count. The blessings were especially strong, it felt as though the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas were above my crown or by my side. When I chanted Amitabha, I even saw brilliant white light twice. Such a blessing made me feel that the Vajrasattva mantra is truly incredible. My faith has multiplied manifold. We are now in the degenerated times when karmic obscurations and demonic interferences are particularly prevalent. If one does not have the help of the Vajrasattva practice, there is really no other way.
Sharing 16 :
My dharma name is Jue Hong. I had such an experience from practicing Vajrasattva mantra. I recited 300 mantras every night with the use of the sadhana before continuing with other practices. I felt the effect was very good. Ever since I started reciting Vajrasattva, my prostatitis has improved, sometimes when my children fell sick, their sicknesses would miraculously be healed. My relationship with my colleagues have improved, and there were less obstacles in Dharma practice. Sometimes, due to the unfixed timings at my job, (I had insufficient time for practice) but ever since I started on Vajrasattva, I had sufficient time for meditation, this is quite an obvious blessing of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Although I do not recite a large number of mantras, but the most important thing is devotion and Bodhichitta from the bottom of your heart. These attitudes brings immense blessings.
Sharing 17 :
I started Vajrasattva practice from 8 Oct 2001. On 15th, I dreamt of bathing (Editor: a sign of purification), after my bath, I felt very refreshed and comfortable, but then when I went around looking for water to wash my clothing, I could not find any. The negative karma I created with my body before I took refuge began to arise: on 18th, a strong stench started emanating from my crotch area. On 24th, whenever I started to confess my negative deeds, I started to cry. I cried and recited at the same time, until my weeping soon became a loud wailing, in all I cried for about half-an-hour. All the people I had given charity to since my infancy, whether they were the handicapped, sick or beggars all started to appear before me one by one. On 30th, the fragrance of ginger lily flowers filled my nostrils. On the 1st of November, my breath started to stink, it was many times worse that the smell of shit. It lasted for about 3-4 minutes before vanishing.
After I recited the mantra, my patience and endurance in difficult situations became noticeably stronger. After I had finished about 100,000 mantras, I felt my entire character change. I had very good mood with little disturbing emotions, my mind was clear and empty like space. Around me, there was only Vajrasattva. I have never encountered such a state of mind before. Before reciting this mantra, whenever I had any trouble, I would get angry, and the anger lasted for a long time. Now, when problems arose, they passed by very quickly. I was also quite unperturbed by such adverse situations. I have let go of many attachments and many things do not affect me as strongly as in the past…
(Editor : Later on, I contacted this respondent by phone and requested her to give more details about her change in temperament. This is what she replied.)
My husband is like my enemy. If he started to lose his temper at me, a scolding would last half a day or several hours. I would be furious at that time, the emotions churning within tormented me so much that I neither knew where to go nor where to sit. After reciting the Vajrasattva mantras, I was more relaxed about his scoldings. I would neither retort nor argue with him, realizing that this is none other than my own cause-and-effect. As I had planted the causes earlier, I now must face the consequences. Since he wanted to scold me, let him scold as he wished. I would treat it like a song. I will still take care of him as usual.
Editor: This lady also told me of another interesting development. One day, when she was reciting the mantra, she heard her hubby talking outside. Because there was no-one else at home, she went out to take a look and saw him sleeping. He was mumbling in his sleep, “Guan Yin Pu Sa(Avalokiteshvara’s name in Chinese), you should know very well that my sickness is due to tiredness…” This lady said that her husband did not believe in Buddhism, but sometimes before he fell asleep, he would chant Amitabha several times. Ever since she started reciting Vajrasattva mantra, her husband seemed to have received the guidance of Avalokiteshvara in his dreams, it was quite wondrous!
This lady also had another experience. After she finished 400,000 mantras, her urine was pinkish in color with some kind of white sediment. She said it was neither painful nor itchy. This happened once or twice before stopping. She asked someone versed in medicine and was told that it could be stones in the urinary track being expelled.
Sharing 18 :
I received your Vajrasattva practice but my son took my copy away to read it. I started reciting the mantra since 8 November. The blessings of Vajrasattva is truly inconceivable. Due to my past heavy negative karma, whenever I recited the sutras or chanted Amitabha, my mind could not be quiet. There would be many disturbances. About this, I felt great frustration. In this two years, I also had many sicknesses. After reciting the mantra for more than 20 days, the changes in my body were quite drastic. My frozen shoulder and spinal problems were quite serious. But once I recited this mantra, I felt a cooling sensation from my head that pervaded my whole body. Some kind of ChI was being expelled from those areas where I had sicknesses. I felt much better. There was blood in my excrement thrice, the blood spurted out like a jet of water and it was black in color. Now my body feels very at ease and when I chant Amitabha, there are not many thoughts. I can hear my own chanting distinctly. I am really happy about these developments…
Sharing 19 :
(This practitioner initially did not have any faith in the practice and gave away the practice booklet to others whenever he received it. Later on, he read about its benefits and tried it out himself.)
I started reciting the mantra from early August. The left side of my body was not well, when it came to going down-slope or walking on flat ground, the joints on the left side of my body would give me great pain. The left muscles and bones felt tight and constricted, and they have been extended, giving me alot of pain. I recited the mantra 9000 times daily and until the 3rd lunar day of the ninth month, my left joints started not to give any pain. The next day, I tried to climb a mountain and there was no problem at all the ascending or descending. It had completely recovered due to the blessings of the mantra.
