Transforming the Adverse Conditions
of the Coronavirus into the Path
By Rangjung Neljorma Khadro Namsel Dronme (Khadro-la ), the state oracle of Tsering Chenga, the goddess protector of Tibet.
Ven. Sangye Khadro received a copy of Khadro-la’s text—composed on March 30, 2020—and gave an introduction and commentary in the following Bodhisattva’s Breakfast Corner talk. Several people have asked for a copy of the prayer, which we publish here.
Ogyen Rinpoche,* please help!
Due to the karmic appearances of sentient beings in this degenerated bad time, the world is pervaded by a pandemic disease. We have fallen into a prison without shelter and without hope, isolated, without protection, and without an army; we cry out in despair.
The epidemic has turned heaven and earth upside down; I ask the Buddhas of the three times to listen to me.
I reveal openly that, because sentient beings cling to a self while the self does not exist, externally the elements are disturbed.
I reveal openly that, due to the hallucinated mind grasping at true existence while true existence does not exist, beings are appropriated by the three poisons.
I reveal openly that, controlled by the black poisonous snake of self-conception, we act for our victory, while pursuing the defeat of others.
This hallucinated mind grasping to a self and true existence conceives samsara perfections as if they were a pure refuge. Suddenly the deadly epidemic comes, the graveyard of the maturation of actions, and the samsaric perfections, like dirt and stones, become devoid of happiness; the time has come for great affection and great compassion. The experience of ripening in accordance with causes and their effects is certain; the dependent relationship is undeceiving.
In the objective and vibrant appearance, the sensory object that brings happiness is grasped with attachment and appropriated by sentient beings. But it is like a dream. Inspire me so that I may see dependent arising and emptiness; inspire me so that I may see emptiness and dependent arising.
After realizing that dependent arising does not exist intrinsically, inspire me to see the reality of the mind.
Controlled by the hallucinated mind that conceives a self that does not exist, the chronic sickness of selfishness that protects friends and eliminates enemies, destroys this and future lives in a continuum of suffering like the ripples of water. Not understanding that sentient beings are our mothers and their kindness, we act with ingratitude: this I reveal openly.
I reveal openly that, after entering the cycle of pure Dharma of the vajra vehicle, I have degenerated the samayas received through initiation.
Vajradhara, from the sphere of Dharmakaya without elaborations, you are the precious treasure that fulfills all desires and needs. Vajradhara, white lotus of emptiness and compassion, venerable pervading all families, dispeller of the three times, you are the only refuge that eliminates the darkness of ignorance. You are the Buddha, but I considered you a normal human being: this I reveal openly.
Though I have received the teachings of infallibility of action and results, like performing a theatrical act I wear the mask of Dharma while supporting my life by corrupted means: this I reveal openly.
I reveal openly that, although there is no other refuge but the three rare and supreme, I relied on non-Buddhist teachings.
I reveal openly that, although there are various vehicles within the pure Dharma, I let the mind pursue erroneous views.
I openly reveal that, although the freedoms and endowments are difficult to obtain and are highly meaningful, the useless activities increase.
I reveal openly that, although I possess the wisdom of the primordial mind, I do not see that my mind is the Dharmakaya.
Not understanding how appearances arise from the base, I regard Dharmakaya and Nirmanakaya as newly produced: that I openly reveal.
In short, thanks to the strength of the Lama’s kindness I can realize that all appearances of samsaric beings are devoid of true existence, always free, self-liberated, directly free.
Lama Vajradhara, you are the embodiment of all three roots, you are our only refuge and hope satisfying all wishes. From the magical illusion of the three supreme bodies, precious omniscient compassionate one, I beg you to pacify epidemics, famines, and wars.
In the state without referent I reveal all the negative actions of the three doors of us sentient beings affected by ignorance. Though the confession, the one who confesses, and the object of confession do not exist, I confess as an illusion, in the state of non-intrinsic nature.
Dharma friends close to me and acquaintances, please apply yourselves in Dharma reflecting on the difficulty of obtaining freedoms and endowments; apply yourselves in the Dharma of adventitious impermanence; apply yourselves in the Dharma of infallibility of actions and their results; apply yourselves in Dharma reflecting on the disadvantages of samsara; apply yourselves in Dharma reflecting on the advantages of liberation; apply yourselves in Dharma reflecting on universal responsibility. Compassion, altruism, and the mind of enlightenment are the precious riches that do not deceive.
In particular, apply yourself in the Dharma of the vajra vehicle of the secret mantra that frees upon meeting it. Apply yourself in the Dharma that is the sublime essence, endowed with emptiness and great compassion, the spontaneous and perfect nature.
Rest assured that the Dharma is solely to pacify yourself and benefit others. Stop worrying! If you rely on powerful deities, all suffering becomes an aid to happiness. Never separate yourself, even at the cost of your life, from the refuge of the three rare and supreme ones, who do not deceive.
Faith and compassion are the foundation of all that you desire, do not be afraid! Make requests from the bottom of your heart. Ask continually for blessings from the lama deity.
In cases when you can act on the results of your actions, what is the purpose of worrying and being sorry? In cases when you cannot do anything about the results of actions, what is the purpose of worrying and being sorry?
If you recite the mantras Mani [om mani padme hum], Benza [om ah hum vajra guru pädma siddhi hum] and Tare [om tare tuttare ture soha], with request, you will certainly free yourself from all obstacles.
May there be the auspiciousness of the Lama and the three jewels!
May there be the auspiciousness of reality free from denial and affirmation!
May there be the auspiciousness of happiness of sentient beings, the mothers!
May there be the auspiciousness of seeing the compassionate lama!
May there be the auspiciousness of spontaneous fulfillment of the four enlightened activities!
May there be the auspiciousness of seeing and hearing the excellent path of liberation!
May there be the auspiciousness of spontaneous fulfillment of the fruition of the spontaneous realization of the three exalted bodies!
May there be the auspiciousness of complete prosperity!
Right now, due to the corona virus pandemic disease that has spread throughout the world, human beings are afraid of losing their lives and suffering from multiple losses, such as financial loss. Therefore, just like one family, the beings on this planet are all experiencing great torment together. I have been asked what could be done to quickly bring this disease to an end. My advice is to practice the Guru Yoga of the Supreme Arya who has the Lotus in his Hand (Chenrezig) inseparable with the one who embodies the great compassion of all the Conquerors**, the manifestation of the union of emptiness and great compassion, the dispeller of the three times (His Holiness the Dalai Lama).
People should recite as much as possible the mantra of the six syllables (Mani) and the mantra of the name of the maha guru (Padmasambava). In particular, to quickly eliminate the disease, I think it would be of great benefit if [practitioners of] Tibetan and allopathic medicine, in combination, sought a remedy or vaccine. As for myself, being a Buddhist, I make intense requests to the three rare and precious ones, which are infallible, and I practice as much as possible the four enlightened activities combined with prayers.
After having received sincere requests from many friends from around the world, I have composed this writing on March 30, 2020. Khadro Namsel Dorje
Rough translation by Fabrizio Pallotti. Lightly edited by Sangye Khadro.
*Ogyen Rinpoche is another name for Guru Rinpoche, Padmasambhava
** Find a practice text for The Yoga of the Guru Inseparable from Avalokiteshvara, translated by Dr. Alex Berzin, on the Study Buddhism website hosted by Berzin Archives. The site also contains commentaries on the practice.