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Mahakala Sadhana

Start by praying for the root lineage blessing: First empty the mind. Next, visualize the Root Lineage Guru Living Buddha Lian-sheng appearing above your crown and radiating light on everyone present. Chant the Root Lineage Guru Heart Mantra 7 times. Pray to the Root Lineage Guru to empower you so that the practice will be auspicious.

Engender the Four Immeasurable Minds. Visualize your parents, children, relatives, friends, and enemies join you in this practice.

Wake-Up Call: Clap twice, then cross hands and snap thumbs and middle fingers.
  1. Recite the Purification Mantras and Earth God Mantra

  2. Recite the Invocation Mantra

  3. Tender the Great Homage with Visualization

  4. Mandala Offering

  5. Fourfold Refuge

  6. Armor Protection

  7. Recite the High King Avalokitesvara Sutra (1 time).

  8. Recite the Rebirth Mantra (7 times).

  9. Recite the Root Guru's Heart Mantra (108 times):
    Om, gu-ru, lian-sheng sid-dhi hum

  10. Mudra and Visualization

    Mahakala Mudra : Place your palms back to back with the right wrist on top of the left. Cross index fingers, middle fingers, ring fingers and small fingers. Straighten both thumbs upright.
    Illustration of mudra:   

    Seed Syllable:                      Mo                                           Hum

    Visualization: First empty the mind

    Chant the Emptiness Mantra:
    Om, si-ba-wa, su-da, sa-er-wa, da-er-ma, si-ba-wa, su-do-hang. (3 times)

    1. Above an expanse of ocean is a stretch of clear sunny sky. A moon disc rises from the ocean into the sky. Inside the moon disc is the Tibetan seed syllable「」''mo,'' emitting black light.

    2. The seed syllable inside the moon disc revolves and transforms into Mahakala. Mahakala has one face and six arms with three red round wide open glaring eyes. His whole dark-blue body emanates flames. He appears incomparably ferocious. A white elephant skin draped over his body with the elephant head facing downward and the four legs draping behind his shoulders and both legs. His uppermost right hand facing up holds the elephant's leg and the left hand, a trident. He has two hands in the centre, the right hand holds a skull drum while the left hand holds a lasso. Of the two primary hands, one holds a skull bowl and the other, a kartika.

      Besides wearing an elephant skin on his body, he has a green snake and necklaces around his neck. He also has white snakes wrapping around his ankles and wrists. These symbolize the submission of dragon kings and yaksas. His waist wears a tiger skin skirt with human heads hanging around it.

      Although Mahakala has six arms, he only has two legs. His right leg is bent at the knee while his left leg is outstretched. He straddles the body of a white elephant that lies on its back. The white elephant's left hand holds a skull bowl and the right hand, a big turnip.

    3. From the brow point of Mahakala, a beam of white light shines onto one's brow point. From the throat of Mahakala, a beam of red light shines onto one's throat. From the heart of Mahakala, a beam of blue light shines onto one's heart. The three lights of white, red, and blue merge completely into one's body and mind.

  11. Recite the Mahakala Heart Mantra (108 times):

    Om, ma-ha-ka-la-ye, so-ha.

  12. Entering Samadhi

  13. Emerging from Samadhi

  14. Praise Verse

    Li-zan-shu-sheng-da-hei-tian, yi-shi-hu-chi-fo-jiao-fa. Qi-qing-xiao-chu-zhu-zhang-ai, ci-yu-cheng-jiu-suo-yuan-shi.

    Praise the Extraordinary Mahakala,
    Protecting the Buddhist Dharma as pledged.
    Pray to eliminate all hindrances,
    Bestow on me the fulfilment of all my wishes.

  15. Recite the Principal Heart Mantras

  16. Recite the Buddha's Name (3 times)

    Namo the 36 trillion 119 thousand and 500 Amitabha Buddhas.

  17. Dedication

  18. Recite the Hundred Syllable Mantra (3 times)

  19. Tender the Great Homage with Visualization (same as step 3)

  20. Recite the Completion Mantra

    Om, Bu Lin. (3 times)

    Om Mani Padme Hum.

Dismissal: Clap twice, then cross hands and snap thumbs and middle fingers.

End of Practice: May all endeavors be auspicious.

An empowerment must be received from Living Buddha Lian-sheng or an authorized True Buddha School master before engaging in this particular sadhana.

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