I had a dream of the bodhisattva Samantabhadra last year in the ninth lunar month, due to that dream, I started to practice Dharma. In the second half of the tenth month, Mr Wang sent me the Vajrasattva practice and image. From early part of the 11th month, I started to do the practice. I have been reciting the mantra for more than 4 months. This is my report:
1. When I started reciting for more than 2 months, there were often times when tears would come. On several occasions, great compassion arose in my mind and I cried because of it.
2. I had dreams of snakes and worms leaving my body, of having diarrhoea, of drinking water, and of bathing.
3. One night, I had a dream of a place flooded with dirty water. I used a pail to scoop and throw out the water, it took a while to remove all the water.
4. In the 2nd lunar month, I had diarrhoea for many days. It stopped naturally even though I did not take any medicine.
5. My mood is much better now. I do not lose my temper easily when I meet bad situations. I do not gossip about other people but only think of my own flaws. The atmosphere at home has become very warm and understanding.
6. My health has been getting better and better. I have no sickness and feel light. I used to be a person tormented by sicknesses and have underwent 6 surgeries.
7. On the nights of 25 and 26 Feb, I dreamt of coming to a temple where a monk taught me how to practice the Dharma, what sutras to recite and other advice. He offered me porridge to eat in a triangular cup.
8. I now appreciate the preciousness of life and no longer kill. Even if it is just a housefly, I would bring it outside the house to release. One day, a mouse came into the house and bit through one of our possessions, I caught it in a cage and released it in the park. Mice never came to our house again.
9. In my dreams, I encountered many things I have never seen before in this life. For instance, I would be at a battlefield killing many people or taking revenge etc. I think these were incidents from my past lives. I would always wake up and recite Vajrasattva mantra to confess these sins.
10. I felt a great vortex of energy when I recited the mantra. It was swirling above my crown and the energy flowed into my body. Sometimes, the body felt as if it were being bathed and all my channels vibrated, the entire body felt as if it were being massaged and this sensation was quite strong.
I feel that Dharma practice has to be accompanied by an unwavering faith. As long as you are focussed and sincere, you can attain liberation. Just focus on making the effort without expecting results and you will reach the final goal. Practicing the Dharma, one must have aspirations or vows. One has to confess all past karmas and resolve to be free from samsara. One has to wish all sentient beings be purified of their karma and give rise to great compassion. One has to be focussed on practicing the Dharma and going to pureland…
This is how I practice. I would recite the mantras and Amitabha daily without any breaks. If I got angry or created any negative karma, I would immediately confess. During my practice session, I would examine myself to see what mistakes I have made and confess them immediately. I would integrate my practice with daily life, dedicating everything to all sentient beings. I would propagate the Vajrasattva practice and benefit others. I would not play mahjong, not crave after entertainment or fun, not crave delicious foods but put my focus on Dharma practice.
Sharing 21 :
Upasaka Kuan HaI from Shanxi
Kuan Hai works daily for about 8 hours. At night, he frequently meditates. From April 2001, he started to recite 3000 Vajrasattva mantras daily. After he began reciting the mantra, he experienced tearing up, passing pungent gas and a bout of diarrhea after several days. His body had red boils appearing twice, these are all positive signs of purification of the body. After he started reciting the mantra, his usual buddies who always looked for him to play mahjong did not even ask him once. He worked at an electrical factory and in his spare time, playing mahjong was the usual activity. So it was quite common for him to be asked to join these mahjong parties. But when his buddies stopped looking for him, it was a blessing because he could spend more time focussing on meditation. His habit of smoking stopped automatically After finishing 400,000, loving compassion arose spontaneously. When he recalled his past habits of desire and anger, and his aggressive manner to others, he felt remorse and sometimes regretted so much that it reduced him to tears. Ever since he recited Vajrasattva mantra, he started to do practice diligently, not picking up calls when he was at home to avoid idle conversations.
After he recited the Vajrasattva mantra, his meditation picked up alot, there were some good signs in his meditation, such as visions of a brilliant sun, stupa or a group of meditating sangha members. But he knows that these signs are illusory and a manifestation of the clarity of one’s own mind, so he does not cling to them. After he recited the mantras, he found that he could sit in meditation for a longer time, it extended from the usual 1 hour to 1.5 hour and sometimes even to 2 hours. The quality of his meditation has improved and it has deepened but this is beyond the province of language to describe.
Amitabha, all fellow pureland Dharma friends, I hope you are well. I would like to thank the friends who sent me the Vajrasattva practice. Through the recitation, I felt the compassionate vow of Vajrasattva very strongly. I have some experiences to share with all.
By chance, I saw the Vajrasattva text in Dharma friend Yao Zhao’s home. At that time, I was quite nonchalant thinking that since I practiced pureland, I should just focus on reciting Amitabha, there was no need to foray into Vajrayana practices. My elderly friend told me, “Since you have practiced Vajrayana before in the past, this book should be placed in your care!” After I brought the book home, I read parts of it and saw, “Vajrasattva vowed to help sentient beings purify their negative karma while he was still practicing on the path. In all the 84,000 teachings, the most powerful purification practice is the Vajrayana practice of Vajrasattva.” When I read this, I felt that I should give it a try and decided to recite 10,000 mantras daily. After I had recited for 1 day, I started to have signs described in the book like belching. On the fifth day, 2 boils grew on both my calves. They were as large as strawberries, dull-pink in color and very painful. When prostrating to the Buddha, the pain intensified.
