Buddhist Healing: Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda Healing Practice, Guided by Venerable Zasep Rinpoche — Video Teaching

Feature Contents

    Venerable Zasep Rinpoche leads a short healing teaching and mantra with visualization on Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda. He teaches the mantra and describes how to visualize the healing, both for people with initiation, and without.

    This famous healing practice, combines a meditation on the Power, Compassion and Wisdom of the Buddha, represented in their most wrathful forms as Vajrapani (Power), Hayagriva (Compassion) and King Garuda (Wisdom.)

    • Note: See time indexes below if you’d like to jump ahead to the visualizations and mantras.
    • For more on the individual deities — Vajrapani, Hayagriva and King Garuda — see sections and links below.

    EVENT ALERT: Venerable Zasep Rinpoche (see video below) will offer initiation into the practice of Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda, the fierce healing practice for difficult times, via Zoom from Tashi Choling on Saturday, January 7, 2023 at 6:30pm (Eastern Time).  As Rinpoche indicates in the video, this practice may be done whether initiated or not, but it is always considered more effective with teaching/initiation. Registration at Eventbrite here>>

    Video Teaching, play below (includes mantras and visualizations):


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    Famous Healing Practice

    The profound practice of Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda, a famous healing practice. It is well known because it combines the powers of three very ferocious and powerful Buddhist Enlightened Beings, or Wrathful Buddhas. Vajrapani is one of the Three Bodhisattvas: Vajrapani (Power of the Buddhas), Chenrezig/Avalokiteshvara (Compassion of the Buddhas, and Manjushri (Wisdom of the Buddhas. [For a feature on the Three Great Bodhisattvas, who are the greatest of the Eight Great Bodhisattvas, see>>] 

    Buddha Weekly Om Vajrapani Hayagriva Garuda Hum Pey mantra and image of deity by Laur a Santi Buddhism
    The Three Fierce Healing Ones Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda vizualized together with a special mantra Om Vajrapani Hayagriva Garuda Hum Pey. Rinpoche describes how to visualize the Three Powerful Healing Buddhas together and chant their mantra for healing.

    The Combination of Three Forces: Power, Compassion and Wisdom of Buddha

    Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda is the combination of these three archetypal forces, but all in wrathful form. In this case, wrath in Buddhist visualization represents the activity and power of the healing action:


    Buddha Weekly Vajrapani art close up of Vajra by Laura Santi Buddhism
    Close-up detail of Vajrapni from Laura Santi’s extraordinary painting. To buy one of her prints, see the Etsy store link below.
    • Compassion is here represented by Hayagriva, who is the fiercest and most powerful aspect of Chenrezig (Avalokiteshvara), the Heruka of the Padma or Lotus family. [For a feature on Hayagriva, see>>]


    Buddha Weekly Hayagriva horse head on Vajrapnis head art by Laura Santi Buddhism
    Green Horse head of Hayagriva, symbolic of his wrathful and compassionate healing energy. (Detail from Laura Santi’s painting.)


    • Here, the Wisdom aspect, is represented by wrathful King Garuda, the enlightened king of the Garudas — a beautiful white “eagle like” deity with “blades for wings”, who are the traditional adversaries of the Nagas (sometimes considered the cause of some illnesses.) He is associated with wrathful wisdom.


    Buddha Weekly King Garuda art by Laura Santi Buddhism
    King Garuda hovers above, the great white healing king. A detail from Laura Santi’s art.


    The wrathful combination of Vajrapani, (representing the Power of the Buddhas), Hayagriva (representing the Compassion of all the Buddhas in this wrathful form of Chenrezig) and King Garuda (representing the wisdom of all the Buddhas) is well known for removing illnesses and harmful spirits.

    • For more on the individual deities, see the sections below.


    Buddha Weekly Difficult Diseases and stress on healthcare workers 2021 Buddhism
    Please note: Rinpoche advises you to always seek medical professional health care first (including vaccinations and other important health guidance such as masking and social distancing) and to use healing meditations such as this one as supportive.



