The Vajrasattva mantra of 100 syllables is a significant prayer in Mahayana Buddhism, particularly in the Shingon tradition of Japan, and is frequently used in tantric practices of Tibetan Buddhism. Its potency lies in its ability to purify the mind and spirit, as it encompasses the essence of all mantras in Buddhism.
With a history dating back centuries, this powerful mantra is said to have the ability to cleanse soul of negative karma and impurities, allowing individuals to achieve enlightenment and liberation from suffering. Its intricate composition of 100 syllables embodies the very essence of Vajrasattva, the Buddha of purification and is a potent tool for spiritual transformation and growth.
In this article, LotusBuddhas will provide you with an insight into the identity of Vajrasattva and the significance of his 100-syllable mantra.
Who is Vajrasattva?
Vajrasattva is a significant figure in Vajrayana Buddhism, a branch of Mahayana Buddhism practiced primarily in Tibet and other Himalayan regions. Vajrasattva is considered a bodhisattva, a being who has developed the aspiration to attain full enlightenment for the benefit of all sentient beings. He is typically depicted as a white-colored deity, symbolizing purity, and is often referred to as embodiment of purity and purification.
In Buddhist art, Vajrasattva is depicted holding a vajra in his right hand and a bell in his left. As a bodhisattva with great compassion for all beings, Vajrasattva made the following vow:
“In the future, when I attain Buddhahood, I vow that those who have committed the five heinous crimes and must undergo the corresponding karmic retribution will be completely purified of all harmful actions and broken precepts if they hear my name, think of me, or recite the mantra of 100 Syllables, the most powerful mantra in all of the secret teachings! Until then, I vow to remain in samsara.”
Vajrasattva is associated with the practice of purification in Vajrayana Buddhism. Practitioners often recite his mantra, called the “Hundred Syllable Mantra” or Vajrasattva mantra, as part of meditation and ritual practices to purify negative actions, speech and thoughts. The practice of Vajrasattva is believed to help remove the negative karmic consequences of one’s actions, fostering spiritual growth and ultimately leading to enlightenment.
In Tantric Buddhism, Vajrasattva is also regarded as the primordial Buddha or Adi-Buddha, representing the dharmakaya or the ultimate nature of reality. In this context, he is sometimes depicted in union with his consort, Vajragarvi, symbolizing the union of wisdom and compassion.
Meaning of Vajrasattva mantra of 100 Syllables
The Vajrasattva mantra of 100 syllables also known as Vajrasattva Dorje Sempa mantra, is a profound and powerful prayer in Vajrayana Buddhist tradition. Revered for its ability to purify the mind, it is a key practice for practitioners on the path to enlightenment. The mantra invokes the deity Vajrasattva, the embodiment of wisdom and purity, whose divine presence clears karmic obstacles and negative emotions, ultimately enabling the practitioner to achieve spiritual awakening.
The Vajrasattva Mantra of 100 Syllables in Sanskrit is as follows:
Om Vajrasattva Samaya Manu Palaya / Vajrasattva Deno Patita / Dido Me Bhava / Suto Kayo Me Bhava / Supo Kayo Me Bhava / Anu Rakto Me Bhava / Sarva Siddhi Me Prayaccha / Sarva Karma Su Chame / Chittam Shriya Kuru Hum / Ha Ha Ha Ha Ho / Bhagavan Sarva Tathagata / Vajra Ma Me Muncha / Vajra Bhava Maha Samaya Sattva Ah Hum Phat
OM BENDZA SATO SAMAYA
MANUPALAYA, BENDZA SATO DENOPA
TITHA, DRIDO ME BHAVA, SUTO KAYO
ME BHAVA, SUPO KAYO ME BHAVA,
ANURAKTO ME BHAVA, SARVA
SIDDHI ME PRAYATSA, SARVA KARMA
SU TSAME, TSITTAM SHRIYAM KURU
HUM, HA HA HA HA HO, BHAGAVAN
SARVA TATHAGATA, BENDZA MAME
MUTSA, BENDZI BHAVA MAHA
SAMAYA SATO AH
Om Vajrasattva Hum
In this sacred incantation, each syllable carries immense spiritual significance, the potency of which lies in their vibrational frequencies, rather than a literal translation. However, a loose interpretation of the mantra is as follows:
Om: The primordial sound, representing the unity of all creation and the divine essence that permeates the universe.
Vajrasattva: The deity of purification, symbolizing indestructible purity and wisdom.
Samaya: A sacred bond or commitment between the practitioner and the deity, which is the foundation for spiritual progress.
Manu Palaya: “Lead me along the path,” an invocation for guidance and protection from the deity.
Deno Patita, Dido Me Bhava, Suto Kayo Me Bhava, Supo Kayo Me Bhava, Anu Rakto Me Bhava: These phrases express the practitioner’s fervent request for Vajrasattva’s blessings, asking for the transformation of the body, speech, and mind to become one with the deity’s pure qualities.
Sarva Siddhi Me Prayaccha: “Grant me all accomplishments,” a plea for the attainment of spiritual realizations and the ultimate goal of enlightenment.