Someone told me to go for a checkup in the hospital, but I said this should be a sign of purification according to the book. Someone else even commented that in the book it is said that sicknesses are cured with practice, but you have instead recited until sicknesses appear. I laughed at the comment and shrugged it off. After about a week, the swelling and pain went down, when these had vanished, another larger boil grew on the joint bone near the ankle. This was even more painful than the previous boil. It also vanished after a week. The third time, another boil grew on my right leg, this was larger than the boils that grew the first time, but smaller than the boil that grew the second time. It was also very painful. It took 10 days to abate. By then, I had recited about 300,000 mantras.
At this point, a problem arose, I could not calm my mind. I did not wish to chant Amitabha or recite mantra no matter what. I felt empty, meaningless and helpless. I felt like crying, I also wished to find someone to chat with. It was hard to control my mind. It felt as if some kind of demon had entered me. (Editor: This is probably a sign of depression karma ripening and being purified) Later, after thinking about it, I felt that this was impossible because the book had explained that you will feel at peace after you recited this mantra and purified your karma. The purification should drive away all obstacles that prevent you from chanting Amitabha and sutras, making the mind at ease and peaceful. How could the opposite effects arise? (Editor: Purification of karma dredges up many past imprints which may come out in our body and mind as various effects. It is just like detox which may temporarily create some healing crisis like headaches and discomfort as it purges the toxins, but, in the long run, is beneficial for the practitioner.)
I could not understand why such a phenomenon was happening and stopped practicing the mantra for a while. (Editor: Almost all serious practitioners encounters such tests, it is important to learn to go through it with an unwavering faith and stable mind.) I consulted a monk and he told me this wasn’t a demon, it is the subtle thoughts that arises when I am reciting the mantra. He advised me to continue reciting and not be shaken by such temporary states. I took up the recitation again and prayed to Vajrasattva sincerely to bless me and purify my karma. That night, under the blessings of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, between 7pm to 9pm, I started to pass gas continuously while I was reciting the mantra, the smell was terrible, and I burped non-stop. I know that this was the blessing of Vajrasattva. So I recited the mantra even more diligently. After I had finished 400,000 mantras, on the day of completion, I continued chanting another 3 hours of Amitabha, and a miracle occurred. Normally, when I visualize Amitabha, his face would not be clear, but on that day, when I was chanting, I felt Amitabha above my crown radiating light that enveloped my whole body. I soaked in the blessings of the Buddha’s light blissfully.
(Editor: Later, through the phone, this lady explained that every winter, her face and hands would have red rashes or swellings that were very itchy. But that year, it did not occur. So we surmised that those boils that appeared on her body were purges of those toxins in her body. She also reported that after completing 400,000 mantras, her chanting of Amitabha is now with much deeper concentration. Her mind is more peaceful and at ease. I called to check with her again after 2 months, and she reported then that her mind seemed to be more agitated again, so she was preparing to begin reciting the Vajrasattva mantra once again. This is due to the contamination from our daily life and surroundings, coupled with the karmas of body, speech and mind that we accumulate daily. So I advise all pureland practitioners to keep Vajrasattva as a life-long daily practice, reciting a certain amount each day according to our ability after one has finished a substantial purification first such as 400,000 or 1 million etc as many other practitioners have done.)
Upasaka Yin De from Jiangxi has practiced pureland for many years. When she first received the Vajrasattva practice, she simply passed the booklet on to someone else without reading it. After her friend reported good results from purification, YD gained some faith and decided to try it. Because she was an experienced practitioner with a good foundation, after reciting the Vajrasattva mantra, the mental defilements in her mind decreased alot. She told me in a telephone call that after she recited the mantra, she had a dream of reciting the 10 Great Vows of Bodhisattva Samantabhadra in her dream. Later on, she had another dream in which she was studying the Sutra of Infinite Life. These dreams were unprecedented. After reciting the mantras, she felt she had less attachment in her life:
1. Her heart opened. In the past, when she saw non-practitioners doing something non-virtuous, she would feel very disgusted and bothered by it. Now, when she sees these things, she would think that everyone has their own causes and conditions and different environments, so she would not get upset about it. When she meets difficult situations, she is able to be relaxed about it. For example, one pureland practitioner friend who saw her reciting Vajrasattva mantra had the opinion that she was not single-minded and even started to criticize her. This happened thrice with three different people, getting more offensive each time, even to the extent of insulting her. But she was able to bear it with magnanimity and let it go.
2. After reciting mantra, her self-clinging and arrogance became less. She has practiced Dharma for a long time and loved to help others. Oftentimes, people would buy her presents to thank her. She would feel indebted as she was not ordained and should not accept gifts, so she would go out and buy something purposely to return a gift. This used up alot of her time and energy. People have advised her not to spend energy on this matter, as she could easily give away these presents to the ordained in the monastery and dedicate the merits to the original giver. But she could not accept this. After reciting the mantra, she gradually accepted this solution and felt her attachments fall away. In the past, she would get very worried if there were the slightest trace of any ailments in her body. Now, as reciting the mantra would cause certain hidden sicknesses to surface as it is being purged, she can simply accept it and let it be. In the past, due to having received much praise, she unknowingly developed pride, but after reciting the mantra, she began to feel that knowing a little more than others is simply due to having read a few more books. Her pride has diminished.