    Rinpoche guides that health visualizations and mantras are NOT a replacement for good health care, advice of your medical professional and vaccines. Venerable Zasep Rinpoche always teaches common sense with a “see your doctor first” message. Healing visualizations and mantras are supplemental.


    Rinpoche advises that this practice can be visualized and the mantra chanted by both initiated and uninitiated. He describes the visualization for both (see time codes below.) You visualize the Three Fierce Ones in FRONT of you if you do not have initiation.


    Art by Laura Santi Sacred Art. Etsy Shop: Etsy.com/shop/LauraSantiSacredArt


    Healing Practice of Vajrapani Hayagriva and King Garuda

    Practice of the Three Wrathful Deities For difficult diseases and difficult times — and viruses such as Covid-19 — many Tibetan Buddhist teachers recommend the ferocious and powerful healing practices of the Three Fierce Ones. Collectively visualized as Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda, this practice is reputed to be effective against even the most terrible diseases and health conditions.




    Buddha Weekly Visualization of mantra and hum at Vajrapnis heart Buddhism
    For those with strong visualizing skills, the guidance is to visualize HUM at your heart and the mantra clockwise around the HUM with blue, green and white light going out to all sentient beings. For the rest of us — of those who can only partially visualize, just do the best you can, while chanting the healing mantra OM VAJRAPANI HAYAGRIVA GARUDA HUM PEY. Visualization image from the video.

    Practicing the Mantra

    Venerable Zasep Rinpoche advises that this wonderful healing mantra may be chanted by non-initiates, provided the Three Wrathful Ones Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda are visualized in front of you. Only initiates may visualize themselves as the deity. Visualize, as described in the video, Healing Blue Light going out to all sentient beings (and yourself) from Vajrapani’s heart, and simultaneously Green Healing Light going out to all sentient beings (and yourself) from Hayagriva’s Green Horse Head, and White Healing Light going out to all sentient beings (and yourself) from King Garuda. You receive all three energies — and send the healing energies to all sentient beings.

    See the visualizations animated and noted in the time indexes below.

    Video Highlights by Time Code for Quick Access

    Chapters 00:00 Healing Practice of Vajrapani Hayagriva and King Garuda

    01:05 Narrator’s introduction to the healing practice of the Three Wrathful Ones

    02:04 Venerable Rinpoche teaching begins introducing the subject of the meditation — the Three Wrathful Healers Vajrapani, Hayagriva and King Garuda — and their benefits.

    03:43 Rinpoche describes the Three Fierce Ones in detail with graphics on screen.

    06:14 Rinpoche describes Hayagriva Green Horse Head

    06:43 Rinpoche describes King Garuda

    07:15 Rinpoche explains the 360 types of Dunn, causes of mental and physical illness

    12:10 VISUALIZATION without Initiation followed by mantra: Rinpoche explains and video demonstrates the visualization with graphics.

    13:09 Rinpoche demonstrates the mantra and how to visualize it.

    14:13 Rinpoche explains how to visualize if you DO have initiation.

    14:39 Animated visualization of the mantra at the heart of the deity with the three colours of healing light emitting and going out to heal all sentient beings (and you!): Blue light of Vajrapani, Green light of Hayagriva, and White light of King Garuda.

    16:40 Concluding remarks and dedication.

    Vajrapani, Hand of Buddha, the very power of Enlightened Mind, surrounded by other members of the Vajra Buddha family: Akshobya Buddha and Manjushri.
    Vajrapani, Hand of Buddha, the very power of Enlightened Mind, surrounded by other members of the Vajra Buddha family: Akshobya Buddha and Manjushri.

