Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Zhu Yuanzhang’s Secret Yidam

Shang Longrik Gyatso Rinpoche Blog
Shakyamuni Buddha

In modern Fenyang in Anhui province, there is a monastery where Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming Dynasty, took his vows and became a monk because of his family’s poverty. At that time, the temple was so old and dilapidated that it didn’t even have a main gate. Once Zhu Yuanzhang took the throne, he relocated and restored the monastery, bestowing it with the name of Dalongxing. For hundreds of years, it was one of the most respected monasteries in China. In this majestic complex, there are nearly 1,000 monk cells and more than 20 large pavilions and halls. It is an important tourist attraction for both domestic and international visitors and keeps countless mysterious stories within its walls.

Zhu Yuanzhang’s deep affection for Huangjue Monastery (its original name) was directly related to his ability to ascend the dragon throne and unify the country. Zhu Yuanzhang also gave Huangjue Monastery the name Longjue Monastery, which means “the place the emperor reached realization,” signifying that this is where he met his spiritual master. The abbot of the monastery saw that Zhu Yuanzhang was not an ordinary person, bearing the marks of someone with the potential to be a great leader. He told Zhu Yuanzhang, “I will transmit a mantra to you. This mantra will give you fortune that surpasses that of 10,000 men, but I hope that when the day arrives that you are ready to set forth into the world, you will honor the three jewels and temples near and far.” And so, Fangzhang gave the young man Cundhi Buddha’s mantra, which Zhu Yuanzhang recited night and day, never expecting that it would completely change his life. Thereafter, in the war between himself and Chen Youliang (his greatest adversary), Zhu Yuanzhang called on Cundhi’s powerful guidance to come to his aid, eventually enabling him to conquer all. Otherwise, the Ming dynasty would have been ruled by the Chen family.

To understand the mysterious power of Cundhi’s mantra, you must read the Tripitaka Koreana, which includes a lot of related information. This mantra comes from Buddha Shakyamuni, who one day suddenly felt that in the future Dharma Decadence Age, sentient beings’ karma would be extremely heavy, their merits continuously decreasing while diseases spread and people’s minds filled with vexation. The Buddha thought about this powerful mantra and hoped that it could help those future beings, fewer and fewer of whom would believe in Buddhism or observe precepts. So many Dharma practices would be unavailable to anyone except those with very good roots. The majority would have little opportunity to practice and humanity’s calamities would become insurmountable. 

So, the Buddha released his supernatural abilities and transmitted Cundhi’s mantra of inconceivable blessing and power. He said that those who practice this mantra would eliminate the karma they had amassed in past lives when they ignorantly committed the 10 unrepentable bad deeds and the five inexpiable sins, as well as extend their lives. Practitioners of this mantra would receive whatever they desired, whether an official post or sons or daughters. Renunciates and laypeople alike could fulfill all their wishes, even becoming a ruler in a future life, receiving supreme authority and respect. The Buddha said in a sutra that this mantra is especially useful for those who want to be revered by others; they would be showered with love and respect and have prosperous dealings with others. When traveling for business or leisure overseas, recitation of this mantra prevents harm by fire or water, karmic debtors, poison and demons. Yuan Liaofan (of the Ming Dynasty) also found fortune, wealth, offspring and the attainment of government rank through the recitation of the Cundhi mantra, showing that it is as powerful as the Buddha proclaimed.

People with a mind of faith and understanding should request this mantra and its practice method from a qualified master. Once this is done, you can visualize Cundhi in the space in front of yourself, radiating light from his heart to yours. If a practitioner with bodhicitta and a mind of faith and understanding recites the mantra continually, day and night, for 49 days, he or she will have an auspicious dream and blessings.

Hear Shang Rinpoche's recitation of the mantra here on his YouTube Channel:
Cundhi Mantra on YouTube

The Buddha showed his compassion by not placing many restrictions on the recitation of this mantra. Laypeople and renunciates alike can recite it, and there are no specific disciplines like eating vegetarian. This is an incomparable mantra (dharani), and it takes amazing merit to come across it.

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