3. After reciting mantra, her understanding of Dharma has deepened. In the past, she would greet people warmly when she saw them, and spend some time having a conversation with them. She was worried that if she did not do that, people would think that Buddhists had no manners, thus creating a bad impression. But now, she is no longer so attached to what people think and instead saves more time for practice. Now, she has made a decision to do a retreat at home for half a month, not seeing anyone.
Her daughter has not taken refuge in Buddhism. But due to her frequent poor health, she decided to start reciting the mantra on the advice of her mother. In a dream, she saw her skin being peeled off from top to bottom, and someone extracting alot of dark dirty water from her body. Later, she had another dream of bathing. Now, her daughter’s health has improved substantially, she has less wandering thoughts and no more insomnia. Her appearance has become more youthful. Her temperament has calmed down, she is less impatient.
Sharing 24 :
Editor: These are a collection of short reports collated from many letters received.
Upasaka Yan from Yunnan had coronary problems, after reciting 3.9 million in less than 2 months, her coronary sicknesses became much better, and her blood pressure was lower.
Another Upasaka Yan from Zhejiang said, “I had an itching scalp and urges to vomit while I was reciting, but after continuing for several days more, those symptoms disappeared. In the past, my whole body felt very lethargic, I did not feel like doing anything. But now, I have started to plant vegetables in the field… Although I come back late everyday and feel rather tired, but I still recite the mantras. The next day I would always be in good spirits.
Upasaka Yang from Gansu said, “Since reciting Vajrasattva, having discharged many colors of phlegm, now it is quite effortless and not tiring to do recitation. My headache has disappeared, there is less mental afflictions and my mood feels calm and peaceful.”
Upasaka Zhong from Yunnan said, “Since early July, having received the practice from you, I have added three prostrations to Vajrasattva daily. On the lunar second, several fellow Buddhists and I went to the DalI Avalokiteshvara Temple, so I showed them your letter too, they said they will stick to chanting Amitabha, but I thought that I would do the Vajrasattva recitation. Before I recited, I prayed for some kind of response to show that I was on the right path. On the lunar fifth, I started recitation with 20,000 mantras. That night, I dreamt that I became very young and was reciting the mantra, someone said to me, “Well recited!” I could only hear his voice without seeing anyone. In any case, it reassured me and I continued to recite the mantra. Later, I dreamt that I was sitting on a lotus seat, dressed in white. In the space, I saw Guan Yin. After having reached 350,000 mantras, my usual mouth odor vanished.
Huai Su from Suzhou said, “It is strange but since I began reciting this mantra, those friends who always came to look for me to join their mahjong parties no longer want to look for me.” In the past, when she quarrelled with these friends over some trivial matter, they would forget it and continued to be friends, but now, after they quarrelled over something minor, these friends seem to have cut her off entirely. (Editor: Bad influences are better cut off.)
Upasaka Hu from Zhejiang said, “Although I haven’t been reciting this mantra for a long time, there are already changes in my mind. I worked as a cashier in a shop, as this job entailed many small troublesome details, if there were even a small mistake, I would be full of complaints and blaming this or that. Now, when I go to work everyday, my mood is good and even when there is a mistake, I would still feel quite unaffected, without anger or grumbles. I would look at the situation with an unruffled mind. Before reciting the mantra, I liked to help people, especially those who needed help, but in my mind, I was always hoping for some kind of reward. If the other party failed to show signs of gratitude, I would get upset. Now, it is not the same. When I help others, I do not need them to repay me. Instead, I am thankful to them for giving me the chance to help them, I am glad to be of service to them.
Guo Ruo from HebeI said, “The first time I vowed to complete 400,000 was from 14 Oct to 14 Jan. The second time, I vowed to complete 1.2 million. During this time, my sleep improved, I could sleep for 4-6 hours. When I recited the mantra, my mind felt very clear. Once I sit, I am able to persist reciting for 40 minutes to 1 hour (due to my legs being numbed, I cannot sit for too long, it is a chronic illness.) My wandering thoughts and ignorance have decreased. In general, everything is getting better and better!”
Sharing 25 :
Upasaka Shan Miao from Haikou
She stayed in an agricultural reclaimed land and has taken refuge for many years. Since she began reciting the Vajrasattva mantra, she felt her mind has become purer. After she had recited more than a million mantras, I asked her if she felt any improvements. She replied, “Definitely there are improvements, I am now more in control of myself.” She stated the points below:
1. In the past, if anyone borrowed her money, if she knows that this person has the ability to repay the funds but is purposely withholding from doing so, she would definitely go in person to demand the money. Now, she has let go of such impulses. A person who borrowed 1000 yuan from her, she learned that this person already has enough money to pay her back but hasn’t done so. She thought, “Forget it, this person probably has some difficulties, maybe he has to pay other people first, anyway since I do not urgently need this money, it is not important whether he repays or not.”
2. She invests in the stock-market in her free time. In the past, this filled her with anxiety, sometimes to the point of losing sleep. But now the movement of the stock market no longer triggers her fears, even when stock prices plummet, she would think, “This is due to the lack of merits planted in my past lives,” and her mind would release all attachments and relax. Before she recited the mantra, although she also knew that this life’s wealth and fortune are the results of what merits one has planted in the past, but when she witnessed her stocks falling, she cannot help getting all tensed up. It seems to her that karmic forces are very powerful and only the recitation of Vajrasattva and purification can overcome such a strong force, just understanding the meaning intellectually is not enough.