    Vajrapani — the Powerful Hand of the Buddha

    Vajrapani — which can translate as “Indestructible Hand” —  is one of the three great Bodhisattvas, each of them representing the three important qualities of Enlightenment:

    • Vajrapani is the “indestructible power of the Buddha” — helping us overcome the delusions, poisons and attachments that prevent our progress
    • Avalokiteshvara is the “compassion of the Buddha” — helping us overcome ego and clinging, understanding our “Oneness” with all beings
    • Manjushri is the “wisdom of the Buddha” — helping us discern truth, and overcome the illusions that keep us trapped.

    All three are equals; all are needed on the path to Enlightenment. We must balance compassion, wisdom and the power (i.e. discipline, etc.) to overcome the poisons.

    According to the Pañcaviṃsatisāhasrikā- and Aṣṭasāhasrikāprajñāpāramitās,  any Bodhisattva on the path can rely on Vajrapani’s protection.


    Buddha Weekly Gorgeous 3 head hayagriva Buddhism
    The terrifyingly beautiful visualization of the most “Powerful of Herukas” Hayagriva Sang Drub with three Green Horse Heads. This stunning image is from a Rubin Museum canvas dated between 1800 and 1899.


    Hayagriva — Wrathful Compassion of the Buddha

    Hayagriva — Chenrezig and Amtitabha’s most wrathful form — is the Heruka (Hero) of the Lotus Padma Buddha Family, the “Incredible Hulk” manifestation of the Compassionate Buddha. His irresistible “active” Discernment Wisdom is what many modern people need. Great teachers in modern times continue to request their students accumulate Hayagriva Heruka’s mantra — known to be particularly efficacious in these troubled times.

    As the Heruka of Amitabha’s Lotus Family, he is Chief among the Wrathful emanations, representing Dharma and Speech in its ferocious form — signified by the screaming (neighing) green horse head bursting out of his fiery red hair.

    Green, as with Green Tara, is symbolic of the “activity of all the Buddhas.” For more on Hayagriva, see our very in-depth feature [What’s so special about Hayagriva?>>] or our amazing documentary video on Youtube>>


    King Garuda — a King of Wisdom

    The Garudas are one of the Four Dignities — the Holy animals representing Bodhisattvas. These are:

    • Garuda — representing Wisdom
    • Dragon — representing Power
    • Tiger — representing Confidence
    • Snow Lion — Representing fearlessness.
    • The King of Garudas, is, a King of Wisdom, in Tibetan Buddhism.


    Buddha Weekly White Garuda Statue in Thailand dreamstime m 34694354 Buddhism
    White Garuda statue in Thailand.


    King Garuda is a an Enlightened Being in Mahayana Buddhism. He is associated with the bright, healing, warm light of the sun. He is popular also in Hinduism, Jainism and is the King of the Birds. Garudas are classically the opponents of Nagas, who get a bad “rap” as the cause of many diseases. (Rinpoche explains how he views this differently in the video.) The Garuda is also part of the state insignia in India, Indonesia and Thailand.


    Buddha Weekly Garuda Buddhism
    Garuda statue at a temple.


    In Buddhism, Garudas typically have golden wings, and are often depicted in art listening to the teachings of the Buddha. This is, in fact, why — with their extraordinary intelligence and power — many became Enlightened by Buddhist teachings. Some Garudas, including King Garuda, can change shapes. They are the protectors of Mount Semeru and protect the heavens from Asuras. As opponents of Nagas, who can cause illness, and because they are associated with the healing light of the sun, they are often considered healing energies, especially the Enlightened King Garuda.

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    Artist Laura Santi

    Art by Laura Santi Sacred Art, used with her kind permission. It is RECOMMENDED TO HAVE A NICE PRINT OF THE THREE FEIRCE ONES Vajrapani Hayagriva King Garuda in front of you. Laura has reasonably priced prints of her wonderful art on her Etsy store (along with many other Buddhist deities.)

    Laura Santi Sacred Art Etsy Shop: Etsy.com/shop/LauraSantiSacredArt


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