True Buddha Dharma-character Treasury - Akasagarbha
On Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017, 3:00pm, at at Rainbow Temple, True Buddha School Dharma King Living Buddha Lian-shengSheng-yen Lu will preside over an Akasagarbha Homa Ceremony followed by the empowerment of Akasagarbha Uncommon Practice and the discourse of Lamdre. (Live Webcast Link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLl20r-KQlapX_5fT-N3cOw )
【Akasagarbha Mudra :】
The fingers of both hands are interlaced outwards. Place both index fingers upright with the tips touching each other to form an arc. The thumbs are then placed side by side against each other.
Akasagarbha wears a Five-buddha Crown. He is white in color and sits upon a blue-green lotus. His right arm is held inward and holds a flaming sword. His left fist is positioned at his waist and carries a lotus topped by a pearl-shaped jewel.
Akasagarbha resides in the mandalas of both the Garbhadhatu and Vajradhatu. In the Vajradhatu he is the Vajra Jewel Bodhisattva and is one of the Sixteen Deities of the Auspicious Aeon positioned in the outer court of the southern direction. Within the Garbhadhatu he holds the primary position in the Akasagarbha court.
The secret name of Akasagarbha Bodhisattva is ''Treasury Vajra.'' This ''Treasury of All Space Bodhisattva'' is so-called because the wisdom of Akasagarbha is, like space, infinitely vast and deep. Akasagarbha's abode is the boundlessness of space. He not only knows every secret meaning but also saves all sentient beings with great compassion.
Akasagarbha has a Pure Land called ''Fragrant Realm.'' Some say that the Pure Land of Akasagarbha is all the stars in space and that his Pure Land extends throughout all the vast infinity of space just as all the stars extend throughout the boundless cosmos. Thus, Akasagarbha has tremendous power and authority.
Akasagarbha possesses the two essential esoteric gateways of virtue and wisdom. This is written in the Akasagarbha Sutra, the Akasagarbha Chapter of the Great Collection Sutra and the Sutra of the Mandalas of the Eight Great Bodhisattvas.
Akasagarbha is one of the Eight Great Bodhisattvas. When we recite the ''High King Avalokitesvara Sutra'' we recite the name of Akasagarbha. The Eight Great Bodhisattvas are: Avalokiteshvara, Manjushri, Samantabhadra, Ksitigarbha, Maitreya, Akasagarbha, Vajrapani and Sarvanivarana-Viskambhin. These are the Eight Great Bodhisattvas of the Mahayana.
The Akasagarbha Sutra states ''By constantly reciting this deity's name, one's wishes for wisdom, love and respect of all, a wonderful singing voice, the position of a king, appointment as a high ranking official, all manner of wealth and riches, a perfect spouse, or fame throughout the world after performing virtuous deeds, will all be fulfilled.''
As depicted in his image, Akasagarbha's right hand holds a sword which empowers one's wisdom to become as sharp as the sword. His left hand holds a lotus topped by a sun disc, a moon disc, a round wisdom fruit, and a wisdom jewel. In Akasagarbha's mudra, the tips of the two forefingers or middle fingers touch together to form an arc in the shape of a jewel. The shape of the mudra is incorrect if the two touching fingers form a point instead of an arc.
Through the dharma practice of Akasagarbha one gains wisdom, unfailing memory, fame, etc.
Akasagarbha has a number of unique characteristics, but primarily he has supreme wisdom and vast, unlimited good fortune. As his good fortune is boundless as space, Akasagarbha can be considered a wealth deity. His wisdom is unlimited. His power of memory encompasses all space.
Another characteristic of this deity is authority and formidable power. One who seeks enormous power as an emperor, king, president, military commander, or civilian official should cultivate Akasagarbha Bodhisattva.
Akasagarbha has vast power for good fortune, infinite wisdom, and boundless strength of memory. He has formidable power and immense strength to gain authority. Akasagarbha is a truly incomparable bodhisattva. Everything about Akasagarbha is in every way boundless as space.