3. Apart from her main job, she also works part-time at another company, she has been working there for 6 months. This company has only paid her 1 month of salary, but when they needed her to give her time and energy to some extra work outside her job scope, normally, she would find an excuse to decline, but after reciting the mantra, she felt a kindness within her and decided to help them without being so calculative.
4. One day, when she was taking her breakfast outside, she asked for an extra set of dumplings. She thought that the dumplings would be served separately from the soup but when it was served, it came together with soup and the dumpling had been overcooked and was very soggy. She felt quite uncomfortable at this and wanted to complain to the boss, but when she looked at the boss, she suddenly felt sympathy thinking that it is difficult to manage a business and decided to let it go.
Now, the attachments and clingings she has in her life have diminished alot. Her mind resides in a deeper state of peace.
Chi Ming from Haikou
Chi Ming who lives in Haikou has not practiced Buddhism for very long. She really started learning Dharma from December 1999. Without really understanding much, she blindly embarked on a trip to Larung Monastery. After staying there for 20 days, she acquired a deeper understanding of Dharma and had a deeper faith in the Triple Gems. When she returned home, she decided to start reciting the Vajrasattva mantra to purify her karma.
Normally, she stayed at home by herself without needing to work as her husband operated a business. Even so, she was inclined to be quite lazy and did not recite the mantra diligently. She only completed about 100,000 mantras in about 1 month. When she was reciting the mantra, she did not visualize as the practice required. From May of 2000 to August, she finished 400,000 mantras.
By this point, many friends and acquaintances were quite surprised at her change in character. In the past, she was quite argumentative but now she was not willing to have verbal spars with others. In the past, she was very lazy and did not want to do housework, now she was very diligent in her housework. In the past, she was pessimistic, anxious and depressed, now all of these had be replaced by a happiness free from worries.
On 18 September, she was reciting the mantra single-pointedly, when she reached 2000 counts, she suddenly started stuttering and could not continue recitation. She felt this to be caused by her heavy karma. In the past, when she experienced similar stuttering, if she continued reciting in a loose distracted manner without concentration, she could continue to recite. However, the moment she started concentrating her mind, the stuttering came back and prevented any further recitation.
CM realized that this was her speech karma, she recalled that when she was about 20 years old, she slandered the Dharma. At that time, she was staying at the foot of Mt Tai, there were many temples on the mountain and if someone mentioned about a temple or Dharma to her, she would immediately exclaim that these were just deceptions, that it would be better to believe in oneself than to put one’s trust in such things. If she happened to be at a temple and saw people praying to the Buddha, she would mock them with jokes at the side.
When she reflected on these past misdeeds, she confessed to Vajrasattva saying, “All negative speech karma that I have created from beginningless time, please bless me to purify these karmic obscurations.” After she finished saying this, the stuttering stopped immediately. She could even do her recitation at a faster speed than before. After she had recited for awhile, the stuttering returned again, and she immediately confessed in the same way, and again, she could continue on without any problems.
She said that at the time, her entire body felt cold and numb. She was sweating from the top of her crown and the sweat poured down like rain. After that session, although sometimes she would still stutter but its frequency had lessened and the degree of stuttering was no longer as serious as before. The amount of time she could sit extended and gradually the entire phenomenon of stuttering entirely disappeared.
When CM reached about 600,000 mantras, every time she recited the mantra, she would belch and pass gas. (Editor: This is the body detoxing itself of harmful Chi. There are medical benefits to reciting mantra too.) Later, she started to excrete very black feces, which stank to high heaven. After reciting 800,000 mantras, every time she recited mantra, she felt pain in her heart. It was like that for several days.
Eventually, the heart ailment that had been plaguing her was healed without medical attention. In the past, her heart-beat was rapid, and she was often breathless. Now these symptoms have vanished. After she hit 1 million mantras, her stomach started to be painful, she had a very serious problem of coldness in the stomach that prevented her from eating anything food of cold nature. Now, she is able to eat anything.
By today, about a year has passed, all the illnesses in her body have been healed. In this period, she has never stopped reciting Vajrasattva mantra daily. Sometimes, she would also recite Amitabha mantra and the Vajra-cutter Sutra.
She is now quite calm in navigating the ups and downs in life, including the divorce with her husband. When her husband claimed he had no money to pay her alimony, she acquiesced. When he gave a small allowance in the end, she would leave aside part of the money each month to do merits for her ex-husband. In her heart, she only wanted to resolve all negative connections and create positive affinities with others. Her philosophy is to see through the futility of samsara and let go of all attachments. She would depend on herself to survive!
Due to her continuous recitation of the mantra (sometimes more, sometimes less) without breaking even for one day, her karma has lightened very much. When she went overseas to other monasteries, she met some Dharma masters who were able to give her suitable guidance. Her path in Dharma has been a constant flow of auspicious connections, with no road-blocks.
Guo Miao lived in Hainan and has taken refuge for several years. She started with reciting the Heart-Sutra and Vajra-cutter Sutra. In the first half of 1998, after being introduced to Vajrasattva practice by several Dharma friends, she started taking up its recitation and had several excellent experiences.