Sarva Karma Su Chame: “Make all my actions virtuous,” an aspiration for all actions to be guided by wisdom, compassion, and skillful means.
Chittam Shriya Kuru Hum: A request to purify the practitioner’s mind and transform it into a vessel for ultimate truth and wisdom.
Ha Ha Ha Ha Ho: The five syllables representing the five wisdoms, which are essential qualities on the path to enlightenment.
Bhagavan Sarva Tathagata: An homage to all the Buddhas and enlightened beings, acknowledging their limitless wisdom and compassion.
Vajra Ma Me Muncha: A plea for Vajrasattva’s indestructible wisdom to dispel ignorance and obstacles.
Vajra Bhava Maha Samaya Sattva Ah Hum Phat: An invocation of the divine presence of Vajrasattva and a request for the empowerment of the sacred bond between the practitioner and the deity, culminating in the accomplishment of the ultimate truth.
The meaning of the mantra is:
“Greetings, Vajrasattva! You who have forged spiritual strength through your divine will and holy deeds, seeking to liberate all beings from the cycle of birth and death. Whatever may happen in my life, be it happiness or sorrow, success or failure, I shall maintain a joyous and serene mind, never giving up. Yet, I beseech thee to guide me!
Bring me closer to Vajra of all Buddhas, and grant me the ability to perceive the ultimate nature of phenomena. Purify my mind, and cultivate within me noble qualities of ethics and happiness. Truly, you are my master and teacher!”
In the practice of the Tibetan Diamond Path of Buddhism, the Vajrasattva mantra is used in Ngondro, or preliminary practices, to purify the mind of afflictions before undertaking more esoteric tantric techniques.
Benefits of chanting Vajrasattva mantra of 100 Syllables
The mantra has the power to bring tremendous benefits to those who recite it, effectively erasing familiar tendencies, obstacles, negative emotions and harmful habits that we often face in life. As LotusBuddhas said at the beginning of this article, Vajrasattva mantra is also believed to have the ability to cleanse karmic obstacles, bring tranquility to the mind and develop general spiritual activities.
Think of your mind as a clear blue sky with fluffy clouds floating below. The clouds come and go, but the sky remains, blue and serene. Although its blue color may be obscured at times, it never disappears.
Clouds like greed, resentment and delusion pollute the mind. Due to the temporary nature of these negative states, they cannot be considered a part of the mind’s inherent nature. They may conceal the true nature of the mind, which is compassionate and peaceful, but those qualities are never absent.
By reciting Vajrasattva mantra, you can cleanse your mind and discover its true nature. The power of mantra lies in its ability to clear away the clouds and reveal the sky’s inherent clarity and brilliance. Through consistent practice, you can cultivate a mind that is calm, compassionate and wise.
1. Purification of negative karma
The primary benefit of chanting the Vajrasattva Mantra is the purification of negative karma. According to the law of karma, our actions, thoughts, and intentions have a direct impact on our present and future experiences. By reciting this mantra, you can cleanse the karmic imprints that lead to suffering and obstacles in life. The mantra acts as a powerful antidote, neutralizing the consequences of past negative actions and paving the way for a more harmonious future.
2. Mental and emotional healing
Chanting the Vajrasattva Mantra not only purifies karmic imprints but also fosters mental and emotional healing. The mantra’s vibrations have a soothing effect on the mind, helping to release deeply rooted fears, anxieties, and emotional traumas. As a result, practitioner experiences a profound sense of inner peace and emotional stability.
3. Cultivation of mindfulness and awareness
As with any meditative practice, the recitation of the Vajrasattva mantra promotes mindfulness and awareness. By focusing on the mantra’s words and their meanings, one can develop a heightened sense of presence and self-awareness. This increased mindfulness enables practitioners to live more consciously and make better choices in their daily lives, resulting in greater overall wellbeing.
4. Connection with Vajrasattva’s enlightened qualities
When chanting the Vajrasattva mantra, one invokes the blessings and guidance of Vajrasattva, the embodiment of purity and the complete purification of all defilements. By doing so, practitioners can align themselves with the enlightened qualities of Vajrasattva, such as wisdom, compassion and skillful means, fostering their own spiritual development and growth.
5. Acceleration of spiritual progress
The practice of chanting the Vajrasattva mantra can significantly accelerate one’s spiritual progress. By purifying negative karma and cultivating a connection with Vajrasattva, practitioners can more readily overcome the obstacles that hinder their spiritual journey. This purification process lays the foundation for a smoother path towards self-realization and enlightenment.
6. Development of compassion and altruism
The Vajrasattva mantra practice instills a deep sense of compassion and altruism in its practitioners. As one purifies their own negative karma, they develop a greater understanding of the interconnectedness of all beings and the importance of compassion in alleviating suffering. This realization inspires a heartfelt commitment to the welfare of others, fostering a more compassionate and altruistic way of being.
Due to the tremendous benefits of Vajrasattva mantra of 100 Syllables, Khenpo Sherab Sangpo, a revered master of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, consistently urges his disciples to recite this mantra at least 21 times per day or more.