Essentially, what Akasagarbha bestows upon one who practices his dharma and attains spiritual union is an increase of memory, authority, good fortune, and wisdom.
There are five Akasagarbha Bodhisattvas called the ''Five Great Akasagarbhas.'' Each of the ''Five Great Akasagarbhas'' has a different mudra and each mudra forms the shape of a jewel.
The power of this deity is truly extraordinary, His wisdom is perfect, he has his own Pure Land, and he is able to increase one's wisdom.
In the past, the personal deity of Master Kukai (Kobo Daishi) was Mahavairocana Buddha. But what Master Kukai actually practiced was the ''Akasagarbha Practice of Enduring Memory of What's Learned.'' He practiced this dharma while in a cave retreat. At that time his memory was probably weak, like Grand Master's. However, Master Kukai cultivated the Akasagarbha dharma practice to the point where stars flew into his mouth and from then on he completely recovered his memory. He could perfectly recollect all the various sutras he had studied, all the mudras, all the mantras, all the visualizations and the all the cultivation practices of all the buddhas, bodhisattvas, and deities.
To cultivate the Akasagarbha dharma practice, one visualizes the image of Akasagarbha appearing in front of one, then recites Akasagarbha's mantra: ''Namo。ah-jia-she-jie-po-ye。Om。ah-li。jia-ma-li。mu-li。so-ha。'' The practice requires that the mantra be recited one million times. Before beginning the practice one must recite the Akasagarbha mantra 100 thousand times.
By keeping the Akasagarbha mantra frequently in mind, one's speech is purified. This practice is not the usual cultivation practice. One must pay close attention to the days of the solar and lunar eclipse. When there is a day of solar or lunar eclipse, one makes an offering of incense, flowers, drinks and food to Akasagarbha, along with an offering of a cup of water. One then sits in meditation in front of the image of Akasagarbha and forms the Akasagarbha mudra. Place both index fingers upright with the tips touching together to form an arc. The thumbs are then placed side by side against each other while the rest of fingers are interlaced outward. This is the Akasagarbha mudra.
As one cultivates and recites the mantra, one first visualizes a detailed image of Akasagarbha. Visualize Akasagarbha appearing in the empty space in front of one. Then visualize that Akasagarbha's sword emits white flames which shoot out and soar in an arc into the water offering. Then visualize that a beam of white light shines out from the pearl-like jewel on top of the lotus into the cup of water. The light emitted by the sword is the Wisdom Sword Light. This light destroys the karmic obstacles of ignorance one has accumulated over one's lifetimes and instantly cuts the bonds of one's black karma. The radiance of the ''pearl-like jewel'' is the ''Wisdom Fruit Light.'' This light increases the ''wisdom light'' of the Vajrayana practitioner and makes one's memory ''firm and unfailing.'' When one has clearly visualized both lights, one then recites the mantra 108 times followed by visualizing an image of the solar and lunar eclipse entering into the water. This visualization represents that the water contains the Wisdom Sword Light, the Wisdom Fruit Light, sunlight and moonlight. One then drinks the water and prays that one will merge with Akasagarbha.
With the image of Akasagarbha, his mantra, and his mudra, a tantric dharma practice is established. The three main elements of tantric practice are visualization, mudra, and mantra. When these elements are present, one may proceed with the practice.
According to the patriarch's transmission, it is of utmost importance to cultivate during the cycles of the solar and lunar eclipses. In other words, if one is cultivating the practice under moonlight, it is best that the the cup of water is positioned toward the moonlight of the lunar eclipse, or if practicing under sunlight, toward the sunlight of the solar eclipse. It's best to have the water facing toward the moonlight or sunlight because Akasagarbha may appear at this time. When one drinks the water into which the moonlight or the sunlight has fallen, one will have a powerful memory by the next day. This is the mystery and magic of tantric dharma practice.
The Wisdom Seed of Akasagarbha Akasagarbha Sadhana
!!Please be aware that before anyone can practice the above uncommon practices, it is advised and recommended that they take refuge and the respective empowerment; alternatively one must face inherent resulting cause and effect!!
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