When she first started to recite, she looked at the image of Vajrasattva as she recited. Then, she started to confess all negative karmas that she and all sentient beings have committed since beginningless time. This is followed by visualizing Vajrasattva sitting on a huge lotus throne in space. This stalk of the lotus covered the entire planet Earth and nectar cascaded down to bath all the inhabitants of Earth. She herself was one of them. All the negativities were washed out in the form of pus, blood, black water from the pores of the body.
After she had recited about 200,000, one night in a dream, she had a vague perception of a white sphere of light entering from her crown, dissolving into her body. At first, she thought this was a illusion or dream. On 6 January 1999, she woke up and witnessed with her bare eyes a white sphere coming into her room through the window and illuminated the entire room with snowy bright light. When it floated to above her head, it descended and dissolved into her body. At that moment, she realized, “Heavens, Vajrasattva truly exists!” she was moved to the point of tears and it was hard to calm down. She stood at the window of her 29th floor apartment and looked at the sea, the white moon-light shimmered over the surface of the sea and all she heard was the waves making the sound of “Om Benza Sato Hung” , her joy was indescribable.
(Editor: This is a true sign of blessing. )
When she had recited to about 1 million mantras. Once, in a dream, her consciousness left her body and floated in the space above. From above her body, she witnessed a lot of black water, pus and blood being purged from her lower body. She could even smell the putrid stench emanating from the detritus. It was very very dirty. Then her body became a white skeleton. In the following nights, she dreamt of herself vomiting many different kinds of worms, such a flatworms and roundworms etc. During this period, her sweat was very pungent, and the secretion from her lower body was rancid beyond belief. The feces that she passed out also had the rotten smell of decomposed corpses. She really felt like hitting herself, “How could I be so filthy?”
Due to the many experiences she had from reciting mantra, she was delighted and completed another 1 million mantras dedicated to her deceased father, wishing for him to go to a good rebirth. She now has strong faith in Vajrayana and after taking refuge with a teacher in this tradition, she received the Phowa practice and attained signs in 21 days. She runs a small shop and used the time after opening-hours to practice at night.
After she finished the before-mentioned numbers, she no longer recited Vajrasattva mantra, and lost herself in her business. Due to creating new negative karma, she felt that her body and mind were no longer as pure as before, so she vowed to continue reciting the mantra. After her karma was purified, her whole skin became white from inside out. This spurred on her diligence and she frequently released lives. She ran her business with an emphasis on benefiting others.
Sharing 28 :
My father Tao Shou Zhen is from HubeI (Xiaochang county, Baisha town). In his entire life, he opposed superstitions. In 1997, he suffered a stroke and was half paralysed. In the summer of 1998, when he was in Hainan, during his lessons on qigong, he learnt about Buddhadharma and started to practice meditation. Before long, he had basically recovered use of the right side of his lower body. In 1999, my father returned to his hometown, stopped his meditation practice and started drinking. His left hand and both legs started to give him problems. Later, he passed away in Sep 2000.
2 days before my father’s death, the coagulated phlegm in his throat obstructed his air passageway several times. To alleviate his suffering, my mother and I, as well as my wife, started to recite the Vajrasattva mantra beside him, having told my father to recite mentally with us. After about half-an-hour, the phlegm obstruction dissolved. While we were there reciting mantra by his bedside, my father’s breathing had no more obstacles until his death. Neither did any other health issues arise. Two days later, at noon, he peacefully left us as if he had entered a dream world.
While we were standing guard by our father’s corpse, we persisted in reciting the mantra. During this time, we witnessed something strange. From the first day when his heart stopped until the third day when he was interred, the joints of my father’s corpse, including the left wrist which had been frozen stiff by his paralysis, were extraordinarily soft and flexible. His skin retained its elasticity. It was as if he were still alive. Many village neighbours and friends who saw this were also mystified.
Sharing 29 :
The young worker Ah Tai from Haikou once learnt some folklore magic from others. But he felt that it did not show any results, his family also opposed his practicing such arts. In the summer of 2000, under the guidance of a Vajrayana teacher, AT started learning Dharma and would recite the Heart Sutra several times each night. After that, he would dedicate himself to reciting the Vajrasattva mantra for about 1 hour . Before several days had passed, AT felt that the energy channels in his body had begun to be released and opened. His mood became more relaxed day by day. The atmosphere at home also became more harmonious and what was strange was that, after about 1 week after AT had started his recitation, his wife who did not practice Dharma actually dreamt of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. After about 1 month, his wife’s amenorrhoea started to be healed by itself. His son’s chronic rhinitis was also cured without any medical treatment.
Sharing 30 :
My mother Ye Quan Mei is from Hubei. She started chanting Amitabha in 1996. In 1997, she overused moxibustion and drove her body into an allergic condition. This later developed into tinea or scall (a skin disease). This condition was immune to all kinds of treatment. In 1998, when we were at Hainan, we met Lungtok Tulku who was conferring the Vajrasattva empowerment. From then on, we started reciting Vajrasattva mantra (OM BENZA SATO HUNG). In about 1 month, my mother’s scall disappeared, there was no more itch. My mother is aged and only wish to be reborn in Amitabha’s pureland. After the scall disappeared, she turned her attention to reciting Amitabha mantra. She is deeply at ease in body and mind. Every summer, my mother would not have time to recite mantras for several month, yet her body and mind remains at peace. Later on, at my suggestion, she combined the recitation of Vajrasattva and Amitabha.
Ms Li is from Haikou, her husband is the head of one hospital. Before learning Vajrayana, due to endocrine imbalance, both her cheeks were afflicted with black Melasma patches. During the new year period of 1998, Ms LI followed the suggestion of her husband who had then headed off to US for a long stay, to start studying the Vajrayana with a friend of his. From him, she received teachings on Bodhichitta and Vajrasattva. She apportioned some time daily for the recitation of the Vajrasattva mantra and before one month was out, during the spring season, the Melasma patches on her cheeks had basically said goodbye.
Sharing 32 :
Upasaka Fa Shu from Wuhan was a primary school teacher. His health has been frail since youth and he has suffered from tuberculosis for many years. His whole body was black and emaciated despite constant ministration of medicine every month without fail. He frequently coughs out blood. In 1997, while he was at Hainan, someone suggested that FS learnt meditation and so he practiced it daily together with the recitation of Amitabha and Vajrasattva mantra. In about a week, he received strong blessing in a dream. The heaviness he felt in his body and the lack of strength became resolved in a fell swoop. Due to this, FS had renewed confidence in the mantra. He spent time everyday on practice and studying the teachings. He also took refuge and officially became Buddhist. After more than 3 months, FS’s health had a great improvement, his skin complexion had become clean white with rich tinges of pink. He gained weight to more than 65 kg. As for his tuberculosis, apart from the one time he coughed blood when he was just beginning his recitation of mantra, there was no further occurrence of it. All the other symptoms had gradually dissipated. Now that his body is on the path to recovery, after he had recited the mantra for about half a year, he no longer takes any medication. His main medicine is now Amitabha and Vajrasattva practice. For more than 3 years now, his tuberculosis has not relapsed.
Sharing 33 :
Editor: I received this letter from Upasaka Yu from Shandong on 13 April 2001.
“I am practicing the Pureland practices, chanting Amitabha everyday. But I have many disturbing thoughts and feel that I have heavy karmic obscurations. Because of this, I had been feeling quite dejected. Lately, I received the Vajrasattva practice and began its recitation immediately. For the first two days, my recitation was quite shaky and unstable, I felt anxious, but I bore on with it. On the third night, I dreamt that my right big toe that had been injured before had many black worms drilling out of it. Upon waking, I was exhilarated, as this was a response to my practice. This toe would previously become numb or give pain when I tire myself out, but now it feels much more comfortable. This increased my faith in practice. I vow to finish 1 million mantras and then continue with chanting Amitabha.”
Sharing 34 :
The elderly Xiong Upasaka who lives in Chongqing started her belief in Buddhism in the 80s. After she completed Ngondro, she went to Sertar monastery to attend the Grand Vajrasattva puja. When she came home, she completed 1 million mantras as HH Jigme Phuntsok had required. She had utmost faith in her teacher, HH Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche. Whatever homework her teacher gives, she will definitely finish it to the dot. She has completed several hundred thousand Manjushri mantras. In 1992, once, when her grandson asked her how to write the Chinese character “Rope” , Xiong, who was totally illiterate, took up a book lying nearby and turned the pages, pointing to that very character within, showing her grandson, “This is the character. This is how to write it!” As Xiong had never been educated and was known to be illiterate, this act shocked her family members. (Editor: Manjushri practice increases intelligence and wisdom.)
In the days that followed, with some slight instructions, Xiong began to recognize Chinese characters. She was finally able to recite the Samantabhadra King of Prayers (from the Avamtasaka Sutra) on her own. She took up this recitation assiduously and completed 10,000 recitations. She also completed Amitabha’s mantra 400,000 times, Amitabha name 1 million times and circumambulated the mandala in Serthar Monastery 10,000 times in 1996. She passed away at 3am in the morning. When a fellow-practitioner came to visit her at around 6am, she saw many rainbow clouds in the sky and thought, “The old practitioner has probably left us.”
During the cremation, her daughter was overcome with sorrow. After the cremation, when the remains were retrieved, Xiong’s entire skull bone remained intact. This was different from other peoples’ skull bone which is usually crumbled in pieces. In her crown, there were 2 holes, one faced the western direction and her daughter exclaimed, “How is it that my mother is lying on her side?” The corpse had been sent into the cremation-furnace lying face-up. At the top of the skull bone, there was also a blue-colored flower, which looked like a coral flower, it was soft like cotton. After the cremation, there were also some relics. Due to these signs, the entire family started believing in Buddhism.
Upasaka Hong Fang from Heilongjiang
The Vajrasattva practice was sent to Upasaka Hong in March 2001. On 19th April, I received her letter. She was 67 years old this year and had many illnesses such as tracheitis, heart disease, rheumatism (pains in her leg and buttocks). She started believing in Buddhism from 1989 and persisted in her daily morning and evening homework. From 1998 to the new year of 2000, she completed the recitation of the Mani mantra 10 million times. From February of 2001, she started reciting 10,000 Amitabha’s Name daily. During this period, she felt great heat in her body and a great deal of perspiration. Her tracheitis basically cured itself, her heart disease and rheumatism had abated to the extent that it was within control. On 2 April 2001, she received the Vajrasattva sadhana and started to engage in sincere recitation. That very night, she dreamt of herself coughing and throwing up phlegm which transformed into cockcoaches. She also saw a creature crawling out of her buttocks. It seemed either like a snake or a fish, in any case, the wormish creature was about 6.5 inches long. She was startled to see it. The next day, the pains in her buttocks that troubled her for 2 years vanished. Due to rheumatism, her leg pains were intense and for a year and a half, she could only lie down on her back to sleep but could not sleep on her side. After reciting the Vajrasattva mantra for 3 days, she was able to turn to her side while lying down. Later, when she continued reciting the mantra, she felt pains in the region of her heart. Nowadays, the condition of her heart has improved vastly from before. (Editor: The fact that the old Upasaka was able to get such swift results on the first night of her Vajrasattva practice was undoubtedly due to her history of diligent recitations before such as of the Mani mantra.)
One year passed, the old Upasaka mainly recited the Vajrasattva essence mantra and Amitabha’s Name. Her daily routine was arranged in the following manner: 10,000 Vajrasattva essence mantra (OM BENZA SATO HUNG), 21 times of the long Vajrasattva mantra, 10,000 recitations of Amitabha’s name and 108 recitations of Amitabha’s essence mantra (OM AMI DEWA HRI). Each time she finished the recitation of a particular mantra, she would dedicate: “May these merits be dedicated to all father and mother sentient beings, may the entire world enjoy good health, peace, happiness and good fortune. May all sentient beings attain Buddhahood.” Then she would join her palms and make 10 prostrations.
By now, the old Upasaka has entirely cured her rheumatism and the heart disease. Even her high blood pressure level has dropped. She has no worries in her mind, feeling that just having food to eat was enough for her; even when her clothes were worn out and torn, she was not concerned about what other people would say. In the past, she was very particular about her clothing. Her patience has increased. Her husband did not believe in Buddhism and presented many obstacles to her. Even making a call to me (the editor) had to be done in a clandestine manner. Her husband often scolded her, saying she was a superstitious fool for believing these things (Buddhism), that she was choosing to behave like a ghost instead of behaving like a human being. Every time she heard these remarks, it infuriated her. But since reciting the Vajrasattva mantras, she just laughed it off and did not feel angry. She felt that even if her husband spits on her face, she would just wipe it off and let it be. (That was the degree of her equanimity.)
After 4 months of this routine of reciting 10,000 OM BENZA SATO HUNG daily, a miracle happened to the old Upasaka. Her husband who had never left his home since his retirement, decided to go back to his hometown in Shanghai and left her alone. In early April 2002, she suddenly received a call from her husband saying, “Now I am also practicing Dharma, I am beginning to do prostrations.” The reason was that he made a trip to Mt Putuo and Mt Jiuhua and discovered that the people there were very devout and kind. After seeing the body relic at Mt Jiuhua, he was deeply affected and started his belief in Buddhism. The old Upasaka’s great obstacle was thus eradicated, isn’t it marvellous? Upasaka Hong firmly believes that a practitioner should be afraid of planting the wrong karmic causes, instead of being afraid when the karmic results ripens. She is very careful in her daily actions not to create negative karma. As the obscurations that covered her mind’s nature began to be dissolved, her mind-nature naturally revealed itself and she began to exhibit some clairvoyances. This came unexpectedly without wishing for it, as hope and fear are the obstacles of dharma practice. Only when one has a pure mind free from expectations, would one attain realizations.
ShanxI Upasaka Zhi Lun (Wisdom Wheel)
Upasaka ZhI has a certain foundation of practice in Vajrayana and Zen. When he first received the Vajrasattva text, he felt it contained great blessings. He recited the mantra daily for 3 hours. Since reciting the mantra, his diligence in practice has increased, and an ardent wish for realizing the Dharmakaya wisdom has arisen in him. Once, when he thought that short mantra OM BENZA SATO HUNG was the essence of the longer mantra, a completely new way of singing the long mantra came to him extemporaneously. After reciting the mantra for some time, once he saw his own Dharma protector. It was very clear and there was no fear, he felt some closeness to the protector and realized that the protector was always following him but karmic obscurations had prevented him from seeing it only. Since practicing this mantra, more people have come to seek his help to perform deliverance for the deceased. Even deceased spirits from other families would come to him for help. He usually recited the Bardo Thodrol to help these spirits.
Upasaka Shao from Ningbo
He is 30 this year. In 1997, he met His Holiness Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche and made an aspiration to recite 100 million Vajrasattva heart mantra. When he is free from work, he makes time to help out at the Dharma center for lay-practitioners. Otherwise, he would spent all his remaining time on reciting mantra. He recites mantra anytime while engaging in his daily activities, but only counts recitations that are done with concentration during a session of practice. To date, he has completed 10 million recitations. When asked if he had any experiences, he replied, “Practice means having a pure mind.” When I asked him how he was able to deal with daily affairs, he replied that he was able to remain unperturbed by external circumstances. As the past mind is gone, the future mind has not arrived, and the present mind cannot be grasped, so he rests his attention only in the present, checking whether his body, speech and mind are non-virtuous and applying self-reflection and confession as needed. If he sees anything negative externally, he will check himself and deem it a reflection of his own negative karma. At the same time, he would make confessions on behalf of all sentient beings and after each recitation, he would dedicate the merits to all beings, praying for them to be reborn in Amitabha’s pureland. He has made a vow in front of Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva’s statue not to get married in this life. He hopes to realize the nature of mind. As he has made the vow of remaining single, he prayed to Avalokiteshvara for his younger brother to have a son (to carry on the family line). In the end, this wish was granted. His brother had a very intelligent son. Now his only wish is to gain realizations and be reborn in the pureland.